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Run Efficient: April 2011

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Big A 50k

So the Mt. A 50k was a small organized race of what I thought was going to be about 28 people, 48 turned out. New Balance was there to scan people's feet, both before, during and after the race. They used this futuristic machine to give a 3D image of the foot to measure the effects of distance running. I think about half the racers signed up for the diagnostics and the procedure was very fast and efficient.

The race started out with a usual large group at a relatively smart pace. Lots of Trail Monsters showing their colors and excitement. I did the first lap with the Nathan Endurance Vest as I wanted to make sure I was hydrated, and was not sure about the water on the 7.8 mile lap. James, Stephen, Brent and I stayed together during the first lap and took it relatively easy, although the course quickly showed it was going to be taxing, with relatively few flat or rest areas. This is always a concern for me as eating and choking go hand-in-hand enough without gasping for air on an ascent or focusing intently on descents. We wrapped up our first lap and I hopped on the foot scanner at the aid station.

Second lap had me in a tiffy. I turned around after getting scanned and saw none of the people I was running with. I ditched my Nathan pack, filled a bottle, and sucked down a tasty, salty potato. I really did not want to run alone as the course was tricky at junctions with minimal marking and while focusing on footing it was easy to miss a turn. After about a mile I caught up with James and Carter on the first climb. We ran together for a while until the second hill where James and I continued on to run the rest of the lap. We took turns missing, and spotting the course and realized the lead person needed to pay attention to foot-fall, while the person in back navigated. After the third hill, which for me was the toughest as the incline seemed to go on forever, I took a fun digger and managed to roll out of it without too much damage. I was most likely talking about food... This lap was way faster than our first and I started thinking I might not be saving enough for the end. Lap ends, foot tested, food ingested.

Third lap, James was nice enough to wait a bit for me. The guy is super efficient at transitions and is able to fit an entire power bar and 8 ounces of water in his mouth at the same time, ridiculous. I started feeling it late in this lap as we continued to move at a quick pace. At one point James bashed his broken toe and shook it off with a couple preternatural grunts which only gave him more energy (I think he learned it at the Barkley). At about a mile or so to the transition area I realized I'd have to slow my pace and could not keep up with him any more. He hung about for a bit and it was a real bummer as we had a bunch of fun and I really enjoyed his company. At this point we realized there was only one person in front of James and I really did not want to slow him down as he was running real strong. Three down, foot scan, grab as much food as I can carry.

So I knew I needed energy, and took in as much as I could to give myself gusto. This lap I ran alone and walked the majority of the hills, really feeling it. I've taken too much sodium in past races and gained weight, which led to foot swelling, and blisters. Not fun. I've been careful not to overdo it but was surprised at about mile 27 to feel cramping in both quads. All I had with me was water at this point and no salt tabs. So looking around I decided to do the next best thing and began licking my arms from wrist to shoulder like a crazed panther. I could not help laughing at how ridiculous it was as I fervently recycled salt from myself. It worked, cramps went away within minutes. Most likely coincidence, but whatever. My pace felt so slow and agonizing the last bunch of miles I couldn't help thinking someone was directly behind me ready to pass at break neck speed.

All-in-all the race was fantastic. Great company, great course, great organization, thanks to Bob Najar, Rich Collins, NB, and crew.

distance: 31.25
duration: 5:36:00
pace: 10:46
elevation gain: 5600

Thursday, April 28, 2011


So this starts it all. My inception in to blogging, never thought it would happen.

I've appreciated reading others' sites for quite some time now and have enjoyed a bunch of inspiration, motivation and comical relief. I figured it was time to give back and share my own thoughts, accomplishments, downfalls, and general running excitements.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Great run with James Demer at a pace that was way faster than what I was planning, but felt good enough. I need to get it out of my head that every long run has to be a certain speed, and simply use perceived effort. My right glute was tight for about 8 miles but it worked out. Tried the Nathan Endurance Vest which worked out great (review on the Trail Monster Website to come)! Also ran with a bottle to help decide which I would use for the upcoming 50k. I was able to put the bottle in the vest later in the run with no movement.
All-in-all awesome run!

Distance: about 14
Duration: 2:04:33
Pace: 8:54

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Eastern Trail

Boring and flat but only had an hour to get a run in, so close it was. Ended up being harder than expected. Both glutes a bit sore but the right was especially tight. Found a fun trail loop at the beginning of the road junction after the two mile mark which made all the difference.

Distance: 6
Duration: 49:00
Pace: 8:10

Monday, April 25, 2011


Started out super slow with a light walk and with Alison and Francesca. After the turn around picked it up a bit after my legs started feeling loose. Met up with Alison at about .5 to the truck and jogged with her most of the way back.

distance: 4
duration: 42:00
pace: 10:30

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Good run with the TM's. We met about a dozen or so at 7 did the 10k loop, felt a bit tight in the glute and hip flexor right side. Then met up with a few more TM's at 8 and did another couple at the Oak Hill before leaving for trail maintenance on the Pineland-Bradbury connector. All in all felt pretty good and was able to progressively push the hills.

distance: 9.2
duration: 1:21:00
pace: 8:49

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Winnick Woods

Really great run! Started real slow with a walk and easy jog then a few stretch breaks. Was very nervous and in my head about my old injury for the first hour. Did every trail with the outer pond loop about 5 times. Went back to the truck and used about 2 liters (Camelback)of Hammer tabs, a GU, and about a bar of Raw Revolution. The third hour was probably the best, and fastest, feeling real good. Very technical terrain and no real easy cruising spots with a bunch of ups and downs. The last hour was tough with thighs feeling it and sluggishness. Last 3+ miles ran out of water, no big deal though.

distance: 25
duration: 4:04:00
pace: 9:46

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wohelo Trails

Ran with Mindy a loop and the figure eight loop, while Alison and Francesca did a loop and watched birds from the observation deck.

distance: 3.2
duration: 33:39
pace: 10:31

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


Ran with Mindy and Val for the first time at Pineland this year. The conditions were muddy, permafrost, snowy and icy in spots but otherwise great. The hip felt good and the cardio was OK. We walked three or 4 hills which was nice to take it easy.

distance: 8.3
duration: 1:27:00
pace: 10:29

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Robinson Woods

Good run after taking a week off from injury. A bit tight on the shins and Achilles. Walked and ran with Alison and Francesca from the start.

distance: 4
duration: 37:45
pace: 9:27

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Wohelo Trails

First run after having strained my leg. Felt great and had no pain or strain. Ran with Francesca while Alison walked in real cold conditions.

distance: 2.6
duration: 21:18
pace: 8:12

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Winnick Woods

Tried running but my upper right thigh/ hip flexor is still too sore, tight, achy and painful to run on. A bit disappointing but oh well.

distance: 0.8
duration: 7:30
pace: 9:23

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Strained upper quad!

Strained my right upper quad. At least felt it currently but probably did it last Saturday and exacerbated it yesterday at Mt. A. Stopped the run and walked back as soon as I felt it and was absolutely unable to run any more.

distance: 0.8
duration: 8:00
pace: 10:00

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Mt. Agie killa

Really fun and challenging run with some tired and sore legs. Pretty much went on every trail on the mountain starting with the dirt road to Cedar, Porcupine, Ring and up and down the mountain a bunch of times. Excellent getting to know the area. A bit tight on the upper thigh, and sore lower legs. Used my old hydration pack which worked but was uncomfortable.

distance: 15
duration: 2:17:39
pace: 9:11

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Robinson exploration

Great run starting out at Robinson Woods and joining the Greenbelt Trail after crossing a road. Great discovering a bunch of new trails that I'm not sure where they actually are.

distance: 9
duration: 1:21:16
pace: 9:02