20 May 2017

Sun Mountain 50k

What a day at the Rainshadow Running Sun Mountain 50k! The weather was perfect, the company (thanks Lucca) was perfect, my fueling (thanks Hammer Nutrition) was perfect, my shoes (thanks Topo Athletic) were perfect and most importantly, my leg held up like a champ the entire way 14 weeks out from being fractured. Life is good.

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04 February 2017

Orcas Island 50k

For some reason I was nervous going into the Orcas Island 50k this year. Not sure why as my fitness has been improving steadily and I ran 50k two weeks ago and felt reasonable throughout. I guess this was my first real race of the year and this course can be challenging. I mean it IS challenging but can be VERY challenging if you are not ready. And in spite of the name of the organization that promotes this event (Rainshadow Running), it has been known to rain here. Just a little. This year we got a bonus.

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21 January 2017

Capitol Peak MegaFatAss 50k

Wow. I have ridden my mountain bike on these trails in Capitol Forest for years but until today I have never run on them. They were great! It didn't hurt at all that we had fantastic conditions as in not too cold, no rain and the trails were incredibly dry for this time of year. That said, the organizers did alter the course today as there was a lot of snow on Capitol Peak. For that reason we never climbed to the top and the course was very runable. 100% runable to be honest. The Capitol Peak MegaFatAss is an iconic NW trail run. These trails are like Tiger Mountain for people that live further south.

Lucky for me Dave Swoish showed up. Turns out we were very compatible today and had the same goals so we ran 99% of this together. I love company. Especially when it's good.

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14 January 2017

Bridle Trails Winter Running Festival 50k relay

At the annual Bridle Trails Winter Running Festival put on by the Seattle Running Club trail conditions were perfect! That's what you get when it's dry all week prior to the race AND it's cold enough to freeze any existing mud. Course records were broken in pretty much every division.

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This has NOT always been the case. The weather this time of year in the greater Seattle area is a crap shoot. More often than not this event is a mud bog. Once it was a sheet of ice. Once it was so windy they almost canceled and finally said, "run at your own risk". Nice.

27 November 2016

pacing Lucca at the Seattle Marathon

Yes! This is the FIFTH time I have had the privilege of pacing my sister Lucca at the Seattle Marathon. If I'm not mistaken three of those runs resulted in a Marathon PR for Lucca... surely pacers deserve some of the credit? :)

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And so I don't get accused of hogging all the glory, Lucca's friend Robert Ruvkun (pictured here) helped out on at least three of these too. And Lucca knows how to work. HARD.

17 October 2016

Grand Canyon R2R2R (rim-to-rim-to-rim)

When the chance to check something incredible off your bucket list comes along, and you can do it with your sister, and with friends, and the weather is perfect, and you get to see billions of years of history, you don't bail because of a sore Achilles tendon.

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11 September 2016

Pine to Palm 100-mile Endurance Run

If nothing else, 100-mile races sure are an education and an insight into your own motivations, amiright?

This summer has been an amazing time for me. After over 14 months of nursing a hip injury, four surgeries and then having to start running again literally one mile at a time, I am finally back to running ultras. Real ones too. First there was the Eiger Ultra Trail E101 and now the Pine to Palm 100-mile Endurance Run. Nice.

Were they easy? NO. But I finished both, in pretty good times considering my rapid ramp-up in training AND my body has been tolerating these longer distances better than ever meaning I have experienced no hardships other than the expected soreness and a couple of blisters. Super nice.

Here I am at the Dutchman Peak aid station. It's night and windy and I have not eaten anything in about 15 miles. Does this smile look forced? Read on to find out.

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21 August 2016

Super Tunnel Marathon

Wow!

I have heard that the Super Tunnel Marathon course is worth about 10+ minutes and now I believe it.
This course has a net elevation loss of 2,000' but it's rarely enough that you feel like you are actually running downhill, it just feels like you are having a good day. Which is exactly what I had today.

I rarely run road marathons with the intention of posting a fast time for myself. First of all I mostly spend my time on trails and when I do enter an official road marathon more often than not it's to run with my sister or a friend. About two weeks ago, on a whim in other words, I figured why not give running a marathon for myself a go. And since this event was two weeks prior to the next big race on my calendar it seemed like a perfect last hard workout before my taper.

With no speed or event-specific training I blew away my best case expectations. I am finally starting to feel like I'm back after all my injuries and surgeries. And believe you me, it feels good.

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16 July 2016

Eiger Ultra Trail 101k

I ran out of superlatives LONG ago trying to describe the Eiger Ultra Trail 101k... it's one of those places and courses where you can legitimately say, "You need to experience it to understand/comprehend it."

First of all you are in Grindelwald, Switzerland and when the weather is nice the views are OFF THE CHARTS. Secondly there is the course. I think with the exception of about 300m of flat pavement which connected the first loop to the second loop across the bottom of the valley and 2k of flat pavement in between the bottom of the last descent and the climb to the finish it was literally all either up or down. Frequently at grades of 20+%. For realz.

I'm struggling to come up with prose that will do this justice so instead I'll tell a few stories that make up the bigger picture.

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03 July 2016

charge your Garmin fenix 3 while recording an activity

If you are an ultra athlete that runs or rides for 24+ hours at a time, or if you just want to record a long activity without resorting to a less accurate recording mode you can rejoice!

I've been a Garmin user for years but some of my friends use Suunto watches and one feature I was always jealous of is their ability to charge the watch while recording an activity. This allows them to use the most accurate recording mode and still log long workouts or races as a single activity.

I even called Garmin Tech Support two days ago and their official line is that you can't charge the fenix 3 while recording an activity. Turns out they are wrong.

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