What ever it takes!

BigHorn 50 mile trail run

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Member Since:

Apr 29, 2010



Goal Type:

Boston Qualifier

Running Accomplishments:

2009 Provo River Marathon, 4:04:38

2009 Provo Canyon Halloween 1/2 Marathon, 1:27:22

2010 Ogden Marathon, 3:04:39

2010 Deseret News Marathon, 2:51:36

2010 Provo River 1/2 Marathon 1:19:01

2010 Top of Utah Marathon 2:52:24

2010 Just Cuz 1/2 Marathon 1:17:36

2011 13.1 LA 1/2 Marathon 1:19:43

2011 Timpanogos Half 1:16:51

2011 Treadmill Marathon 2:49:26 (pr)

Short-Term Running Goals:

2:45 Boston.

Favorite Blogs:

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 0.00
Elliptical Trainer 2017 Lifetime Miles: 107.00
Treadmill 2017 Lifetime Miles: 454.20
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 36.00Saucony Progrid Kinvara Miles: 35.00Bike 2012 Miles: 23.00Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 98.50NB Minimus Miles: 24.50Elliptical Trainer 2012 Miles: 11.50Swim 2012 Miles: 2.00Treadmill 2012 Miles: 10.00Nike LunarGlide 3 Miles: 6.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

2 easy loops around Disney now trying to get packed up for a fun long drive home.  Bye Bye Mickey.

Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 5.00
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OK, now I'm at a computer.

I had so much fun on this run 10 days ago I decided to do it again, I even convinced Ryan it was a fun run (Sucker)  Even though I drove all the way home from Disneyland yesterday I decided today was my do or die day, 2 weeks until my race and I needed to get one more long run in.  Ryan didn't want to start until 5:00 this morning, and he didn't want to run a full 30+ miles either so I started at 4:15 from my house, ran 4 miles to his and was early so I ran another 1 while waiting until 5:00. 

Ran up Timpanogos highway, up American Fork Canyon and this time went all the way up to Tibble Fork Resevoir.  Ton's of runners out today, and an absolutely perfect morning for running, I was a bit worried it would be to hot but clouds kept it perfect the whole run.  We ran back down, I dropped Ryan off at Smiths and then ran the 4 miles home alone.  When I got to the Elementary school by my house my wife was playing a game of soccer so I stopped there but my watch said only 32.5 miles.  I really wanted 35 for some reason so I took off my shoes and socks and just ran around the freshly watered soccer field barefoot for 2.5 miles until my Garmin said 35 miles.

 I'm amazed how good I felt all morning, I kept commenting to Ryan how good I felt and figured I would eventually crash but I never did for some reason.

35 miles in 4:50:13 8:17 average pace.  I told Ryan I wanted to average between 8:30 and 8:45 but he would never allow for that. 

Awesome run, I'm pretty excited that I somehow got this far along in my training for the Big Horn with all the set backs I've had this year.  For the next 2 weeks I can't do anything to get in better shape, only things to get slower, so I'm going to take it pretty easy and get the bike out more.

Saucony Progrid Kinvara Miles: 35.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

I've actually recovered quite well from my 35 mile run on Saturday but I've been wanting to get out on my bike for a while now and today seemed like a great day, plus it gave my legs an extra day off of running.  Started from my office, out around the Zoo and back on Wasatch.  Nice morning, really cool views of the Lunar eclipse all morning.  I didn't even know there was an eclipse today but when I went to bed last night the moon was full and when I woke up it wasn't, which I thought was strange so I Googled it and sure enough, an eclipse.

Bike 2012 Miles: 23.00
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12 miles on a warm but very nice morning, the full moon made it possible to start running at 4:30 with no headlamp.

I've really been having a shoe dilemma trying to decide what shoes to wear for the BigHorn, I finally broke down and bought some Altra Lonepeaks yesterday, I figured I'd be save with the zero lift shoe since I train in minimalist shoes most the time anyway.  I was sufficiently happy with them today, I'm not much of a shoe guy, if the shoe fits wear it I always say :)  I did get a small blister on my left foot but I think that's more from the new socks I bought too. 

Anyway, 12 miles all on gravel road at an average 7:32 pace, which is much harder to hold on dirt that pavement so I'm pretty happy with the run.  7:30 is about the fastest I ever need to run in the race, and that's downhill pace.

Now off to the airport to fly to Minneapolis for a couple days

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 12.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Pretty nice run this morning along the river parkway here in Minneapolis, believe it or not I have never been to this city, seems like a nice place with lots of active people out running and riding bikes.  It took me a little while to figure out the trail system, I almost gave up at 5 miles and came back to the hotel gym to finish but then I asked a biker where to go and he pointed me to the correct trail and that one seemed to go on for a long time.  Every once in a while there would be little single track dirt trails that would take off through the trees down by the river, I kept trying those out but they were really over grown with bushes and I got sick of getting spider webs in my face so I ended up just sticking to the pavement.

A little bit muggy and buggy here, it reminded me of when I lived in Mississippi.

I bought Scott Jureks new book "Eat and Run" yesterday on my iPAD to read on the plane, I really like it so far, I'm about 1/2 way through already and it's really getting me excited to run the Big Horn.  I'm not sure how a book full of pain, vomit, and all the other discomforts that come with running ultra long distances can get me excited but it does.

NB Minimus Miles: 12.50
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Pretty amazing run this morning, went out and followed the River Trail again today but since I started knowing the right way to go I was able to follow it much further.  About 4 miles out of downtown Minneapolis the trail got really beautiful going through foresty residential areas, there were lots of side dirt trails that kept taking off into the woods, I couldn't help myself and eventually just left the path and started running down an amazing trail, it was like I found running Mecca, soft dirt trails with leaves all over them, little bridges that crossed over streams and wild life everywhere, it was simply amazing.  I could have kept running forever until I realized I was completely lost, had no idea which way I was heading and some how the river got on the wrong side of me and I didn't remember ever crossing a bridge, so I turned around and tried to back track, eventually I found my way back to a park I remembered running through and got back on the right track.  My Garmin Database got full and stopped working so I'm not sure exact distance, it was further than 12 cause it said 6 when I turned around and then I ran a bit extra just trying to figure out how to get back.

Anyway, awesome run, I wish I knew someone local who knew those trails better cause it would be amazing to just run forever though the woods like that.  I fly home this afternoon.

The hotel I'm staying at has had network problems for over 1 year, we have sent 4 techs out to try and fix it and finally they convinced me to come out and take a look.  I found the problem in about 4 hours and have the new parts coming in this morning to replace the bad.  They don't pay me enough!!!

NB Minimus Miles: 12.00
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Course specific run today, I realized I should have done about 19 more of these, started out at the base of Little Cottonwood and started running up the mountain bike trail.  I was suckin air hard, and kept thinking, "Oh, Crap the Bighorns going to eat me alive" got into a little bit more of a rhythm and tried to run, albeit slow the whole time, there were sections that were just technically not runnable, to steep and too technical.  At 4.5 mile the trail came to a river and the only way I could see out led me up to the main road so I decided it was a good time to turn around.  That's when the fun began.  

When I was 15 or 16 years old I was a wannabe skateboarder, I couldn't skate but I tried to dress like one.  Vision Street Wear shoes, Quicksilver shorts, and Powell Peralta T-shirt.  Well one of my best friends and I's favorite things to do was to hike up Adams Canyon in Layton up to the Waterfall and then just run as fast as we could down the canyon and jump off rocks on the way down doing skater moves.  At the time I had no idea I was excercising, no idea what pace I was running, and no clue that I was trail running.  All I knew that it was dangerous and fun.  I hadn't thought about those days for years until today, running down the canyon I felt like I was 16 again, and was pretty sure I could have beat my 16 year old self down the canyon.  What a great run, thrashed my quads pretty good but I will definitely be doing that again this year.

2,000' climb in 4.5 miles, 8.3% average grade up, same coming down.  No wonder I was suckin air.

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 9.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Ryan is running UVM Half today so I was all alone for my run. Luckily it wasn't long.  I woke up me other pacing partner (My 10 year old son) to come with me at 5:00am.  He wasn't happy when I woke him up but he's a great kid and I can always count on him.  By the way kids on bikes make great pacers and water bottle holders.  Averaged 7:30 for the run which I'm pretty happy about, especially since we started out fairly slow so I made it up on the way back.

I think I've decided to change my stratagy a bit for next week, I've been feeling much better than I ever thought I would at this point and my long runs went very well so I think I'm going to push it a little bit.  I was going to go in with just a I want to finish attitude but I'm pretty sure I can finish so I might as well try for a decent time.  I looked up a couple of the people running the 50, there were 3 that stood out.  Craig Howie won the 50M leadville last year, I suspect he will win next week.  Damion Stoy took 1st place last week at the Pocatello 50K and Dominik something from Park City took second.  Both will be there next week.  The funny thing is I actually have a faster marathon time than any of these guys, but they are ultra-runners with lots of experience, I've never ran more than 35.   I'd like to try and go out with Damion and Dominik and just see how it goes, Damion has ran this race like 5 times so I figure he's a great trail guide.

I finished Scott Jureks book last night, it's a bit dark, not Dean Koontz dark but a bit depressing.  I actually liked it and got a lot out of it.  I wouldn't recommend having your non-running spouse read it.  It makes runners look like self absorbed, 1 track minded jerks.  But one thing about it, I new Ultra-runners were over the top, but Wow! these guys are completely crazy.  Pretty sure I don't every want to run 100 but who know, after next week I may change my mind.

Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 14.00
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5 easy mile with the doggie.  She was happy

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 5.00
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32 laps in the pool followed by 45 minutes of weights and stretching and 10 minutes on the elliptical just to waste time.  Gotta love taper week.

Weather is shaping up nicely for the weekend. When the 10 Day first was showing Saturday it said 85 for a high at the finish line, now it's down to 71.  Perfect!  85 would have done me in.

Elliptical Trainer 2012 Miles: 1.50Swim 2012 Miles: 1.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

I was going over my pacing plan last night and saw that I have about a 3 mile downhill section where I need to run 6:40 pace.  I wasn't even sure I could run a 6:40 pace so this morning I decided to hit the treadmill and give it a shot.  What did I find?  sure I can do it but I doubt I could recover enough to climb a 2500' climb and then run another 30 miles after it.  I did 4 miles at 6:40 pace and then my stomach started acting up.  Hopefully it was just something bad I ate but I still don't think my body is ready for that.  So my new plan is to not run over 7:00 pace ever and just try and make it up somewhere else.  Weird that I can maintain an 8:00 pace for at least 30 miles but I'd probably struggle pretty bad even running one 90 second 1/4.  I'm definately going to need to re-focus my training if I plan to run Des News this year.

On the plus side... My 10 year old son is a pretty decent little soccer player, he was the top scorer for his team last season but he was really out of shape, he could barely run the length of the field without cramping up and doubling over.  I was really embarassed that my kid was so out of shape so this summer I have started a running program with all 3 of my kids.  I measured out a perfect 1/4 mile loop which I have them all jog around and then try and sprint for best time, we also go to the school and I time them on the 50M dash.  Yesterday my 10 year old had a real break through, at first he struggled to just to get his 1/4's under 2:00, and his 50 under 10.  We've been working on form and pacing and yesterday he pulled out a 104 1/4 and a 7.93 50.  I was pretty excited about it and I'm sure he was happy to have his dad giving him high fives.

Treadmill 2012 Miles: 10.00
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I was out way too late with my wife trying to re-live our youth at the NickelBack concert.  Pretty fun show, but I'm too old for that crowd.

I slept in a bit late and then just did an easy 6 mile run on the dirt trails by my house.

The weather forcast at the finish line on Saturday keeps getting better and better, now it's down to 68 with clouds, perfect.  It may be pretty chilly at the start line at 9,000'.

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 6.00
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Made the 9 hour trek up to Sheridan yesterday and just relaxed the rest of the day, woke up and went for a nice little jog around town.  If you've never been to Sheridan it's a great place, just a great community with bike trails all over.  It's really quite beautiful here and the weather in the summer is always perfect.

I'm feeling eerily good, not really much soreness in any of the normal areas, hip feels good, shins feel good (the top of my foot still has an issue but I don't think it will be a problem).  I'm getting pretty antsy, the weather at the finish line now says around 80 which I'm a bit upset about, all week it was saying high of 70 on Saturday now all of a sudden it jumps up 10 degrees.  Oh well, can't do much about that.

Nike LunarGlide 3 Miles: 6.00
Race: BigHorn 50 mile trail run (51.5 Miles) 10:10:01, Place overall: 17, Place in age division: 7
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Well, now I got that out of my system for a while.


This is going to sound really stupid, but for some reason I envisioned this being a little bit more “fun” I’m not sure why I would think that.  I have about 100 excuses but honestly I don’t think I need to make any excuses, I’m happy with my result, I really had no way to know what to expect and with all my resent set backs just finishing a 50 miler is something I’m pretty proud of.

Stayed at the in-laws last night and actually got a really good night sleep, almost 7 hours of sleep then woke up at 3:00am with no alarm.  My Father in law offered to drive me to the start even though there were buses leaving Sheridan, we got to the start about an hour early and 15 minutes before the buses so I had the porta potties to myself for a while.  It was chilly at the top but I knew that was only going to last for an hour or so, so I was happy about the cold.  Surprisingly the race started with an out right sprint with about 10 guys right off the bat, I wasn’t expecting that at all, I started up chase group 1 with 3 guys behind me, I felt good but we were running through snow drifts and mud puddles pretty fast, I kept thinking “this is to fast” but I didn’t want the guys behind me to pass.  A couple times I saw 6:10 on my Garmin, bad news.  At mile 8 I tripped on a rock and wiped out pretty hard, skinned my knees up but nothing felt broken, the 3 guys all passed me, which looking back actually may of saved me from something really bad happening.  I tripped about 5 times over the first 20 miles, I think that it was simply a matter of me doing all my training runs on the road, my normal running stride just doesn’t lift my feet enough so I kept tripping.  I could tell that falling was taking a lot out of me and decided taking a really hard fall was going to put me back a lot more than just slowing down, so that’s what I did.

I would say this route is almost 50% un-runnable, the up-hills are to steep to run- and the down-hills to technical.  I was pretty upset that I kept walking up hill but then I realized everyone was walking the up-hills and no-one was passing me.

My family was all waiting for me at the mile 33 aid station, I told them I was going to be there between 11:00 and 12:00, at 11:10 I was 3 miles away and saw that it was straight up-hill to the aid station, I averaged about 16:00 pace for that next 3 miles.  All my kids and wife were waiting for me and walked me the last 100meters up the hill.  They told me even the winners all walked that hill so I didn’t feel so bad.  I spent way to much time at that aid station with my family, eating and taking care of blisters, I noticed 2 girls running the 50M come in and immediately leave, my wife told me I had to go catch them so I didn’t get chicked, I knew I couldn’t catch them though, they were hauling.  About 5 miles later I got backed by Girl # 3 and thought, I need to start running with girls, they are way smarter than me when it comes to racing.  I kept jocking back and forth with the 3rd Girl and ran/walked with her for quite a while and eventually broke away.  Besides the 2 girls I could only think of maybe 2 other 50miler guys that had passed me and guessed I was in about 15th place, but I didn’t really care, I knew I wasn’t going to pass anyone, and I couldn’t see anyone behind me so I was content with my place.

Mile 38 all of a sudden like 10 people just stopped right in the middle of the trail (at this point there were 100M, 50K, and 30K people on the trail) and one of the 100M pacers was sword fighting something with a stick, turns out there was a huge rattlesnake just off the trail all coiled up and really pissed off.  Eventually we all bush wacked around it and I decided to try and help scare it away cause we were afraid for other runners coming down the trail,  I found out I could throw rocks almost as good as I could run at that point, and I’m terrified of snakes anyway so I left it to the pacer and left.  Not sure if he ever got rid of it, I hope so.

Around mile 40 the trail actually got really nice to run on, single track without rocks and a downslope, If I didn’t have 40 mile legs I’m sure I could have flown down it, but by this point 9:30 pace felt like sprinting.  Then at 46 miles the trail came out onto a dirt road which also would have been nice to run on but it was 85 degrees at this point and I was dead.  I kept telling myself I just needed to make a running motion no matter how slow it was and just get done.  That 4 miles was miserable, I knew my wife was waiting for me at the final aid station to pace me in so that kept me going. The final aid station is at mile 50, seriously, I thought this was a 50 mile race I was ready to be done.  I’m really happy my wife was there, she was all gung ho and I kept having to tell her to slow down, but without her I seriously would have walked the last 1.5 miles so I was glad she was there. 

I finished strong, never had a major breakdown and was so glad to be done.  I immediately crossed the finish line and jumped into the Ice cold river.  So nice.


Things I learned,

Don’t follow the 6:00min/mile guys at the start of an Ultra

Don’t try to find the “dry” way around rivers and bogs, just go through them you’re going to get wet and muddy anyway.

Do train on trails, not roads.

Learn not to fall down so much.

Learn how to take care of your feet better, I dealt with a pretty bad blister almost the entire race.


Un-fortunately I am in a really bad age group so I don’t get any award at all, If I came back next year I’m sure I could win something, but at this point I don’t think that will happen.

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 51.50
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Looks like I just bruised my rib, which is much better than breaking it.  It hurt pretty bad yesterday but I'm feeling much better today.  Went to the gym and did the only activity I thought I could do, elliptical.  Then I went and stretched out in the hot tub.  I realized today that I really miss fast running.  There is just something about the feeling you get right after a really hard tempo run.  

Elliptical Trainer 2012 Miles: 7.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

5 easy miles on the JRP, quads are still sore, knee is a bit achy, but I think I'll survive.

Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 5.00
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The River trail was way to buggy this morning so I took to the roads.  My knee that I crashed on is a bit screwed up so I cut my run short.

Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 6.00
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5 pretty pathetic miles.  I really feel bad I didn't make it to the Wedding Bells 5K but I guess last week was my week, today we played soccer with my wifes Co-Ed soccer team.

I think I figured out why I like running and cycling better than team sports.  I don't like being responsible for other people, in Soccer when you screw up the whole team suffers, in running when you screw up you're only responsible for yourself.  I guess I just never played team sports as a kid and don't know how to be a team player.

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 5.00
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I'm just not recovering very quickly, knee hurts, hip hurts, foot hurts.  I'm just an old man.  Soccer on Saturday probably didn't help any.

Decided to swim this morning, I wanted to swim in the outdoor pool but there was a big sign that said pool closed, so I jumped in the indoor pool, they must have just drained and re-filled it over the weekend cause it was freezing cold.  I did 12 laps and then noticed 2 guys just walk past the sign and go outside, so I jumped out and followed them to the outdoor pool.  It was nice and warm, maybe a bit too warm but it felt good after the indoor pool.  Did 24 laps outside and called it a day.

I'm headed to Miami tomorrow, so the rest of this week should be nice beach running.  I'm excited for that.

Swim 2012 Miles: 1.00
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Pretty darn fantastic run this morning.  I'm at the Harbor Marriott on Ft. Lauderdale beach, it doesn't start getting light here until after 6:00 am but that's OK cause that's only 4:00 Utah time so my schedule wont get too messed up.  Started out running the sidewalk from my hotel along the beach, I felt really good, nothing hurt and I was running comfortable at about a 7:00 pace flying past other people.  The humidity was bothering me a little bit but a nice breeze kept it bearable.  At 3 miles out my knee started hurting a little bit so I turned around and ran back to the hotel, stripped off my socks, shoes, and shirt and ran hippie style on the beach.  Another 2 miles out and back for a total of 10, running on the sand right along where the waves hit the sand is the best place to run, every once in a while a wave will come cool off your feet and that is where the surface is the hardest but it still gives your calves quite a workout.

I can't decide if when I'm rich and retired if I'd rather be a beach bum or a mountain bum.  Both would be very nice, if I'm rich enough I'll just do both Florida in the winter, Montana in the Summer.

Oh, sure, Jeff L had to one up me by running in Hawaii, Jealous!!

Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 6.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

My knee was hurting pretty bad so I went to the hotel gym, ellipticalled for 30 minutes, lifted weights for 30 minutes then went for a 2 mile run/walk on the beach.  It's too hot and humid here to enjoy running, I'm ready to come home where at least it's cool in the mornings. 

If you ever have to choose between Ft. Lauderdale and Miami South beach, pick South beach, the running is better. 

And if you ever have to choose between Pie Heaven and Regular Heaven, pick Pie Heaven.

Elliptical Trainer 2012 Miles: 3.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 10.00
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Nike Free Run 2 Miles: 36.00Saucony Progrid Kinvara Miles: 35.00Bike 2012 Miles: 23.00Altra Lonepeaks Miles: 98.50NB Minimus Miles: 24.50Elliptical Trainer 2012 Miles: 11.50Swim 2012 Miles: 2.00Treadmill 2012 Miles: 10.00Nike LunarGlide 3 Miles: 6.00
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