Sunday, March 25, 2012

Potential Remaining Race Calendar for Oklahoma

SO I still have some time left before the big move and I am looking into what races to run.

April 7th --- Lake McMurtry Trail Race  Stillwater, OK

April 15---- Redbud Classic---OKC

April 29th---- OKC Marathon

May 12---  Cavanal Killer 8k----Poteau, OK

Sunday---Run to see Ashlee at Husdsons....17 miles---It was a nice night-time run that took me out on Main street, Robinson, over to Ok Runner, over to Hudsons, to Bank of America and then by the Sooner Mall and Hollywood Theatre and then back on Robinson. It was a nice long run and the cool air felt so good since I am not totally acclimated to 80 degree weather just yet.

Tuesday--- 7 miles of running at Belmar Golf Club. It was a little warm but a nice fast-paced tempo on the grass of the course.

Wednesday---13 mile run from Embassy Suites at night all around Rock Creek Road and the Polo fields.

Thursday--Run as the sun sets out on the hills of Norman.  All the way out to 72nd...nice long loop to Highway 9 and back.  15 miles

Friday---Night run out to Robinson. Beautiful stars in the sky and a nice humid evening to help acclimate me to the weather I might face at OKC.  Fast run of 11.32 miles at 5:36 PACE!

Saturday-- Nice run of 84 minutes running in  the warmth that is now Summer in Oklahoma.  It is the last day of March and running out here is crazy already and feels like mid-July in New Jersey.

Sunday--Night Run around OU campus...a little cooler than 90 degrees and it was a sweaty humid run but felt good with my mid-day nap out of the way.  Logged 70 minutes or so.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Night Rider

Friday--- night run of 12 miles in 75 fartlek with 5 mile pick-up

Saturday---Run of 1 hour and 32 minutes on Cedar Lane and Weather Tower up on THE HILL.

Sunday-- 15 min  run to my car parked at Bison Witches

Monday-Torrential rain and a run on Alameda with my Inov 8 shoes up and through the pounding rain and almost out towards Lake Thunderbird. There is something so special about running in the rain. There is this sense of peace that comes with it and today was no different.  It is time to get the extra miles in before OKC and I am training hard, working hard, and working with Ashlee to get everything in order for our move to NJ and NY. Today was a run of about say 13-14 miles!

Tuesday--- Nice run out on 36th then a loop on Rock Creek through Sutton Wilderness and then back home. I ran about 76 minutes and to describe the run, I was floating. Everything felt effortless and that is a great sign for my upcoming marathon and for any other races I can run in to prep for the big show.

Wednesday---Run out to Bank of America. The sun was out and the rain has subsided. It was a gorgeous day with the morning temps in the 50's. I ran with my fanny pack out to the bank and then through the OU campus back home. I feel really good and I am so excited to race the marathon in my pair of new Karhu shoes that Jordan Kinley  is so generously helping me out with!  Karhu is a very interesting brand and it is known for really great color patterns and designs and a shoe that focuses on the natural gait of a runner!

Thursday--- Run with Kelly Waters. Easy run of 35 with her out to the OU track and we did some strides and then I left and ran the last 48 minutes on my lonesome to get in some extra miles.  The day was beautiful as the rain ended and the weather became perfect and sunny.

Friday---Run out to Lake THunderbird. I parked at the lodge and then ran out towards the campsites on the shoreline. I was impressed with all the cars now vacating the once barren park because it is officially spring and the weather is AMAZING.  I ran along some of the trails of Indian Point and then headed back out towards 120th street. 120th is by far the toughest road to run on here in Norman.  The hills are long and brutal and just as many as Cedar Lane and some of the other spots.  The road begins with a long gradual 1.5 mile incline at 8% grade which is pretty tough. Then once you crest the top, a downhill followed by a nice long uphill again and repeat it all over again and again and again.  I ran at 6 as the sun as low in the sky and the reflections of the sun off of the water presented the most magnificent golden hue I have ever seen.  I love Lake Thunderbird runs and today was a hard run with strong pace increases and a blazing 4:48 finishing mile up and down some hills that can really test the runner. It felt great to set a new PR on this section after a 14 mile run as my personal best came almost a year ago when I ran 70 minutes and split a 5:06 last mile or so. Today, I was on top of the game and this is all great news for OKC marathon race day.

I am so thankful that OKC will be my closing of a great 5 years here in Oklahoma where I have molded myself into a real runner and a stronger more mature person.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Sunday---Rain and ALLL

I went out for a nice Sunday run and decided that 75 minutes would be enough. I still had that fatigued feeling in my body and made the effort to enjoy the run in the rain.  It felt great to have some rain and my new Salomon jacket really is great with rain and the cold damp weather conditions. I ran some hills and this weather will be short-lived as 70's and 80's are in store for the area for eternity.

Monday---Run with Ashlee. It was hot as we made a 26 minute loop out of a Norman bike outing.  She rode her bike and I tired to keep pace. The temperature was around 79 and my body was tired from the week of running so it was hard to keep up but I made the effort to put in some nice speed work.  Ran maybe 3 miles or so.  (AM)

(PM)---Ran up to Summit Lakes development and just did a nice loop out towards East Lindsey.  The moon was covered by the clouds and it made for a very dark and erie run but it was nice to have the solace of the night on my side.  50 minutes was the total time of the run as I amassed about 75 mins for the day.  I caught a leisure biker out on the sidewalk and scared the living daylights out of him which was funny. I bet he never thought that a skinny white kid could run so fast!

Tuesday-- 1 hour 38 minute run with Scott Downard out on the hills of East Norman.

Wednesday--- 65 minute swampy humid run out to Cedar Lane. Ran real easy and now I work a 11 hour day at the club.

Sooner 10k--Last Time out

Saturday was the Sooner 10k where I have been the defending champion for the past 2 years. This year was indeed my last and I wanted to go out a victor. It was a nice cool morning as my Puma gloves gave me just the right amount of warmth.  From the gun, I ran really controlled as I hit mile 1 in 4:58. Hovering right around 5 minute pace was where I wanted to be.  As I proceeded throughout the race, I felt that I might be just a tad tired from running long mileage days Wednesday and Thursday and I my legs just recovered from my fast trail run.  I made the move to slow down and stay relaxed.  I slowed to a 15:40 first 5k and then continued to hover around 5:20 a mile for the remainder of the race.  My strength from the gun was all that was needed to secure the win as I enjoyed my last go at the race. I crossed the line in 32:10 and some change and though it was not a fast time, I still felt great considering I was pretty tired and my legs did not have the extra gears today.  Now, I can rest up and really hit marathon form!  OKC is right around the corner!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Back To Life

Monday begins yet another week of running and life.  I had the chance to head to Atoka, Oklahoma for a fun trail race and while being lost for 3 miles got back on track to run a top time of 1 hour and 45 mins for the original 15.5 mile race which became a 18.5 jaunt.

Today, I had two workouts: 1. Ashlee and myself ran around our neighborhood for 30 minutes, she biked while I ran. It was a ton of fun and it felt nice to get some pop back into my sore legs.  The PM effort came with a nice run out to Bank of America to deposit my paycheck and some cash and to try out my new hydration back-pack from Osprey packs thanks in part from Backwoods.  The 4 liter pack is amazing and by taking out the hydration bladder, the pack converts into a nice storage pack that molds to your body. The pack really helped me fly!  I can already tell this pack will come in handy for long trail running efforts or on hot days where lots o water is needed.

I was able to run for 90 minutes in all today and probably about 13 miles.  I have to gear back up for the Sooner 10k this weekend and to defend my title as reigning champion.

Tuesday---72:39...11 miles a nice run out on the hills of Cedar Lane! Tons of wind that blew dust into my face and eyes. The turn-around had me flying through the air with the wind gusty near 60 and consistent winds at 30 mph. Welcome to Oklahoma I guess.\\\

Wednesday--More wind! Run of 1 hour and 34 minutes out to Lake Thunderbird on Alameda and then back home. I ran to North Sentinel and it was a great run. I got pretty hungry on the way back but overall it was a nice strong run. Temperatures in the 70's was nice.  I am ready for a new pair of running shoes and my marathon shoes for OKC I think are going to be the Karhu Flow because they are light but also durable for the longer distance where for me, a light but sturdy shoe will do best for me and my flat feet.

Thursday---Run with Scott out along campus. A nice run in some cold and rainy conditions. I ran a bunch today by logging 1 hour and 41 minutes in total of running which would amount to a ton of miles maybe 16 or 17 or 18. I am done with the long runs for this week as I am set to race on Saturday at the Sooner 10k Challenge.

Friday--45 minute run at night to my car left at Belmar Golf Club. It was fun to use the headlamp and a nice run to prepare for the Sooner 10k.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

A-OK 50k/25k

I will begin this post with Stringtown, Oklahoma. Stringtown is a very small town near Atoka and it located near Mcgee Creek State park which I have been told has the most amazing bass around.  South-eastern Oklahoma is so different than anywhere else I have been in Oklahoma and I was so honored and privileged to have the opportunity to run this race.

I arrived at the race site as the sun was setting picked up my bib number had a little dinner and then I realized I had no cell phone reception. I had to call Ashlee and my father to inform them that I had indeed made it. So I took the option of staying at a motel in Atoka because I was not prepared for intense outdoor camping and even if I was I would have liked to have Ashlee by my side.  

So I drove down the dusty gravel road towards the exit off to Atoka.  The surprise of it all, Ashlee made the drive out to see me at the Thunderbird Lodge motel. It was great.

Here are some photos Ashlee took of me from the race. It was a great race as I set off to a fast early start. I got lost at the first checkpoint as I signed the check in sheet then hopped a creek out 1.5 miles in the wrong direction. I soon learned after heading off course that I had to turn-around at the sign book and so I headed back and then began my ferocious pace to pick off people to regain the lead. It took me 5 miles into the technical rocky and steep little ascents of the Southeastern Oklahoma terrain to realize that I had regained the lead. For 10 more miles I had thought I was in 3rd place as two more names appeared before mine of the sign in log.  I continued my 5:30 pace and caught the two women who I later found out to be early starters.  The first half of the course was technical rocky,rooty and tough hilly terrain. I excelled at the challenge. Then I hopped onto a fire road for the 2nd half of the run. I ran by ponds and through gates and up and down sandy mounds of dirt.  The small forested landscape was beautiful and the race atmosphere was perfect.  I settled into a nice pace and continued to surge to the finish.  I was able to run 18.5 miles in 1 hour and 45 minutes and averaged about 5:40 a mile.  It was a great pace and I really feel with this little adventure out of the way, I am truly ready for the OKC marathon.

Thank you to all of my sponsors...OK Runner, Backwoods, and Acidotic Racing for making this race a reality for me.  Thank you Ashlee for being there and supporting me and to all my fans.  

If you ever pass through Southeastern Oklahoma, my only advice is to go running; you will love the experience.