Sunday, November 16, 2008

Mary's Peak

A good crew ran Mary's Peak yesterday. Gaby, Linda, Will, Mike, John, Ken and Clem. Gaby and Linda and I started early and ran the lower piece of the Northridge trail ... haven't done that part before ... about 8K I figure. Nice and easy. Then we met with the others for the climb. It was a gorgeous day. A good steady pace up the Northridge, across the Tie, then to the top, a loop around the top piece (don't know what its called), then to the summit. Gaby took off near the top. I tried to keep up ... not a good idea ... burned out the quads trying. Beautiful views. Then an easy pace back down the Northridge. Some HUGE trees blown down across the trail ... like 5 or 6' in diameter. I think we were on our feet a good four, five hours. About 19 miles. Had a good snooze when I got home. Let the training begin...

Monday, October 27, 2008

Beaver Classic and Mac 15K

Two races this past weekend:

Saturday was the Beaver Classic. This is a college level cross country meet. It took place at Avery Park; an 8K ... 4 laps of a 2K course, 3 laps for the ladies. Guys and gals ran separately. It was fun to watch the ladies ... Penny ran and did great, finishing 2nd. Dave Bateham was running this too ... there were just a handful of us older dudes. Gaby, Guy and Todd were there to cheer us on, which was much appreciated. I was way out of my league here ... the only goal was not to get lapped ... I made a wager with Gaby, who was holding my keys, that she could have my car if I got lapped. No pressure. I went out as fast as I could but most of the kids left me in the dust in short order. The course was flat ... just one small rise. All on grass. I was working hard. My lungs still not 100% from a cold I was just getting over. As I finished the third lap I heard Guy holler "You're safe!", meaning that I hadn't been lapped and now couldn't be, which felt good. Really struggled with the forth lap. Managed to reel in a couple of lads at the finish. I finished in 30:12, 127 out of 149 :) Dave finished well too, also not getting lapped. It's a good thing it wasn't a 10K, otherwise we'd both have been lapped for sure. The best time was 24+, which means the front runner almost caught us before we finished our third lap. Todd posted some pics. Results are here.

The Mac 15K was Sunday. Good crowd for this. Guy, Dave, Todd, Gaby were all racing. Dave Zahler and Mike Rosling were there, but Will Swint wasn't ... thought he would be. Had a chance to talk to Linda about her getting into WS. Penny wasn't racing but seemed to appear all over the race course once things started ... don't know how she did that. I struggled for all of this one. Legs were heavy from the get go. Guy, Dave, Gaby and I ran together for a piece, then gradually parted company. The uphills were tough. Penny paced me for about a click ... I really appreciated that, needing all the help I could get. I had hoped to run all the hills, but had to walk a bit here and there. With a couple of clicks to go Todd fired past me on a downhill like a bullet, then Gaby passed too. I kept them in my sights all the way to the end, but didn't have the juice to reel them in. We finished in about 1:09+, Dave shortly after. Unfortunately, Guy suffered a foot injury and had to pull out ... bummer. My time was my worst ever for this race ... the price paid for racing Saturday ... but I had a blast.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

XTERRA Trail Running National Championships

A full day yesterday. Guy and I went to Bend to run in the XTERRA Trail Running National Championships. This is a half marathon on trail along the Deschuttes river. We left Corvallis at about 4:30am. Got to the race start, in the Old Mill District, at about 7:30 or so, plenty of time for the 9:00 start. Dave Bateham was there ... nice to see him again. Lots of high-end runners here for this one, including some I recognized from the Mountain Nationals on Mount Hood last week ... always nice to watch the big guns do their stuff. The start and finish of the course were on paved and gravel road and wide trail. A lot of single track, sandy trail too. Nothing too technical. Not a lot of elevation ... I think about 1,000' in total. I wasn't too fond of the course. Bend offers up much nicer trails, but as one gal put it, they were looking for production values. I went out pretty hard. It wasn't long before I felt fatigue in my quads ... not enough rest since Mount Hood. But I managed pretty well. After the half way point I managed to hold position pretty well ... I was passed by a few, but managed to reel in a few. I had to really focus for the last few clicks, keeping my mind on my breathing, rather than on my tired, aching legs. I finished in 1:29:43, 43rd overall, 5th in age ... not bad, given the level of competition. Guy and Dave both finished strong too. Afterward, we went to Smith rock (cool place) to drop off Dave for some climbing. Guy and I headed to Sisters for lunch at Bronco Billy's. That night, Todd hosted a nice get together for the ultra runners ... M & I didn't stay long. I was toast. Slept well that night. No more racing for a couple of weeks, at least.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Northwest Mountain Running Championship

Ran in the Northwest Mountain Running Championship on Mount Hood yesterday. Went there with Guy. Will and Mike were there too. Jason was too, but he wasn't racing. The race started at Timberline Lodge (6,000'). It was a cold, cloudy, misty morning. The race trail took us down the mountain to about 5,500' in elevation, before climbing up to about 7,000'. The climb was brutal ... I walked most of it, sucking wind the whole way. There was snow at the top. The run down was very technical ... couldn't really open up. I passed Will going up, but he zoomed past me on the downhill. Took about 53 minutes or so. Not sure yet how I placed ... in the top 30 maybe. Quads are feeling it today.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Ole's Astoria Assault

Did Ole's Assault in Astoria yesterday. This is one crazy race. It's about 10K I think, but it took me 1:43 or so. Except for the starting and finishing miles, it was mostly bushwhacking ... following flagging tape. No trail, really. There were some man-made obstacles ... barbed wire to crawl under, log walls to climb over, tunnels, etc... But the toughest part was just running through the bush. Over logs, under logs, down and up gullies, through thorny shrubs. Tripped a lot. Fell down a couple of times. Went over on each ankle once. Got scraped up pretty good. Several times had to take long pauses looking for the next piece of flagging tape. No drinking water on the course, so I was pretty parched by the end. Lost my sunglasses ... again! It makes the Mount Hood Scramble seem like a gentle trail run. A lot fun. Wouldn't want to do it more than once a year though :)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Back at 'er, pitter patter

Good run today with Guy, up Horse Trail, down Dan's Trail. 12K and 1,000' in 1:08. Felt good the whole way. Did some speed work this week too. No long runs though. Almost back to a normal routine at the gym too, but will need another week or two there. Less and less likely I'll do another ultra this year. But really looking forward to the short races of September and October.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Running Again

It's taken longer to recover from Waldo than I figured. It's been two weeks. Did an easy 20K yesterday ... up the ridge and hill twice. Managed a few 12K runs earlier in the week too. Not feeling too badly, but far from normal. Kind of glad I didn't sign up for MacKenzie ... it would have been optimistic ... and courting injury. Still considering that 50 miler in October, but we'll have to see. Looking forward to Ole's assault. Tomorrow the gym re-opens. Cannot wait to get back at it ... feeling like a slug.

Friday, August 22, 2008


It's been almost a full week since Waldo. Haven't done any training. But, went to yoga last night ... I was the only one who showed up. Nancy kindly took me through a set of restorative positions ... felt good, and feeling good today. Time to get back at 'er, pitter patter. September races are coming.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Where's Waldo Ultra

Ran Waldo yesterday. Went down with Linda and we camped at the race start. Used the tent Mikey gave to me ... a nice unit. I didn't sleep too well ... not sure why ... got a few hours anyway. Up at 4:00 am for the 5:00 start. There were about 105 starters I think. I've never been so nervous before a race ... and never so uncertain about finishing.

I went out real, real slow ... stayed in the back third of the pack. John, Linda, Ken, Mike and Will were soon gone. But after a few miles I caught up to John and stayed with him for a while. I slowly pulled away. We spent the rest of the day playing 'see you at the next station' ... I'd get to a station first, but he'd show up before I left. With that whistle of his I always knew he was close by.

I was stopping for a good 5 minutes or so at each station. Things went well for the most part. I was relying heavily on the Perpetuem, and that seemed to pay off. No stomach issues, and I didn't need much solid food at the stations ... typically a small potato and piece of banana were all I wanted. After a while the gel made me gag, so I stopped using that all together. Took salt tablets regularly. It was a hot day.

It was great to see the friendly faces of the Corvallis crew manning the Charlton station. I sat down and chatted a while. Todd, Dave, Scott, Clem and Gaby were all there ... pampered me silly. All the volunteers were great, all along the way.

Scaling Twins was a bear ... the heat was getting to me ... thought of quitting at that point. When I got to the Twins station, I found Ken and Linda there ... so I figured that the conditions must be tough on everyone. Dennis gave me a lot of encouraging words. Melissa sat down with me and gave me a nice pep talk too. Those two really helped my resolve to keep going.

The very toughest part of the course was Maiden Peak. 3.2 miles of up, up, up. Not even nice switch back. Just up. I was taking baby steps the whole way. But at this point, there was no going back, and I had no intention of quitting. The run down the peak, on Leap of Faith, was a blast. I was pushing fast and hard as I could, feeling no pain. I heard foot-falls all the way, keeping up, behind me ... they followed me all the way to the next station. It turned out to be Mike :)

The run from the last station to the finish was an easy downslope of about 10K. I was alone the whole way ... and I felt surprisingly good.

I finished in 14 hours, 24 minutes ... not quite the 14 hours I was hoping for, but good enough for a cap. I've got a few small blisters, and will lose a toe nail. Otherwise feeling pretty good today.

Can't thank the Mac Forest People enough ... for all the help, advice, support, encouragement and training runs of the past year ... no way I could have pulled this off without them.

Runners on Mount Fuji

View from Mount Fuji (compliments of Olga)

Maura, Caroline and Tate ... traded places with these three ladies the whole way.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

McCullough Peak

Had a real nice run yesterday with Gaby and Guy up McCullough Peak. The GPS says the peak tops out at about 2200' ... the climb up is about 1800'. 12K in 1:18. We took a tough, steep route, but nice view up top. G & G were good enough to go slow and cut the run short on account of Waldo next week.

002 arrives today. I'm excited and bit anxious.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Busy Weekend

Lots of work this weekend, but managed a real slow 25K. Took 3 hours. Twice up the ridge, 3 times up Bald Hill. But that's still too fast for Waldo. Will have to run slower yet if I have any hope of finishing it. 2 weeks to go. Wish I had time to squeeze in another 50K.

Took Kiira partway up the ridge. Man ... she is an awesome trail runner. We only went a few klicks ... she's still too young for serious runs. But coming down the single track, she just flew ... but in total control. Twisting this way and that. Can't wait 'till we can do some long runs together.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Double Mary

The whole pack went back to the great white north for a week ... Vancouver, BC. Good time had by all. 001 spent a good deal of time helping out Vera with stuff. Did some running in the Endowment lands. Beautiful place. Easy, thoroughly maintained trails. SwordFern was the most technical ... nice.

Did a double Mary today. The second time up was tough. Lot of walking. But I made it. About 42K in total and 4,000' of climb ... on my feet for about 5:40. Heed and Perpetuum seem to be working for me.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Mary's Peak

Had a great run up Mary's Peak with Guy yesterday. It was cloudy down below, but by the time we got to the top we were through the clouds, under sunny skies, looking out over a sea of clouds. Other peaks of green were popping up through the clouds, here and there. Very cool.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hmmm ...

Not sure what I've gotten into here. We'll see I guess :)

Frank Schnekenburger