Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Ragnar Wasatch Back 2013!

I was not planning on doing Ragnar this year.

It's kind of where I started with running... and I have some really fond memories of it.

But it's expensive, it takes a lot of time, and most of the time I ended up doing a lot of planning/captaining stuff for it!

Last year we had a great time with TWELVE family members all running together and sharing a great, but long experience. It took us over 37 hours to complete the relay.

After the race, when we started discussions of a family team for this year, I didn't feel like I wanted to deal with that, and nobody else did either, so we didn't buy a team.

Fast forward to a while back when a coworker decided to drop out of our Corporate team, and WHAM I was in a team that finished in 29 hours last year, taking 102nd out of almost 1200 teams!

A bit different than the support-your-runner-and-don't-worry-about-pace approach I've been part of before!

This team is STRONG and FAST!

Also in previous Ragnars I have always been in van 2. This year I was assigned leg 6, the last leg of Van 1. First time to the start line!!

Fun to see the actual start and cheer on our runner. Go RevRun!

My first leg went up a little, and then DOWN Avon Pass. Very enjoyable leg, mostly because it was a fairly fast downhill on a DIRT road! I really don't like pavement much!!

Yeah... That was a fun leg. Although I realized with a mile left to go that I had forgotten to wear my race bib/number!! So my final mile was a little slower as I was trying to text and call my team so that we wouldn't get in trouble... luckily nobody cared, so I should have just RUN and had a better total. As it was, 6.9 miles in 52:45, is a time I'm happy with.

Our van blazed through those first legs, cutting 30 minutes out of our estimated time, so Van 2 started ahead of schedule! Luckily they were ready to go!

We hopped in the van and headed along the route to a Subway where most everybody (not me) got a sandwich. I ate HAM and Veggies! YUM!

We then drove up to Snow Basin for Bathroom Breaks and wait for Van2 to complete their first legs. They killed it and added a couple minutes to our lead.

I also was able to do my Mayurasana with the wife of a coworker who HATES when I do Mayurasana. Made my day. :)

We left our first runner and headed down the road to the next exchange because the line of cars heading out down Trapper's Loop was ridiculous. It was a good idea, but we probably could have waited a LITTLE longer. Lots of runners made it to the bottom before their vans and had to wait! This was probably the worst point of congestion I noticed the whole race.

As we waited, the 'nighttime rules' started, so we added reflective gear while we waited.

As it got darker and our team was still totally kicking butt on their legs, it finally REALLY turned to night and it was my turn to run the long 8.2 miles up through Morgan to East Canyon Reservoir.


8.2 miles in 1:13:34 - I could probably improve on that - but I'm very happy with it. I KNOW that my crazy Tuesday Morning runs of Vertical Ridiculousness made a huge difference. I passed over 75 people on this leg, and was only passed by 2 guys who I dragged along for the first 3 miles of the race before they caught me. Then we stuck together for just over a mile with some nice pacing and conversation! :)

About the time I couldn't keep up with those guys anymore my breathing was having some allergy issues. Grr. I don't know if I can put the blame on that or what... but like I said I'm still happy!

We then drove to Oakley to rest at the next exchange - I kept our driver awake with my crazy ramblings, and ended up not being able to move off the middle bench of our van, where I got almost 2.5 hours of sleep.

Our final legs began at almost 5:00 AM. The moon (above picture) looked very cool 30 minutes before that! Hard to capture with all the runner lights and excitement of the exchange. Amazing that so many people were sleeping.

Our van killed it on their final legs until our last leg, mine, where I felt I did great finishing my 2.1 miles in just over 15 minutes.

Then I had Bacon with Butter. Extra Bacon due to the no pancakes. The butter was a bit much, but SO good!

Bacon and Butter for Breakfast! Yum!

Then we waited at the finish line for our van one to finish.

They were fast and we ran across the finish line just before 11:15 - so our official time was 26 hours and 57 minutes!

Victory Pizza!

Our just-sub-27 hour Results put us at 1st place in our division, 11th in the overall Mixed category, and 35th out of ALL the teams that ran! ( almost 1400!)

Another Ragnar is in the books! It's an interesting thing to think about for me. A lot of the people I run with now absolutely despise Ragnar. I understand where they are coming from, but it's very different from what we do and really targets a different demographic.

I'm thankful that I was able to see my brother run Ragnars and some Marathon's way back in 2006 finally getting on a team for 2010 and training for it - and then just continuing in fitness from there. That first Ragnar was a big turning point in my life because look how important fitness is now! So whether or not I'll do a Ragnar again (and if I'm still here we may try to improve on this years time!!) I am thankful for what it did for me.

It opened my eyes!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Morning Runs

I try to go with a group of Davis County runners early mornings at least once a week.

They meet at 5:30 AM at various places and range around the trails - and it's awesome.

Seriously how often can you run for 2 hours in the morning getting around 10 miles usually and still be to work on time?


Even though they are HARD.

On Tuesday morning we ran up what is affectionately known as 'The Wrong %*$(%* Trail!' to the wrong side of 'Chinscraper' (which is a part of the Wasatch 100 Trail race)

It's the wrong trail because if you continue straight (heading behind Fernwood Castle - yes I would buy that if I had the money!!) you are on the RIGHT trail for the Wasatch 100!

And just like the elevation profile on that chinscraper link, starting around mile 5, that's the type of vertical gain on this trail too!

Still it's a beautiful trail - and we had a lot of fun. Took us 2.5 hours to got 6.2 miles!

One of my hiker friends was amazed we were able to do it that fast.


Tiptoe through the Tulips!

The Cabin!

Almost lost my hat to the wind!

Heading back down
As a result of this ... my quads are STILL killing me. They hurt to touch! Tomorrow I'm going to run again even though it hurts because I need to work it out.

I've done Yoga and BJJ and weights and bodyweight stuff - my legs still work fine, they just hurt!

BJJ is going great. I can't believe I've been doing it for over a year now! My elbow is still a bit funky from an armbar a month or so ago - and I keep slightly re-tweaking it, so I'm trying to be careful with it. We are also getting some new people out to do BJJ - today we had 6 people!

Next week is Ragnar. The Week after that is Spartan Beast.

I need to take a vacation - but even without one planned I'm very much looking forward to the rest of this summer!

I AM going to have to be shaving everything throughout the summer to make sure I don't have any ingrown hairs on my chest and arms and legs... I'm NOT looking forward to that very much.

But who knows - maybe we'll like it!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Time Flies

It has definitely been a busy past few weeks!

Right after my last entry the sickness I mentioned hit me full force. Fever, Ear infection, shakes, weakness, sore throat, coughing.

Nasty. Then the ear infection caused a major cloggin in my noggin that even STILL hasn't fully gone away. The congestion is mostly gone, but there is still a slight lessening of hearing in my left ear. Very annoying.

Needless to say that cut my fitness pursuits significantly for a few days.

Running wise - I have started using Strava along with Runkeeper to track my running. One thing I really like about Strava is the 'segments' that they have, allowing for a little bit of friendly competition, and giving you goals to beat.

Kind of fun to hold 'CR's' (Course Records I think?) for a particular segment.

During the sickness I did not run as much as I wanted, but I did have a couple good ones.

Went on a nice run with the Davis County Group on the upper and lower Farmington Terrace Trails as well (These pics are on my instagram - yay!)

Beautiful Morning runs with that group - especially now that even with a 5:30 am start, you don't even need a headlamp!

After 2 weeks without BJJ I was very happy to get back to doing that - and even happier to see that when we started working on omoplata's  I wasn't completely lost and I was able to pick things up possibly faster than I had before! Yay!

Preparation for the physique contest in September is moving along - I'm still not sure what I want to change in my current routines to improve in certain areas like ab and arms definition...

Here's a torso progress picture from May 20th:

As you can see one of the major things that will happen before any competition is a spray tan and some other tanning lotions! If you know of any deals let me know!

I have added P90X Ab Ripper and plan to add a day of the Insanity Abs program into my weekly routine. 2 nights a week each program one time - should add a nice little hit to the abs. I haven't done those programs in QUITE some time - my first time doing Ab Ripper X the other night left me sore for longer than expected.

I love it!

On Saturday the Refuse2Quit guys (who I run with a lot, especially since one of them is my brother!) finished the Bryce 100 Mile race. I love the last line of the last paragraph before the video. (Which is awesome, you should watch it!)
We certainly have other friends and brothers who still need to run 100 miles. Time to make plans (Brent and Aaron).
HA! 100 miles is a REALLY long run. Like 24+ hours of running without really stopping!!

Maybe I'll do a 50 miler this year though... Who knows!?