Stomp of Approval!!!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Lifting Weights and Macronutrients

My wife recently decided that she wanted to start hitting the gym and dieting.

So of course I followed suit.

We started dieting based off Macronutrients this past Monday, so 5 days ago, and we're already seeing some good results.

Our daily levels are similar, but on different scales.

Im shooting for 2,000 calories a day, over 200 grams of protein, under a certain amount of carbs, and over a certain amount of fats.

Its crazy, but Im actually having to eat MORE than normal to hit my caloric goal for the day.

Unfortunately, I've have to dial it WAY back on the fruits to stay under my carb limit. But we're still eating great food!

We have both started loosing weight already. My wife has lost a little more than me, but since we have been hitting the gym, I'm already seeing musculature gains. Thanks to good muscle memory, my physique is coming back pretty quick! And although I dont want to get back to big 225 pound guy I once was, adding back some lost muscle has been very nice!

I've also discovered planking, and it's AWESOME!!!

My running hasn't been very... Well it just hasn't really been anything because it just hasn't even been.

I want to start training soon for the Spring half marathon season. There's always a good handfull of half marathons that are fun around that time period.

My goal is to be able to go out and smash my curent PRs in everything from the half marathon down (1:48 half, 20:19 5K... Wow, I don't have a lot of real PRs) and post some good, respectable times.

So distance specific training will need to begin soon. I've always just kind of ran with the goal of running longer and longer and longer, but I haven't ran with the goal of running FASTER in a long, long time.

Well, gotta go. Time for another snack!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Time for a change.

I've been thinking about my running a lot lately (not that thats anything new), and I have come to a few realizations.

Firstly, I don't think that running / training for Ultras is going to work any more.

I love running long distances. It really clears the mind and soul. Often times, after a really good long run, there is a literal sense of euphoria. Hell, after running 20ish miles thru the woods a few weeks ago I broke down and cried like a baby on the way back home because a good country song came on and made me think of how much I love my wife.

A country song made me cry....

True story.

But, running 20 miles thru the woods takes time, and lots of it. Whats worse is that 20 miles isn't even a really long distance in training for an ultra!

30 miles is.

So that time I use running is tome I could use to be doing something better. Like building better relationships with my children.

Dont get me wrong, I love my kids to death, and i feel like I'm a good father. But I dont feel like I'm a GREAT father.

My kids deserve a GREAT father.

Training for 7 hours on a Saturday morning after being at work all week isn't being a great father. 

Worrying more about missing a few hours of running when there is a family event planned on the weekend is not being a great father

It's actually being quite selfish.

And this isn't even starting to get into how this effects my wife. She is very supportive of my running and realizes what it is for me, but doesn't like all the baggage involved with being married to an ultra marathoner.

So, I need to make changes.

I will now be focusing my running efforts on shorter, faster events.

My race ranges will be 5K to 20 miles.

I'm getting older (uhh... duh? ), so my window of opportunity to run FAST is shrinking.

I'm not talking about age graded fast, I'm talking about FAST.

I want to start setting and resetting PR's in the shorter distances.

But I still want to keep my endurance where I could go run a 50K of the opportunity arose. But I'm not entertaining the idea of a 100 mile race any time in the foreseeable future.

So, here's to a new plan and more time with the family!


Sunday, May 31, 2015

Beards and Getting the Itch!

I haven't ran since Whispering Pines.

My knee continued to bother me for a good week and a half after the race. I thought I had figured out what was bothering it and made the necessary adjustments and it started feeling better.

Now, 3 weeks later, it's getting little twinges again. Mainly at night while I'm sleeping, but it doesn't feel 100% yet.

This really sucks... I was hoping to be back running again this week. The Habenero Hundred is in August, and I was thinking about going for the 100K there if I could resume training soon enough to be ready for a 62 mile run. Doesn't look promising though...

So, if I can start running anytime soon, I might lower my goal to running the 50K at HH. Theres also the Blazing 7's in October. There's a 50K, 50M, and 100K at that event. So if things go good, maybe I can run the 50K at HH, and the 100K at B7.


I know I can be physically and mentally ready for a 50K in a very short amount of time, especially if I can focus on cleaning up my diet. It's all dependant on my knee feeling well enough to start running again.

It felt fine in my training leading up to WP, but the climbs, and mainy the decents, of that event really threw a screw in things. Both HH and B7 are flatter courses, so I dont think they would have any ill effects like WP did.


Since I'm not running, I've been taking care of some stuff around the house.

I finished my kitchen table build a few months ago, but I need to get on my wife's laptop to make that blog entry due to the pictures involved. It came out great!

I also built a counter top and some shelving for the laundry room. Courtney painted the top to look like granite and it turned out super awesome! She did a great job with it, and the laundry room looks completely different now!

I even built a side table for the couch that has a dog kennel built into it. It came out great too!

I also cleaned and started organizing the garage. Doing all these woodworking projects had created a thick layer of sawdust on everything in the garage, so my next project is to build a dust collection system before I start any more projects (and there is quite a list of future projects...) to help eliminate the mess and the long cleanup process.

I have included some pictures below of everything, I hope to do a more detailed post on the table because of how involved  of a process it was.


Oh, I also grew a beard, and then shaved it off just last night. I will start regrowing it whenever I start training again, and then shave it once I have completed a big race. I might keep it a little neater / trimmed next time.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Whispering Pines 50K pictures

Ok, My wife snapped a few pics of the events at the race while I was out running (HA! More like walking!)

Theres 2 of me, one is of me starting the second loop, the other is me walking into the chute after the second loop to drop out.

Theres a few pics of my son running is race and then after finishing. He was so pumped! Im very proud of him. He's actually competing in a duathalon tomorrow, should be fun!

Then there is one of my little princess stuffing her pie hole with something edible. You can see our tent in the background.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Whispering Pines 50K Race Report

I guess it was bound to happen at some point.

A big



The main cause for the DNF (Did Not Finish) was my LCL flaring up again. This was very aggrivating for several reasons.

-It hasnt really bothered me in my training. I took 2 weeks off and started back up with no problems. It only spoke up once, and even then it wasn't anything even worth thinking twice about.

-I felt GREAT during the race. Energy levels were very high, stomach felt perfect, I wasn't feeling too hot, my mental state was spot on and I felt like my muscles and body could have kept going for the remainder of the race with no problems.

-The course was beautiful! The trail was solid single track thru the forest. It felt great to be out there.

-The trail was also made quite technical by all the recent rain we have been getting. David (the Race Director) told me that all the top soild of nice soft dirt had been washed out and all the rocks and roots under it had been left exposed. So the trail was very challenging for a guy with no shoes.


But there were some good things that I can take away from the experience.

-David at Endurance Buzz Adventures is a great guy that knows how to put on a great event! I thoroughly look forward to running more EBA races in the future!

-When trying to run Ultras on trails, sometimes it might be best to wear some shoes. While I could have ran this course barefoot had my knee not acted up, it wasn't  necessarily "enjoyable" to have to walk and tip toe my way through the areas where I could have otherwise been running a very good pace. For once, running barefoot deffinately was a hindrance and negatively affected my performance.

-I normally dont eat before I go on a long run, but for something like a race I think I should. So I ignored rule number 1 of "dont try anything different on race day" and ate some guacamole before the race. I found some 100 calorie packs of guac at Walmart, and they taste amazing. They gave me plenty of energy and nutrition without any negative side effects!

-I got to meet a lot of great ultra runners from around the area. Mariela Botella, a highly tallented runner from the Houston area. Dat, another highly tallented guy from the Dallas area who was using this race as a training run for a 100K in a few weeks, and several other great runners who I played leapfrog with for most of the race. I even got to catch a very quick fleeting glimpse of Nicole Studer as she literally BLEW past me on her way to win the 50K in just a hair over 4 hours. She is stupid fast and was very friendly and supportive.

-We camped out the night before, and outside of a re-occuring issue with a theiving little racoon, that went great too! It was really nice having the wife and kids at the start / finish line. I feel like I let them down a little by DNFing though. But they enjoyed the experience and cant wait to go camping again! Yay!!!

Probablly the best thing from the day was that my son ran in the kids 1K race and had a blast! He came into the finish line area in 3rd place, but stopped short because he got confused and ended up crossing the line in 5th. But he could have cared less because he had such a great time! He rambled on and on and on about how much fun he had running thru the woods on the trails. Now he wants to do more races!!!! YAY!!!!

It was a good day overall. Jesse finished his first race / first trail race / first run over 16 miles long and he loved it as well.

So, now I'm going to take 2 or 3 weeks off from running to try and get my knee back to 100% for whatever race I decide to attempt next. I'm going to focus more on my diet and losing weight now. I went into this race tipping 200 pounds. I need to be closer to 180.

Oh, sorry, no pictures. My phone died while we were camping...

Thursday, May 14, 2015

2 Days out...

Its roughly 11:30 Thursday night, and I dont think its stopped raining either here, or in Tyler, for the past week and a half... And it doesnt show any signs of letting up any time soon...

We've loaded 90% of our camping gear in the back of the wife's Sequoia. My son's field day has been changed to a "play in the gym all day" day. So hes not as excited about and has decided that he wants to get an early start on camping!

So we will be leaving Montgomery on our way to Tyler at some point early tomorrow morning. On the way out we are stopping for hair cuts, ice for the cooler, and hopefully (if I get my way...) breakfast from Chic-Fil-A...

I screen shot the forecast for Tyler. Its going to be a wet, muddy and messy  adventure for sure.


Monday, May 4, 2015

LSHT, Part 3

Well, while this run was MUCH better than my last adventure into the LSHT, it was still pretty rough!

In an effort to get my last good long run in leading up to the Whispering Pines 50K, I decided to take to the trails super early with a goal of going between 28 and 32 miles. I accounted for the run to last about 6 hours, so I hit the ground running at around 4:20 Saturday morning.

What I didn't account for was that several sections of the course had been destroyed by tornados earlier in the week.

So running barefoot, in the dark, with a head lamp and flashlight while stopping every 30 feet to climb over fallen pine trees and then scampering thru all the accompanying pinecones littering the trail was quite... interesting.

Luckily I had thought ahead and was carrying a pull string draw bag on my back that contained .7 liters of Poweraid, .7 liters of water, some trail mix and peanut M&M's, my pair of Vibrams and luckily a ziplock baggie of toilet paper. So after spending over an hour climbing thru fallen tree tops and barely covering the first 4 miles (mile 1 was ran in 13:15, mile 2 was a real bitch) I decided that I was about tired of pine cones, so I sat down on a fallen oak tree and slipped on my Vibrams and took off again.

I haven't ran in shoes in a long time. And even then it was only for 3 or 4 miles on the roads. So running in trails in shoes was an entirely different experience altogether.

But it wasn't a bad experience!

Shoes as tools, right?

After donning the Vibrams I was actually able to continue on at a relatively decent pace for awhile. I even came upon a cleared out area that was COVERED in little pop up tents at some point. I can't remember if it was before or after the shoes, but I know it was still pitch black outside. I figured that it was the local Boy Scout's. I debated on giving then a good scare by either screaming like crazy or holding a conversation with myself.

This is what I was playing out in my head as I passed thru their camp...

This is good, just drop the body here.

No, that won't with you idiot. These people will find her.

Well if anyone sees you your ass is grass anyways, your covered in blood and chicken feathers.

Oh will you just shut up!

No, you shut up. You're  the one who got us into this mess.

I should never have listened to you in the first place. I knew that house wasn't abandoned, and this isn't my sister after all.


Sort of play it out like a Jekel and Hyde, or even better, a Smeagol and Gollum type thing!!!!

But I didn't from fear of being shot by a paranoid city dad.

Other than the trees crossing over the trail, the area from Trail Head 1 to Trail Head 6 was a very beautiful trail that was very runnable, save for the creek crossings where you went damn near straight down 15 feet into a creek bed, then right back up a 15 foot vertical climb / crawl to get back out.

I actually took a short cut trail because of the slow progress from the tornado faulted obstacles, this was the "North Wilderness Trail" and it cut out roughly 2.02 miles from the 1 way trip. This section of trail was very running friendly. Way nicer than it's southern counterpart, the Little Lake Creek Loop.

Overall, all the sections of the LSHT that I have ran have been very well marked with reflective blazes every so often, but I did manage to get off the trail at one point, but realized it after about a 3rd of a mile and was able to quickly correct my mistake. This particular turn was very poorly marked, and on the way back I showed Jesse what had happened and he said he would have done the same thing.

At one point I actually made my first human contact since kissing my wife good bye several hours earlier that morning. I met a french ultra marathoner whose last name was something like "Weisbeck". He was out on what I think came out to be around a 25 mile run. We chatted for a few minutes before resuming off in opposite directions. I always get giddy and talkative while I'm out running, especially when I meet another ultra runner, so, Mr Weisbeck, I'm sorry if I came across a little... umm... strange? Its just how I am. It was still very nice to have met you.

The plan was to meet Jesse at TH6, then return back to TH 1 either via the entire 16 miles of LSHT, or take the same North Wilderness Trail shortcut and make it back in 14 miles. I was intending on taking the longer 16 miles, but was unsure due to the setbacks earlier in the run. When I found out that Jesse mistook my drop bag full of calories and hydration I had left on the trunk of his car as one of his son's buddies bags and left it in his yard, the decision to try to make the 14 miles back with only .7 liters of water on me was an easy one to make.

To return run went great. We actually made pretty decent timing. I had to stop to remove built up dirt and sand from the toes of my Vibrams. That was annoying.

I saw, and caught, a little ribbon snake.

We see a guy who appeared to be another ultra runner bust his ass trying to cross over a fallen pine tree. I think he was a bit embarrassed because he didn't really reply when I asked if he was alright and tried to make conversation with him. He might have just been "in the zone", so whatever.

We crossed paths with the Boy Scout's group who did confirm that the sound of me running thru their camp scared the mess out of most of "the kids", but I imagine the adults werent feeling too great about hearing someone running thru camp in the dead of night either.

At mile 25 it hit me like a ton of bricks. I had to stop dead in my tracks.

I needed to poop.

There was no waiting.

Thank God I packed some toilet paper!

The romp back thru the warzone of fallen trees was MUCH easier in the day light. We were actually running at around a 9 minute mile pace between trees.

I made it back to the truck, covered in mud and blood (from all the thorns and briars) in 27.84 miles in 7:02.

I expected to be sore as hell the next day, but here it is, Monday afternoon, and only the faintest signs of any soreness. I take this as a good sign!

I didn't take a lot of pictures this time. I enjoyed running in the Vibrams on the tougher sections of trail, but it still doesn't beat running bare!

Happy running!!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

LSHT, part 2

Well, this run SUCKED!!!!

We headed out at sun up this past Sunday on a new-to-us section of the LSHT with a goal of an out and back course that would give us 15 to 16 miles along with some pretty scenery. Unfortunately the night before there was a really bad windstorm, so the entire trail was littered with fallen trees crisscrossing the trails, along with a lot of sticks and roots and pine cones. This made the going slow and very rough.

On top of that, my legs were feeling a bit fatigued from a moderately hard effort 15 miler the morning before, AND this section of the trails was very rooty and muddy.

Did I mention the roots?

After about 3 miles I was reduced to lots of walking, so I told Jesse he should just go on without me and that I would see him back at my truck when we got there.

He took off and actually went to the turn around point we were intending on going to, being a shod runner the roots and such didnt bother him nearly as bad as they did with me.

I continued down the trail, walking much of it, running the sections that I could (which were very runnable!) Untill I got to a road that crossed over the trail. At that point I decided that I would just take the road back to the Trailhead (TH# 6) and just wait for Jesse there.

Big mistake.

The road started out as a reasonably worn down asphalt that was pretty nice to run on.

Then it went to some rougher asphalt.

Then chip seal.

Then really rough chip seal.

Then it got worse...

I ran on one of the worst surfaces Ive ever ran on for probablly 3 excruciatingly painfull miles untill it met up with a more traveled road that was old worn down smooth asphalt. The difference was night and day. I was on cloud 9 once my feet hit that asphalt.

Although the chip seal hurt like a bitch, I wasnt worried about snapping a toe off on a root like I was on the trail.

I made it back to the truck in about 10.5 miles total distance and laid back waiting on Jesse. Unfortunately he got lost somewhere on the way back and turned what should have been only 1.6 miles back to the truck into about a 6 mile detour. But he did set a new PR for distance ran!

I feel like this section would have been perfectly fine had there not been a storm the night before. When it starts drying up outside instead of raining every other day for the last month, I think this section of trail would be fine barefoot along with the rest of the trail that I have ran so far.

It is beautiful out there though! Between the 2 of us we captured some good pictures of the trail, both nice sections and not so nice sections.


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lone Star Hiking Trail, Part 1

Saturday morning Jesse and I went to try out running on parts of the Lone Star Hiking Trail (LSHT for short) and a one of the smaller trails within the LSHT system, the Little Lake Creek Loop Trail (LLCL for short

We wanted to get an early start on the day, so we parked Jesses car at trailhead #4, then he hopped in my truck and we drove on to trailhead #1. We were on the trails running by 6:05.

Its still quite dark at 6 in the morning, so we were using hand held flashlights and head lamps. I was also carrying my new Vapur Eclipse Anti-Bottle that I ordered as a solution to Endurance Buzz Adventure's (that's the people responsible for the Whispering Pines 50K) "No Cup Race" rules. In other words, the aid stations dont have cups of water. They have water, you provide your own cup.

All 3 of items of gear that I was carrying performed PERFECTLY! I will do a full writr up review of the Vapur Anti-Bottle after a little more usage, but I can already tell its going to be very satisfying!

From Trailhead #1, which is the Western end of the LSHT (which itself is something like 98 miles long, adding in the additional subsidiary trails and its around 130!!!), runs thru some "managed" areas of the forest where the trees have been harvested and your running thru knee to waist high ferns under a sparse canopy of pine trees.

After a mile and a half or so, you come to a split in the trail. Staying to the left will kep you on the LSHT, going right will bring you onto the LLCL.

Both areas stay in the nicely manager areas for several miles where the very well marked single trail meanders along side various ponds and creeks, with the occassional creek crossing. There are no bridges on the LLCL, creeks were crossed the way small creeks should be crossed. By running down the bank, thru the water, then back up the other bank. This was very enjoyable, and made for some interesting and rather technical sections. It was enjoyable.... the first dozen times.

After about 5 miles things got messy.

It had been raining for a few days on and off, but I dont think it made that much of a difference. The rest of the 7.5 miles of the LLCL were a soggy muddy mess that at times literally ran thru swamps where the mud was almost mid calf deep.

Since I was barefoot the mud and water wasnt too bothersome. Jesse, on the other hand, was running with water drenched shoes for the last 7 miles. There was no avoiding it.

At some point on this section of slogging thru swamp after swamp I managed to kick the shit out of a stump or root or something that I couldnt see due to the underbrush growing out over the trail. My toe was bleeding, but it actually wasnt as painfull as it should have been.

When we finally made it to Jesses car at Trailhead #4 12.5 miles in, I switched out to my second Vapur Anti-Bottle (more on that on my review post) and grabbed some packs of trail mix and set back out to make the return trip to my truck.

There is a 1.25 mile long tail connecting the LLCL back to the LSHT called the Pole Creek Trail (we will just call it the Pole Creek Trail since the name PCT is already taken...). This trail was quite nice!  Gently rolling terrain, single track with a pine straw bed. Not very technical or rooty from what I can recall.

Once I joined back up with the LSHT I realized why people hike it rather than the LLCL. It was amazing! Very easy to follow, no swamps, fewer creek crossings and even a few bridges over the occassional swampy areas!

It was in need of some maintenence in a few sections. There were several downed trees that were laying across the trail. At first I would just leap up onto it and keep going. No real hindrance. But after 17 miles of running thru mucky swamps, steep creek embankments and lots of slippery and slick muddy sections of trail, I was fading and climbing over fallen trees became a bit of a nuscance.

There was one section that felt like a straight shot for about 3 miles, the entire time was spent either doing a gradual climb on slick mud, or doing a step descent on muddy slopes coverd in hidden roots.

The final 3 or 4 miles was back in the maintained area following along the side of a little creek, occasionally crossing thru it to the other side. This area was awesome! It was a bit on the rooty side, but very baefootable. The fact that I was running quite tired legs at this point probably made the roots a little more of a challenge than they actually were.

I made it back to my truck at 21.4 miles in just a hair under 5 hours. There was a lot of walking involved. This was my first run back in almost 2 weeks, so my conditioning wasn't where it should have been. It was still a great run that left me very sore. My feet actually took quite a beating. The soles are bruised in several areas with a few scraps. The tops are quite cut up from all the undergrowth that had grown over the LLCL in the wilderness section.

I tried to take a few pictures, but my phone was in a zip lock baggie, so the pictures aren't that great and so therefore I only took a few. Maybe my next trip out there will be a little dryer and I can snap some quality pictures!

I'm deffinately looking forward to my next adventure on the Lone Star Hiking Trail!

Monday, April 6, 2015

MAF tests.

I performed my version of my MAF test about 3 weeks ago. I have been putting off posting anything about it because I have been trying to build a graph in Excel to actually plot out my progress and results.

This is my 5th MAF test, and I think its probablly almpst as bad as my first or 2nd one as far as my pace is concerned. My aerobic system isnt on very good condition lately.

I have been running by HR on my last few runs, but after being out for a week and a half due to my knee, and eating like a junk food addict for the same amount of time, I am going to have a lot of ground to make up!

I really need to find a cheap bicycle trainer that I can sit on at the house and ride under my HR cap while I'm not running. That would give my heart and aerobic system a bunch of good quality training that will transfer over to better running effeciency.

Time to go shoppin at the local Goodwill!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Damaged LCL...

The LCL is your Lateral Collateral Ligament. It runs on the outside of your knee and connects your Fibula and Femur. It parallels your MCL (Medial Collateral Ligament), which is on the inside of your knee, and together they provide support and stability to the knee.

Last Wednesday at work I tweaked my LCL in my left leg while trying to push some heavy material down a conveyor.

It felt funny, but I have tweaked it before in my younger days as a Soccer player, so I didnt think much about it.

I even ran 4 miles Thursday afternoon without it bothering me. Afterwards it felt a little tight, but no biggie.

Even during and after my 15 mile long run on Sunday it felt fine!

The. I attempted to play Disc Golf Sunday afternoon. My first throw I twisted my left leg just right to send a shock of pain running thru my leg. I was forced to limp the remainder of the game.

So I made a Dr appointment for Tuesday afternoon with a local Dr in Montgomery. I was leary of this because the last time I saw a Dr he berated me for running barefoot and it just didnt go well...

Luckily Dr McWilliams (thats his real name, I'm not making it up) was actually SUPPORTIVE of running unshod and asked lots of questions about it!

I told him what happened, and what I thought the problem was and after he did an examination of my leg he agreed and prescribed me some Naxoprene and said to take a week or 2 off with plenty of rest and ice on the knee.

While a week or 2 off REALLY sucks... It could be far worse. I will gladly give it ample time to heal up real good before resuming my long runs.

Luckily its already feeling much better today. The Naxoprene must have already started reducing some of the inflamation.

Just figures that I would get a non-running related injury right as my training for a race starts really ramping up!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

15 Mile Long Run, Check!

Weekend #1 of my 50K training plan is completed! 

15 miles this morning! 10 of which were at a HR under 150, the last 5 were well over that... oops! My aerobic system apparently wasnt ready for a full 15 mile run yet. Around mile 9 it was very hard to keep the HR down.

I explored a few new roads in the neighborhood and saw some really fine houses! I saw a bunch of deer as usual too.

I usually see a few people either out walking dogs or jogging on my weekend morning runs, and this morning was no exception. Most people are nice. 99% of the time Im the first one to speak up and say good morning or hello, and generally people just politely reply. Occassionally I will get a barefoot comment, and very seldomly I will get negativity fired in my direction.

At mile 13 this morning, some old fat bitch blasted me with here negativity cannon.

There were 2 old ladies actually. As always, I smiled and waved and said "Good morning!" The nicer of the 2 women replied with "Good morning! Where are your shoes??!!" (That's the typical response I get) and so I laughed and told her they were at home some where...

Thats when the old bitch decided she would put in her 2 cents...

"Dont worry, you'll get old and regret it!"


I just laughed and yelled back "Well I hope not!" And kept on running.

WTF? Really. Hasnt this lady seen the movie Bambi before? IF YOU AINT GOT NOTHING NICE TO SAY, DONT SAY NOTHING AT ALL!!

No body cares about your old uneducated opinionated smokers coughing advise.

Totally crushed my runners high!

Oh well, reallu it's just whatever.

Next weekend is a 15 and 10 back to back run. Looking forward to it!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Training Schedule?

I've never really followed a training schedule or a plan or anything like that. I always just kind of run whenever the opportunity arises for however long I have time for.

I find plans and schedules too... Controlling? I prefer to follow a method / theory / philosophy, and let the distances and times fall into their own places.

But I have decided that I want to go into Whispering Pines 50K READY!

So I came up with a "Schedule" (I use the term loosely because nothing is set in stone) to follow for my long runs. I will still do the occassional sub 10 mile run during the week, and maybe even throw in some other shorter runs on the weekends, but when training for an Ultra I believe that the slow long runs are the most important tools in your arsenal.

So heres my tentative "schedule"..

Weekend long runs and back to back runs are my main focus, so thats all I am going to list out.

Saturday, March 28th - 15+ miles
Sunday, March 29th - Rest

Saturday, April 4th - 15+ miles
Sunday, April 5th - 10+ miles

Saturday, April 11th - 25+ miles
Sunday, April 12th - Rest

Saturday, April 18th - 20+ miles
Sunday, April 19th - 20+ miles

Saturday, April 25th - 20+ miles
Sunday, April 26th - 10+ miles

Saturday, May 2nd - 25+ miles
Sunday, May 3rd - 10+ miles

Saturday, May 9th - rest
Sunday, May 10th - rest

Saturday, May 16th - 32 miles at Whispering Pines 50K!!!

I feel like this plan gives me some good back to back runs to get me running on tired legs.

Theres one weekend at 40 miles, one at 35 miles and one at 30 miles. I think that with those weekends I will have a good base of mileage to finish 32.

Some of these will be run on trails, some on hills, maybe even some on hilly trails!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Whispering Pines 50K


I just registered for the Whispering Pines 50K in Tyler Tx!!!

Never raced a 50K before (although i dont think that the death march thats bound to happen could really be considered much of a "race"...), but I have ran a 50 mile ultra at Rocky Racoon back in 2012! And then just recently I've ran a 30 mile solo run to celebrate my 30th birthday, so I'm not to taunted by the distance. I've still got something like 60 days to train my mind, body, and soles (get it?, soles instead of soul.... ehhh...) to take a 32 mile beating.

But I am worried about the challenges that the course may bring.

I've been reading a lot on a blog Ive found just recently by a guy named Dat. Dat is a minimalist ultra marathoner (Vibrams) that has ran both the 50K and 20 mile at Whispering Pines before. He took a lot of excelent pictures of the course and the trails, so thanks to Dat I feel confident about going into this race barefoot. After seeing how big of a help his blog was, I will be sure to do the same and take lots of pictures on my journey come race day.
My newly aquired running buddy Jesse signed up for the 20 miler. This is his first trail race, and he signed up with his longest run ever only being 13 miles. So hes got a good challenge ahead of him as well.

Let the training begin!!!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Running with Preston

A few days ago my wife Courtney, my son Preston and myself decided to go on a bike ride /run around the neighborhood together. (My daughter, Izzy, was at her grandmothers)  I was running, they were riding.

I'm not a very fast runner, and most of my runs aren't ran at what I consider a "fast" pace, so keeping up with a 7 year old boy on a bicycle was a pretty good challenge.

I ended up running 2.18 miles in 17:56. That's an average pace of 8:13 per mile! That's fast for this old fat guy!

My wife snapped a few pictures of the 2 of us going along.

Although it's not my typical type of training run, and I only ran 2 miles, I still managed to have a good time running with most of my family present!

Now back to the slow poking around again....

Sunday, March 15, 2015

The Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing; revisited

Outside of my birthday run and the month of training that led up to it, I haven't had any good or consistent training in a long long time.

During my run this morning with Jesse (I got a nice 10.5 miles in!) He was asking me questions about training via HR, and the benefits to doing such. I answered him as best as I could, but I have honestly forgotten a whole hell of a lot on the topic.

There was a time where I could talk for hours and hours on the topic if given the time and opportunity (just ask my poor wife...), but now I struggle to explain it properly!

Same goes with my reasoning to run barefoot. I have gotten to the point where I just say "it works for me" and move on. I know the benefits behind it. I understand my reasoning. It makes total sense in my twisted little mind.

But how do I transfer that over to someone else that has a brain larger than the size of a peanut?

To help out with the first part (low HR training) I'm going to re-read Philip Maffetone's book "The Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing" so that I can sort it all back out in my head again.

Luckily Old Phil is a proponent to minimalist and barefoot running, so I can re-educate myself on that subject via this book as well!

Friday, March 13, 2015

How did this happen?

If you follow that link it will bring you to an orthopedic doctors website where he has compiled a list of 21 barefoot and minimalist running blogs and websites.

Along those listed are...

Ted McDonald, the infamous Barefoot Ted from the book "Born To Run". Basically, Ted could be held partially accountable for the explosion of barefoot and minimalist runners to emerge since BTR was released. His blog can be found HERE.

Barefoot Ken Bob Saxton, the O.G. of barefoot running. Yes, Abebe Bikila might have been the "first" barefoot runner to make headlines, but that was a one time thing. BF Ken Bob is the real deal when it comes to running unshod. The Guru of barefoot running's website can be found HERE.

Jason Robilliard. Jason has been mentioned in my blog on several occasions. Of all the "big guys" that made the list, Jason is the only one I have ever seen in forums. A super helpful guy, a great runner, an esteemed author of multiple books, Co-founder of the Barefoot Running Society,  and the owner of the Barefoot Running University, Jason's website can be found HERE.

Then there's Anton Krupicka... Anton is one of the top ultra runners of all time. Although he is not a barefoot runner, he is most certainly a minimalist runner! With multiple wins in not only races, but championships, series and a nice list of FKT (fastest known times) he's got a pretty good idea of what it takes to run really far REALLY fast. He is one of my favorite Ultra Runners and from what i hear he's actually a very humble and all around cool guy! You can find Anton's website HERE.

So there we have 4 of the biggest names in the minimalist /barefoot running world along with some of the top Ultra Marathoners all in one listing!

There were others that made the list. Minimalist show reviewers, other runners, etc... But those 4 stood out the most to me.

Then there's one that really shocked me.




I'm a nobody! Hell, I'm not even on the facebook! How did they find my blog, and why did they decide to use it? My mind is blown!

I'm certainly honored and appreciative, dont get me wrong here. I just never thought that my name would be listed with some of the greatest runners of our time.

Geez... there's going to be some disappointed people visiting my blog!  I guess I need to start posting up some more good stuff!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Running partner...?

I ran with a partner today for the first time in... well in a long time.

I'm not used to holding a running conversation with somebody that doesn't only exist in my head anymore. So it's going to take some getting used to.

His name is Jesse. He lives just about a mile down the road, and our wives are now friends too. His longest run is 13 miles, but he did say that he would like to go farther.... I will bring him to the dark side. Muahahaha!!!!!

I was a bit unsure at first, but I figured what the hell and decided to invite him for a run anyways. I'm very glad I did, because if I hadn't then my fat ass would probably still be asleep in the bed saying "Man... it's 31° outside! Piss on that!"

BUT, since I had invited someone else to go run, I couldn't exactly just back out. There was a sense of accountability involved that forced me to get out of bed and go running. Luckily I did. I grabbed a nice 5 miles that felt wonderfull!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Dusting off the cobwebs

No, I'm not referring to the same type of cobwebs as Drop Dead Fred was referring to.

Or even the oh so popular Gwen Stefani 90's hit song from the band No Doubt.

I'm taking about the cobwebs that have gathered about on my legs and in my lungs from not running over the past 3 months. Being fat and lazy and dormant for that long really allowed them to build up mighty thick!

But that changed tonight!

I just finished running an amazing 3.6 miles. And it felt... Well... Amazing!

I stated off at an easy relaxed pace and sort of gradually increased little by little. At one point I stared out on a long slightly declining well lit section of the road and saw a cat about 5 streetlights down. So i decided to do some primal style animal chasing type shit and just took off sprinting with the goal of not stopping until i was past the street lights glow. I checked my pace as i was slowing down at the end.... 5:56! Fork yeah!

Then the last quarter mile I set in mind to run under a 7 minute per mile pace. It gave me a nice little burn in the legs.

When I got home my wife made a few comments about how I must have enjoyed myself because I was grinning ear to ear. Then she commented about how bad I stunk.

Apparently shes never smelled the scent of burning cobwebs before!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

February 2015 update

I haven't ran since my birthday run...

The theme that seems to haunt my running "career" reared is ugly head again.

Every time my training starts going really good and i start to eyeball an upcoming race, something comes up and puts all my training on the back burner.

After my 50 mile race i worked 14 to 16 hour days for a few weeks. After that i resumed training, but then went back to working 12 to 14 hour days for a little over 4 months.

After that stint is when i started the Makers Diet and my training was going AMAZING.... for about 4 months. Then we had to remodel our old house in order to sell it and relocate to the Conroe area (about 45 minutes north of Houston Tx)

Once we did that i had to find employment, then find a new house, then move in and settle down.

That's when i started running again. Of course once i started getting where I wanted to be, i start working crazy hours again.

Once i got put back on a normal schedule i started training for my birthday run, which i succeeded in. I went from not running to running 30 miles on about 5 weeks.

The very next day at work the tell me were going back to 12's....


Last week they put us back on 8 hour days, thank you economy.

I'm not running again just yet because I'm hell bent on finishing our kitchen table that I've been building from scratch very slowly over the last several months.

Hopefully i can finish it in the next week or 2 and then resume running again! least until i start working 12's again.