Saturday, March 29, 2008
Rarely do I--we--actually live in the moment. Think about it. You wake up in the morning and you're thinking about what's going to happen when you get to work. At work, you're thinking about what's going to happen at your lunch meeting. During your lunch meeting, you're thinking about what you have to do when you get back to the office. After lunch, you're thinking about what time you'll be heading home and what you need to pick up for dinner. After dinner, you're thinking about what you need to do before getting into bed. Getting into bed, you're thinking about the next morning. Everything is about the next thing.
When I'm running longer distances, whether it's 15 miles, 26.2 miles, or 50 miles, my mind wanders, but there is no planning, no thoughts of what else has to be done. I am running. For that period of time, running is my sole focus. Everything is sharpened to a single goal. Run. Just run. It is one of those rare occasions when I am truly in the moment.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Thursday, March 20, 2008
In some ways, it's been nice. I've even joked that running a marathon (or longer) every 2-3 weeks means you never have to train.
But yesterday morning, I got up early and went on a long run along the Trinity. For the first 4-5 miles, I was completely alone; I never saw another soul. The quiet solitude and crisp pre-dawn air greeted me like an old friend. I felt the sun slowly rising and the earth warming around me as daylight broke over Fort Worth. It was a magnificent run.
Friday, March 14, 2008
Okay, that's sort of a joke.
But in truth, I've run 4 ultramarathons over the past two and half months, but no marathons. I've done three 50Ks (Bandera, Cowtown, and Waco) and one 50 mile run (Rocky Raccoon).
It's been an eventful year thus far.
I've got 3 more marathons (Big D, Oklahoma City, and Andy Payne) planned this spring, and then nothing official until the Ultracentric in November.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
*** Waco 5-0 report is below, amigos ***
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Sunday, March 09, 2008
It was a cold, beautiful morning. Temps were in the high 20s-low 30s at the start. I settled into a comfortable pace, reminding myself of the course's deceptively difficult stretches. As the sun came out, I hooked up with Miles, a lawyer from Houston with whom I ran part of the race last year. We were soon joined by Clea, an accomplished ultrarunner and registered nurse from Austin. (Clea would eventually be the first female to cross the finish line.) The three of finished the first lap in just over 2 hoursBy the second lap, the clouds had dissipated and the sun had crept out. Clea and I lost Miles (the lawyer, not the distance), but she and I stayed together, chatting about this, that, and everything else. Clea remarked that ultrarunners were kind of like the characters on Cheers. Different backgrounds, different stories, but we all come together for races and share our lives with each other during the hours that we are on the trail.
About 6 miles into the second lap, we came across Donaldo, who was hiking the Waco 1-0, a single, 10 mile lap of the course. This was his first trail attempt and longest hike/run in years. At the young age of 63, he looked strong and happy.Toward the end of the second lap, I bid Clea farewell. We had run lap two a bit slower than the first lap, and I was feeling good. I decided to pull out the iPod and push it a bit on lap three.I ran most of the third lap, including some of the hills. (I typically walk even the slightest incline on a trail run. That had been my m.o. for the first two laps, but I decided not to pull any punches on lap three.) Before I knew it, I had reached the bamboo -- a sign that the end was near.But first I had to climb THE STAIRS. Ugh. A new addition by our sadistic race director. At the conclusion of each lap, we had to climb some brutal stairs to the top of a hill before descending the gentle decline to the finish.I finished in 6 hours, 19 minutes, 42 seconds at a pace of 12:13 per mile. 19 out of 38 50K finishers. More importantly, I bested last year's time by nearly 34 minutes.
Donaldo also did great!
We'll be back again next
Saturday, March 08, 2008
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
While standing in line to pay for our dinner, a middle-aged lady behind me said, "Congratulations on finishing the ultramarathon!"
"Thanks," I replied.
"How far was it, 10K?"
Saturday, March 01, 2008
It's now 4:15 a.m., and I'm meeting Jballs for a 10 mile run before sunrise. He's got to report to the Air Force Reserves for his monthly service, so I agreed to get up at the asscrack of dawn to go running--stupid, stupid, stupid. Yawn.