Thursday, March 28, 2013

So What's Next?!

I finished my first Ultramarathon.

Sure it was just a 50K, but I DID it, and I'm very happy about that.

But now what?

I feel like there is an ever-present gloom shadowing me right now... And it is very frustrating because things are GOOD!

Had some busy birthdays and lots of time spent with family. We even set up both of my slacklines in my sister's backyard - using the 25m line to almost it's full 82 foot extent! We ended up putting the monkey cage climbing thing in the middle because it was too loose.

Me and my son on the blue ENO line

Mayurasana on the 82ft Gibbon line!

BJJ has been going good - I think I'm getting places where I can avoid and escape submissions -but I still am not very good on the offensive!

So what can I do to get rid of the FOG OF DOOM that is lingering at the outskirts of my life right now?

Should I sign up for another 50k? Maybe bump up to a 50 miler? Maybe sign up for a beginner BJJ Competition? Ooh or I could sign up for a Natural Bodybuilding Men's Physique contest!!

No matter what I do - I need to use some of my accrued vacation time and get out and commune with Nature!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

2013 Buffalo Run 50k

Saturday was FINALLY the Antelope Island Buffalo Run!
I don't know that I'd ever watched the weather as much as I did on Friday. I was slightly encouraged by looking at the Satellite pictures and seeing that the snow was mostly sticking to the shores of the lake - and hoped that would stay that way.

It did!

I got up early Saturday and got ready to go, shorts, shirts, body glide and moleskin on the toes, etc etc. then waited... After a ridiculously long 10 minutes waiting (funny how that really did seem like a long time!) I drove out to the island with my dad and brother-in-law who were coming out to support and cheer and help out as much as they could, which for me was seeing me off at the start and finish, but they were able to follow my bro around his 50 mile race!

The initial idea was to run with a friend, Brent, for most of the race, but literally 1 minute before the start, he ran back to his car to get some compression sleeves, so I started the race without him.

The Start! (I'm 3211 grey jacket)
And they're off!
Then at the first little turn past the gate I waited for him and we ran together along the big curve there until it started going uphill and I continued to pull away from him. I felt really good and relaxed and didn't feel like I was pushing it too fast and made good time up that looooong hill to mile 2. Just enjoyed the next 3 miles to the Elephant Aid Station, passing people on the downhills and being passed by them on any inclines, although the spots in my feet that have been bugging me were starting to flare up and I was a bit worried with it being so early. Walked a bit up lone tree hill for the first time, but kept moving well.
Grabbed some Mt. Dew at the Elephant Aid station but could only drink a swallow or two, so I put it down by one of the water barrels holding up the tent, knowing I'd see it again soon! Headed down into Split Rock Bay where there was a small herd of buffalo and some noisy coyotes, then walked again but ran a decent measured pace up the switchbacks through miles 8 and 9, before getting into probably my favorite section of the race, all the rocks and technical boulders - awesome trail. It helps that there isn't 2 feet of snow on top of it like there was three weeks ago!

Felt decent for the next 6 miles until the turnaround, except I was starting to chafe something fierce! At the turnaround drop I took a swig from my soda I had there, but really the only thing I needed was that Body Glide! Slathered that on my inner thighs and took off  having completed the first loop in about 2:40:00 - which was a bit faster than I thought I would.
Headed back up and finally saw Brent again as he was just coming down the hill towards the turnaround - Go Brent!
Started walking on that long uphill to eat some shockblocks and drink some water and while I wasn't in a bad mental space - I wasn't in a good one either. Not much motivation. I was going to get it done, but I wasn't in a hurry. This is a RACE! Come on!

Luckily about that time an awesome lady was coming up on me and we started talking and pacing each other, and we stuck together for the next 10-12 miles. HUGE thanks to Sue Lee from SLC Utah for getting me into a better place mentally and helping me continue pretty regularly for most of the 2nd half. On the 3rd mile of the 2nd loop I almost tripped and hit the rock pretty hard, but didn't realize until the switchbacks that I had done something to my pinky toe. Turns out I had made a pretty gnarly blood blister on my pinky toe! Still my feet were doing surprisingly well (I did take some ibuprofen because I didn't want to deal with pain! It must have worked!) Having somebody to talk to and pace with really was awesome for that second loop. Awesome lady! Thanks Sue!

On the way back I stopped for a minute to take a picture of a cool Antelope Skull I saw.

 With about 4 miles left I took off my jacket, and took off trying to push it a bit more for the remaining distance.

4 Miles to go! Feeling good! Image from Altra Running

I probably could have pushed it a little bit more - but I'm still happy with my performance.
Came down around the last curve (MAN that's a long looping section!!) still feeling pretty good and crossed the line at 5 hours and 47 minutes.

Finished at the Finish line!

Beautiful day - beautiful race! Fantastic group of people running the race in every sense of that word. Thanks to all the volunteers, and race organizers - But of course even more thanks go out to all the people who got me to actually do this and supported me along the way. Like the Wasatch Mountain Wranglers at Refuse2Quit, especially my brother Matt, my amazing wife, my dad, my brother-in-law Ben, and everybody else! We had some awesome adventures and memories getting ready for this!

Also my cute little 5 year old came out to the island to watch me finish. I ran this race for her and she was excited to be there - Such a doll!

Ultramarathoner and the Birthday girl!
If I had a goal for this race, it was to be able to move the day after the race - other than my pinky toe blood blister and some achillies tenderness - I was feeling great!

My one regret is that I didn't stop somewhere in the middle (or multiple times) to get pictures of weird yoga poses. That means I was probably taking everything a bit more seriously than I think I should. Uh oh!

The Buffalo Run Hoodie Crew (Matt, Me, Dad, Ben - Antelope Island in the back)
Now I've just gotta figure out what's next!

I need a focus!

For more great reads - here are some race reports from other runners crazier'n me!
ME on FRB (almost exactly the same as here... I'm lazy!)

50 Milers:
Matt on R2Q
Sam on OTM

100 Milers:
Craig on R2Q and on FRB
Scott on FRB
MattVH on FRB

Monday, March 18, 2013

5 Days Until My First Ultra!

The Buffalo Run 50k is this Saturday!!

I think I'm ready - but I'm still definitely a bit nervous about it.

For Training I've lightened up a bit last week - I ran 3 times about 5 miles each... which is kind of funny that a 15 mile week is 'lightened up'!

Thursday one of those runs was to Patsy's and Flag Rock. The trail was pretty dry until we got to one little North-facing slope and then the snow was still DEEP! Crazy.

Saturday we ran the BST to the North - Beautiful weather and we had a lot of fun:

5 Days Til the Race!

Did a handheld body scan this morning - it said I was 6.6% body fat! Ha! I think I'm still a bit more than that... in fact after typing that I ran down and did it again - it jumped up to 7.7%...

That's still probably a little bit low... my abs aren't showing enough to be THAT low!

Still things are going good.

I will definitely be reassessing what I want after this race on Saturday!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

BJJ and Climbing for a 'Big Celebrity'

This week I've done a LOT of BJJ
Which is good because I need lots of practice!

I trained Tuesday at work after having run 6 miles that morning. My feet were bugging me and there was a possible meeting earlier than normal so I turned around at 3 miles. I really hope I'm NOT developing a bunion on my left foot.

Wednesday morning I went to work early to meet Micah to train, and we trained with Gi's, which is nice to do when possible as it is quite a different type of workout, and methodology that can help the no-gi grappling.

Anyway I was invited to go to Fusion again around lunchtime to train so I did that. More Gi time! The more I spend training in the gi the more I'll get used to it.

At Fusion we started with a few bouts of 3-5 minutes straight (3 for the first couple, 5 minutes for later when there were 4 of us rolling). You can see me rolling with Tony (black belt) here and here, and you can see me rolling with Micah (brown belt and my main teacher) here and here. If you watch this video you can see all the different ways I was submitted or choked (usually via Triangle or Armbar). Tony is good, and as soon as his legs are in triangle I can't move them! The 4th guy Gavin is a blue belt (almost purple) who is the closest to my size that I've wrestled, and he's good for a blue belt, so I have trouble with him because I'm not used to it!

My new sweep from under the mount! (It needs work)

Watching those videos makes me realize I should probably get some new gi pants sooner than later... those are HUGE on me!

Today I trained with Mark and Matt because Micah was going to be gone, and we did random finishes and dirty/mean moves to do in self defense situations... which are fun...

Tomorrow I had the option to go to Fusion again - which would be an awesome end to a week of fantastic BJJ training - but I was asked by my workplace wellness coordinator to climb on the gym climbing wall during a tour by a visiting celebrity so he can see our awesome fitness facilities in use. So I'll be climbing, some others will be doing bootcamp classes and other weight-lifting things. I was hoping to climb tomorrow anyway - so that's what I'll be doing! Climbing for a Big Celebrity (which we're not supposed to talk about or anything at the moment, but I'll probably be able to talk about it more later. Yay!)

I think it is great that we are showing off our facilities this way, but I do think it is a bit silly as well.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Under 3 Weeks Until My First Ultra!

2 weeks from this coming Saturday!

Also it has been 2 weeks since I last updated.

It's funny it feels like it is harder to update here when nothing BIG like the Wedge has happened.

I've done a LOT too!

But I guess running 17.6 miles on Antelope Island on Saturday pushed me over the line so I could finally post here!

Before that though - Matt and Kakes and I had a grand old time out in the snow going up Baer Canyon in a nice little blizzard for a quick little 4 mile jaunt, including some nice avalanche traversing!

Yeah we had fun. It was so cold my hat froze to my head, so in that last picture I was lucky enough to borrow Matt's balaclava (akak Baklava) so my ears didn't fall off. Windy cold blizzard!

The rest of that week had been a rest week as far as running was concerned. I did some good BJJ and it's nice to see how things are improving, and had a pretty brutal Crossfit workout on Friday, along with Yoga and Rock Climbing.

Yoga is still important to my weekly endeavors - but I don't feel like I am progressing again - So we'll see what happens with that.

I hope as it gets warmer I'll be able to work on climbing and slacklining!

On Saturday I went out and did a training run for the Buffalo Run out on Antelope Island. The weather was beautiful, but there was still a lot of snow out on the island! Hopefully the next couple of weeks will remove most of that, so we have a nice and muddy race! We made it 17.6 miles in a slow manner due to all the "post-holing" through the snow.

There were about 30+ people that went out for the run, probably about 10 of those did what we did, and only a couple went longer than that. As you can see from the pics it was a beautiful day. I ended up taking off my jacket AND my shirt, so I got a nice sunburn AND some funny tan lines from my hydration pack! Gotta make sure to get a travel size sun block thing or something before the race.

My beautiful wife starts Yoga Teacher Training this week! The next few weeks will be interesting I'm sure - but I am so excited for her! Maybe she'll help ME break through whatever barrier is blocking me in yoga right now.

Life is beautiful!