Big Cottonwood, Friends & Bart Yasso!

What a fun weekend! It’s finally June and summer has made its’ presence felt. I’m digging the heat. I actually really love dry heat. Well, I should say within reason. It has been 90 degree the past few days — anything hotter is not my favorite and one of the many reasons why I could never live in Vegas or Arizona.

But, we’re getting in the swing of the running season and that excites me more than anything. My ultra/marathon training has begun and the next 3-4 months are focusing on getting ready for them — Big Cottonwood Marathon, Huntsville Marathon, St. George Marathon and the Pony Express 50!

I didn’t have any concrete plans for running this weekend on Friday. It was probably going to be 6-8 miles around my neighborhood. Nothing too fancy — just get my miles in. But, when I got word that a group of friends was running down Big Cottonwood Canyon on Saturday morning I quickly changed those plans. I can’t miss a good Big Cottonwood run. I just can’t. I love that canyon. I live for that canyon.

So on Saturday morning I met up with Meridith, Shelley, Monte, Robert and others at the Park n’ Ride and drove 10 miles up the canyon. I really didn’t need 10 miles. My training only called for about 6-8 (depending on which training plan you’re looking at). But, I knew I could do 10 miles — especially 10 downhill miles. Plus, it’d be a great training run for the Drop13 Half happening this weekend.

As much training as I have done — it’s mainly been on rolling hills or flat surfaces — not downhill. Which is unusual for me because in the past that’s been my default choice. Besides the Ogden and Provo Half Marathons — I just haven’t ran much downhill. So this really was good training for me — I have to train my quads how to prepare properly.

I wasn’t sure exactly where I was pace wise and kinda came prepared to run solo. But, when we started running the gazelles went off blazing and a little group of four emerged — me, Dith, Shelley and Alicia. We ran about the first mile or two together and then the group became a party of two — me and Shelley.

Supporting “The Dith” while getting a little support myself! #run4dith #sportsbro #notclevage #myonlypatchofchesthair

A photo posted by Joshua Sn❆w Hansen (@josherwalla) on

I love running with Shelley. Especially down Big Cottonwood Canyon. We ran the Vigor Big Cottonwood Half together last year — and had a BLAST! Then again — anytime you run with Shelley you have a blast — race or not.

We ran pretty strong and average around a 12 minute mile — some stretches were faster than that, especially around the “S-curve” in the canyon. But, I felt strong and had good energy. Two of my biggest worries about doing Whole30 while running.

I did slow down some around mile 8-10, but I kinda of expected that, because I am trying to transition my running from run/walk method to pacing. So, I resorted to a run/walk method for those miles — while pushing the minutes in between the walking. That transition has been easier than I thought — it’s just building the stamina back to where I need it to be.

So this mishap happened today, but Josh says I get my hard core runner badge now!

A photo posted by Shelley Halverson (@sunriseshelley) on

Anyways — did a total of 10.1 miles in about 2:05-10 hours — not bad. I feel good about that. I wasn’t wearing my Garmin to track it so I don’t know the specific mileage and pace. I haven’t worn my Garmin now for over a year — not sure when I will start doing that again? But, I am starting to feel the tug to do it. Maybe after Ragnar? But, we shall see.

But, I had a blast running the canyon and especially with Shelley. She even biffed it at one point — I am proud of myself for not laughing, because I have a problem with that — but, luckily she was okay. Especially since she did it while walking. She did scrape her knee and pants up. I told her she earned her “badass runner” badge — and a Slurpee.

I don’t know if she got her badge yet, but I know she did get her Slurpee.

It was also a lot of fun running (literally) to a number of runners from Run4Fun and some of my other Facebook running groups. I ran into four runners from the groups down the canyon. It was fun. And, proof that Big Cottonwood is THE PLACE to run for a great training run here in the SLC area.

And, lucky me — I’m going back this weekend!

DROP 13 OR BUST, BABY!


AIIA PODCAST WITH BART YASSO!

Had an amazing opportunity yesterday afternoon to join Coach Blu from Addict II Athlete interviewing the Mayor of Running — and Chief Running Officer — Bart Yasso. I got the opportunity a couple weeks ago to join Bart for lunch after the Ogden Marathon which was a really neat experience. But, getting a second chance to meet him and to record a podcast — wow.

My friend Angie Pace text me on Friday morning after I had posted the AIIA episode online and told me that Bart was going to be in town and if we could make it work — we should try to set up an interview, because of Bart’s background and reasons he started running. I won’t tell the whole story here — you’ll have to listen to the podcast yourself. 

But, it’s an amazing story. Amazing. Both Coach Blu and I were in awe of how he rebounded from struggles in his youth to become an elite runner and eventually now — the Mayor of Running.

The episode will go live in a couple of weeks. Make sure to stay tuned in here and on social media for the release date. You really won’t want to miss this episode.

But, a BIG thank you to Bart for spending the time with us yesterday. And, of course Angie for making the connection. I sure love the running community. Everyone has a story and a reason — and we’re all better when we share it with others.


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AMAZING! There’s a new podcast from Addict II Athlete out today. The Runcast swapped weeks with AIIA due to some technical difficulties. But, we’ll be back this week with special guest and Pod Bash resident psychiatrist — Dr. Matt!

But, don’t overlook this episode it’s powerful. Coach Blu interviews his brother-in-law and fellow AIIAer, Jarom Thurston. They talk about his involvement with AIIA and the inspiring stories behind the athletes. Great, great episode!

Give it a listen …


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This week begins a string of consecutive race weekends for me. I’ve got a race every weekend for the next month. And, if you extend that until August — it’s 6 out of the next 7 weekends. The only weekend I am missing is July 9th, because my niece is getting baptized and I want to make sure I am not late for it. So I’m just staying closer to home that weekend.

But, I am excited for Drop13 this Saturday. This is one of my favorite races down one of my favorite canyons. I ran it in 2:37 last year — I am not exactly sure if I’ll match that this year. But, as I am losing weight and running more consistently I know I’ll surpass that at least once or twice this year.

The goal on Saturday is a sub-2:50. I think and feel like I could sneak into the 2:30s, but I need to race smart to ease myself back into there. But, after Saturday’s run down the canyon — I think I could? I don’t know? I just want to run — and do my best.

And, really, that’s all you can expect and be proud of, right?

Either way — I’m excited for Saturday!


STREAKIN’ THROUGH JUNE!

As I’ve noted last week I am run streaking this month. So far, so good. I’ve done 16.5 miles since June 1st — and planning for good mileage this week. Especially with my race on Saturday.

One thing I am planning on incorporated this week is at least one or two runs during my lunch hour. I am not sure of the route yet, but I’ve got plenty of places to run on campus — not to mention the avenues around campus. That would be good hill training. I’m hoping to do 2-3 miles during the hour. Luckily, I have access to a shower close to my office.

But, the key this week is consistency and preparation for the Drop13 Half on Saturday. I’m excited for this week — especially with how energetic I’ve been feeling doing Whole30 the past couple of weeks. It’s helped me a lot.

THE STREAK GOES ON!


2016miles

RUNNING MILES

122.55 miles

RACE MILES

77.9 miles

WALKING MILES

684.01 miles

TOTAL MILES TO DATE

884.46 miles

MILES TO GOAL

1782.54 miles



A photo posted by Runcast USA™ (@runcastusa) on

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