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Browsing Posts in 50K and Marathons

Antelope Island 50K

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When Jim Skaggs moved to Utah about ten years ago, he introduced to the ultrarunning community the unique experience of running on Antelope Island.  He introduced the first ultra on the island in 2006 and now several thousand runners have had the experience running on the island.  The main running event is held in the spring, 25K, 50K, 50-mile, and 100-mile races.   But also in the fall Jim puts on a smaller 50K race with a more interesting and challenging course. continue reading…

Ogden Marathon

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I ran in the Ogden Marathon, held in Ogden, Utah. It is a nice, mostly downhill, fast course that winds down Ogden canyon.  It starts at 5,400 feet and ends in downtown Ogden at 4,300 feet.   After my good Boston race, I had lofty goals, hoping to finish in 3:15.  Running that fast for 26.2 is pretty flaky, you never know what my happen along the way.  In my case today, I didn’t reach my goal but did set another marathon distance personal record (PR),and improved my Boston Qualifying time (BQ), so I really cannot complain. I was on pace to reach my goal through the first 17 miles, but the wheels then started to come off because of a new problem.

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Boston Marathon

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Wow, what an experience.  Running the Boston Marathon was truly an urban adventure run. I met my brother, Bob, before the start at the Athlete “village.”  I had arrived about 45 minutes earlier and found a nice place on the side of the high school, out of the wind, with nice warm sunshine.  When Bob arrived, he joined me but as usual, was unprepared for the cold. California kid, you know. A kind guy gave him a cool full body paper suit that kept him nicely warm.  

I had my Dirty Girl Gaiters on (black with skulls).  Bob was the only one to comment on them.  I said it was my fashion statement.  Soon it was time for me to go to the start line for Wave 1.  Bob was in Wave 2, a half hour later.   The parade of 14,000 Wave 1 runners going up the road 0.7 mile toward the start was quite that sight to see!   My wife texted me a good luck message from home.  That was nice.

I only had one goal.  Break my marathon Personal Reocrd (PR) of 3:24:49.  Someone questioned whether that was a wise goal because Boston was quite a bit tougher than the downhill Ogden course where I had PRed.  I hoped if I could keep away the cramps, that I could succeed.

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Not quite the 50 that DeanK did, but I bet he didn’t summit a 13er.  Friday I ran up to the top of the highest peak in Utah, Kings Peak (13,528 feet). The summit gets about 5,000 visitors per year. However, few people run from the trailhead to summit and back in one day. Most people do a three-day backpacking trip.  This was my 8th Kings Peak Summit and the sixth time I have done the summit in one day. I made the run with Craig Lloyd and his neighbor Eric. Read Craig’s detailed writeup here.

Saturday I ran in the tough Park City marathon.  This marathon is not your typical road marthon.  It is run at altitude and has about ten miles of dirt.  The hills are never-ending and it makes an amazing huge circle around the valley, visiting Deer Valley and Park City. 

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I ran in the Utah Valley Marathon.   At the last minute I entered this marathon, feeling that I had recovered enough from a good finish at the tough Squaw Peak 50-miler just a week ago.  I thought it would be an interesting experiment to see how I can do.  Besides, all the trails were soaked from all the rain this week and a nice road run down Provo Canyon would make sense.   It would also be a nice last long run before Big Horn 100 on Friday.

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I  ran in the Sapper Joe 50K held at Camp Williams, Utah in Bluffdale, about six miles from my home.  Well, actually I ran 23 miles on the course during the race. I never entered the race, but I’ll get to this.  This is a new race run entirely on a military base on dirt roads normally closed to the public.  But thanks to Lt. Colonel Milada Copeland, a talented ultrarunner, this new race became possible.

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Ogden Marathon

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I ran in the Ogden Marathon, in Ogden, Utah, a fast beautiful race that is mostly downhill.  It would be only my third attempt at a road marathon in comparison to 46 finishes at the ultra marathon distance.  I was nervous going into this race, for good reason, because I had not fully recovered from a non-minor foot injury.  I had really not run seriously for five weeks, when I last raced a 50-mile race.   I had only started to do some treadmill miles a few days earlier.   My theory for going ahead with this race is that the injured tendon is not very involved in straight ahead flat road running.  On the other hand, on trails, the tendon if very involved to keep balance.   So I decided to go ahead and give it a try.   How would I do without any significant running training in five weeks?   I did swim many miles in the pool to keep my fitness up, but I was nervous that my leg muscles weren’t tuned well enough to maintain the fast intense speed of a marathon.

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Moab Red Hot 50K+

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I ran in the Moab Red Hot 50K+. This trail race is actually a little more than 34 miles. The course runs on various surfaces with plenty of sandy roads and hard slickrock. The scenery is spectacular, making it tough to always watch your feet.

I traveled to the race with a childhood buddy, Jim Kern, who would be running in the 33K version of the race. We were concerned about the weather because it snowing (flurries) and pretty windy before the start. But the day turned out to be fantastic for running.

I tried something really different during the race. I attempted to produce a youtube video as I raced. I ended up taking about 70 photos and recorded 23 audio segments. It probably delayed my finishing time by about 15 minutes total, but it was fun and I’m pleased with the results.

Watch the video. A better resolution video can be found on facebook.

I finished in 6:19, which ended up being about seven minutes faster than last year. Oh well. Only three people older than me, beat me. Watch the video, I hope you enjoy seeing the entire race in 10 minutes.