Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Dear Ibuprofen-Thank you for getting me through Ragnar

Cafe Rio, a local texmex restaurant gave out a gift card
to runners if they ran the last 1/2 mile of a certain leg with
a sombrero that they were giving out. 
A few statistics for the June 17-18 weekend.
192 miles
12 friends
32 hours straight
3 hours sleep
15 ibuprofen

What does that give you? A Ragnar Wasatch Back Relay event.

Remember the last comment I made about my foot getting tweaked? Well, even after being off of it for multiple days, wandering around the house barefoot for several days my foot was still tender.

I missed the previous two Ragnar's and foot pain or no foot pain, I was going to run this one. My non-running friends asked why I would run with foot pain. I calmly replied, "Because Ragnar gives out really cool finisher medals." Is there any more reason than this? This is the whole reason I run races. If there were no medals involved, would I really continue running? I doubt it.

In the past, my relay events have consisted of a mixed group of men and women in the van through the duration of the race. This time, we were segregated to a men's truck and women van. I hesistated at the thought of being stuck in a truck for 30+ hours. It wasn't until the camp chairs were propped up in the back of the truck bed did I really see the value of the truck. I can't describe the absolute relaxation of finishing a run then sitting in a camp chair with my legs propped up while driving down the road with the wind cooling me down–pure bliss.

Ibuprofen was my best friend.

Leg 1 (5.6 miles, moderate difficulty) = 2 ibuprofen before the race began, 1 after. Legs felt pretty good.
Leg 2 (4.9 miles, moderate difficulty) = 4 ibuprofen in 2 waves before the leg, 2 after. Foot really starting to bother me. It's dark, there are a lot of rolling hills and as I pass a aqueduct I start wondering how long it would take to find my body if I fell in. My energy level is running pretty low at this point.

Rest = 2 ibuprofen. We arrived at the rest stop at 1:30 am anticipating that we'd be running again at 7:00 am or sooner. Paid $5 for a pancake dinner, then crashed on the gym floor inside the high school for a few hours sleep. Awoke off and on during the night and finally got up at 5:30 am, paid $2 for a hot shower in the school locker room and got ready for the rest of the day.

Leg 3 (7.9 miles, hard difficulty) = 7 ibuprofen and 1/2 oxcodone (not all at once but spread out). My foot is really hurting. My calves, quads and glutes are stiff. The first 1/4 mile was a slight downhill followed by 3/4 mile steep downhill. My legs didn't have time to warm up and loosen up so it hurt A LOT! After 2 miles into the run though the pain in my foot subsided and my legs finally started loosening up. The rest of the run was a combination of steep up hill and short flat sections. It was a nice relief to make it to the end.
Team 'Till We Collapse'

Once our van was complete, the next step was locating some solid non-runner food. Mission accomplished when we found a Mexican Restaurant. After our lunch, we all crashed on the grass near the finish while we waited for van 2 to finish. Our final finish time was 32 hours. Not quite the 29 hours we wanted, but we finished.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Pacing the Utah Valley Half Marathon

I know, you're thinking "What? The half marathon was more than a week ago and you're just posting about it now? Here's a few options as to why it has taken me so long to post this. You can choose one.

1. My recovery affected my ability to think coherently.
2. I was waiting for my rockin cool race photos to get posted.
3. I had moved on and was prepping for Ragnar.
4. My lawyers advised me that if I wanted to win the nomination I had to wait.
5. I was swamped with television and radio appearances promoting my awesomeness.

Feel free to mix and match any of the above or come up with your own. I'm totally good with that.

The race went well. I paced the 1:50 group which meant I needed to maintain an 8:23 pace the whole course of the race. This pace is much closer to my actual race pace so I was anticipating this more than the Thanksgiving Point race.

The race started at 6:00 am which meant that I was getting up at 2:30 am in order to eat some breakfast, get showered and out the door. The last bus left the parking area at 4:30 and I wanted to be there in plenty of time to use the porta potties and be ready. This plan worked smoothly.

I had about 10 people that came up and said they'd be trying to keep up with me. I let everyone know that we'd be running at a slightly faster pace than what was listed to compensate for the couple of hills that we'd encounter on the way.

During the course of the race, I had a small group that stuck with me the whole distance. The course was really nice and had I been running this all out, I would easily be posting about a new PR. Since this is my fastest pacing time, maybe I should say it is a pacing pr?

Me in the bright shirt.
After the race, I grabbed a couple food items and caught the bus to head back to Fleet Feet in American Fork for my half marathon coaching group. It was their first 5 mile run. Around mile 3 of the 5 mile run, I tweaked my foot and ended up hobbling the last few miles.

Finally, here is the awesome race photo.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Running–It's What I Do

I was asked the other day how I can spend all my time watching movies via Netflix do only one sport—running. I've been contemplating this. Here's a list of sports I've attempted:
  • P90X-too hard, too complicated, too many forms to fill out things to track, etc. Plus, when I start talking back to Tony as he is going through the exercises and laughing at the same joke over and over, then it's time to move on.
  • Swimming-I can't swim well and my ego gets in the way of taking lessons. I know I have talked about the possibility of a triathlon, but the thought of me in a speedo and swim cap just makes me shudder.
  • Basketball-hands, feet, dribble, run, guard. Again, way too complicated for me.
  • Biking-while appealing, I'd need to buy something better than the mountain bike that has gone through two winters in the backyard.
  • Weight training-I have a hard time understanding why this is even considered a sport. I always envision myself as a caveman in a rock lifting contest. I would be one that got squashed by the other caveman.
  • Baseball-I was always stuck in the outfield and my times on base were when I got hit by the ball.
Running on the other hand. I just have to do one thing–run. I don't have to catch anything, dribble anything (other than water as I'm attempting to get a drink), hit anything or pretend I'm a fish. I put on the shoes and run. It doesn't matter that I can't run in straight line or that anything more complicated than just running like drinking or opening a GU while running could get me pulled over for possible DUI if I were driving.