Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Haliburton Forest Trail Ultra 50 Mile Report

Wow, what a fantastic race.  I was blown away by the organization, the aid stations and the trails!  Being only my second 50 mile race, I thought I ran a much stronger race than previously in May.  Although I knew I was under-trained by a few weeks going in to that one.

The race was 25% logging roads and 75% trails.  It was nice to start and finish on the logging roads since it was dark when we started and allowed a quicker pace to finish.  I ran with a headlamp for the first time in my life for the first 40 minutes of the race. 

Another runner from the East Coast and new pal Jacko Kelly and I started out together, however we quickly separated as he was running a little faster and I was chit chatting away with other runners and meeting new people - I think if I had of done less of this I would have broke 10 hours - however, I really enjoyed this aspect of the race and learned a lot.  I am always amazed at the difference between someone's will and their physical appearance.  I noticed an older runner that had an odd stride (almost a loping walk), I asked him how he made it look effortless to maintain the pace he was moving when it looked like I was putting in so much effort.  Turns out he has finished 25 100 milers :)  Goes to show how much of ultra running is mental and nutrition based.

The first few miles on the road passed quickly as I was chatting and it was dark.  The pack began to separate when we hit the single track.  Every section of single track I ran, I thought it couldn't get much prettier, then the next section of trail would be even nicer.  I caught up to Jacko and a group he was running with on the first trail, however I was fumbling with my pack and lost him again - that was the last I would see Jack till the turnaround at the halfway mark.

For much of the next few trails, I chatted with several runners and met a bunch of new people, many who seemed to be running their first 50 miler.  It was really nice to chat, but I started to realize I was getting a little behind on my time to so I picked up the pace a bit and seemed to run for quite a while alone. 

My first 50 miler, I did not use salt tablets.  I took one per hour this race and I think it was a major contributor to not feeling low or nauseated at any point during this race.  Another factor was the race was stocked with eLoad.  I had used only Gatorade till this, what a difference there as well.  Much easier to stomach for the entire day.  So much for me to learn:) 

I tried to eat something substantial at each aid station - as well as text my family at home who were anxiously awaiting updates.  The race was quite remote, so sometimes the texts wouldn't go through for quite a while until service was available.  Either way, I felt strong all day up till the last 10 miles.

On the way out to the turnaround I met up with a female runner with a unique name:  Kinga Mikolos.  She was running her 3rd 100 miler this year, had completed 5 the previous year and 10 in total.  I picked her brain as we ran till the turnaround.  She reminded me much of our friend Jodi Isenor from NS.  She made bobbing around the trails look easy and effortless - and she was full of information. 

At the turnaround, I see Jacko who does not look very good.  I gotta admit, I was concerned for him since I was running a pretty good pace and I had not caught up to him in 4 hrs of running.  He said he had fallen a few times and was banged up and tight.  He really looked bad.  I tried to pump him up as best as I could, but in all honesty I did not expect him to finish the race.

I was feeling very good at this point and was also pumped by the fact that every step from here was closer to the finish and I had already seen the terrain.  I met a few more people on the way back, but for the most part I think I ran about 2-3 hours alone again.  I bumped into Kinga again around mile 35.  I tried to keep pace with  her and for the most part could keep up.  Things were starting to get tough around mile 40.  This was the first point in the day where I felt I was exerting myself.  Kinga did a fantastic job keeping me moving and ensuring I was going to do the best I could do and leave nothing left in my legs.  Amazingly I did not take any spills as I stumbled about 6 times on rocks or roots.  I  hit the last aid station with Kinga who was going to do this course all over again after I finished, she told me to go ahead and burn what I had left.  I ended up going pretty hard the last few kilometers with a sprint to the finish. 

Of course, I wanted to call my family right away after crossing the line.  I was on the phone with them and realized Kinga had turned around and gone back out.  I never did get a chance to thank her for teaching me so much and for keeping me moving for that last 10 miles.  If you happen to read this Kinga, you were truly an inspiration I thank you so much for making this a great race for me. Oh and congrats on winning the 100 miler! :) 

I was pretty low after finishing for a bit since I thought Jack was not going to make it, I decided to drive back to the city and stay the night in a hotel since I had to have the rental back by noon anyway.  I would have liked to have stayed and watched some of the hundred milers come in throughout the night as we were camped at the start/finish, but some folks mentioned traffic from cottage country back to the city was pretty thick Sunday AM.

Just as I was packing up, Jacko Kelly rose from the dead and was sprinting to the finish.  I think I was happier for him than I was for me to have finished...well done Jacko!  You are one tough dude!

In the end I improved my time from 10:31 to 10:09 on a more difficult course and my buddy Jacko completed  his first 50 miler.  We also met Stephen Bradshaw and Stephanie Mahallati who both completed their first 50 milers as well...congrats guys.  I hope our trails cross again.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Life and Running

It has been a while since I last posted.  Not much has happened and a lot has happened.  Not much new from a running perspective.  I missed a couple races I really wanted to do.  My wife really wanted me to go to the U2 concert.  With 2 young kids and busy careers, we don't get out much together so we went and had a great time!  I am super glad we did as the events to follow were not fun (more later). 

I had every intention of getting a bit of sleep and hitting the road to PEI for the Brookvale Ultra Trail 50 km event.  However after standing around all day in the mud and very little hydrating (port-a-potty lineups suck) we ended up having to walk home which took over an hour and a half - got in the house around 2:45 AM and to sleep about an hour after that.  No time to sleep basically prior to drive a couple hours to get to PEI and run 50 km.  Probably not good for my body.

We had relatives at our house from Vancouver over the past 3 weeks as well that cut into some running time, coupled with a family emergency involving a severe car accident and my mother-in-law.  I have missed a significant amount of training and another race in Wentworth, NS that I really wanted to attend.  I was pretty bummed out but that is running and life, right Jodi :) 

I also believe things happen for a reason and two good things have come out of this from a running point of view (and hopefully better things from a life perspective very soon).  The positives are that the knee that was ailing me is feeling much better as a result of more rest.  Secondly, I am hungry to put on miles!  Normally I get eager to train for a race and once I start feeling prepared I get a little complacent.  No time for that now, I am eager to get out and put on the miles - no time to procrastinate.  I am still planning on running my big event of the year - Haliburton Forest 50 miler.  My plane ticket has been purchased and I will sign up and book my car rental this weekend if all goes well.

I plan to really test my fitness level this weekend to gauge the amount of work needed prior to September 10th in Haliburton.

Monday, July 11, 2011

On Track

Haven't posted much.  Been training and following the big races...WS100...HardRock 100.  Glad to see a Canadian female winning again this year...way to go Ellie!  My daughter's name is Ellie as well :)  I am on track with my training for Haliburton.  Lots of kilometers.  My knee is feeling much better, I went back to physio and have been substituting some mountain biking for a couple runs a week.  Up next is Brookvale PEI end of July for a 50km race.  Then Son of a Gun of Trail Run in Wentworth, NS, then the big 50 miler in Haliburton Forest.  Best of luck to Jodi, Karine, Mark, Nat and Bernie heading to Vermont 100 this weekend!  Travel safe and leave it all out there, can't wait to hear the results - I will be checking the live feed.

Monday, June 20, 2011


I can't say it any better than Geoff Roes .  This is why I run.  Very inspirational...I hope he wins Western States again this weekend.  Good luck Geoff.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Officially Training Again

First 'full' week back of training this week.  A very good week of 62 total miles.  A nice round 100 km week.  My knee was starting to feel really good over the past couple weeks even with 20 -30 miles.  I figured it was a good time to jump into my Haliburton Forest 50 Mile training program.  I got the training program from Bryon Powell's Relentless Forward Progress and times in nicely with the Brookvale Ultra 50km Race in PEI in July.  I did 24 miles on Saturday and another 10 miles last night.  My knee is sore today but manageable. 

I couldn't resist hitting the trails in Centennial Park for the 10 miles last night which are a little rocky so I had to put on my sneakers - foregoing my Vibrams.  So now I am starting to truly wonder if my previous suspicions of moving back to running shoes after using Vibrams exclusively for a year and a half created this whole mess in the first place when training for the Wascally Wabbit Ultra 50 miler.  I think there is too much drop in the running shoe.  I will experiment this week when I put in my long run and subsequent run on Vibrams....if my knee is not sore there might be something to it.  If it is the case I will try to find a pair of trail runners that have a zero drop or near zero heel drop to try and transition.  I find my feet are too sore after taking the Vibrams on any rough trails. 

Nice to be back logging some serious training.  Also very excited with Western States coming up to be planning on putting my name in the lottery this fall.  Any suggestions on the trail running shoes with zero drop?

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sun + Running = Happy!

Knee is still sore.  Had X-Rays, no call back from the doctor.  Probably rules out stress fractures of any kind.  I don't think they were on the radar anyway.  I am in line for an MRI, not sure if that takes weeks, months or years.  I am hoping weeks.  I think there definitely is something wrong.  Having said that I ran for an hour on it today and it feels better than before I ran on it - must be the sun :)

We have had 2 sunny days in a row.  That makes 3 total for the month of May I think.  Sore knee or not, running and sun makes me happy.  I think I will begin training for Haliburton Forest.  What is the worst that can happen!? :)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bummed Out!

It has been a been about a week and half since I last ran.  Last run was the 50 mile race.  The soreness was quick to leave and I was back to the gym a couple days after the race, but my knee has been very sore.  I really think something is wrong in there.  I have a doctor's appointment on Thursday to find out what I should do.  I am hoping a scope is not needed, but I don't see what else could be wrong.  I typically run/play through whatever injuries I have but this one seems different.  I feel like there is damage done that requires medical attention.  When you live in my part of the world, the running season is as short as the winter's are long.  I really don't want my season to be cut any shorter. 

On a more  positive note I made a decision that I definitely am up for the challenge of a hundred mile race.  What better race to start with than the ultra of ultras.....pause for effect...Western States.  Yep, I'm an idiot, but I dream about running that course and since it is a lottery, I may as well start to apply.  If it was a perfect world I would run Haliburton Forest 50 miler this fall under 11 hours to qualify, apply to the lottery in November and  be running Western States June of next year :)  If I don't get in via the lottery my backup plan is either Leadville or the Canadian Death Race I think.  The back up plan is always negotiable but Western States would be surreal.  Crossing my fingers that the knee is not serious.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

2011 Wascally Wabbit Ultra 50 Miler Race Report

Wow!  What an experience.  First off, hats off and a big thank you to Jodi Isenor for organizing an excellent event and his dad for keeping track of all our times.  The course was a very nice mix of everything imaginable for a trail race.  The scenery was awesome!  I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of trail vs logging roads and ATV trails.  It was exceptionally marked as well.  I have the world's worst sense of direction and I didn't come close to going off course - even when I was zoned out :)  Secondly, the volunteers deserve more credit than any of the runners for staying the course of 10 plus hours with the most fierce crop of black flies I have ever witnessed.  The volunteers were exceptionally supportive and helpful.  Finally, before I get to my specific experience , I was blown away by the talented 50 mile runners - 3 of which finished under 8 hours on a course that was anything but easy.  I am used to being a middle of the pack runner, but on this day I was by far the back of the pack.

Turns out I may have been the only 50 mile runner there not training for a 100 mile race later this year.  I was tempted to put a100 mile stop on my list, but after this event, I realize what a huge accomplishment 100 miles must be.  I think I will try another 50 miler, then 100 km event before 100 miles.

Sorry, back to the race report...the course consisted of 5 laps of a 6 km loop, 9km loop, finishing with a 5 km out and back.  There were advantages to this:  no need to carry gear, you passed your gear every 6 km and 9 km.  You knew what terrain awaited you after one full lap.  The biggest disadvantage was numerous chances to quit :)  I absolutely loved the course and it was a great first 50 mile course for me since I didn't have a crew, I could setup my lawn chair and gear and have at it.

The first 6 km lap started uphill and passed a nice water dam on the right hand side of the trail, it was a sandy ATV trail I think - quite soft.  It then turned into some very technical single track through the woods - very nice trail.  It was quite wet in spots but I managed to stay dry for the entire lap.  Once out of the woods it was back onto a rocky ATV trail uphill and onto a logging road - again uphill.  It is funny that after several laps I began to look forward to the uphills to hike and not run.  Mounds were uphills by the end of the race :)  The logging road then went downhill and turned off onto a double track trail that I dubbed the pipeline.  The trail followed a massive white pipeline which I have no idea of its contents...looked to be a normal waterline of some sort.  For some reason I found this part of the trail tough even though it was not so technical.  But once you were done this section you were pretty much back at the start line.

The 9km loop was my favorite even though it begins with a 4-5 km stretch uphill - with a few sections that are flat or downhill - however for the most part it was completely uphill on logging road with several very steep sections - and a nice lake on the right hand side towards the top.  Once at the top however, it was very nice trail through the woods with a really nice downhill over dirt, rock and water. The first time I came down with some music cranked in my ears - I realized what trail running was all about and that I really don't care to run on asphalt ever again.  I had a grin from ear to ear and I think I may even have been laughing it was so much fun.  I couldn't wait to get to the top again :).  Once were down and out of the woods on this trail, you looped back onto the logging road to go downhill back to the start line.  What goes up must come down.

So once the full lap was completed, I was still on track with the plan to finish under 10 hours, however, I realized that I hadn't trained very much for hills and I didn't train on trail - sooner or later my times would drift.

By now, I realized as well that the rest of the 50 mile runners were way faster than me and I would be running solo most of the day.  I did run several laps with Bruce from Dartmouth, a very nice man with whom I had much in common.  He took several pics throughout the day as well- anxious to see those.  After 2 and half laps I was still on pace to finish under 10 hours but I was slipping a little each lap.  I met another woman on the trail who had finished her 2 laps for the 30 km race but was going out for another 6 km for fun.  What a trooper, she has only been running since November and was already doing 30 km races and was registered for a 50 km next weekend.

The rest of the race was more or less bearing down and getting the miles in.  My energy stayed good but legs were getting tired and sore.  Mentally I was fine until halfway through lap four.  I was a bit down when other runners were onto their last 9 km and I was just finishing my fourth.  My wife and sister in law showed up about this time.  My wife is used to seeing me pretty upbeat.  I was down, a little frustrated and was getting the stupids as well.  She is also used to seeing me about mid pack and I am dead last :)  She approached Jodi after I left for the 9 km loop to tell him I am not myself.  Jodi being a very experienced runner reassured her I was just down a bit mentally but physically I was fine (not !@#$ed up as he put it).  Good thing, thanks Jodi, I bet she would have come out on the course after me :)

After the 4th lap, my stomach could not take in food or gatorade anymore.  The best I could do was Pepsi and water.  I need to work on nailing a nutrition plan.  Not as easy as you would think after 8 plus hours of running.  I felt very good my last loops of 6 km and 9 km, probably because I knew they were the last laps.  But I was proud to still be running and not solely hiking - which I had mentally prepared myself  to do if the legs weren't there.  I finished the last loops and went back out for my final 5 km out and back.  One of the volunteers paced me back on his bike from the turnaround I was glad to have the company.  When I got to the finish, my mom, dad, kids and brother were there.  What a day!  My daughter and son said:  "Daddy, you have been running for a long time!"  I quickly put them back in the car before the black flies flew away with them.  10 hours and 31 minutes later I accomplished my first 50 mile ultra marathon.  Yes, Daddy was running for along time.  An experience I will never forget.

Thanks again to Jodi and all the volunteers as well as my family (my wife in particular) and friends for putting up with my training and running obsession.  Can't wait to do it again :)  Yes Jodi, that is a plug to make it annual :)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

About to Pee My Pants

Stoked to be three sleeps away from running my first ultra marathon!  I took a week off to rest my knee, consulted a physiotherapist as well as my doctor.  I am fortunate to have a doctor that runs ironman triathlons.  Got lots of running advice as well as medical advice from him.  He told me if my knee deteriorates to a limp during the race to call it quits.  Not sure if I can do that - I am stubborn enough to finish what I start.  However to hear it come from someone who understands the training effort and excitement of the event and damage that could result - it weighs more heavily on the decision.  As a result, I was really bummed out about the knee situation, how it felt and having to rest it for a week.  Yesterday I ran for an hour and fully expected it to swell up like a balloon afterward.  It felt a bit nasty for first half hour of the run - meaning I was really getting down thinking I would have to make the call to not race.  If I couldn't do an hour without soreness how would I do 10 hours.  Then the strangest thing knee started to feel better, and better and better.  By the end of the run it felt strong and pain free.  I tried to reason in my head that it must be inflammation starting thus reducing the grinding and pain from grinding.  However I waited for it to swell and it has not.  I do not understand what is wrong with the knee.  Very strange.  When moving about throughout the day, I feel sharp pains every so often in the inside of my knee but to walk up and downstairs it doesn't hurt at all.  Anyway, I don't care why or how it feels better - I just care that it does.  Now I am crazy excited about the weekend!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Not the Only Kukoo in the Nest

So it appears I am not the only crazy wanting to run as far as I possibly can in one sitting.  The organizer of the Wascally Wabbit Ultra 50 and some of his associates appear to have created the race to have a 50 miler under their belts in order to run the Vermont 100 Miler later this year.  Excellent! so happy to hear other runners in this neck of the woods have interests similar to mine.  It also appears, one of the other runners in the race next weekend is planning on running Haliburton 50 miler this fall.  It would be nice to know someone else going.

Regarding my knee... I saw a physiotherapist this morning since I was concerned that the pain encountered after my 'final push' weekend of back to back long runs lingered along with a fair amount of inflammation.  I am pretty sure I can run through the pain however - I wanted a third party assessment of whether or not I was going to cause permanent damage of any kind.  My legs had very little fatigue after the back to back runs - however my knee was very sore and swelled - so it wasn't just discomfort from a lot of mileage. I have also sprained, hyper-extended and torn cartilage before and it didn't feel like any of the above.  I have experienced IT band issues and it didn't feel like that either.  If I had to lean towards one of these injuries,  it would be a cartilage tear which had me concerned.  Better to have it checked than linger in my mind.  Would I listen to sound advice or not is another story :)

Either way, her assessment doubted a tear which was mostly what I was after.  The interesting part is that she is an avid runner and feels the injury is sourced in my back or hamstring.  When she mentioned hamstring, I was all ears since my right hamstring plagued my running a bit last year.  I vowed to work on my flexibility this season but as of yet, I have done zero to improve on that.  I was told by a few post race RMTs that I had some of the tightest hamstrings they have ever seen - nothing to brag about of course.  Last time I checked hamstrings are not abs.  So I am to rest and stretch before trying a light run again.

Harder than you think.  My brain and body are yelling at me to run and get those last miles of tapering in.  My psyche tells me I cannot lay low for almost 2 weeks prior to a race.  Stay tuned to see how it all works out. 

Friday, April 29, 2011

Final Push

21.5 miles in this week so far.  Planning on getting 50 miles in this weekend as a final push for mileage prior to backing off next week to rest.  I would rather have backed off this week, but I knew when I signed up I am short about one month of training so I will need every mile I can get.  Knee is getting suspiciously sore, probably from mileage increase.  Also have had trouble with my right leg falling asleep while running.  I have had this happen on the treadmill, but not usually on the road/trail.  It happened on the trail yesterday.  I have had right hamstring issues, maybe it has something to do with that.  Oh well, on with the show...

PS - If any rich ultra running enthusiast happens to be reading my blog - I am highly doubtful anybody is reading this.  It would be a dream come true to hit Geoff Roes' Alaska Mountain Ultrarunning Camp - feel free to send me out of the kindness of your pocket book :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Plan

Back on track with some hard miles on Monday and Tuesday.  Going to try for a long run tonight if the rain isn't too bad.  I wrote out my schedule for the race which makes me feel more confident.  I stretched the time out as far as I could to finish under 10 hours.  The race is a 6km loop followed by a 9km loop for 5 laps - finishing with a very short 5km (out and back).


*45 min per 6km loop              *65 min per 9km loop              *40 min for last 5km

My fingers are crossed to win one of the daily prizes from Bryon Powell's RFP giveaways this week...I could use the shoes since the ones I ordered didn't fit :)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Focus! Focus! Focus!

Disappointing weekend from a running perspective.  Neither pair of my new shoes fit - both were too small.  I was really pumped to try them out for my long run.  I ran 30 miles which felt more like 30 days.  I experienced the dreaded 'wall' for the first time in years during the last 10 miles.  I didn't focus enough on eating and drinking - stupid me.  It really put a dent in my confidence going into my first 50 miler in 3 weeks.  I would not and could not have finished a 50 miler yesterday. 

However, luckily I woke up pissed off.  I still have 3 weeks and have no intention of backing off!  Back at it today.  Bring it!

On a more positive note, it is launch week for Bryon Powell's ( book Relentless Forward Progress.  If you happen to read this blog, check out the book.  Mine should be in my mailbox tomorrow and I can't wait to read it.  

He has some gear giveaways this week to promote the book.  I hope to win the Montrail shoes since the Rogue Racers I ordered were both too small. (wipe tear :)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

New Shoes for Me :)

Not much from a running perspective to report....another 5 miles on the treadmill yesterday.  Gotta run tonight due to an all day meeting at work.  However, I just purchased a pair of Montrail Rogue Racers for my upcoming event.  Had to purchase them over the phone since Moncton, NB doesn't really have any selection at all of trail shoes.  I bought them over the phone from the in Halifax, NS.  Hats off to Trevor who answered the phone and helped me out - very knowledgeable and friendly.  Turns out I thought I had only a few choices from the inventory on the website, but he quickly corrected me and pointed me to the Montrails.  Super excited.  I ordered 2 sizes to ensure a proper fit since my brother is driving up from Halifax on the weekend to deliver them...can't wait!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Historic Day on the Treadmill

Too cold and wet for a run outside.  Ran an uneventful 5 miles on the treadmill at the gym yesterday - will try to get outside today.  Having said 'uneventful' - it happened that my run coincided with both the women's and men's finishes of the Boston marathon.  Both were exciting and record breaking.  Man it would be great to wake up every day and it be your job to run and train!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Longest Run Yet

I set the alarm for 4:20 AM this past Saturday to get up and run 30 miles.  I was fortunate enough that the alarm wasn't necessary - my daughter woke me around 3:50 AM - she called my name wanting some company.  I snuggled her back to sleep and figured I would shut off the alarm and be on my way.  After some coffee and waffles, 'nature' had not yet beckoned - which I had hoped would have happened prior to leaving the house.  I figured there was no sense waiting around for that to happen - not too many spectators at that hour on a Saturday morning.

It was a beautiful morning, crisp enough for toque and gloves - but the star of the show was a huge almost full yellow moon hovering over the trees.  I set off for a few laps close to home in case the bio-break set in early.  The neighbors have a large dog, but not that large and probably doesn't use TP.    After a few laps, I set off towards Magnetic Hill to see the sun rise over the city.  A nice surprise on the way up was a fox joining me for a portion of the run from a short distance in the field.  I crested the top of the concert site just as the sun came up over the horizon - makes getting up at 4AM worth every minute.

Next up was Mapleton Park.  A nice set of trails that I could fully take advantage of now that I  purchased a Garmin GPS watch.  I could deviate from a measured route to explore the park and still keep track of my distance. I found several new trails I didn't know existed and got to see a crane taking off from a perfectly still pond.  There were lots of ducks, chipmunks, squirrels and even a pheasant up and about but no sign of the beaver I was hoping to catch a glimpse of.  Nice park.  Nice day.

At this point I was 4 hours into my run and I was getting pretty hungry and also needed a little motivation.  A good time to stop back to the house for some fuel, hugs from the kids and ridicule from my loving wife who thinks I am insane:)

After hugs, ridicule, peanut butter sandwich, more gatorade and some chips, I am off for the final 2 hours of my run.  This time I head to Centennial Park to explore some more trails.  I was lucky enough to find some new trails here as well, some of which were still snow packed, others quite wet.

The final hour was pretty tough as I started getting a pain in my left leg.  I was too tired to tell if it was coming from my knee shooting through to my ankle or vice versa.  Either way I finished off the run.  My wife was kind enough to have a hot bath waiting to hop into.  I still had enough energy left to set up the kids trampoline as I had promised before waking up to run.  The long run topped off a 60 mile week for me.  I am hoping to get a 70 mile week in this week.

I also hope to get my copy of Relentless Forward Progress by Bryon Powell from  A little late in the game for a manual, but it should come in handy for future events.  I expect to have many lessons learned to reflect upon after this first race. 

Stay tuned.


Just what the world needs, another blog...more specifically another running blog.  I am a runner.  I have been running for approximately 10 yearsish.  No idea exactly how long.  I haven't really taken it seriously - tried a half marathon one summer and then a full marathon to see if I could do it.  I then usually tried one event, either half or full each year after.  Last year I read 'Born to Run' and really got the bug to run more.  Last year I ran 2 half marathons and 5 full marathons - I ran them all but one (Hyporthermic Half - too cold)  in Vibram Five Fingers.  The last 3 races were on back to back to back weekends.  I have been researching and reading about ultra marathons.  I am blown away by these runners and their endurance.  I also am blown away by the venues.  The trails and mountains make you question why anybody would ever run on pavement given the choice.  I want to take the plunge and work towards running these ultra events.  Maybe it is a life crisis of some sort - but I don't want to read about them and see photos of them anymore.  I want to experience them.  I am running my first 50 miler May 14...wish me luck.