Tag: st george

RACE #167: Snow Canyon Half Marathon

A few months ago this weekend was very much an unknown variable. I wasn’t expecting on racing, but I wanted to. There wasn’t a half marathon in Northern Utah, but the Snow Canyon in Southern Utah was — and it’s a favorite of mine. So with some urging of friends I decided to make a quick trip of it.

I figured adding another race this year would help alleviate my race schedule in 2018, especially leading toward my 180th race in July. I really want to focus on speed and strength and I know that will happen by not racing or running long distances every weekend. I have done over 30 half marathons this year — and it is too much for me.

Despite wanting to run less, after I signed up for the Snow Canyon Half Marathon I found out that a group of friends were also doing the Joshua Tree Half Marathon in Joshua Tree, California that same evening. This intrigued me for a couple of reasons … one, because it’d once again alleviate my 2018 race schedule and, two, being Joshua Snow Hansen, I wanted to run my name for the day.

(Joshua) Tree Half Marathon.
(Snow) Canyon Half Marathon.

How many people can claim that they’ve been able to run their name before? I had to do it. I had no other option.

It was destiny.

The plan was to carpool down with my friends Julianna, Crystal and Chris on Friday afternoon in order to grab our race packets, run Snow Canyon Half on Saturday morning and then book it to Joshua Tree in time for that race, do it, drive back to St. George that night and then home on Sunday morning.

It didn’t quite happen that way. But, it was still an adventure and a half that you’ll get over the next two posts. Because, it turned out not quite the way I thought it would. But, still enjoyable and fun.

When we arrived in St. George on Friday evening, we made our way to the race expo and then went to dinner at Pizza Pie Cafe. Since most of our car was on keto — we ate salad and then the toppings of the pizza. Yes, we left the crust. But, for $10 and all-you-can-eat pizza — it was perfect. And, much better than buying one pizza for $10-$15 and doing the same thing.

We crashed at a condo that night and we were out the door for the first race by 6:15am. The plan was for the faster runners to come back, shower and change. Then they were going to bring me my change of clothes where I’d take a hooker shower in one of the Honey Buckets before the 5+ hour drive to Joshua Tree.

After waiting at the start of the race for about an hour, we were off just a few minutes past 8:30am. I felt good. My race plan was similar to my race plan two weeks ago when I ran the SoJo and Howloween Half Marathons. I wanted to trash my legs on the first one so I had fight through the stiffness, pain and fatigue during the second race.

Knowing the course and that the first couple of miles were a bit of a climb, I took it a bit easy until we got to Snow Canyon, then I just let it rip. The downhill windy roads through the canyon were fast, awesome and downright gorgeous. I stopped a couple of times to take obligatory pictures, but for the most part I kept a good clip.

The first 6-7 miles were perfect.

Since being on keto I’ve been running with a hydration pack filled with Powerade Zero — mainly for the electrolytes. After I keto crashed at Run Elevated in August, I haven’t wanted to take the chance of doing it once again. It’s been nice to have, especially when I get hungry, because I’ll pack a few almonds or whatnot in there as well.

I kept sipping my Powerade Zero throughout the first few miles and I was just enjoying the race.

But, around Mile 9, I hit a wall. Or a wall hit me? Either way, I got super nausea and threw up. This was the fourth race I’ve thrown up at while on keto. And, I still haven’t figured out exactly why? Part of it I reasoned is because I am not used to eating breakfast before 11am (I do intermittent fasting) and the food I eat before and during my race that early just doesn’t settle well.

I also thought the nausea could have been from squeaky cheese I ate before the race. But, whatever the case was — I was having none of it. After throwing up at Mile 9, I kept throwing up. I threw up six additional times during the race.

I don’t mind throwing up, but I hate throwing up in front of people. Especially out in public and during a race. The last thing I wanted was another runner, race official or random stranger to stop and ask me if I’m okay — or pull me off the course.

The nausea would come in waves. I was fine for the most part, but it seemed like when I’d slow down or stop at aid stations the nausea would come back. It was nerve wracking and disappointing, because I really wanted to be pushing myself a bit harder than I was after Mile 9.

I tried to throw up in convenient places — Honey Buckets, sandy areas, drains — anywhere were people wouldn’t be walking. When we got to the Entrada Golf Course, I made an effort not to barf on the golf course. It’s a REALLY nice golf course and if I learned anything from my Mother as a young kid, it was not to throw up on nice things.

But, once we passed the golf course — I threw up.

My only worry about throwing up that much during the race was replenishing my fluids so I didn’t dehydrate. But, the more I did, the more it seemed to make me feel. Which was so odd.

Once I got to the finish line after mingling a little bit with Curtis and Laura Eppley and some others, I felt the wave of nausea come once again. Having worked many finish lines and seeing many runners throw up — I just couldn’t get myself to that point to do it around SO many people.

But, I sheepishly went to a volunteer standing near some garbage cans and politely asked if I could throw up in it. I’m laughing about that now, but I really hate throwing up in front of people.

After one last episode of the barfs, I finally felt good. I drank my water and felt settled. I was really surprised at how much I could throw up, especially on a stomach that I thought was empty. It almost made me wonder if I had a second stomach I was unaware of?

Either way, I found some shade under a tree to chill for Julianna and the other come back so I could change. After waiting about a half hour, they came with a change of plans. There was no time for me to take my hooker shower. One of the runners we were going to down to Joshua Tree got sick and ended up in the ER to replenish her fluids

Something that made me worry a bit, because — did I need it too?

Either way, I felt fine now. So I just focused on drinking my Smart Water and refueling in time for Joshua Tree. Which was an adventure that provided me with a few more answers as to why I was nauseated.

Which was still an issue for my next race.

[CLICK HERE TO READ MY JOSHUA TREE HALF REPORT] – Link Coming Soon


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RACE #132: St. George Marathon

Back in 2012 when I started marathoning I ran three marathons in three months. I thought I was nuts (I was). I never thought I would be in a situation again where I would be doing that many marathons not just within three months, but within four weeks.

That’s crazy … to at least me. I know there’s nothing special about it — there are many many many more impressive feats by much much much better runners than me than three marathons in four weeks. And, that’s not hard to find. But, considering that about 1% of the world’s population have ran a marathon — I’ll relish in that accomplishment.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

Anyways, the purpose of running so much — is basically to help in the training for my 50 miler. My training plan called for a number of 27 mile training runs — and instead of tackling these runs solo, I just decided to run a marathon instead of those runs.

And, why not? I get a fully supported “training run” with a t-shirt and medal to boot? Plus, I can run with my friends. Seemed like a win-win to me. And, they have been.

I’ve tried to focus on at least 1 or 2 aspects each marathon to help with my ultra training. The Big Cottonwood Marathon was time focusing on time on my feet — which was pretty much a given since I was sweeping the course. The Huntsville Marathon I wanted to simply trash my legs during the first 13-18 miles so I had to grind hard to crank out the last part of the race sore and tired both physically and mentally.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

Going into St. George I wanted to do the opposite of my Huntsville Marathon goal. I wanted to start out conservatively and then finish off the race strong. And, to measure that — I basically wanted to be able to finish the race without relaying on the Marathon Death Shuffle and feeling like I still had some gas in the tank to keep going.

They might seem like strange goals for a marathon, but the more I’ve delved into ultra training I’ve learned the importance of conservative starts. And, I’m not talking about a 1-2 mile conservative start, but like a 8-10+ mile conservative start. Because in an ultra you want enough energy in the tank to rely on at mile 35, 40, 45 and so forth. So I wanted to use this marathon as the training ground for a conservative start and my last looooooong training run before my 50 miler here in three weeks.

I’ve always loved the St. George Marathon. It was supposed to be my first marathon back in 2012, but not wanting to wait for the lottery I ended up signing up for the DesNews Marathon. But, I’ve ran it twice before and I just love it. Love, love, love it.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

I love it for a number of reasons. I love the course. It’s challenging. It’s fun. But, oh my heavens, it’s beautiful! From Central to Veyo to Snow Canyon to St. George — I feel like I am constantly in awe of the scenery around me. Plus, the organization is top notch and always fun without any major glitches.

Plus, you’re running towards St. George with 7000 other runners. It seems like you’re always running into a friend along the course. It’s just a fun festive environment. Pretty much the Super Bowl of running here in Utah.

The logistics around the marathon were for a quick trip and to not make a weekend of it. So, I carpooled down with some friends of mine — namely Martin, Sara and Doug — on Friday morning. We got to the race expo around 2pm to pick up our race packets. I stuck around for a few hours at the Runtastic booth helping give out shirts and registering people for the upcoming Haunted Half races.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

My friend Kevin — and former trainer — and former mission buddy — met me at the expo later that afternoon and I stayed at his place that night before carpooling to the bus stop. Kevin was actually my first trainer when I started my weight-loss journey and is the one I hold responsible for my running obsession. I remind him often that he’s the one that challenged me to run a 5K — and now look what he’s done.

I have a lot of respect for Kevin. Anyone who’s met him knows he’s just a genuine good guy. But, he’s tenacious with his goals. He’s been training to try to BQ the past several years with no success. But, that hasn’t stopped him. He keeps getting back up and trying again — I admire that quality in him.

And, even though he didn’t reach that goal again on Saturday, I admire his attitude and perspective about this attempt and his subsequent attempts. I have doubt that he’ll reach his goal. His example has been a great example to me and how I approach and tackle my goals.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

Anyways — after carpooling to the buses and taking the ride up to Central (aka The Starting Line) I hung out for a couple of hours before the race started. I was a little worried it was going to be cold up there like years past. But, to my delight — it wasn’t that bad. So I just kind of mingled for a while trying to work up the need to use the restroom before the race.

Because of construction in Veyo the marathon start line was done in waves. So the wait was rather long before I finally crossed the starting line. I wasn’t complaining because that helped me get in two extra bathroom stops. Plus, I liked the spread out crowd at the starting line — it wasn’t super congested like it has been in the past.

To still avoid the crowds and to get some “trails” in during my race I ran on the side of the road. Not the shoulder, but a little dirt trail that ran alongside the road. Runners were probably looking at me strangely, but I was in heaven — I was getting my trail fix in and avoid any mass congestion.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

After it thinned out I returned to the road and ran alongside my friend Christy before running into my Facebook friend Jessica and her husband. She was running her first marathon and was hoping to run into me because we hadn’t met yet. We ran a good 4-5 miles together right before Veyo where we parted at an aid station.

I was still going rather conservative with my pace and was planning on doing so up Veyo. I knew if I tried to beast my way up Veyo I would pay for it in the later miles. That happened to me in 2014 when I pretty much cramped from miles 8-12. I was determined for that not to happen again this year.

So, I trudged up Veyo with Christy we stayed together for a couple of miles before parting at an aid station. Feeling good I wanted to pick up my speed a bit. It wasn’t really in my race plan, but I felt a need to redeem those miles from 2014 “Crampfest” fiasco.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

Feeling good I just let my body dictate the speed. I just didn’t want to walk — both for the pride of not stopping, but also in fear that if I did — I would cramp. I did stop a couple of times — one, to use the restroom and, two, to take pictures of a tarantula that was making its’ way across the road. I ended up seeing three of them during the race. Nope. No thanks. But, still better than running into a deer in my books.

Once I crested the uphill climb after Veyo I took the next couple miles fairly conservative before turning towards Snow Canyon. That’s when I started picking up my speed — knowing the course would be mainly downhill towards the city. Being armed with a killer playlist and killer view — I just put myself into cruise control and enjoyed the ride.

The great thing about having ran a number of marathons the past few weeks the miles seem to pass by quickly. They literally seem to melt by step by step. There were a number of miles — specifically between miles 16 and 22. There were a couple of miles that went so fast I could have sworn the course was marked wrong. But, that’s not because I am some fast or amazing runner, it’s probably a better testament of my ability to distract myself more than anything.

A photo posted by @fight4phat on

I was waiting to see if I was going to hit a wall. I was expected to hit it eventually. But, after miles 19, 20 and 21 passed I was really feeling good. But, then I hit it somewhere at mile 22. It wasn’t so much my legs giving out or the lack of energy, it was just hot. I felt like I was running inside an Easy Bake Oven.

And, on top of that I was trying to do math on how close I was getting to the 1pm cutoff at mile 23. I knew I was going to be close, I felt like I was going to meet it, but I wasn’t sure. And, asking me to figure the numbers while out running a marathon is asking a bit too much from me. Especially considering I was never a good math pupil in normal circumstances.

But, once I hit that wall I just kept going. I prayed for a little wind and just focused on keeping my feet up and myself going forward. Once I hit the mile 23 aid station and the bridge I knew I was safe. It was a great feeling even if I had more than 10 minutes to save. I heard they gave a little variance to that cutoff — presumably because of the Veyo Hill construction and starting line wave start. Either way I was just excited to be hitting the last 5K of the race — I just wanted to be done.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

Of course the last three miles were tough. But, during the marathon these are some of my favorite miles. Normally, I am not a fan of running around neighborhoods during races, but this is different. The marathon is very much a part of the community and the community gets behind it. They come out in droves to cheer on loved ones and strangers alike — and I love it.

There are also a number of impromptu aid stations along these miles. People are handing out Otter Pops, popsicles, ice, water, candy, fruit, etc., etc., etc. I love it. I love seeing so many of these citizens getting behind the race and helping out us marathoners during some of the toughest miles of the race.

I have to laugh about it now, but I got handed a popsicle at mile 24 and ate it like without any difficulty. Not wanting to just throw it on the ground I stuck it in my headband so I could throw it away at the next aid station. Well, I forgot about it and ended up running the last couple of miles with this stupid popsicle stick in my headband. I’m pretty sure I got a couple of great finish line pictures looking like a fool.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

Anyways, as I wended my way to the finish line I was feeling strong. I was sweating buckets and ready to down ten gallons of water, but I was feeling like there was gas still in the tank. This gave me a surge of confidence and helped me keep my legs up — avoiding the dreaded death shuffle.

As I crossed the finish line I was feeling a number of emotions — sore, tried, humbled, thirsty, proud, happy, hot — name it, I was probably feeling it. But, of all those emotions I was thankful for what I was able to do. This was my tenth marathon and each has provided a blessing and lesson. Because of that I will never take them for granted.

It was such a sight for sore eyes seeing my friend Wanderley at the finish line giving out medals. He was the perfect person to be there handing out medals. He is such a cheerleader and embodiment of what a runner should be. He is one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. I was humbled getting my medal handed to me by Wanderley.

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

In retrospect — I met all of my goals. I do wish I was a little faster. I finished in 6:24, but considering the conditions of the last half — the heat was no joke. But, standing at the finish line I felt like I had gas in the tank and the death shuffle didn’t manifest itself at all during the race (after the race is another story).

But, I felt proud of myself and what I accomplished. Plus, I feel more prepared and ready for my 50 miler, which is the whole reason why I was running this race and the other two marathons so close together.

I am ready to tackle this 50. Now for a couple weeks of tapering before finally tackling this beast. I can’t wait.


133 - park city red rock relay

I am pretty excited about this relay. I know I’ve talked a lot about it — but, this is going to be a special relay. I am going to be running this on a team of other Addict II Athlete runners — my AIIA Family. Some of us our veteran relay runners and some of us newcomers. But, either way it’s going to be a great experience and a fun way for me to spend my taper miles.

I am going to blog a bit more about this later this week. Plus, I am going to be sharing my story on the Addict II Athlete Podcast here either this week or next. So stay tuned for all of that. But, I can’t wait for the Red Rock Relay this weekend!

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WEEKENDGRAMS


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RUNNING MILES

230.5 miles

RACE MILES

287.7 miles

WALKING MILES

1150.6 miles

TOTAL MILES TO DATE

1668.80 miles

MILES TO GOAL

998.20 miles


2017 race schedule

I’ve been working on my race schedule the past couple of weeks for the upcoming year. And, I swear it’s been tougher than years past. Not sure why?

Well, it could be with the pull I’m feeling to run more trails — but, also the desire to stick to half marathons next year. Plus, there are just a bunch of great races here in Utah that I just want to run.

Oh so many decisions.

Plus, a number of races are opening registration this week and I am going to have to make some decisions, especially with the ones offering killer early bird deals.

Anyways, here’s what I have planned so far — or what I am thinking of running so far …

139-new-years-half 140-st-george-half 142-march-madness-half 143-antelope-island-buffalo-run 144-emigration-canyon-half 145-tulip-festival-half 146-ironman-13147-vigor-bc148-ogden149-wasatch-back-ragnar150-drop-13-bc151-bear-lake-idaho152-bear-lake-wyoming153-bear-lake-utah154-af-canyon-race-against-cancer155-canyon-to-canyon-half156-des-news-half157-timp-half158-utah-midnight-run-provo159-utah-midnight-run-legacy158-skyline-mt-half-marathon161-nebo-half162-revel-bc-half163-park-city-trail-series164-haunted-slc165-haunted-half-provo166-mt-view-half-marathon167-saltair-half168-thankful-134



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InstaReplay: St. George Marathon

I’ll get a whole St. George Marathon recap up here on the bloggy blog within the next couple of days. I’m going to first let it process for a bit. I had a blast and I hit the goals I wanted to hit during the race. Well, most of them.

Anyways — here are a few snaps from the weekend … and by a few, I mean a lot …

ST. GEEZY OR BUST, BABY! #race132 #stgeorgemarathon #running

A photo posted by Josher (@josherwalla) on

The 100th Fartlek Friday™ – I feel like I should be popping some bubbly for the 100th “Fartlek Friday” — no? Okay, I’ll just take an orange juice then.

As I mentioned yesterday — I’ve had an up and down week. Mainly down because of this stupid cold. Or whatever it is? I was hoping it was just allergies — but after a couple days I realized that wasn’t the case.

But, still it hasn’t been an overall bad week. Just crummy.

It really was kind of a buzzkill after coming off an amazing week with the O.U.R. fundraising gala here in Bountiful. Being so motivated and pumped up — my engines completely pooped out. Kinda like driving a new car off the lot and discovering it’s a lemon after applying the gas.

But, setbacks just set the scene for comebacks — and who doesn’t love a good comeback? If someone doesn’t — then odds are they’d hate all the Rocky movies.

I feel like I am turning the corner — so hopefully I can still run tomorrow. I am still planning on doing it. I mean, heck, I ran a half marathon last year with the flu — so that’s nothing!

And, luckily the race is down in St. George and it’s suppose to be in the mid to low 50s — ideal racing weather in my book. So it really wouldn’t be much of a problem running outside if I still have a semi-stuffy nose.

So I am not worried.

But, if I am going to die from running with a cold — I couldn’t think of a better way to go. Well, except for maybe dying hand in hand with the love of my life in a nursing home bed — oh, wait — I just stole that from The Notebook.

Anyways — I am just WAY exciting to be running this weekend. I am also excited for Christmas — and New Year’s — and basically the next three weeks. December really is one of my most favorite times of the year. Heck, I don’t mind the snow that much during December.

But, once January comes — it sucks. I hate January and basically all of February. There is nothing good that’s ever come out of those two months. Here in Utah it’s cold, miserable, snowy and depressing.

But, December — Christmas makes up for all of that.

Gosh, I love Christmas. I’ve already watched Elf three times this year. Last year I got to 7 — maybe I’ll break that record this year?

We shall see. But, if I was to consult my Magic 8 Ball — it’d most definitely say, “most definitely seems so”

Welp, have a good weekend — if you’re going down to St. George for The Bakers Dozen please make sure to come hi to me! I also love meeting new friends and seeing old ones too!


 


RUNNING WITH REESEMAN

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My friend Reeseman — who I’ve pushed in a few races, as well as around the neighborhood (we only live about a mile apart) is growing. And, because of his growth spurt — he’s getting too big for his race cart.

So as a group of friends we’re working together to get Reese a new chair. One that hold and support him much better when we’re out running with him. We have set up a GoFundMe campaign for him in hopes of raising the needed $6,000 for the chair.

Any donation amount would be appreciative. Whether it’s a dollar or a $100 — each dollar gets us closer to the needed funds.

I can tell you on a personal note how much Reese loves and needs running in his life. Whenever we’re running — especially downhill and cruising — he’s all smiles. He loves the wind again his face, the force of gravity carrying him forward and the bounce of the cart.

Running is his haven and heaven.

Please consider making a donation, especially during this Christmas season. You can make a donation at the link below … mucho gracias!

DONATE HERE


THE JOSHBY AWARDS

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For the past eight years — yes, eight years — I have been giving out yearly awards. What are the awards? Well, when I started “The Joshby Awards” — it was just something I did for my family. Basically it was a formal way for me to tell my siblings which ones were my favorites.

But, over the years that’s expanded over to my friends — and also my running world. Two years ago I started a running category and it’s just kinda grown into what it is now — I guess?

Really, it’s just a fun way to celebrate not just the past year, but my friends and show them my appreciation for making the past year awesome.

All of next week is dubbed “Joshby Week” here on the blog. I will be giving out my awards to my running friends, non-running friends and family. I also give an award to my favorite race medals — so look for that one.

The week should look like so —

MONDAY – Nominees and Special Awards
TUESDAY – Family Winners
WEDNESDAY – Friend Winners
THURSDAY – Running Awards & Top Race Medals

If I had the money I totally would give every winner some sort of award. Maybe after I make my first million I’ll make some nice shiny medallions? Or maybe I could just make yogurt lid medals this year?

I should let the winners decide.

Anyways, I hope you enjoy the week. Don’t take it too seriously, it’s suppose to just be fun. And, please know — I am appreciative of EVERYONE!

But, I am also allowing my friends pick the running awards. This includes runner of the year, most inspirational runner, best race, etc., etc., etc. Make sure to vote here if you haven’t already — RIGHT HERE.


THIS WEEKEND’S RACE

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One of the reasons why I am going to push through my cold to run tomorrow — is because I really want to run this race. I mean, really, really, really want to run this race. This has been on my radar for the past few years.

I’ve had a number of friends who have ran the Bakers Dozen Half and loved it. And, from all the pictures that they posted online hasn’t helped that desire to run the race lessen.

In addition to running a really fun race, it also happens to be one of my required St. George area races I need to run before April to get guaranteed entry into the St. George Marathon. So, basically I am hitting two birds with one stone.

I like that saying, but I love birds so sometimes when I use it — I actually feel kinda bad.

But, I digress.

I’m WAAAAAAAAY excited. Granted, we’re leaving Salt Lake at 2am and getting back in town at 3pm. But, it’ll be fun. I’m carpooling with some fun peeps — my friend Mindy and Cevan.

Make sure to come back here on Monday for my race report.


WEEKGRAMS

Apparently we’ve all been playing the piano the wrong way all these years?! #kokoplaysthepiano

A photo posted by Joshua O. Snow Hansén (@kindaqwerty) on

I think she likes her cake. #shewantstoeatcakelikethepeopledo

A photo posted by Joshua O. Snow Hansén (@kindaqwerty) on

I’m just going to go ahead and pretend that I won Callie’s birthday. #mermaid4thewin

A photo posted by Joshua O. Snow Hansén (@kindaqwerty) on

My contribution to my work party — Peppermint and Chocolate Orange RKs. #ricekrispies4life

A photo posted by Joshua O. Snow Hansén (@kindaqwerty) on

I got a tutorial tonight on how to make ninja stars — I guess I’ve been doing it wrong all these years? #ninjaintraining

A photo posted by Joshua O. Snow Hansén (@kindaqwerty) on


RUNCAST USA — EPISODE ONE

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We’re back! And, rebranded! The Utah Runcast is officially now Runcast USA! We were going to make the move to the newPodBash network in January 2016 with the other shows, but we got a jump start to NOW! This change includes our own iTunes feed,individual page at PodBash.com as well as our own website atRuncastUSA.com. Lot’s of fun stuff coming your way in 2016 with the podcast and more. So make sure you stay tuned in!

So for this episode Jorge joins us and explains why he didn’t show up for the last show. Let’s just say — the Mrs. isn’t so happy. We have a special guest — and first female on the Runcast — Shaylee Hurst from Runtastic Events. She shares with us a little bit about what she does with Runtastic along with how she got faster this past year.

GREAT INSIGHT!

Plus, we babble on about our goals, my 50K, Jorge’s injury and Jim’s marathon plan. It’s all good stuff. Catch it all here …

CLICK HERE FOR EPISODE


AWESOME FREEDOM2MOVE OFFER!

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This past summer, your’s truly, made his cinematic debut. Well, okay — I was once an extra in a film and I’ve photobombed news camera numerous of times — so I don’t know if I can count it as my “DEBUT.”

But, it was definitely my debut as a fitness model. Yes, you read that right — fitness model. It’s just one of the many titles of man of my prestige holds (I kid, I kid).

I was a fitness model for a fitness video called, “Freedom2Move” — it’s a locally owned DVD series of workouts that are tailored towards every and any fitness ability. This includes ability levels because of age, mobility or fitness level. It’s tailored to YOU.

There are three volumes to the workout series — and I’m in the third volume which focuses on the abs, back and pecs. Intrigued aren’t you?

Now, here’s the deal — I have a discount code for you. When you buy any of the volumes — or the complete set you can use codeOUR10 to get 10% off your order. Just make sure you apply the code at checkout (and not in the non-profit purchase code field on the product page)

That’s not all though — Freedom2Move will also donate 10% from each order to the Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.)They are an organization that helps rescue, free and rehabilitate children that have been kidnapped into the sex trade industry. A very worthy cause and non-profit organization.

So what are you waiting for? Get fit, make a difference and see me in my fitness model acting debut — and if you’re lucky I’ll even sign it for you!


TODAY’S SHORTS


FRIDAY’S HOLIDAY LAUGH

RACE #112: Snow Canyon Half Marathon

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I know I gush a lot about my races — especially about the scenery and courses. But, this race — takes the cake. It’s such a beautiful course. The scenery and course instantly became one of my favorites. There is a reason why Runner’s World named this one of the best half marathons in the country. Well organized, great volunteers, beautiful course and scenery that can’t be replicated any other way than experiencing it in person.

I might be slightly biased about the scenery — because the red rocks of southern Utah are my happy place. I’ve always been fascinated with them — ever since I was a kid. It one of the many reasons why I went to school at Southern Utah University — I’m completely drawn to the red rocks.

Okay, now that I am done gushing about my love affair with the scenery and red rocks — to the race.

I decided to run this race about a month ago. Though it’s been a race I’ve wanted to do for the past couple of years, I just never had a reason to do it — until this year. I signed up for the St. George Runner Series to guarantee me a spot into the St. George Marathon in 2016. The requirement for the series is to basically run two southern Utah-based races. Since I was running The Bakers Dozen Half Marathon in December — I decided to hop unto this race so I could meet my requirements before the end of the year.

And, well — because I wanted to run it as well.

I carpooled down with my friends Jason and Tammy Henry. Well, I shouldn’t say carpooled — it was more like third-wheeled it. It reminded me of my dating life in High School. We stayed at a small hotel just on St. George Blvd. — nothing too fancy. We didn’t really need anything fancy because the trip was a — sleep, run, eat and get home — kind of trip. It met our needs and didn’t have bed bugs — a questionable stain on the ceiling — but no bed bugs.

In the morning we made the 10 minute drive to the high school for bus picket up the canyon. I won’t lie — I kinda like the later starts this time of the year, because it feels like a mosey to the start line, but I also wish to get started early — so I can finish earlier. But, a 8:30 gun time was not TOO bad.

The race was bigger than I expected. But, I guess there were 2,600+ runners — soooooo — it was a big race. It took me a few minutes to get across the starting pad. But, it wasn’t as bad as the St. George Marathon. That one feels like you’re waiting in a port-a-potty line of runners with stomach issues.

The goal for the race was two fold. I was hesitant to put a time goal to my race, because I haven’t ran my own race since Nebo in early September. But, I wanted to shoot for a 2:35-2:45. But, I was fine not meeting that as long as I gave it my all during the race. I just wanted to do my best.

Starting off I was a bit worried because my shins were having none of it for the first couple of miles. But, then again, I knew it was a slight incline from my experience running the St. George Marathon — once I hit Snow Canyon then I knew it was going to be faster. But, those first two miles were difficult. But, I fought through it — knowing I just needed to warm up.

Once I hit the canyon it felt like a completely different course. Not only was the course more downhill, but the scenery was completely beautiful. I had to stop at certain moments to capture a picture. — I was just in awe. Complete awe. So, I just kept my head high, cranked up my music and just ran.

Of course with occasional stops for pictures.

Between miles 3-7 — I felt great. Like superb. I was in a groove, enjoying the world around and just thanking God for the ability I have to run. But, in the midst of that euphoria I got distracted and accidentally took a Gu along with Gatorade at the same aid station. For some runners — this might not mean anything, but for me — the  combination taken together — kills me. It causes really, really bad stomach pains and just makes me super sick.

This incident wasn’t anything different.

About mile eight — it really hit me. I was kind of in a panic, because I knew there wasn’t another bathroom until mile nine. I had to stop and walk — stretch — knead out my stomach — just doing something to make the pain go away. I even tried to push through it. But, that didn’t really work for me. Luckily, no accidents — but mile 8-9 had a horrible time and once I got to the port-a-potty that took another 7:30 minutes off my time.

If you’re wondering — yes, I timed my bathroom break. Strange? Probably. But, if you’re a runner you’d understand.

Anyways — the break kinda took me out of my groove, but I was determined to finish strong. Sure I was about 8-10 minutes off where I wanted to be, but I wasn’t going to let that defeat me. I was going to fight the last four miles. So that is what I did.

After my break I lost the group of runners I was running alongside with — well it wasn’t a group of runners I knew — just the people at my pace. I knew they were long gone and at this point the field was rather thin. So to stay motivated I had to make a game of it for me. So, I tapped into my inner-Ragnar and decided to go for “KILLS” aka runners in front of you that you pass along the route.

And, well, it worked.

I passed eight runners in the sparsely crowded field. And, it really helped. I still somewhat slowed down from where I wanted to be — but I fought to keep going. Physically and mentally.

During my last mile Jason came back to run with me and I was really appreciative of it. I was kinda spent by that time. My legs were shot from the fartleking — especially from passing the runners during the last four miles. But, I kept going forward and sometimes that’s all that’s required, right?

I was met by my friend Tricia at the finish line who took some video and pictures of me crossing the finish line. She also grabbed water, bananas and string cheese for me at the finish line. I was famished and I was so appreciative for the gesture. But, can I also say how good that string cheese was after the race? Seriously — I’m in love with post-race cheese.

But, then again, I am also in love with cheese, period. But, that’s a story for another day.

After showering and cleaning up at a friend’s condo — the Henry’s and I grabbed some grub (breakfast burrito for me — naturally) and then headed home. It was the perfect quick getaway. It was a great race experience. One that will definitely bring me back there in 2016. Seriously, I am in love with the race.

But, it was also a great gauge of what I need to do to get myself back to where I want to be with my running. My official time was 3:01, but I count 2:53 with my bathroom break. Regardless, my goal is to get back to consistent race times of 2:20-2:30 by the middle of next year. And, that will come with my weight-loss program along with a planned half marathon training program starting in January.

I haven’t decided which training plan to do — but more than likely I’m going to follow the Galloway Training Plan. I haven’t tried that training plan yet — and I already have the book and supplies to do it. So why not? I think I could really benefit from a good run/walk program.

But, all of that I will save for another post for another day, probably a future Fight4Phat post?

With that all said — I’ll be back in 2016 — I’m hooked.


RACEGRAMS


NEXT RACE: ANTELOPE ISLAND 50K

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DUH! DUH! DUH! The hour is ‘nigh — well, actually, it’s pretty much now. Since my 50K is less than a week from now. I am all kinds of excited and full of nerves. By this time next week I will have earned the title of Ultra Marathoner. Pretty nifty, eh?

I am excited about this race for a number of reasons — not only to earn that title. But, because of whom I am also running alongside with. My friends Jason Henry and Tim Gill will be joining me on the journey. And, honestly — couldn’t have asked for a better pair of friends to tackle this race with. Both are positive and encouraging guys — who would do anything for anyone. Plus, they both have wicked sense of humor — so we know our 50K won’t be boring — like — at all.

This week we’ll be finishing up our race plan, but really the goal is to just finish. We have 10 hours to complete the race — and I am not too worried about meeting that goal. Obviously, it’s nothing to be blasé about — but I’m confident that’ll be done within 10 hours. The goal is just to finish — have fun — and not get gored by a buffalo. Easy enough, right?

But, I’ll have more about the race on Friday’s post. But, right now — I’m just focused on taking deliberate deep breaths.

It’ll be epic.


MONTHLY MILEAGE UPDATE 2015

Total Mileage Breakdown for 2015
2015 Training Miles – 246.75 miles
2015 Walking Miles – 436.8 miles
2015 Race Miles – 413.6 miles
2015 Total Miles – 1097.15 miles
 
Monthly Total Miles for 2015
January – 78.8 miles
February – 72.85 miles
March – 115.3 miles
April – 76.3 miles
May  97.4 miles
June  131.15 miles
July  101.65 miles
August  110.2 miles
September – 115.69 miles
October – 164.7 miles
November – 39.1 miles

MONDAY’S MOTIVATION

The 96th Fartlek Friday™ – It’s all about “St. George or Bust” baby!

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If there are two things I hate in this world it’s Satan and snow. Which is funny — because my middle name is Snow. But, I wasn’t because of the weather element — in fact, I was born in the middle of August — it’s a family name.

But, yeah, I hate the snow.

That’s one reason why I am looking forward to a quick little trip this weekend to St. George in southern Utah. It’s not for business — it’s all pleasure. I am running the Snow Canyon Half Marathon tomorrow morning. This will be the first time running this race — which I have to say is making slightly giddy. Probably too much?

But, I can’t help it. I love southern Utah and especially Snow Canyon. This course basically follows the last half of the St. George Marathon. In my opinion, the better half. I like the challenge Veyo Hill and all, but really — how can you NOT love hitting Snow Canyon and literally running downhill into St. George?

It’s making me that much more excited for St. George next year.

And, that’s why I am actually running Snow Canyon. I signed up for the St. George Runner Series that guarantees me a spot in the marathon next October. All I have to do is run two pre-approved southern Utah races and I’m guaranteed a spot.

So I am running Snow Canyon and then the Bakers Dozen Half Marathon next month in Hurricane. That’s another race I am excited about — not sure if it’s because of the locale or the fact every lap I get the opportunity to cram my face with Hostess products?

I am kind of happy that I am getting both of my required races out of the way, especially before the end of this year. It makes my 2016 race schedule easier to manage. Though I wouldn’t mind running the St. George Half Marathon in January. But, I sh’ant.

So the plan for the quick trip is that I am leaving work at noon and then I am going to be carpooling down to St. George with my friends Jason and Tammy Henry today. We’ll then crash, wake up early, run, eat something good and then drive back home tomorrow afternoon-ish.

Pretty solid itinerary, eh?

I am not pacing this race, in fact it’s my first race that I am running by myself since — um — thinking — Nebo? So, really, I have no expectations. I haven’t really trained for speed the past couple of months.

But, with that said, I do want to go out there and give it a good effort. I’d love to finish somewhere between 2:35-2:45. I think that’s doable and realistic, especially considering that I have never ran this course. If I go faster — good on me.

I really just want to go down there and have fun and give it a good effort. Help me gauge where I am with MY running — not my pacing speed. It should be fun.

It will be fun.

Anyways — it’s “ST. GEORGE OR BUST” baby!

Have a good weekend and happy running!


NEXT WEEK’S RACE: ANTELOPE ISLAND 50K

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Welp, my 50K is rapidly approaching. And, by rapidly approaching I mean — next week. I am running the Antelope Island 50K next Saturday.

I am all kinds of excited, nervous, excited, scared, excited, worried and excited — basically I feel like Jesse Spano before a big exam. I really don’t know what to expect? I don’t want to know what to expect — I just want to do it.

I know I am probably under trained and that’s why I am expected to go slow. I’ll be running with my friends Jason Henry and Tim Gill. We’ve pretty much established we’ll be doing a lot of speed hiking. And, of course, when we’re around buffalo that’ll be actual running.

Sound race plan, eh?

I’m also playing with the idea of ordering a Domino’s Pizza mid-race to see if they’d actually deliver it. I figure it’ll take them over 30 minutes thus giving me a free pizza. Sure it’ll be cold — but when you’re running an ultra marathon I don’t think it matters, right?

Well, okay, no pizza. But, if anyone shows up with a pizza I won’t decline a slice — or ten.

But, really, I am excited. I know I’ve done enough to not die. I know it will hurt. I know my feet will look like hamburger by the end of the race. I know it will be one of the toughest things I’ve done.

BUT — I know it’ll be worth every step. And, that I have what it takes to do it.

As a dear friend (ahem — Jill) says often, “if you can’t be fast — be epic!” So epic is what I’m going for next Saturday!

And, note to self — get that quote on a t-shirt.


WEEKGRAMS

Because that’s not creepy. #consideryourdreamshaunted

A photo posted by joshua o. snow hansen™ (@kindaqwerty) on

Everything about this says … BAD DECISION. #andididNOTpartake A photo posted by joshua o. snow hansen™ (@kindaqwerty) on


THE UTAH RUNCAST TO RUNCAST USA

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If you’ve been following The Utah Runcast online as of late, you’d know we’ve changed things up a bit. And, by a bit — I mean — a lot. We’re still a podcast that talks about running it’s just our target audience has expanded some.

Basically from Utah to the USA. Quite the expansion.

But, this doesn’t mean we are not about running here in Utah. We’re still Utah based, we still talk about running here in Utah — but also running matters around the country. And, I guess international as well. But, we’re sticking with Runcast USA — no potential Runcast International name.

Besides appealing to a wider audience, we’re making this change in correlation with our podcast host — Podgoblin’s move to PodBash come January 2016. The move will bring a bigger audience so we want to make a similar move as well.

I’ll still be on the show along with Jorge and Jim. Not to mention a couple other additions coming soon. It’s going to be fun — it’s going to be a party.

You can follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. We also have a website RuncastUSA.com where we have bios, past episodes and the like. We’re pretty stoked about the changes — and I hope you are too.

Here’s the last episode of The Utah Runcast if you haven’t listened yet — enjoy!


THE FRIDAY FARTLEK

Here are a few other things that caught my attention this past week —


FRIDAY’S (DE)MOTIVATION

#fitness #health #running #workout #motivation #inspiration #fitlife #fitspiration #run #diet #fastfood #food #burgers @demotivatedfitness

A photo posted by Demotivated Fitness™ (@demotivatedfitness) on

#fitness #health #running #workout #motivation #inspiration #fitlife #fitspiration #run #diet @demotivatedfitness A photo posted by Demotivated Fitness™ (@demotivatedfitness) on

#fitness #health #running #workout #motivation #inspiration #fitlife #fitspiration #run #diet #food #health #healthyfood @demotivatedfitness

A photo posted by Demotivated Fitness™ (@demotivatedfitness) on

RACE RECAP #86: Dogtown Half Marathon

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Who let the dogs out? Who? Who? Who? Who?

I am sorry, I had to get that out of my system. I just had to. But, no one really wants to reminisce much about the summer of 2000, especially when it involves the Baha Men. Please forgive me.

Anyways, back to the point of this whole post … the Dogtown Half Marathon. Which was race 86 in my run towards 180.

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Even though we ran with each other last weekend, it’s always a treat to see Elsha. Not to mention to get our obligatory selfie!

The race held each February is held in Washington City, which is near St. George. It’s my second time running this race. And, while I enjoyed running the course in 2012 the course has been tweaked a number of times since then.

I was sweeping the course with Jill so more than anything it was going to be a party in the back. Sweeping is one of my favorite slots to pace, because it isn’t drudgery, it’s a party and can be VERY inspiring and motivating. Those in the back are “MY PEOPLE” as well, so I always have fun with it.

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Jill made this pin for me to wear of my Grandma during the race. Awesome, huh?

Since Jill and I were pacing it together we decided to make a vacation of it and after the race we decided to hop in the car with her husband and kid and go to Vegas for a couple of days. It was a pretty solid and fun plan. So we’ve been making plans for a few months for this trip.

After my Grandma passed away I wasn’t sure how the timing of her funeral was going to affect the race or trip. I would have dropped the race in a heartbeat if I had to, but thankfully there wasn’t a need to with the funeral being on the Thursday before the race, so it worked out fairly well. I did miss out on time spent with my cousins which I did feel bad about because I don’t get to see them that much.

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So, the race shirt they gave me was actually a woman’s shirt. I wish I could say this is the first time this has happened to me …

But, the trip was still on.

The Gabicas and I left Friday morning and stayed overnight in Cedar City after heading to St. George to get our packets. That seems like a lot of backtracking, but having lived in Cedar City all three of us were quite use to the ride. Plus our room was MUCH cheaper than anything we could find in Washington or St. George.

It was my first time spending overnight in Cedar City in over three years so it was a tinge strange. It still feels like home in some regards. But, there is just enough foreignness to it that it feels somewhat strange to me. Since we had a 45 minute drive to the race we had to leave Cedar by 6:30am. Long enough to get breakfast from the hotel lobby and run out the door.

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Cheering the runners off at the gun!

The pickup for the race this year was at the Staheli Farm in Washington City, this also served as the finish line as well. Quite honestly, I am trying to still understand why this was picked as the location for the race because … well … there were quite a bit of cows. And, well … cows … smell … like … CRAP. Especially, when it’s a lot of cows. It wasn’t a pleasant setting to say the least. In the morning it kind of smacked you in the face without warning and then after the race you just tried to avoid it the best you could.

Not a good location.

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The race was “cupless” so the race organizers gave each runner one of these small plastic poaches to fill up at aid stations. Not a bad idea!

The bus ride to the start wasn’t bad and the beginning of the race was actually pretty awesome. It was about … a mile … further than my first year running it? It was a tad hillier, but not bad at all. Since Jill and I were sweeping the course we cheered on the runners as they left the corral and then waited for a couple of the Double Dog Dare (run to the start from the finish and back) runners and then we started off ourselves.

The course for us was fairly lonely. There were 2:45, 3:00 and 3:15 hour pacers and with this being a winter-run they pretty much swept most of the people around them. So, Jill and I were able to encourage and cheer on runners doing the small out and back around mile three, but that was about it.

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Took some time out to fish … naturally.

We did stop at a couple of the aid stations and to thank the volunteers and let them know we were the last runners on the course. This is ALWAYS one of my favorite parts of sweeping, because depending on the race the volunteers varying from either race to race or booth to booth. Our first aid station was a bunch of kids who even made signs. Of course I stopped and got their pictures.

It really reminded me of something my Grandma would have done. And, since Jill and I were running together she made buttons of her for us to wear. It was a touching tribute and a couple of the volunteers even asked me about who I was running for. It was awesome being able to share a little bit about my Grandma with them. Thanks again Jill for the great gift and memorial to my Grandma’s legacy!

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These are the faces of two people that are lost … L-O-S-T.

The run itself wasn’t that bad as well. Sure we weren’t running it for a PR and we walked a lot of it, we still had a lot of fun and talked about anything and everything. Something that Jill and I don’t have a problem with at all. And, you think with all the races and runs we’ve ran together we’d run out of things to talk about … but … nope. Not a chance.

When we got into the final mile of the race the course wasn’t as clearly marked as we assumed or thought it would be. Sure, we knew we were the last out on the course, but the markings got confusing and we missed our last turn. We ended up running right in the middle of a Parade of Homes showing. We thought they were runners from the race heading back to their cars.

Nope.

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Brown cow, brown milk.

So after running around some odd side streets we ran back to where we knew we could get back to the farm and just went from there. We still got in our 13.1 miles … actually 13.7 after the confusion. But, we made it! And, apparently we weren’t the only runners who had problems finding the last couple of turns. I think we just got lost because we couldn’t see any of the other runners around us.

But, still … it was fun. After a quick change of shirt and shoes we hopped in the car to head to VEGAS!!!


VIVA LAS VEGAS 2K15!

Since we were an hour and a half from Las Vegas from the race, it was an requirement for the Gabicas to visit Vegas. And, they were nice enough to allow me to tag along with them. The Gabicas LOVE Vegas. And, I am afraid even that is an understatement. Jill can pretty much tell you the history of Las Vegas, past hotels, current hotels, attractions and food. She is quite literally a walking Las Vegas Encyclopedia.

The stay in Vegas was pretty much that. We didn’t have much of an agenda, other than we wanted to run the Strip in the morning and make our way to the outlet mall. The remaining time would be spent on the Strip walking around and visiting the Bellagio fountains.

On our way down the Gabicas and I found out that our friends the Copelands were going to be down there the same time we were. So we worked our last second magic and arranged a meet up at dinner at Bobby’s Burger Palace on the Strip. Our friend Angie met us there and it turned into a little Southern Utah University reunion of sorts. Something we aren’t able to do much with everyone everywhere else.

It was fun to spend a night laughing, reminiscing and catching up, especially with Angie. The Gabicas laughed how the Copelands had moved closer recently, but it took a trip to Vegas for all of us to meet up. Such is life, I guess?

Anyways, the next day was spent at the outlets and again on the Strip with the Gabicas. Since I really didn’t have need to really buy anything I just ended up walking or pacing around the stores, mall and casinos while I waited for them. It wasn’t out of boredom or frustration, I actually did it because I wanted to. I was in the midst of a step challenge on my FitBit with my friends and I HAD to win! So, I WON!

I ended up walking an additional 5 miles after my 13.1 miles on Saturday and then 7.5 miles on Sunday. Come Monday morning my feet were shot. But, I won! That’s all that mattered. Plus, it really wasn’t that difficult, I just had to keep going and I was okay. Plus, it was just fun to keep going. I wish we did get the chance to run on the Strip, but my feet and legs felt like too much mush to even try that.

Still … here are some of fun things done in Vegas on our trip …

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I will most likely post some more pictures on my Facebook page in the near future. I just need to find time to go through my pictures. But, it was a fun trip with many little adventures and a dinner on Sunday night I kind of want to forget. But, yeah! Vacation is always fun!


MY DEAR MOTHER

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While in Las Vegas over the weekend I got a call from my Dad telling me that my Mom broke her arm. Specifically, her humerus bone. She slipped in the hallway right on her elbow and it just shattered as you can see in the x-rays. Her arm will be in a sling for quite a while and she’s still in a quite bit of pain, but she’s optimisitic it will heal properly.

I am sure I’ll post a bit more about this later. Please just keep her in your prayers.


MY 2015 MILEAGE

Total Mileage Breakdown for 2015

2015 Training Miles – 68.6 miles
2015 Walking Miles – 39.5 miles
2015 Race Miles – 35.55 miles
2015 Total Miles – 143.65 miles
 
Monthly Total Miles for 2015
January – 78.8 miles
February – 64.85 miles

TUESDAY MOTIVATION

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