Friday, May 30, 2014

Back At It

After a disappointing finish at the Western Pacific Marathon at the beginning of the month, I decided to shut it down for a bit. And when I mean shut it down, I mean opting to just run without any real planned workout. Yes, my running streak of 536 days is still in tact. There is no plan of ending that thing any time soon.

I needed a couple of weeks to just enjoy running, I mixed in some short runs some group runs, some runs that almost didn't make sense. No set workouts, no plans except for the pure joy of running. Now as I look forward to my schedule and realize that I have 4 races I am already registered for (The San Francisco Marathon, Santa Rosa Marathon, NYC Marathon, and California International Marathon) it is time to start working out a game plan.

Now everyone who has been following me on social media or on my blog know that I am going after that unicorn. Yes I have earned a Boston Qualifying time for 2015 with my 3:09:25 at the 2013 California International Marathon, but I want to make sure that I punch my ticket with a sub 3 or even a 3:05 would do.

With those goals being said, I did my first 2 workouts leading into The San Francisco Marathon on July 27 this past week. My first speed workout of 3 x 1-mi and my first marathon pace workout with 8 miles at GMP. To be honest I felt pretty good after both of the workouts. I was probably most surprised with my Goal Marathon Pace workout where I warmed-up for about a mile then was able to comfortably run 8 miles at 6:59/mi pace before hitting a short cool down. It's official I am back on the saddle with 58 days until the San Francisco Marathon.

What are you training for? Any upcoming races? How do you deal with not hitting a marathon goal?

Friday, May 16, 2014

Who are we racing?

We call it racing when you're in a race. That big day when you get to toe the line, bib on the singlet, and when thousands of people come out and support these crazy individuals that have dedicated hundreds of miles and days on end to running. However, what are we really racing?

Two weeks back, I did a race where I blew up on the course and ran 15 minutes off of my "A" goal. I did finish 9th overall and 2nd in my age group. That is great and all, but in all honesty that is just a matter of luck when it comes to who shows up and makes up the field. I mean don't get me wrong I won't turn down the extra bling and the opportunity to be part of the "podium", but placing is a matter just being faster than who happened to show up that day.

At the end of the day or race, runners aren't ever really racing the field unless you are an elite and fighting for prize money or a gold medal, rather runners are racing the clock. I like to compare running to golf, the opponents in these two sports don't ever actually beat you, but the course does. Every one along side you is actually more of a motivator or unofficial team members during the event. Think about how pace groups work, you run with a pack to sometimes keep you steady on a pace or to help fight the elements (such as wind) together.

If the average runner (non-elite runners) is always "racing" to beat other runners, will you ever have a chance of winning? I say no. However, if your goals are specific to you individually or to running a qualifying standard you have a chance of winning that race.

Do you agree that for 99% of runners, you are never actually "racing" other runners?

Friday, May 9, 2014

#14in14: Western Pacific Marathon

The #14in14 continues on. This past weekend I ran my 6th run of marathon distance or further. With a little change in schedules and plans, the Western Pacific Marathon became my spring target race. The training was done and going into this race, I didn't have any reservations or leave any doubts in my mind, last week I posted about my 3 goals for the race, which I wrote out comfortably based on weeks of training.

This specific race was selected on a number of requirements:
  1. it's date based on my other target race 
  2. it was drivable the day of 
  3. most importantly it was a Boston Qualifying race per USTAF'
I really like that Brazen Racing events are that they are extremely well organized and they offer a day of the race packet pick-up. With the day of race pick-up, I jumped in my car and headed to Fremont at 4:00AM to tackle the 2 hour drive.

well organized and easy to find staging area

The drive was pretty easy especially in the early morning with very few cars on the road. Once I got to Quarry Lakes Regional Recreational Area in Fremont, I found the prime parking spot. You know the one closest to the port-o-potties and packet pick-up and everything else. To be fair, every spot was close to everything you needed as a runner since it is a small race the area wasn't overly impacted with tons of traffic and all the hoopla of bigger races.

awesome tech shirt FTW!
The staging area with all of the packet pick-up and other pre-race booths were well organized and easy to maneuver through. It took only a couple of minutes to grab my bib, safety pins, and shirt. Shortly after grabbing my swag I ran into Professional 1:45 Pacer, Erin herself! She was doing what pro pacers do at races, you know hanging out and hanging out, well to be honest, I don't know what pro pacers really do because their work is highly guarded by security. The rules of being a pro pacer are like that of Fight Club. (*Erin being referenced to as a Pro Pacer has nothing to do with her being a Pro, I just like to call her that)

With bib and other swag in my possession I still had about an hour before I started the marathon, so I decided to jump back into my car listen to some jams and get my gear ready for the 26.2-mile journey I was ready to take on. I also made sure I was consuming some fluids at this point throwing down some Nuun Hydration

With my bib pinned onto my new Bib Rave singlet, I was ready to make my way to the start line area. With small races, the beauty of the start line area is that you can make your way to the line just minutes before the horn. At the start area I saw Erin and was formally introduced to Anil, who I have been chatting with through Strava. It is always nice to put a real person with the digital / social media person we get to know through training and running.

photo cred: #Pro145PacerErin
At the start, I knew it would be important to try to find some other runners that would be running the same pace or at least around the same pace as I. With the fastest pace group being a 3:15, I knew I would have to either find a pack to run with or run alone for most of the course. I quickly found 4 guys who were shooting for a sub 3 hour group, however we quickly dismissed one of the runners after we started talking about pace and race strategies. Most runners in the group were shooting for 6:45-6:50 / mi pace, which is right under the 3 hour mark. However, the one runner who was quickly dismissed stated he was going to try to run 6:30's, as a group the other 3 runners said that is well under 3 hours, his response ... "Oh".

With a 10 second count down and the blow of a horn, we were off and running to see what the next 26.2-mile journey had in store for us today. The first couple of miles were ran inside of the Regional Recreational Area, before making our way long a canal pathway. The course was pretty simple to follow, as it consisted of an out to a turnaround, a back to the regional area, then past the entry way of the regional area heading to a second turnaround before making our way for the final 2 miles within the recreational area. All of the course was either gravel or pavement, with most of the course being gravel.

Heading out along the canal I was feeling pretty sharp, running around sub 7s, exact times for each miles I don't keep rather I know where I needed to be for certain miles for the race. With the sub 3:05 goal, the buffer is always being at mile 20 at or before 2:20 into the race.

As for the race description, there really wasn't much to break down since the race had some miles of long straight stretches that became somewhat lonely very quickly until about mile 12.5 where the first turnaround took place, there I would see the other lead group as well as at the turnaround coming back and seeing many of the other marathon runners making their way out to the turn.

This long stretch would again be a bit lonely until about the 6.5 mile out marker where the half marathon turn around took place, but even then it was the tail end of the half marathoners that would remain on the course.

Honestly, this recap is about the glitz and the glamor of what I saw on the race, but rather it is more of what happened and where the race broke down for me. Yes, the moments where goals A, B, and C were lost.

All three of my goals seemed to have dropped off all around the same time. Somewhere between miles 16.5 and 18 is where everything shutdown. I literally felt like my race just wasn't on for that day and at that point it became a run. After the mile 16 mark, I was still running 6:50ish per mile, which would have gotten me to the finish line under the 3 hour mark. Then suddenly my legs just got tired, I wish I had more than that, but it was just one of those days that happens.

After seeing and feeling my body more cruising from mile mark to mile mark, I felt that overall I started to labor a little more than normal through the next few miles. During these next 2 - 3 miles I still wanted to see where could I be by mile 20, if I could still hit the magic number of 2 hours 20 minutes, then I would still have a realistic shot at getting one of my 3 goals.

I got to the mile 20 marker just after my Garmin read 2:20, which meant I had a shot, however my body was not ready to kick back into race mode and tackle the final 10k with anything more than just a run. At this point I had to do a systems and mentality check. My legs were tired and mentally, what really was there on the line except my goals?

The next 10k would be something that I didn't expect, going into the race, I was hoping that the final 10k would involve a surge of energy, though as every marathoner knows the final 10k is always the toughest, no matter how well trained you are for the race. The last 10k would involve myself running at an easy ... more like very very easy pace ... while reminding myself it is just running. I have gone out before and made the mistake of being so invested in my goals and not meeting them, I didn't enjoy the day running. Since that moment in 2013 at the LA Marathon, I promised myself that every race would end with a smile. I have done just that up to this point and wouldn't make today any different.

With a couple of miles left in the race, I was back into the Regional Recreational Area where I could see the finish line area and hear the MC calling out runners names. With about a mile to go, I saw some familiar faces with Erin and Albert (another fellow TSFM 2014 Ambassador) snapping some photos and providing me some words of encouragement to finish strong.

To be honest, I did make a final push for the finish for 2 reasons, the end of the race was nearing and most importantly there was another marathoner just a few yards behind me. Yup, the next to cross the finish line would be 9th place overall. So with a last minute surge, I broke for the finish and crossed the line with an official time of 3:15:30. This finishing time was good enough for 9th overall and 2nd in my age group, putting me about 13 minutes behind the winner.

Even after the race, I started to reflect on my goals and what I had done on the course. Less than 2 years ago I would have been ecstatic with a 3:15:xx finish. Now fast forward to today where a 3:15 is a bad day on the course, is pretty F'ing amazing. Obviously, I was disappointed with not hitting my goals, but taking a look at where I was and where I am now is pretty fun. In December of 2012 I hadn't even broken the 3:30 mark in a marathon, since then I have ran seven marathons under 3:23:00.
Albert, Erin, and I with all smiles.
After the collection of bling, I celebrated with some laughs with Erin and Albert as well as congratulated the overall winner Brian Callejas, who I had gotten to know along the course as well as through Strava. 

Who photo bombed who in this photo?

Finishers medal and Age Group bling.
Have you raced lately? How do you handle aborting from your race day goals during a race when things just aren't there?

Friday, May 2, 2014

I'm a #BibRavePro

I'm a #BibRavePro. End of statement, everyone knows what that means right? Okay well for those of you living under a rock let me explain (just kidding about living under a rock, but it was attention grabbing right?). Before I get into what a #BibRavePro is, let me introduce you to my newest race review friend

The site
BibRave is a place where you can find and write race reviews. It’s just like restaurant or hotel review sites, but for races! BibRave is the place to research races you’re considering signing up for, and a place to leave feedback on races you’ve completed. No more scrolling endlessly through online forums, no more relying on a race’s Facebook page to see how many people liked or didn’t like the race.

Oh and the best part the website is completely FREE! 
screen shot of a BibRave Profile w/ Review
Not only does BibRave offer it's website for reviews but it also host a weekly Twitter Chat on Tuesdays at 6:00PM PST. Just use the official hashtag #BibChat and jump in on the conversation each and every Tuesday. 

Now back to #BibRavePro and what it means. Being a BibRavePro allows me to tweet, facebook, instagram more about races, it keeps me connected with the running community around the country. I get to review races, post them on and most importantly I get to meet more awesome people in the running community. 

All views are my own and are not influenced by BibRave or their employees. I am provide running related items such as singlets and other gear along with free entries to races as part of being a BibRave Pro. 

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Throw The Dice or Drop the Hammer?

Whatever your choice of words are for getting yourself motivated to acknowledging a target race is coming up, it really doesn't matter, what does matter is if you did the work to best prepare yourself for that race. My most common terms I use to share that some sort of PR is going to be attempted are throw the dice and hammer time. Neither one of them am I completely certain where they came from or when it started, but they just stuck and some awesome.
On Saturday, May 3, I am going to be running the Western Pacific Marathon at Quarry Lakes in Fremont. This race is a Boston Qualifier that I had on my radar but didn't originally have as my target race, though with some change of schedules it quickly became my target race.

course profile, mostly fire trail & gravel with some pavement

Going into this weekend's marathon, my training is not short of anything. I did the work with speed sessions of 12 x 400, 6 x 800, 5 x 1000, 4 x 1200, 3 x 1600, 6 x 1 mile, 4 x 1.5 mile repeats, 3 x 2 mile workouts, and the kicker of a workout the 2 x 3 miles. My marathon pace workouts ranged from 5 miles at GMP to 10 miles at GMP. The long runs went from 10 milers to 31 milers. The work has been done, at this point, I cannot worry about what I did or didn't do, I just need to trust the training.

With 2 days remaining all I have are a couple short miles to keep the legs moving and to verify my goals for Saturday. I always like to have 3 goals in place going into a target race ... so here I go sharing my goals with those that come across my blog:

"A" GOAL: Run a sub 3 hour marathon. There you have it 6:52 per mile pace is that it comes down to. Running this would better my current best by 9 minutes 25 seconds. My current best is a 3:09:25 which I ran at the California International Marathon back in December which is also my current Boston Qualifier.

"B" GOAL: Run a 3:05 marathon. The 3:05 marathon is something I have been chasing for a couple of years. Though it is no longer my Boston Qualifying standard because I have moved up an age group, it is still the fastest BQ standard set for males 34 years and younger. I would like to know that I got into Boston with the fastest required standard time.

"C" GOAL: Better my BQ time by 2 minutes, running a 3:07:25. To get into Boston 2014, one of the most impacted years, a runner had to run 1:38 faster than their BQ standard time. In 2013, everyone that applied with a qualifying time got in. I would like to ensure my place in Boston 2015 with running at least 2:30 seconds faster than my standard time.

"THE KICKER" GOAL: Smile at the finish and enjoy another 26.2-mile journey.

The journey continues and I won't stop until I get there ... Run, Run, Run by Michelle Lewis pretty much is my theme song and describes my journey as I try to get to Boston 2015.

Do you have any target races coming up? What is on the schedule? How do you layout your goals for a target race?

Thursday, April 24, 2014

500 Days of Running

So today I hit 500 days in my running streak. Honestly, I wasn't really sure that this was going to happen, only because it isn't something that I am shooting for or making a goal of mine to reach certain marks beyond the 365 days in 2013.

My streak started on December 10, 2012 with a 10 mile run, from there it just started happening after I was invited to join a Run Streak 2013 Facebook Group, which had people try to run every single day in 2013. I did that, ending 2013 with a 20.13 mile run. From there on out it just was something that I did every single day, it became part of the routine.

With 500 days of run streaking I have logged 4,656.15 miles. Here is what the 500 days of streaking has included in regards to races:

A couple of training partners have asked me what number am I trying to go for? I don't have the answer for that, but all I know is that I will continue to run until I can't.

A big shout out to the companies that keep me running SkechersGO, Zensah, Nuun, Energybits and BibRave.

Do you have a current running streak going? What is the longest consecutive running streak you have done? 

Sunday, April 20, 2014

#14in14: Mokelumne River 50K

A few months ago, I signed up for the Mokelumne River 26.2 managed and organized by Elemental Running. Then on Wednesday or Thursday this past week I decided to email the race director and find out if it was possible to upgrade to the 50k, with a quick response back from him, I was now officially moved from 26.2-miles to the 50k. The motivation you may ask? Well I found out that the 50k finishers get a jacket ... Yes, I am a sucker for swag.

So here I was, on my way to run my first ever 50k race. However, this wouldn't be my longest distance in a single run. In 2013, I ran the Dirty Half-Dozen 6 Hour Endurance Run and earlier this year I opted to say hello to turning 34 by running 34-miles. After upgrading to the 50k an email went out that was titled "Mokelumne River Runner Instructions", this email had the typical packet pick-up instructions along with some interesting additional instructions regarding cows, bulls, ticks and poison oak. At this point I started to think ... WHAT THE HELL DID I JUST UPGRADE TO? However, I knew that the jacket would be awesome and would be worth it. Wait, I didn't even know what the jacket was like, it could have been a cotton zip jacket, fingers crossed and let's hope it is a legit running jacket.

Who would you react if you saw a cow or bull during your run?
Saturday morning came around with a 3:30AM wake-up alarm. This early start to my day would allow me to have my typical smoothie breakfast, cup of coffee, and handful of ENERGYbits®. After making sure I had all of my goodies in my crate and bags I was off to pick-up my buddy Kevin who was running the 26.2-mile run. This would be his 2nd marathon overall. He ran his first marathon last month.

The drive would seem to be a bit long while on the roads, but time wise only took a little over 60 minutes. The highways leading to Lake Camanche in Valley Springs would be pretty dark and lonely at times and border line spooky with very little light along the road. Once we pulled up to the South Shore of Lake Camanche, we were welcomed with a back log of cars getting into the staging area as each car would have to purchase a parking pass to get in.

arriving to Lake Camanche (South Shore) in Valley Springs
It's official we are at the race staging area!
Once inside of the staging area, we walked to the packet pick-up got our swag (a bib number, shirt, pins, and some other stuff in a bag). With about 1 hour until start time for the 6:30AM 50-mile and 50k start, I proceeded back to my truck to get ready, here is where I saw my cousin Edd who was also running the 50k. Not too much after I saw a couple of my Buffalo Chips Running Club teammates (Laura and Kynan Matz), another one of my twitter running homies Clint, and a few others. I partly wanted this 50k to be a somewhat secret race since it was going to be my first 50k and I didn't train specifically for this race. However, with all of the familiar faces it was going to be far from a secret.

After I through on my race attire, pinned my bib and loaded up my handheld bottle with some Nuun Hydration, I walked about 1/4-mile to the start line area. At this point I saw trail badass Paulo and a handful of other top notch trail runners who would be out to try to win this thing with some smashing times. One thing I do really enjoy about trail running is the low pressure start line areas, there isn't as much anxiety at these races. For me I knew just getting out and enjoying the trails would be a good day, and obviously finishing my first 50k. While waiting for the start to come around we saw the minutes tick by, first it was 6:35, then 6:40, not until 6:46AM did we start the race. During this time a few of us joked about the bulls on the trails and how awesome (not really) it would be if we got chased by one or two.

With the race now underway, I opted to start around middle of the pack, since this was my first 50k I was going to run somewhat smart and start slow and push where I felt like I could. The course was an out and back, so the out would allow me to figure out the trail and the back would allow me to run a little more consistent, or at least that was the plan. My strategy using my "lap" button would provide me some info on distance from aid station to aid station as well as moving time between each one.

Strava screen shot of the course elevation

Start to Lancha Plana (aid station 1)
With a conservative start I started with runners around me moving through the trails once the trails opened up around the first mile or I took at the opportunity to pass some runners and run in my own space on the trails.  Around 2 miles in, I was now running around 2-3 runners. This would be the case for most of the race.

The first portion of the race would cover just under 4 miles based on my Garmin, at this point there weren't any major climbs nor was there any sight of cows and bulls, the only thing to report at this point were the sounds of cows somewhere in the grazing areas. The gates at this point were open so there wasn't any time wasted on opening and closing of gates.

I ran the first section of the trail in a time of 35:29. Once I got to the aid station, I made sure to refill my water bottle since the next stretch to Campo Seco would be around 8 miles without any aid between.

Lancha Plana to Campo Seco (aid station 2)
Right after leaving this aid station, I passed a couple other runners and came across my first cattle grazing gate that I actually had to open and shut behind me. Once I separated myself from a couple of those runners I had just passed, I really started to enjoy the trails, but this is where it seemed like the cows mooing started to get a little louder, to be honest I got freaked out a little bit because of the fact that what if a cow and bull were just hanging out nearby, I would be kind of screwed since I was by myself on the trails.

With the trails all to myself and about 2.5 miles out from the Lancha Plana aid station, this is where I fell and literally almost ate shit!  Some people use the term, "I ate shit" as a way of saying they fell pretty hard. However, in my case, I tripped on a rock and landed inches from eating a cow pie. I collected myself brushed off the dirt and washed my cut from my fall and continued on my way.
post race photo of the result of my fall
This portion of the race might have been the most beautiful part of it all. Below are some photos that my cousin Edd posted on his Facebook. I wish I would have ran with a camera, because these views were completely awesome and breath taking.

Some of these areas along the trail during this stretch were pretty exposed and the sun started peaking out and really started to take a toll on me, I knew having a handheld would save me during this run. During this stretch I would also have a decent little climb to make. With the combination of sun and climbing I made sure to keep the fluids coming as well as consume my fruit bars and gels that I had in my pack.

After getting past the climb, the downhill along with some open meadows allowed me to switch up my focus and just cruise down rather than struggle up. Just before the Campo Seco I started to see a couple of runners in front of me, this was a good thing because as fun as the trails had become, they had started to become a little lonely at times, so seeing other runners provided me a little bit of joy.

This stretch took me 1:15:09 to cover the approximately 8 miles.

Campo Seco to 50k turnaround
I was quickly out of the Campo Seco aid station after refilling my water and dropping my Nuun into the bottle. I also grabbed a handful of pretzels to help with some salt and something other than just fruit bars and gels. 

After getting out fairly quickly of this aid station which would take me to the 50k turnaround some 2.5 miles out or so, I was passed up one runner who got into the area before I did and was the runner who I had seen as I ran through the meadow.

This section of the race had a fairly steady climb up and was mostly on gravel. This area was completely exposed and where the sun would start to take it's toll on most runners. With the turn around coming up, I saw a number of lead runners already making the turn and heading back towards me. Getting out to the turn around, I passed 2 other runners who were in the 50k distance. Just before hitting the turnaround I saw Clint working his way back down, seeing a familiar face on the trail was a good thing at this point.

While at the turnaround one runner who was a few yards ahead of me continued past the sign, meaning he was one of those extremely BADASSES that was running the 50-miler.

I hit the turnaround 26 minutes 24 seconds after leaving Campo Seco. At the turnaround there was no water or aid, so I knew I was about the same time and distance away from being able to load up on food and water. The bright side of climbing up to the turnaround was that the distance back to Campo Seco would be mostly downhill.

50k turnaround to Campo Seco (aid station 3)
After turning around, I knew that this part of the course would allow me to see more runners that would be working their way up to the turnaround. This is always the positive part of an out and back course.

As I worked my way down, there were a lot of exchanges of "way to go", "nice job", "looking strong". Around half way back down to Campo Seco aid station, I saw Laura and Kynan. A little bit further down I saw my cousin Edd, who was snapping photos, however the photo he took of me didn't come out.

With the downhill continuing, I was covered the return portion to Campo Seco in a time of 22:11.

Campo Seco to Lancha Plana (aid station 4)
Knowing that there was about 8 miles from Campo Seco to Lancha Plana, I decided that it would be a smart idea to refill the bottle with some water and throw down some food along with my gels and fruit bars. I think at this point I ate some crackers and pretzels for some salt.

Heading back to the final aid station before hitting the finish line, I saw a number of runners making their way to the marathon turn around and came across one runner heading back to the next aid station as he too was running the 50k. We chatted for a few minutes while running along side one another tackling some of the hills. He asked me which distance I was running, I informed him the 50k, at that point he said "Damn, there goes another place in the race I just dropped." I didn't catch his name but I was a bit worried about him because he just seemed pissed, but it is always hard figure out during any endurance event, if the guy was really struggling or if he was mad. I offered him some of my gels and even some Nuun to pop into his water, which he refused.

After making covering more distance on this leg, I came up to the half marathon turn around point, where there were more runners heading back as they were the marathon and half marathon group which started about 60 minutes after the 50-mile and 50k.

This part of the race became pretty memorable because at this point I saw my buddy Clint on the switch back, he was probably about 5 minutes of moving time a head of me (about .4-.5 miles ahead if I had to guess). With a quick wave to him, he saw me and I could tell from his body language that he was going to pick it up a bit to hold me off.

Moving towards the end of this stretch I knew all I had to do was get to  Lancha Plana and I would be able to count down the miles to the completion of my first 50k. After opening and closing the final cattle grazing gate of the stretch I finally covered the distance of about 8 miles in a time of 1 hour 17 minutes exact.

Lancha Plana to Finish
After another refill of the hand held bottle and a couple small cups of cola, I was ready to push the final 4 miles to the finish line. During my time at the aid station one of the volunteers told me I was the 5th overall 50k at this point. I knew if I could keep myself moving, I could probably hold off any other 50k runners behind me, though I wasn't sure if someone was closing ground anyways.

For most of the course, I was running alongside the 3rd place overall marathoner, who was holding pretty strong at this point. We passed a number of half marathoners still on the course making their way to the finish. I remember passing one guy who asked me which distance I was running and responded after I told him the 50k, "Dude you'e badass, enjoy that jacket!" See I wasn't the only one aware of the jacket.

With a couple of small climbs to finish off this stretch, I was able to see some horse trailers and some boats, I knew I was getting close to the finish line. I decided to pick up my pace a bit to see if I could finish strong. I finished this section in 39:47, giving me a total time for the 50k of 4:36:06.

After crossing the finish line, I was given my bling and jacket and checked the official finishers screen where I finished 5th overall and 3rd in my AG. With a quick high-five to my buddy Kevin, I saw Clint at the finish line, where he told me, "Hey thanks for the extra push, when I saw you on the trail, I said no way am I getting beat by Chris". Clint ran this race very strong considering he was dealing with being sick and coughing during the race at times. Clint finished a couple of minutes ahead of me and 4th place overall.

bling and jacket in hand!

Clint and I at the finish showing off our new swag.

It was an awesome Saturday morning of running and I think another 50k is probably in the future at some point.

Some of you might be wondering about my #14in14 title ... yes I have decided to modify my goal of 14 marathons in 2014. I have decided to change my goal to include 14 runs of marathon distance or greater as part of my 14 in 2014. So far I am 4 runs in the my #14in14.

Have you ever decided to just upgrade to a distance at an event without training for it? How did it go?