Tag: Running

Physical Challenges

Adventure Report: The Wonderland Trail 2019

“It’s not an adventure until something goes wrong” -Yvon Chouinard, Founder of Patagonia “You must put your head into the lion’s mouth if the performance is to be a success” -Winston Churchill, Prime Minister of the U.K. during WWII — The full moon hangs overhead. It is 4am and the temperature is dropping into the 30s. I am sitting on the concrete floor of an outhouse on the north side of Mt. Rainier as the fumes of fecal matter, previously left baking in the sun, waft through the air. My feet are pruned, blistered, and bleeding. One of my toenails has started the process of falling off. My legs ache from a day covering 48 miles and 12k ft of elevation – equivalent to taking the stairs up to and down from the top floor of the Empire State Building 12 times in a row between running two marathons. My

Physical Challenges

Thoughts Before My Ultramarathon Debut

This run will be the hardest physical exertion I have ever demanded of my body. To date, the most I’ve ever run in a day is ~27 miles. A marathon + warm up. Tomorrow I will attempt to cover 93 miles on foot. 3x+ my lifetime max. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever even run 93 miles in a single week. Traditional wisdom says you should progress up to a ~100 mile effort. Go from racing a marathon (26.2 miles) to a 50k (~30 mile), then a 50 mile, followed by a 100k (~60 mile) before finally attempting ~100 miles. I’m not much for traditional wisdom. I am doing this run; self supported, solo, overnight, on trails, covering ~25k ft of elevation and in remote wilderness with no cell service. Any one of those things might make an effort like this crazy. Doing all of that for my first

Physical Challenges

Race Report: Gulch Countdown 2019

On Saturday January 5th, 2019 I did not finish the Gulch Countdown race, getting disqualified after ~27 miles. This is the race report. Goals I really didn’t have goals for this race, I was just out there to have fun. Part of me wanted to see how far I could run untrained though to see if it was going to be a good idea to attempt to go on a 93 mile run this summer. Make it to 6 laps (13.1 miles) – ACCOMPLISHED Make it to 12 laps (26.2 miles)  – ACCOMPLISHED Make it past 50k -Not Accomplished Be the last man standing – Not Accomplished Successes What am I proud of from race day? Somehow ran the farthest I had ever run in a day, despite low training Did a great job implementing my pacing strategy Had a lot of fun meeting other runners and talking on the trail

Physical Challenges

Race Report: Dipsea 2018

On June 10, 2018 I ran the 108th running of the legendary Dipsea race. I finished in a time of 1:08:26 – good enough to requalify for next year. Goals Finish/Survive – ACCOMPLISHED Requalify for 2019- 450 spots – ACCOMPLISHED – with 117 to spare Average heart rate 170+ – ACCOMPLISHED – averaged 175 BPM Sub 1:02:04 (My course best) – Not Accomplished Average heart rate 180+ – Not Accomplished Do not walk or speed hike – Not Accomplished Top 100 – Not Accomplished Sub 1 hour – Not Accomplished Black Shirt – Not Accomplished Successes What am I proud of from race day? Both Chris and I requalified and live to race another year Great effort & performance on minimal training Managed to stay upright the whole time & avoid rolling my ankle Discovered a new shortcut that will save me some time (this is legal in this race) Brought a frozen water bottle to drip on

Physical Challenges

Race Report: Boston Marathon 2018

On April 16, 2018 I ran the Boston Marathon, finishing in 2nd to last place overall with a time of 8:09:48 (its a long story…). Here is the race report. Synopsis It isn’t every day you get to be one of the last people to cross the finish line of one of the most famous marathons in the world. After logging 20 miles at 6:30 pace, trying my best to fight through horrible weather that I was not dressed for, my body began to shut down. At mile 23 and I dropped out of the race to get treatment for symptoms of hypothermia. 5 hours later, once safe and warm, I decided that I needed to finish. I put on some warm clothes and went back to where I had dropped out to finish the last miles of the race. Goals Finish – ACCOMPLISHED (I list this as a goal in every

Physical Challenges

Race Report: 2017 Racing Season Recap

In 2017 I decided to mix up my running races. In 2016 I had a great season, but I realized I couldn’t keep training at that intensity as my number of kids went from 2 to 4. I would have to approach futures years a bit differently. Because of that, I took 2017 as a chance to experiment a bit with a few major changes. I’ve found that these types of changes can often add fresh life into an old habit. They are familiar enough that it feels like comfortable but different enough that it feels fresh again. They make the future seem expansive rather than defined. So here are a few of the things I tried to mix up my running in 2017: 1. Running A Trail Race – For Christmas 2016 my wife told me she’s sign me up for the Dipsea race, a long-running and unique race

Physical Challenges

Race Report: Jack & Jill Marathon 2017

On July 30, 2017 I ran the Jack & Jill Marathon, finishing in 5th place overall with a time of 2:51:07. The guys I ran, Wes & Jonathan Coopersmith, finished in 3rd & 4th place respectively, with times of 2:47:23 and 2:49:02. Here is the race report. Synopsis This is a race I should be happy with. I didn’t plan on racing this year and only did so to train with my friend Coop so we could get a Boston Marathon Qualifying time for next year. After the time stress of my 2016 season, I had a conversation with my wife and we decided that I should cut my training to three runs per week, 1-2 of which I’d take kids in the running stroller. I averaged just 27 miles (just barely longer than a marathon) each week. Running a 2:51:07 off of that training plan is more than I had

Yearly Focus

Racing Like Liddell

In 2017 I named Eric Liddell as my exemplar for the year, someone I wanted to learn form. After spending time learning more about Liddell, one item seemed particularly relevant to put into practice – his approach to races. Liddell was one of the most fiercely competitive people I have ever read about – once running so hard to win a race that he had to be taken by ambulance to the hospital afterwards. At the same time he was incredibly compassionate to his competitors. There are numerous accounts of him sharing a friendly word before races, lending his gear to another racer that forgot theirs and praising the other runners after a race. He would mentioning their best aspects and how they very well could win the next time. It seems a dichotomy to be equally caring of a competitor’s heart and unrelenting in his own physical performance. As


Race Report: Gobble Gobble Kids Dash 2017

On November, 2017 I ran the Gobble Gobble Kids Dash with my two oldest boys. Here is the race report. Synopsis This was the first official race my three year old ran – he got his own bib & everything. My two year old was technically too young to register, but we let him run some of the race with us as well. This is part of me exposing them to the sport of running and what it has to offer. My kids have been watching me be a runner as long as they can remember (my two year old asks ‘are you going running daddy’ whenever I put a synthetic shirt on) and going in the stroller for just about as long (this past summer they even got to participate in their first race, riding in the stroller), but this was their first time where they got to be the runner

Physical Challenges

Race Report: Run-A-Muk 10k 2017 w/ Stroller

On August 26, 2017 I ran the Run-A-Muk 10k while pushing two children in a double stroller, finishing in 5th place overall with a time of 39:58. Here is the race report. Synopsis My first ever race with a running stroller. I was invited by my friend Abram (who is also my brother-in-law-in-law) who was putting together a group of dads that were going to run the race with strollers. Throughout 2017 I got pretty good running with the stroller, bringing one or two kids on more than 50% of my runs. I had mastered the art of snack management for keeping kids occupied, I had made adjustments to the stroller to allow me to clock sub-6 miles, I had even turned my kids into an onboard cheering unit, ‘run faster Daddy’ their cry whenever I slowed down (even if because of a hill). This race let me put that