Saturday, January 31, 2009

AR over ball bearing that needs to be done

Profile from the American River Course--From Near Dam Road to Overlook 24.5 miles

Today I passed on the Nichols Quad Ball Bearing Run and focused on a run that will do me more good come April. I wanted time on this section of the American River Course since it includes some narly sections of running at Buzzards Cove and has that 3.2 mile climb to the finish at the Overlook. More time on feet here and sections that are runnable so lots of leg turnover perfect to close out the month of January. I was joined by Rena today. Rena is a strong runner with hill climbing being her speciality. I was trying to start of slow today like I did last week when I run with Mike Hernandez on a slow first 10..I had hoped that but We ran faster at the start..maybe cause she is faster than Mike. I was feeling tight the first 3 miles but gradually started to feel better. By the time we got to Buzzards Cove time seemed to stand still..dang is this slow for me and a lot other runners. It took foreeeeever to go through Buzzards with steep climbs, tight turns, rocky. This section ate me up! Rena was none to worn out...a fast train of folks with Jen Phiefer, came by us headed to the overlook no slowing them down. I felt Rena was being nice staying with me as we pulled into Rattlesnake and 10miles to go..I let her lead and I started to slow down about 10 seconds behind. While I still felt ok I had a major melt down with 6miles to go..this is my hard section all the time as we run to the river and the climb to the finish. I tried to keep moving but I was at least 10minutes behind Rena now...The climb to the top had me humbled..50 steps walk then 100 steps run..I just wanted to finish. Today was tough but that was ok..better days ahead. I will finish the weekend Sunday with a short 10miles and calle it a week...Tony

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Some Elevation Profiles and early week run

Elevation Profile of My Rocklin Running Route...

I usually wait till the Weekend to post thoughts on my running but thought a early week review maybe ok...I am working out of my home office today and took off on a short lunch run through the concrete streets of Rocklin. I used to run this route allllll the time but since the every present contruction homes and office parks in suburban hell I have limited running this route to only a few times a year and when I guess traffic volumes are low...So with cool sunny skies at lunch off I went..
So you see I still run on the road though it was just under 7 miles it reminded me that I still need to get some tempo in my workouts. I felt very comfortable running but not at a pace I would have run if I where training for a marathon...This was slower than my boston qualifying pace. Oh well something to work on. But it was nice since it was less than an hour of running. I then head off in the late afternoon for my weekly leg massage at the Monsters...That has kept me moving all these years and I recommend it to anyone putting in the mileage.

I also attached the abbreviated Cool Course Profile from last weekend..notice the flat spot just at the top of Goat Hill..that is the time I forgot to turn the garmin back on..oh well it gives you a general idea what it is like to head down to hwy 49 and Quarry Trail/Road----Up Browns Bar-----Run on ALT---Down Ball Bearing to Quarry Road---Quarry Road to Goat Hill---Goat to Cool Fire Station....

Here is the Profile of Saturdays Run...

Till Next time..hit those trails....Tony

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Abstract of Running Weekend...

As I was running this was cold, raining and empty trail except for me..I thought man was my post about Saturday without further adiu..a abstract of the weekend and read/be bored at your own risk the lengthy post from earlier...



Excellant Weekend Running, Cold, Rainy. Mudddddy. Ran on Cool Course, up browns bar twice, American River Trail Sunday, Legs felt fine, Great Climb up from Last Gasp. Total mileage for Weekend.....30.

No Pics or Profile..But a lot of Mud

Sorry...The Saturday Run had no pictures and I forgot to turn my garmin back on after goat hill so no real elevation and distance profile...That said

Saturday was our first real day to run on the trails this year in some really sloppy conditions. A group of 10 met at the Cool Firestation for to run portions of the Way Too Cool Course. Nichols lead the 26mile group. Today though we had the pleasure of Ernie Takahashi joining us..Ernie is a guy to look up to..mid 60's and still running a 3:20marathon and very good 50k,50miles. He got the ok to run his first 100k so he was out with the group that was great.

I had been taking it easy since Wed monitoring some minor lower leg issues..I wanted to get the long run in today and Sunday. So I choose to go right to the back of the pack and just stay there. It really turned out pretty good. From the Firestation we ran down quarry trail to quarry road then up Browns Bar to ALT. Achilles was really tight climbing up I started to run the next 6 miles with Mike was perfect pace to stretch things out! I quized him on his badwater and states runs...told him the year I passed rena at states that we used his lead as a goal to catch him before the finish...So this was nice to get to 10miles at ALT..
Here I made decision to just make the most of the slick,muddy conditions. So off we went down Ball Bearing..that was not fun. Here we heard some runners from behind and it was Rena and 3 others that had turned and wanted to run with us....
My strongest portion of the day was from the base of ball bearing and returning to browns via quarry road...I was moving fast and dropping the group. Moderate climbs here and I was enjoying this. From Browns it was time to climb that one more time and this time it was easy....Next stop climb up goat hill. Always tough on me and here Mike and another runner caught me at the top. We saw the Nichols aid station and stopped there for a second. Now since I have been taking Vespa I just want to keep focused and running on these days again was no different. I told Mike I was heading out and they where going to be close behind....

I said it was muddy...Well..just past Goat on a Steep was slick mud...As slid down this section I was yelling MUDE LUGE!!! Being by myself I was hoping Mike would hear the warning..not less than a minute later I heard a roar of laughter from behind..They must have found the LUGE....That was the last I heard of them that day...perhaps they fell here but for the next 4miles I ran on my own..I did have a little fatigue from Hwy 49 up the hill to Cool. But I was impressed with the second half of the run...Total distance was about 18.5 miles.
Today I will try and see how the legs react for a 16mile run on the AR trail. It is cooler today so I will have a later start...Have fun all.


Saturday, January 17, 2009

Runnin the Trail to Rattle..a Good Week of Running

On Avery Pond on the American River Trail

A very nice week of running and a nice suprise on a warm northern California Saturday

Running this week could not have gone better..I had set a mileage at only 50miles for the week. Following my game plane to hit high mileage in March with two 50mile weekends to prep for American River 50mile..

The week was really nice and a lot of strong base running..Runs included stagecoach loop and two runs down and up from the American River with strong 2.5mile hill climbs from Last Gasp to the overlook in the middle of the week..That leaves Saturday and Sunday..I set a 20mile limit for Saturday and choose to run from the Overlook to Rattlesnake and bac on the AR trail. I was on my own today...Rena was sick an others where scattered at races from Pacifica to Redding. Not bad though as the parking lot was not too crowded as I departed at 7:30 not too chilly and a promise of warming..I had set myself to review my fluid intake today and every 15minutes set to drink 4oz...and at 45minute 3blocks and a scap. Pace the whole day was steady with no real "wheels off" I was enjoying myself. I did encounter a large group of at least 20 hiking and taking their time..that is fine but they would not move over as I called out to pass..I caught them first at the powerstation and later as I crossed a stream..they were all being carefull and I was set to finish my run in the time I had in my time so I just ran through the stream getting wet.
Oh well..I did see Erik Skaden and Mark Lantz just after I turned back from Rattle..they had another 2 miles to run before they turned back and I decided I did not want the fast folks to catch me at any cost..So off I went running scared for the final 3.2 of climbing..I did have a low point on the climb but was checking to see if I was on for my predicted finish after I left Rattle...Got to the overlook with 2minutes to spar and no Mark or Erik to be scene..I was happy. I think Vespa really works..its now part of my long run suppliments....

My nice suprise for the day was when I headed over to Auburn Running Company...and to my suprise Dan Moores was in his shop!!! It was great to see him out of the hospital and smiling. He was very grateful and stunned at the outpouring from Auburn and the trail running community as he deals with leukemia...He felt great and just wanted to talk..It was GREAT! Granted he has one more chemo and then the bone marrow transplant..but I want to see him in 2010 at the Bath Aid station at Western States that is my plan...and his as well!

A nice view of the American River

Elevation Profile---Overlook to Rattlesnake and Back

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Nichols Birthday Run...A Long Day on the Western States Course

Total Elevation 13,311
Elevation Gain 6,654
Elevation Loss 6,656

The annual running of the Nichols Birthday Run took place yesterday on the Western States Trail. This marked the 4th year I have particpated. I should note that I did not RUN the Tradional Total Birthday Distrance of 40miles. Just too early in the season to load that mileage on for this average ultra runner.

Lets Review the facts...Thank God it was not too cold at the start with a safe and sane 8am start temps where not bad to begin..but there was frost and ice on along the shaded spots. Ten of us meet to take part in this run...Nichols being the most generous had stached at the Hwy 49 crossing at Cool a Cooler filled with a wide assortment of aid station goodies...from red bull to goldfish and some chicken jerky if anyone brought a dog for a treat..I actually did eye the jerky and thought about taking somethen I recalled the association with jerky and dogs nichols has..and thought better of it...

Short digress there. Lets frame the group...Nichols, Mark Lantz and Rob Evens where the lone group to tackle the full 40. There was a tough group of women runners headed by Karyn Hoffman, Karalee, Lisa,Karalee, Elizebeth..sorry for being bad on your last names..They had committed for a 28mile total. Rena and Charlie Jones...Had 30miles on their mind...ME....I had set a total run time for the day over miles and wanted to keep this between 4 and 5 hours...That said off we went.
Sunny Skys and today must have been like spring fever on all sections of the traile from Auburn to NoHands Bridge, HWY 49 to Browns Bar and Browns to ALT...A consistant stream of runners..getting ready for Way Too Cool, etc...Riders and their Horses...(I always find these folks very friendly and they have bailed me out from time to time)...and a ton of general type folks out on a hike..It sure is different than a few years ago...The most interesting group we saw along the way was one that included Jennifer Phiefer and she is back to some ultra training after her time away to have a child and olympic marathon trails last year in boston...she had on some bright green brooks trail shoes and seemed pretty happy..Her goal was to run AR50 again..with her in the field it would be easy to see her win or place in the top three...

For the second week in a row the climb from 49 to Cool got my lower back tight..I was also breathing way too hard..I have some lingering effects from a cold still and that has to pass..I let Rena use her strong hill climbing to bridge up to Karyn and the group. I was not concerned today with competing or testing fitness levels..just time on feet was the goal. I did take Vespa one more time as a gauge..My overall results are that I feel a bit more focused, not wanting to lag around much, better overall endurance and legs not to wasted after the run. So I think I will rate it a sucess and try it on races etc...

It was warming nice and as we got to Browns Bar, Rena asked me if I wanted to go the full route to ALT and 30miles..I nearly said yes..but I was feeling good and used my stay the plan instead. Nichols and the 40mile group where way ahead. Charlie for all his injuries was running this point I said good by to everyone and only ran another mile past browns since I would be at 2:15 then..I was feeling good but slowing down a bit on the way to browns and back down to quarry road..strong though from the road and to the Hwy 49 junction where I did take time to have some food...The bad part of my run is that I had only had one full bottle of fluid to that point...I ended my total run of 4:30 with consuming 2bottles...gotta change that. At 49 I had planned to cruise fast down to Nohands bridge but I was hitting a wall of sorts and did not have strong leg turnover..passing nohands I was thinking glad to have turned when I did knowing I was about to start some more hiking than running. Up through the black hole to robie point had me hiking..I had enough for the day. I was pretty impressed though that I was spot on and finished in 4:32..A good run!

It was now time to wait for all the other distance groups it was nice to sit in the sun and listen to the playoff game Ten vs Baltimore on the radio and wait it was a long afternoon when Nichols made it in...he was tired and beat but we got him to go out and grab some food...It was a long day for all..I had left my house at 7am and got home at 7pm..Tired now..I hit the bed I think by 8...I need to finish this weekend with a 2hr recovery run on the AR trail in a few...lets hope the legs get me through this...


Saturday, January 3, 2009

Run for Dan, Screaming Quads and a Cool Run

Today was a very special day for the training running community near Auburn, California. Today was a benefit run for Dan Moores. The day was to support Dan in anyway the community can and they sure did. Greg Soderlund-WS Race Director, Tim Twietmeyer and a cast of many hosted the event on the Placer High Track..The Finish for Western States. Greg estimated about 400 individuals turned out to run a lap or more. It was nice to see so many come out and support..

It was however...dang cold at the start of the day...what is with this low clouds we have been having keeping temps near freezing at night! I met up with Rena and Karyn Hoffman about 8 at the track and we ran a tricky warm up around the was slick with a light coat of ice in portions. The quads just hurt from New Years Day. I admit it was tough to leave the track as they where bringing food and hot coffee out for everyone..I was thinking....hmmm stay on the track anc run 60laps would be a good workout...But alas We headed out to the cold and muddy trail...

Karyn, Rena and I all felt it in the quads but we said we would take it easy..The downhill in the black hole was very slick with a slip n slide...I kept a good pace for the group to No Hands bridge..but I was wondering what would happen on the climb up to Cool. Karyn and Rena where running strong up to Cool and I dropped back..I was a bit whinny with some tightness in my lower back..However on the way up we saw many runners returning from Cool to head to the track to support Dan..there must have been nearly 15 runners on the stretch down from Cool..I was hurting..the back was tight..I told Rena and Karyn to head to the Firestation and I would cut it just short of the Firestation...This seemed to work out well and I at least had a nice final climb up to Cool. The return from Cool to No Hands was very nice but dang if it was not cold in the shade! Karyn was running very strong and consistant for the final 3 miles to the track....Rena jumped on the Hoffman train and they took off..I kept a steady slow legs where a bit shot...Upon hitting the track there were a lot of folks taking part in the event...Mark Lantz was long finished with his training run with Rob Evens and was there to great us...Time for a little socializing...

So it was a great day to support Dan...I had a ok day and this is what January is about..building a good base.


Friday, January 2, 2009

New Years Day Run Review---Fantastic! and how Rena Smoked me again :)

California Street to Drivers Flat
Start Elevation (ft): 3,214
Finish Elevation (ft): 1,694
Min. Elevation (ft): 732
Max. Elevation (ft): 3,214

New Years Day 2009: What a great day! 2009 started with a high...I did not ring in the new year at midnight...though I did wake up I think about then to hear a few firecrackers that the neighbors set off..I quickly went back to sleep. Better things on the agenda...The unofficial first Western States Training Run.
Leaving my home at 6am and driving through a series of cold low hanging clouds had me thinking the remainder of the day would filled with brilliant sunshine at higher elevations..I was not wrong.
This year like many that are good weather see more and more first timers and that shows the growth in trail running..Drivers Flat was packed with cars and runners by 6:45...Many familiar faces for those that read this blog..Mark Lantz, Rena Schumann, Charlie Jones, Grant and Leslie Carboni, Jeff(sorry), Mark Murray, John Blue, Karyn Hoffman, Ken and Ellen Crouse...and cast of others...Snow at spots as we arrived to California Street but brilliant sun and temps in the high 30's it was gonna be good...I started off ahead of Rena with a mission..I had not told her..I just wanted to get to the top of Drivers Flat before her this year..and I figured a few minute head start would be good...

This was my third time I tried Vespa as a supplement and I was curious if its just a placebo or really works...On that note..I think it worked very well...I felt stronger and ran better, very focused the whole day and had a pack of blocs so a positive result...Back to the run...

Off I went and held a steady deliberate pace...I was by myself when the fast train lead by Mark Lantz came breezing by just before Cal1 three miles in...they made it look so easy. I passed a few groups of runners and was way over dressed. Running the trails which where perfect..not muddy, covered in leaves...had me runny with a big may not have showed but it was there...I was running comfortable as I descended impail trail and ran that tough downhill really well...I caught up at Cal2 with Grant, Karyn and Jeff they had a head start on me so I took off with them for the downhill and then climb to Fords Bar..Cal3. Karyn ran easy as we run down this stretch always a good time to chat it was nice. We started the climb up to Cal3 and I was listening and learning from Grant as he was talking to Karyn about better uphill techniques..I tried it out as well hmmm gotta keep practicing. I did not want to lag long at Cal3 and grabbed my last blocs and filled my bottle and took off. I actually had a good stretch of running from here to the picnic table...Oh and No Rena in sight...I wandered if she was hanging back with Charlie...Anyway there are good cruising streches here and the sun was shinning bright...Making it to the picnic table now only 5miles to the finish with 2.4 being the climb. I took it a bit easier on the this stretch and we passed a campground with a few new years day campers..they where most likely confused at all this energy so early in the new year.

Then it happend! Just as I begin the climb up Drivers Flat I heard some fast feet moving up on me...I thought it was Grant but then I heard Rena!....She said damn I had to really pick it up to catch you....It was really ok...I knew though that her strong climbing would make my unknown goal a none reality..we where talking at the start and I told her..she smiled as did I....oh well. Our run times where the same since she started a few behind me...

We got to the top (Lantz, Mark Murray and Rob Evens running 2:26) long finished had hot water for tea and hot chocolate ready to go...we came in about 3:20 not bad to start the year....This year no breakfast fixins at the top...oh well. I had kinda wanted those pancakes and eggs...We did bring a few items to share and some beer...We all hung out for about two hours after...all in all we saw about 60 runners.
Today I will focus on picky a few races to run prior to American River 50.

A note for my out of town friends....2010
One of these days a few of my friends from out of town just gotta join us for this to those...pull out your running shoes and joins us for 2010..You know I got a lot of space in my house...Ring in my 2010 training for Western States..

A long post..but it was Fun! Tony