Tag: canyon

Ode to Big Cottonwood Canyon …

I love Big Cottonwood Canyon. I’m pretty sure I’ve said that a million times on this blog. The proximity, scenery and elevation drop is bar none. Well, I shouldn’t say bar none, because Little Cottonwood Canyon, American Fork Canyon and even Emigration Canyon can give it a run for its’ money. But, when it comes down to it all, Big Cottonwood Canyon is the one that’s getting the last rose.

I’ve been looking forward to this past weekend’s run for WEEKS! And, I mean WEEKS! So when I threw my back out last Monday I was nervous I’d have to skip this run. But, I did some slow miles, lots of stretching and core work to help strengthen that back. All that fun stuff.

But, I really didn’t want to miss this run — besides, I was the one who set it up in the first place. It’d be like not showing up to your own party. Luckily, I made it! And, there was a great turnout.

Most of us met at the Park n’ Ride at the mouth of the canyon at 6:30am before carpooling up. There were a couple other groups that either went at 5:30am (sooooooo early) and a few later than the main group. It was a lot of fun to get everyone together and social offline.

I wasn’t sure what mileage I wanted to do — with the factors of my back, recent race schedule, future race schedule and the like — I kinda decided somewhere between 8-10. That seemed like a good number. But, I didn’t really decide until I got to the Park n’ Ride when my friend Camille said she was doing nine miles. That seemed liked a good comparison (smack in the middle), plus I always like running Camille.

At 6:45am we jumped in the car and carpooled up the canyon. We dropped off a few at 8 miles, but the rest of us went up the extra mile. After a little more stretching of the back we headed down the canyon back to our cars.

For the first couple of miles I kept up with Camille pretty good, but I was slowing down. Part of it was my back, but it was more of a combination of my tired legs and this being my first downhill run of the year. I knew my speed wasn’t going to keep me up with Camille so I sent her ahead.

After Camille left I just plugged in my music and just zoned out. I focused not necessarily on my pace, but just not walking. I had to walk a couple stretches — not out of fatigue, but I just didn’t know if it was icy (there was actually only one sketch stretch that was icy). The last thing I needed was to fall with my back.

Even though I wasn’t as fast as I wanted — I didn’t really care. I’ve been ultra training all winter so of course I am going to still be rather slow. After the Salt Flats 50K I’ll have more time to do some speed work — speed work that will focus on doing really well at the Revel Big Cottonwood Half in September. If you’re wondering — that’s the goal. There’s a lot that will and is going into that training, but that’s a post for another day.

Anyways — the nine miles down were beautiful as ever. The beauty of this canyon is breathtaking and is one reason I love running it. Whether it’s the Vigor Big Cottonwood Half, Drop13 Half or the Revel Big Cottonwood Marathon — I hate missing those races, because they’re fast and gorgeous.

I am not able to run the Vigor Big Cottonwood Half again this year, but I am excited because they have a trail series of half marathons starting this year. They’ve had smaller distances, but not the half — until this year. There are three throughout the summer and I am signed up for the one in August.

I can’t wait!

Seriously, the excitement is ridiculously high.

I really enjoyed the run. It was great being around so many great friends. I absolutely love the running community, especially here in Utah. There are so many runners who inspire and motivate me to do my best. I feel extremely lucky and blessed.

Moving onto next week — I have my 25K next week on Antelope Island. I’m rather giddy about this one for a few reasons — one, IT’S TRAIL and, two, IT’S TRAIL! I get to break out my Trekking poles, douse myself in bison repellant and enjoy an aid station full of M&M’s, salted potatoes and Nutella tortilla wraps.

Trails speak my language.

Plus, I have a number of friends running the 100 and 50 miler so I might stay for a little after my race to encourage them along. The dangerous part about doing that is the more time I spend watching these amazing runners tackle 100 miles — the more it makes me to tackle that distance too.

I’m crazy, but am I that crazy?!

Please don’t answer that.

Anyways, ANTELOPE ISLAND OR BUST, BABY!


Weekly Review

It was a tough week for miles. After throwing my back out on Monday at the Dentist office — the week was used stretching out the back and doing lighter workouts. I got about five miles of sloooooow miles in during the week. Just enough to keep my back lose.

I was worried about being able to run the group run, but manage a good — but, slow — 9 miles down Big Cottonwood. I didn’t want to overdo it because of my race this weekend out on Antelope Island. I am running the Buffalo Run 25K. I’ll be on my feet for a while during that race — so, the focus is this week will be lower mileage and continuing to stretch my back out.

Weekly Miles

Running Miles — 14.0 miles
Race Miles — 0.0 miles
Walking Miles — 21.97 miles
TOTAL MILES — 35.97 miles
Races this week — None.

March 2017 Miles

Running Miles — 17.5 miles
Race Miles — 13.1 miles
Walking Miles — 41.3 miles
TOTAL MILES — 71.9 miles
Races in March — March Madness Half and Antelope Island 25K.

2017 Miles

Running Miles — 133.65 miles
Race Miles — 83.02 miles
Walking Miles — 189.53 miles
TOTAL MILES — 406.2 miles
Races done in 2017 — New Year’s Half Marathon, Sweethearts 5K, Jackpot Running Festival, SL Tri Club Indoor Half and March Madness Half.


I tried to convince Dave to get this shirt. But, he declined. At least for meow. #walmartventures

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It’s National Dentist Day … naturally, I’d be celebrating it here. #nationaldentistday

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Sadly, none of these dispense cotton candy. #nationaldentistday

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Monday, Monday so good to me …

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AWESOME WEEKEND! I had my first canyon run down Big Cottonwood over the weekend. Ate some nachos. Took some things to the dump. Heck, I even got myself a Slurpee. So, yeah, it was an awesome weekend.

I’ve been in need of a good long canyon run for quite a while. And, by quite a while I mean, like, last October(ish)? I think it was the Haunted Half in Provo that I last ran DOWN a canyon. So, it’s definitely been a need for quite a while.

Besides needing a good canyon run, I’ve also needed a good non-solo run. Most of my training runs as of late have been solo — and as much as I love running, I won’t lie, I’m a social runner as well. It’s one reason why I love racing, especially sweeping courses. I need somewhat of a balance.

Being in a likewise situation my friend Jill and I decided we needed to make a canyon friend down happen. It wasn’t simply a hope or wish — it was something that needed to happen. So we made it happen.

And, we had our usual blast!

We met up at the mouth of the canyon at 6am (well, 6:15, I was late) and then Mark drove us 10 miles (actually 10.5 miles — he over shot) up the canyon. We weren’t going for speed, we weren’t going for a certain speed — we were going for effort, socializing and for the fun of running. And, it was very much all of that. Something we both needed.

And, it worked out for us because we avoided the rain (and snow) that some of our other running friends encountered. So it was perfect. Just a great time. It was something I needed to launch myself forward into the racing season.

Since Provo City is basically NEXT week — the plan this week to taper some. The plan is to still do a couple three miles run mid-week along with my workouts, but my long run on Saturday will be about 4-5 miles — and pretty easy. Don’t know if that’s necessarily needed, but I am playing by my training schedule rules.

Gotta be smart, right?

But, I am excited about the couple of weeks ahead — it’s hard to believe this is the last week of April. Time is flying by fast and I want to make sure it doesn’t pass me by — I need to make sure I hit the milestones and training plans I’ve set for myself.

Right now — I’m on track. It’s just staying the course.

Have a great week! Keep running! YEAH RUNNING!!! 


busquenda

On Saturday night my friend Dave and I went to The Nacho House here in North Salt Lake. I won’t go into much detail here — I am going to be blogging about it a bit later this week. But, they were pretty good — something you’d expect from a place with nacho in its’ name.

They had a number of options for nachos — cheese nachos, chicken nachos, steak nachos, supreme nachos, shrimp nachos and fajita nachos (chicken or beef). It was a tough decision, but I chose to go with the steak fajita nachos for a couple reasons.

One, I try to taste the best nacho dish on the menu and, two, I try to avoid the chicken. Not because I don’t like chicken, but it’s kind of overplayed and if not prepared right — can be rather boring. But, that’s a post for another day.

Anyways, make sure to check my blog, Nacho Búsqueda, to read the review later this week, along with my other samplings. Including my Costa Vida and Cafe Rio head to head battle from a couple weeks ago.

NACHOOOOOOOOOOOOOS!!!


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If you missed the newest episode of the Runcast, you’re missing out on a good episode. A really GOOD episode. We’re talking a little bit about Boston, a little bit about marathon training and a whole lot about Jorge’s heart attack.

If you haven’t given it a listen yet, do so here …


PHATGRAMS

Jill and I encountered some what of a headwind running down the canyon. #holdontoyourhats #running #runutah

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We have come to make offerings to the seagull gods of Bountiful. #acceptouroffer #dumpyland

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These are nacho socks. #nachosocks #mysocks

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I’m under attack by cuteness. #babytrex #prouduncle

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2016miles

RUNNING MILES

102.4 miles (17.5 miles for week)

RACE MILES

38.6 miles (no race during week)

WALKING MILES

499.75 miles (36.35 miles for week)

TOTAL MILES TO DATE

640.75 miles (53.85 total miles for week)

MILES TO GOAL

2026.25 miles


FALLING IN LOVE WITH K-POP

Recently, I’ve been introduced to K-Pop — Korean Pop. And, I won’t lie, I’m kinda obsessed. It’s music lyrics I really don’t understand — but it’s catchy, feel good and just fun. It’s the kind of music you would have heard in the early-2000s.

Here’s a little sampling of some good K-Pop songs …


Daily Shorts.fw

  • Okay, I love this Runners World article about stair climbing — I’ve done quite a bit, but could definitely do more. It’s not like it hard to do at my house. I have a flight of stairs that are perfect for it. But, any stairs or uphill running in my opinion is beneficial and a focus of mine as of late.
  • It’s hard to believe that chocolate chip cookies were only invented back in the 1930s isn’t it? Seems like they’ve been ingrained in our American culture forever.
  • I won’t lie — I never was a huge fan of Prince. It’s not that I hated his music, I just never really cared for it or got into it. But, it’s hard to ignore his contributions to music and his presence will be missed. This little ditty I found of 10 unknown — or not well known — facts is pretty interesting. Worth the read.
  • Oh gosh, Mean Girls is one of those movies that I could watch over and over again. So I can totally relate to all of this.
  • If you’re looking for a fun Disney quiz — this one from BuzzFeed is a pretty fun one. Just try to guess the movie from one line of dialogue from the script.
  • While searching the nether regions of the internet, I found this ditty about Life — the famous board game, most of us have probably planned at least once in our lives. Anyways — I had no idea it was over 150 years old? Wow.
  • Wow — what a touching tribute. Yet, another great example of how running can help heal wounds.
  • I love me some jelly beans — so most of these recipes look way good.
  • Gadgets are getting cooler and cooler — and it seems like everything is starting include some sort of phone charging component. Like this phone charging coffee mug. Pretty impressive, eh?
  • I love Utah politics — that’s why I try to stay out it.
  • Here are a couple other stories coming from the Boston Marathon that was ran last Monday — read them here and here.
  • I love the latest column by local columnist Robert Kirby in regards to the recent brouhaha at BYU regarding the Honor Code and rape victims. Worth the read.

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Running a BIG 10 down Big Cottonwood Canyon

IMG_3032Running and I have an interesting relationship. I can’t imagine living a healthy lifestyle without it. Yet, there are times it frustrates me, especially when I am not physically where I think I should be. This is when running can (and usually does) hurt. But, then runs like this past Saturday happen and TOTALLY surprise me to no end.

I have been looking forward to this run for a while now for a number of reasons. One, I always love a good downhill run, especially down Big Cottonwood, and, two, I wanted to use it as a gauge to my long distance running fitness level. I am nowhere where I want or should be for a sub-two half, but I’m working towards that and wanted to where I need to go from after an efforted long distance run.

Coming after my 25K last week I was a TAD apprehensive about this run, because I didn’t know quite how my legs would respond. But, the opportunity was too great to pass up or passively approach. It was all in or nothing. So throughout the previous week this run was on my mind 100%.

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The morning of the run everything felt good for a great run. I felt good, my legs were fresh and I had the energy needed for a run strong. I met up with the fun group of runners at the Big Cottonwood Park n’ Ride and carpooled the ten miles up the canyon. Still everything felt great.

I was a little worried that I was a bit underdressed, because it was 32 degrees up the canyon and I was wearing shorts and a tech long-sleeved shirt. But, alas, that was not a problem at all. Once we started going I wanted to go all out on my first mile to give myself something to test on for future runs and to give myself another gauge of my fitness level.

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I did that mile in 9:43, which I was very happy with. I could have probably kept that same pace for another mile or two, but I didn’t want to burn out to quickly knowing I still had another nine miles to go so I slowed down to a 10:45 pace for mile two and three, knowing I wanted to pick it up some later into the run, especially once I hit the “S” curves in the canyon.

But, around mile three something internally happened within me, within the deepest parts of my bowels. I don’t think I really need to go further in describing that feeling, because it’s simple … I had to poop. Like bad.

Knowing there was a bathroom at the end of the giant “S” curve I picked up my pace some and ran with a purpose only one who has pooped their pants before could fun with (and for the record the previous time wasn’t while running … and I don’t want to get into the story. Just know that I’ll only tell that story ONCE publicly and it will be in my book). Once I got to the bathroom I was greeted by this …

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Yes, if you can’t read that it says … “RESTROOM CLOSED WINTER” The nerve! The tragedy! The … pain! How could they still be closed for winter? Winter has been over here in northern Utah since basically mid-January. And, with the temperatures in the mid-70s on Saturday we were basically in summer anyways …. so why were the restrooms still locked?

There was slight panic because I really, really, really had to go. I still had about 4.5 miles left in the run and really tried figuring if I could realistically make that. But, I knew that there was another campground down further and I had this foolish notion that it would be open. So after meeting up with my friend Robin (who was having similar problems) and walking with her for about a quarter of a mile I picked up my speed towards the next campground.

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Now, I’ve been doing Hip Hop Abs lately and the first lesson you learn is to “tilt, tuck and tighten” your abs. Well, I’ve found other ways to apply these same measures and I am happy to report that it probably saved me a pantless ride home.

Since none of the campgrounds were open I just had to continue to run down to the park n’ ride. I knew if that bathroom was closed I could just continue my run to the 7 Eleven at the intersection of Wasatch and Big Cottonwood. That’s how desperate I was.

But, luckily, I made it to the park n’ ride bathrooms without incident and they were unlocked. I don’t think I’ve ever been so utterly ecstatic and disgusted all at one time then when I opened the restroom doors and saw this …

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At least the people before me flushed and there weren’t any dead bodies or possums in the restroom so I had no problems. I was just happy for the needed relief.

So by the sounds of it, this could easily be classified as a “crappy” run, but it actually turned out to have some positive outcomes. The first obviously being that I didn’t poop my pants, but my pace was faster than I expected. I ended up averaging well under an 11 minute pace. My legs didn’t feel completely fatigued which was another bonus. I had some pain in my knee which is attributed to last week’s 25K, but nothing to worry about.

But, this run puts me slightly ahead of where I thought I was. The goal is still to focus on fitness, getting stronger and losing weight. Then once June comes I am going to focus on speed training going towards the Nebo Half in September where I hope to get a PR sub-two half marathon time. The key is going to be consistency, hard work and having fun doing it.

Well that and making sure I know where the closest bathroom is.

YEAH RUNNING! YEAH FOR NOT POOPING MY PANTS!

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THE MANY ADVENTURES OF LEGS AND WHEELZ

legs and wheelzThis past February you might remember the indoor race called Reese’s Run done by Extra Mile Racing that I ran along with my friend Josh Twelves. This was Josh’s first taste of the running world and needless to say he is addicted. So I’ve been helping him get a racing cart and connected to the running community.

Additionally, we are planning on running a number of races together so we decided to make a team of it. Since we’re both Joshs, we obviously needed nicknames to differentiate between the two of us. We kinda naturally came up with Legs and Wheelz.

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We’re excited to get going. After my run on Saturday I took Josh and another friend of mine to go shopping for some running clothes. We ended up getting a tech shirt and shorts for Wheelz (aka Josh aka Josh Twelves aka The Other Josh) and of course we ended up getting burritos at Freebirds World Burrito afterwards. What’s a day without burritos?

But, this upcoming Saturday is going to be Wheelz first half marathon. We’re both running the Lagoon Half Marathon in Farmington. I am actually not pushing him though, our friend Chanda will be pushing him, but I am going to run with them to help both get accustomed to the chair we are borrowing for the race. But, it should be a great experience for all three of us. Plus, we get to run through Lagoon which should be a lot of fun.

I am helping fill out Wheelz’s schedule for this summer so if you’re wanting or willing to push him let me know. I am going to share more information within the next couple of weeks on that. So, please stay tuned.


MY 2015 MILEAGE

Total Mileage Breakdown for 2015

2015 Training Miles – 130.4 miles
2015 Walking Miles – 74.0 miles
2015 Race Miles – 53.55 miles
2015 Total Miles – 257.95 miles
 
Monthly Total Miles for 2015
January – 78.8 miles
February – 72.85 miles
March – 106.3 miles

MONDAY MOTIVATION

oprah-winfrey

Yes, I am a scheduling this far out …

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Okay, first off, yes, the following is every Saturday from here until the end of November. And, secondly, yes, I am planning ALL of my runs/races this far in advance.

I don’t know if that means I have problem … or … if I am just THAT good of a planner? I’d like to think it’s somewhere in the middle. Because, seriously, who plans their November races in March?

I mean really?

I have a number of goals or mile markers I want to reach this year. Of course my long term goal is to run 180 races over 13.1 miles. By the end of the year I SHOULD be at around 114-115 races. I feel good about that.

Secondly, I want to reach my goal of a sub-two half marathon. I would really like to do that at the Nebo Half on September 12. But, I have some work to do before I reach that milestone.

Mainly, I need to train and train hard for it. But, I also need to get my body where I need it to be to achieve it. Namely, I gotta lose my winter coating. I wish it wasn’t there, but now I’m just working on getting rid of it now that my thyroid and testosterone are FINALLY (hopefully) balanced.

So my thinking is from now and until mid-June the focus is losing weight, getting stronger through weight lifting, core strengthening and running. And, then mid-June the focus is speed work towards Nebo in September.

I am going to push hard to get my sub-two at Nebo, but honestly would be happy giving my ALL and getting a new PR (2:08:25). But, I don’t plan on settling for that, because I am going to fight for that sub-two.

But, with as much running as I have planned this year and especially this fall after Nebo I decided to come up with a game plan for each race. Some races I am going to push myself at, others I am planning on pushing Elsha, Josh or Reese and then a number of them I am pacing or sweeping the course.

This really is something I could do in my own little journal and keep to myself, but I thought it might be better putting this here to kinda give you an idea of my method to this running madness.

So, here you go … if you’re planning on running any of these races let me know by commenting below. I’d love to know!

  • MARCH 28: Big Cottonwood 10 Mile Run
    • GAME PLAN: Fast pace 10 mile run down Big Cottonwood. No set pace, but I would like to average BELOW an 11-minute mile.
  • APRIL 4: Lagoon Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Goal time is under 2:45. I am planning on running alongside my friend Chandra who is pushing Josh. The course is flat so heat could have a lot to do with the outcome.
  • APRIL 11: Bountiful to Salt Lake Temple Run
    • GAME PLAN: Planning on about an 11 mile or so group run from the Bountiful Temple to the Salt Lake Temple via Bountiful Blvd. and the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. No set pace and I am anticipating it to be rather slow once we hit the trail.
  • APRIL 18: West Mountain Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: The goal is to run this sub-2:40. I am not pacing or sweeping. I might be pushing one of my friends and if that’s the case I still want to hit that same sub-2:40 goal.
  • APRIL 25: Five Mile Run
    • GAME PLAN: I have an all-day commitment this day so I am going to have to sneak in a VERY early morning fast run around the neighborhood. No set pace, just FAST.
  • MAY 2: Provo City Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Stick with the 2:20 pacers as long as I can. That’s the goal … simple as that. I know the course well enough that I know what to expect. But, I’ll be happy with a sub-2:30 half marathon time.
  • MAY 9: Vigor Big Cottonwood Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am pushing my friend Josh Twelves during this race. I am not sure what pace to push for with him, but I feel comfortable that we could keep a good 2:30 pace at this point, especially considering that it’s a FAST course.
  • MAY 16: 5 Mile Run
    • GAME PLAN: I am not sure where or when I am going to be racing? I have a campout the night before and I would like to cheer on my friends running Ogden … but … I might just need to do a nice speedy five around the block due to timing and circumstance?
  • MAY 23: Alpine Classic Half
    • GAME PLAN: I am sweeping. It shouldn’t be any longer than three hours hopefully.
  • MAY 30: Jordan River Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am planning on pushing my friend Josh on this course. It’s a flat course … sooooooo … I am thinking around 2:40-2:45 would an ideal goal time. We’ll see, this might be reassessed by race time. For something faster hopefully.
  • JUNE 6: Emigration Canyon Group Run
    • GAME PLAN: One of my favorite courses. The plan is to run from the top of Emigration Canyon down to Liberty Park. I would like to go for speed on this one. Hopefully around 10-11:00 minute mile?
  • JUNE 13: Yellowstone Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am pacing the 3:30 group on this race. It’s a mix of road and trail. Just hoping I don’t get eaten by a bear.
  • JUNE 20: Big Cottonwood Canyon Group Run
    • GAME PLAN: I will set the goal pace once I get closer, but the pace should probably be around a 10-11 minute mile. I am only planning on a 10 miler. No need for anything longer to wear me out for the following week.
  • JUNE 27: American Fork Canyon Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am running this one at a fast clip. This will be my test run to gauge where I am at going into my training for Nebo.
  • JULY 4: 13 Miles of Freedom Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am planning on pushing one of my friends during the race. I am going to hold back a little bit on speed, but still go for a sub-2:40. Then again this all depends on where I am physically. If I can comfortably go faster, I will.
  • JULY 11: 7.11 Slurpee Run & The Dam 15 Miler
    • GAME PLAN: This will be a two run day. I am planning on running the 7.11 miles down Emigration at a fast clip (if only I could run a 7:11 pace). I will set some pace goals once I get closer and set my training schedule in stone. The 15 miler I won’t push, it’ll just be fun miles.
  • JULY 18: Corner Canyon Trail Group Run
    • GAME PLAN: Ideally about a 7-10 mile trail run around Corner Canyon just to get re-introduced to the trail. No real set pace, I’ll do that work during the week. I want to enjoy this run.
  • JULY 24: Handcart Days Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am pushing Elsha during this race. This is a special race for me considering it was my first race four years ago! I am going for a 2:30-2:40 goal time for this one. There isn’t much shade along the course so I am hoping it’s not TOO hot.
  • AUGUST 1: Timp Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Sweeping with Jill, I am anticipating that this race should be around 3:30-3:45 long. Depending how many people we have in the back, I might do some fartleking around to get a good workout in.
  • AUGUST 8: Park City Trail 10K
    • GAME PLAN: A nice little reprieve from long distance running. And, my first trail race since the Buffalo Run 25K. I want to push it on this race to see what I can do on the trails. Should be a fun challenge.
  • AUGUST 15: Park City Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Totally excited about this race. Not only is it on my birthday, but it is also my 100th race over 13.1 miles! I plan on running this at a moderate pace with some family. I still would like to sub-2:30.
  • AUGUST 22: Run Elevated Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am going to run this at a full effort. I would like to PR at this race (basically sub-2:08:25) to gauge where my body is physically for Nebo.
  • AUGUST 29: Murdock Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Sweeping this course. I should be in around 3 hours or so, so depending on the crowd I might do some fartleking around motivating others. I love sweeping.
  • SEPTEMBER 5: Volition Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Run at a moderate pace. Don’t push for time or speed. But, come in around the 2:30-2:40 range. Just don’t risk injury or spending too much energy. Really I want to have fun during this race. Hopefully I can push one of my friends during the race.
  • SEPTEMBER 12: Nebo Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: BALLS TO THE WALL!!! SUB-TWO CITY!!! What else do I write here? DON’T STOP!!!
  • SEPTEMBER 19: Park City Trail Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: The transition to trail racing begins. I don’t plan for a certain time on this race, mainly just to not get swept. I am anticipating that my legs will need some loving post-Nebo.
  • SEPTEMBER 26: The Burn Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: The same game plan I had last year running this race. RUN UP as much I can, walk if I must and then at the turn around RUN DOWN as fast as my legs can take me. I blame this race for all the crazy challenges Jill and I have been doing this year. But, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
  • OCTOBER 3: Antelope Island Trail Group Run
    • GAME PLAN: Get to know the terrain better and run the trails to hopefully work out some of the pre-50K jitters.
  • OCTOBER 10: Pink Series Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Sweeping the course. Just have fun. This is a woman’s only race that I paced last year. I loved it a lot, awesome ladies and awesome stories. I look forward to it again.
  • OCTOBER 17: Corner Canyon 25K
    • GAME PLAN: Since the Buffalo Run was done in 6 hours, I really want to finish this race in sub-six hours, other than that I just want to have fun. I ran this trail three years ago with Susette it’s a great canyon.
  • OCTOBER 24: The Haunted Half & Howloween Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: A double run day! I am planning on sweeping The Haunted Half in the morning in SLC and the running the Howloween Half in Davis County in the evening. No goal time for Howloween Half, but I’d love to push it a little past easy so I can get some good fatigue training in, which would be perfect for the trails.
  • OCTOBER 30 & 31: The Haunted Half & Howloween Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Similar game plan like the week before. Both races are in Provo. The Howloween Half is on Friday night and then the Haunted Half is in the morning on Saturday. I am going to run at a good moderate pace for the Friday race and then sweep the Saturday race. Should be fun. Another great fatigue challenge for my upcoming 50K!
  • NOVEMBER 7: Saltair Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: I am planning on pushing one of my friends during this race. I’d like to get under 2:40 mainly to push myself because it’s an easy race to tank because it’s flat and out and back. But, with my 50K the next week I should take it slowly.
  • NOVEMBER 14: Antelope Island Buffalo Run 50K
    • GAME PLAN: Simple game plan. Run, keep going, don’t give up and don’t get gored by a buffalo. Sounds reasonable enough, right?
  • NOVEMBER 21: Five Mile Run
    • GAME PLAN: I put this down as a five mile run, but we’ll see after my 50K is done. I might just doing something active in the pool?
  • NOVEMBER 26: Thankful 13 Half Marathon
    • GAME PLAN: Sweeping the course! Have fun! Earn my turkey! Make friends and wrap up the running season with race #115!

Okay, now that I have everything from here until December planned out … who’s running with me? YOU … KNOW … YOU … WANT … TOO …. !!!!

You don’t run while you hike? I don’t get it?

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So yesterday, I went hiking for the first since … well … probably the Reagan Administration? Like, seriously, the last time I went hiking when I was a Cub Scout and I almost died from heatstroke. Okay, it was probably just a mild case of heat exhaustion, but still … for a fat kid that’s an ordeal that not even the Pioneers would understand.

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#totescool

But, a group of my running friends decided to go on a hike up Big Cottonwood to Lake Mary yesterday and I relented, especially since I was promised ice cream at the end. Ice cream has gotten me a lot of places in life … school, church, scouts, college and even hiking (just to name a few).

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This picture needs a frame around it.

I am not a big hiker for a couple of reasons. For one, it’s outside. Secondly, there are wild animals outside. I might have a irrational fear of deer, but I also have a rational fear of bears, cougars and rattlesnakes. So, I just haven’t wondered anywhere past the parking lot restroom in a National Forest for those reasons.

But, yeah, I got convinced by Becky and Christy that I should go. So, I did.

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Yeah, God made that.

The hike really wasn’t that bad. Relatively bad. For one, I was grossly unprepared. I am always unprepared, let’s be honest here. How I became an Eagle Scout is beyond me! (okay, my Mom earned it). I didn’t bring a jacket so I ended up wearing a teenage girl packet with pink and purple skulls all over it.

Needless to say, it was fetch.

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#&%$ SNOW!!!

The hike up wasn’t that bad. I won’t lie, because I was half tempted to run. But, when the terrain is basically going straight up that ambitious temptation kind of dies. So I just hiked and it wasn’t that bad. Like, really. But, then again I am no longer a fat little kid that wants to stay home and play his Game Boy either.

My only real compliment was that there was snow on the mountain. It really shouldn’t be a surprise to you how much I HATE SNOW. But, it was melting so I couldn’t be that mad at it. It was dying a slow painful death … so … I was satisfied.

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This happens more often than it probably should.

Once we got up to Lake Mary we got to enjoy not just the beautiful lake (well, really it’s a resoverior) but the canyon as well. It was really gorgeous and almost immediately I started regretting my lack of enjoying nature like this. It really was a great experience for me as it kind of felt like another piece of Fat Josh melted away.

After hiking down the mountain and on our way down the canyon we also got to experience this AWESOME … well okay … BEYOND AWESOME sunset. Yet another reason why I love Utah. Just go ahead and revel in it.

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But, I couldn’t leave you with JUST pictures. I also captured a few videos of my adventures in Big Cottonwood Canyon.

For your general amusement …