Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Camp Corns Weekend

The first weekend in October Aneta and I made a road trip down to Indian Cave State Park in South East Nebraska. I always heard they had a great trail system and the rumors where right. We covered 8 miles of trail and didn't see half the trails. I was really impressed with the elevation gains and variety of scenery.

The following week I made last minutes plans to throw the tent and sleeping bag in the car and went back for two-day trail run.

Let's just call it CampCorns. So there was no entry fee to sign up for CampCorns, and as you can see there where no shirts given out. The attendance this year (at CampCorns) was 100%, but then again I was the only one invited.

The first day.... Saturday, I rolled into Indian Cave and set up camp. That took longer than I hoped so my first day of running was short. Maybe a ten mile run followed up by camp fire meal and a cooler full of beer. The weather was perfect. A cool evening, no bugs and no phones.

Day two was great. I got up early and had a quick backpackers breakfast. I filled up the camelback with H2O and hit the trails for a nice fifteen mile run. Indian Cave had a horse race that morning so I shared the trail with hand full of horseback riders. They were bigger so they had the right of way, plus they were faster, but then again if you've seen me run, that ain't saying much. The trails had some amazing hills with incredible views of the Missouri River, some deep valleys and you could run for 25+ miles without seeing the same trail twice.

After the run I went back to camp. Fried up some eggs and sausage and held the awards ceremony. CampCorns trailrunning series fell on hard times this year with the poor economy so there where no buckles awarded. Maybe next year.

Below.....I added a link to a short film of David Goggins, the US Seal Team member/Ultra runner. Most of the footage was shot at the 2008 McNaughton Park 100/150 mile ultra. I was running the 100 mile distance and the only time I got to see David he pasted me when I was on mile 25. He passed me like I wasn't moving and he already completed 125 miles. It's a great video. When you click on the link there are several video's. Use the tool bar to scroll over to "The Long Run". Enjoy!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Bohemian Alps 2008

Three weeks after the Lean Horse 100 mile ultra Nebraska holds it's only Ultra distance race, the Bohemian Alps 50k. I can't say I was fully recovered from the Lean Horse but it's important to support our local races when-ever possible.

Again, the day was a tough one. The forecast was calling for mild temperatures but holy cow it was hot. Upper 80's and when you are a walking oven, that's hot. I think everyone said they had difficulty with the heat. The fastest time was around 5hours. I happened to finish the Alps in 7 hours 11minutes. I'm please with the time and had a blast doing it.

The Bohemian Alps is a 32 mile run in Branard Nebraska. Rolling hills, dirt roads and trails. My GPS says we had 3685 feet of Ascent/Descent. September is the start of harvest season so the occasional grain truck flying by and kicking up road dirt is a factor as well. Sweat + Dirt = a messy dry eyed Greg.

When I first started doing triathlon the race would always give you a photo or drawing of the area.

Since I started doing ultras the RD would give you a satellite photo or county road map for distance and direction. I wish they wouldn't do that. Scars the shit out of me when you see the big picture.

Post race beers and BBQ. I wasn't worth a crap here. Notice I thought this one through. I camped out by the beer cooler. Now if I could just give my dick to someone to go take a piss for me, I'd be happy. I was on my own for that one.

Going down!

Monday, September 8, 2008

The Lean Horse

We made it back from the Lean Horse and back to our normal Life again. The trip to South Dakota is always fun, but this year was another humbling experience again. This was my 2nd attempt at running the Lean Horse and I fell shy of the finish line by 30 miles.

Carhinge was the first stop on our trip to South Dakota. It's a mystical place. Life changing for sure.

I was able to scratch one item from the bucket list. PISS ON CARHINGE. "Who doesn't have that on their list"? It was satisfying.

The next morning we were got checked in....had a quick snack.....stretched and got ready for the race start up.

The race had about 140 runners, some running the 50 miler and about 80 people running the 100 miler. I love the energy at the start. Most people are nervous and jacked up ready to get the race started. I tend to be numb. No emotion, I'm just ready to go.

After we got started I hooked up with the only other person from Nebraska. Scott G. from LaVista Nebraska.. One hell of a good guy. Really......we didn't plan to dress the same.......Scott ended up with at 25 hour finish.......Which I'm proud to say he represented Nebraska well. I hope to do some more running with Scott in the future.

The wild life in South Dakota was incredible. I know most of my friends would look at hind-end as an invitation. Kind of looks like a target. And look.........handle bars......who could say "No" I had to pass on this one.

Big Buck.......What a monster.

After the race gets underway you are really able to relax and just enjoy the run. The Lean Horse is considered one of the easiest 100 mile ultra. Non technical trails, with all smooth surfaces, but I argue that. It's ALL up and down. You are always going through some level of elevation change, and the changes in temperature are challenging too. The start of the race is 40. The mid day is 80 and after the sun goes back down it's back in the lower 40's.
The first 25 miles were smooth. I was running well. I did not have any major problems. I was able to see Aneta a few times at different aid station and was able to cruse into Carrol Creek aid station at mile 30 feeling good. From 30 to 40 miles my body was starting to rebel a little and started getting sick. I was sick of drinking energy drinks, I was sick of gu, my "S" caps were not tasty and that's were I started Blow Chunks. And "No" I don't have a cat named "Chunks" (joke). Now on the up-side of getting sick it was only a minor problem. I just had to slow down. Focus on staying hydrated, and keep moving forward.

Now it started getting late. The sun was down and believe me South Dakota is dark. It's funny but when you are running in the trees. No moon light, and all you have is your head lamp, you tend to see things. Everything moves. Trees take on different shapes. I kept seeing chairs lines up on the side of the trail. I go take a closer look and guess what chairs...just more and more trees.
I ended my run about 1:30am at night. I really had trouble from mile 60 to 70. The last section of my run was a 6 mile stretch from Crazy Horse Monument to Harbach park all up hill. It trashed the quads and with no water in my system.......I just shut down. On the upside.......I did 70miles.......I did about 12 thousand food of ascent/descent, and I ran from 6am and stopped at 1:30am.........On the down side.......I showed up to run a 100 mile race. I only covered 70 miles.

I am disappointed in the end result but overall I'm happy for the opportunity, and to say I ran in tough conditions, and I've gained a ton of experience for the next race.

In short.....The Lean Horse is a great event. Jerry Dunn does a great job putting on a event that is challenging, but do-a-ble for the first time ultra runner.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Lean Horse

Lean Horse is an old U.S. Postal Service Mail term used back in the Pony Express days as "a Horse that could run longer distances (and) quickly, more-so than your average horse". I plan to redefine that term as the one who trots and who leaves many road apples along the way.

The Lean Horse 100 Mile Ultra Marathon starts Saturday August 23rd at 6:00am.

This will be my second attempt. I fell short last year, so I have some unfinished business now.

It should be fun weather permitting. I'm going to need you to send some of your positive vibes.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Two Questions

Answer to Question Number One: Well I guess they do shit in the woods. But then again, so does Blink. Good now I can move on.

Answer to Question Number Two:
Hell ya Kansas is hot. Which worries me just a little. July 5Th I'm going to venture down to Kansas City Kansas to run in the Summer Phyco Wyco 50K trail run . Most race's have a claim to fame, or a certain known level of difficulty that makes thier race unique. Western States has quad crunching down hills, H.U.R.T. has technical roots, rocks, mud. Hard Rock has elevation gain/loss. Well you get the point. Summer Phyco has Kansas heat and humidity. It's only been a few months sense my last rant when I was bitching about the cold. So it doesn't seem right that I squawk about the heat.......But as luck would have it, KC is only calling for temp of 86 degree's, with 70% humidity.

How lucky am I. Good weather, time off away from work. I get to go run in a lil' trail Ultra and finish up with beers and fireworks.

I hope everyone has a great 4Th. I would tell you "Please Drink Responsively" but I know you all better than that. Have fun and be er responsible!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Olympic Trials

Yesterday we had an opportunity to watch the Olympic Swim Trials. It really was a great show. First, the athletes were the best part. A few world records were set. Mark Phelps was there and in top form. Then the event itself was fun. It wasn't your typical swim meet like what we had back in high school. There were lights. The was loud-ass music. It was almost a concert setting. If you ever get a chance to go in the future. I highly recommend it.

Happy 4th kids.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Coeurd 'lane

First of I'd like to congratulate all of those.....who competed in the Iron Man competition at Coerdil'ane Idaho. You did great. Hat's off to Blink, Bigun and tacboy. You three are studs.

My next adventure is Summer PhyscoWyco, July 5th. Again, I might be a little under trained for this one, but I'm looking forward to a challenge. 30 miles on the trail. It should be fun.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

McNaughton Park 100 Mile Madness

Let me start off by saying...if you want mud and shitty weather, well just invite me to your race. It seems that's the one consistent thing that I can guarantee. McNaughton Park was that. times snow, but it was fun.

Bob M. and I showed up at this race Friday for packet pick up and to watch the 150 milers start. It was humbling to stand there with fresh legs and watch the 150 milers, knowing that when we start our race they will have already been running for eighteen hours.

6am Saturday came around quickly and we were all off and running. There was 60 runners in the 150 miler. 60+ in the 100 miler and 90+ runners in the 50 miler. This is a single track 10 mile looped course with rolling hills and two stream crossings per loop. The rain was light and sporadic during the morning portion of the run, but got progressively heavier though out the day.

Miles 0 to 20 was easy and a lot of fun. I ran with several groups of people, the trail was in reasonably good condition considering the steady rain for the past few days. David Goggins (Navy Seal) and pacer passed me around mile 25. He said he was on 115 and still looking strong. David went on to win the 150 miler with a total time of 33:36.

Miles 30-40 did not come easy for me. The trail was pummeled by hundreds of feet. The mud was ankle deep in places and the rain stopped long enough for it to turn to snow. It was cooled! I remember standing on the side of a hill taking a gel and the ground just gave away. I was gliding down the hill unable to stop. The good news was, I could slide faster than I could run. The bad news was, what goes down must eventually go back up. One section of the course called (Golf Hill) had a rope to assist you up the hill. It was a vertical climb that required use of the rope.

At mile 45, I came up on (Heavens Gate) aid station and of one the volunteers was eating a grilled cheese sandwich, she could see the drewl from my mouth so she offered. Let me just say this, that was the BEST grilled cheese I've ever had in my life! Then she offered cheesy mashed potatoes and bacon. Kids.... I just ran into a buffet. They called it (Heavens Gate) because it sat on an old cemetery. I think they should call it Heavens Buffet and All Night Grill.
At mile 50 I found the difference between a water proof jacket.....and the difference between a water resistant jacket. A water resistant jacket is good for 0-30 miles in the rain and a water proof jacket is what I did not own. My body was soaked from head to toe. The sun was now down and the temperature dropped. The thought of doing 40 more miles in the dark didn't seem possible, and that's when my flashlight went out. Now what? Here I am out in the woods with an eight pound water filled jacket and a broken flashlight. Fortunately I did have a small backup penlight. Without that I'd probably still be out wandering around in the woods someplace in Illinois.
When I got back to the start/finish line I was shaking uncontrollably. I just couldn't get warmed up. I was spent, and without a light I was done.

It was a tough year for McNaughton Park. 13 runners completed the 150 mile race. 11 runners completed the 100 mile race and 69 runners completed the 50 mile race. It's also worth mentioning......Of the 60 people to start the 150 mile race 11 additional runners did complete 100 miles before stopping. Anyone who could endure 100 miles in those conditions has my respect.

Bob M. completed the 100 miler in 29:47 and placed 3rd overall and received the 100 mile buckle and 1st place award for his age group. I ran for 16:58 before dropping and place 19Th overall and 9Th place for my age group and received the 50 mile buckle.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Mud Fest 2008

Yes I was at the back of the pack on this race. Not a strong finish. The only thing that I can say in my defence there were 35 runners that dropped from the race because the trail conditions was so bad. Believe me, I thought about it at one point too, but my ride wasn't at the race so there wasn't anything else to do but wait, so I thought.....I might as well be running. The last lap was un-runnable, it was a wading pool of mud that added weight to my feet. Mile 25 (or so) the dash board lights turned on the the wheels feel off, and I was walking. But talk about fun. It was a blast.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

The First Coeurd'Alen Challenge

Well I'm finding there are more challenges to completing an Iron Man than JUST physical challenges. Recently I've been displaced from my job. (Or as they would say south of the boarder). Juno....I lost my Yob Mang! So most likely that will effect my goal of attending the Iron Man in Coeurd'Alene and that SUCKS! I mean that sucks "BIGTIME" I'm only guessing my next employer will not be open to giving me a week and a half off in June, so I had to come to the realisation that I won't be able to make the trip to Idaho. For those who are signed up for an Iron Man this year.....think about that.....How hard would it be for YOU to back out at this point. We've all committed. We've all past the point of no return.

First there is the financial investment of $500 one year in advance. Hell I don't even know what what I'm going to eat for lunch today, and IM wants me to plan one year in advance to compete in their race then lay down five hundy.

Second I know we've all laced up our shoes and ventured out into the snow and shitty weather because "we had to". A run could wait for another nice day but you know if you don't bang out some serious miles you may not see the finish line. So we take an enjoyable thing like running and turn it into a chore. And that pool, face down in cold water ingesting chlorine for hours. It's not always the funnest thing to do.

Now that you are vested financially AND physically, then have to "bow out". For me, the toughest part was just saying it.....ok....."I'm out" I hesitated and Studdard but I did have to say it................I'm out..................Ouch!.

Now IM has my money and not likely to give it back, and maybe there is an outside chance that I can go. What if my new employer would say, wow Greg you are going to compete in the Iron Man, wow you can't pass that up. Just maybe the stars will Aline and allow me to go. (I know dream on). So what to do? Keep on running. I would hate to show up under prepared.

I guess the best approach is to enjoy what you are doing today. The race only lasts one day. Enjoy all the days that brought you there, and enjoy all the things that you take away from Iron Man. I'll be thinking about you June 22ND.

On the lighter side. The weather has been warmer. I finely got to run in shorts and tee for the first time in months. Why do I have to learn things the hard way?

Nipple Protection!

The question is? Why do my lil nipples seem to always take a beating when I wear just a tee shirt. It seems the ladies never have this problem. What is it? Are they made of Kevlar, and cast iron? Do men genetically have sensitive nipples?

I've had people say......Well Yeti why don't you just Duck Tape em. Well that poses another problem. Who's going to remove the tape when I'm done running? Not me. And I refuse to look like Steve Carell on the Forty Year Old Virgin. Bag-Balm doesn't cut it.

Maybe I'll just remove them. I don't use them. What good are they? Will HMO cover that? Maybe Snap-On will invent some removable Nipples.

Well that's all for now folks. Happy Training.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Banwagon is Heading to the Blarney Stone

Monday March 17Th Aneta plans to kiss the Blarney Stone in her 2008 running debut. One of Omaha's local running stores is putting on a 5k St Patty's run.

You know ever sense I can remember I've been challenging Aneta to try running but there hasn't been much interest, but last month Blink came over for a few beers and conversation. Well the usual smack talk started and Blink challenged Aneta running in the Blarney Stone 5k.

I have to say Aneta's has been working hard and laying down some good miles. I know she will do well.
Who knew, the motivating factor would be....
#1 A challenge from Blink.
#2 Free Beer and pizza after the race

I can understand #2 that's enough motivation for me to run. But #1 REALLY a challenge from Blink? Who knew.

And here's the kicker. The above picture is a blatant violation and unauthorized use of Yeti's Man Cave.

Well I hope everyone's St. Patty's day is one to remember and I hope everyone gets to Kiss the Blarney Stone. Happy St. Patty's day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Back From the PsychoWyco

Let me just start off by saying, have you ever had to ask yourself, why do you enjoy this sport? Let me skip forward for a moment to say, I just got back from the Psycho Wyco 50K trail run this week and absolutly had a blast. Probobly the funnest race I've been in. But on paper it looked like the worst. I was in the back of the pack and my time was 9:20 on a 50k trail run. When I got home, the question was asked, how did you do? After telling my story the, responses was.....Why did you go? Did you even go? What's the point if you arn't number one? and so on. So I caught myself dwelling on the question. Greg why do you do this? You know maybe they are right? I can remember back when I first started running the answer was simple. I wanted to look good naked! Not like a toad. Then you decide maybe I'll enter a race,then a few years later we try differant types of races, or we become more competitive. All of us have an different agenda and I almost forgot my reasons for a second. HAVE FUN. It's simple, but meaningfull to me. Have fun and enjoy this as long as the good Lord let's me. And when it's no longer fun, well do something else.

So let me tell you about the fun in KC. Aneta, Bob Murphy and myself roll into KC about 6pm on Friday. Went to Garry Gribbles running sports for packet pick up. Probobly one of the nicest running stores I've seen. We checked into the hotel then went to the Outback for some shrimp off the Barbie, then got a good night of sleep.

8:00am the following day the race starts with 900+ runners. The temperature was 25 and the ground was frozen and snow covered. The course is a 10 mile looped course, each loop had 5 stream crossings and 1800 foot acent/decent so dry warm feet and running on flat ground is not an option.

The temperature warmed up quickly to 35 by 9:30 and 40 by noon so with the snow melt plus 900 runners equealed a nasty messy crazy-ass run. The mud was anckle deep at times.

The first two laps were runable, but the last lap was reduced to a walk. Let's just say the mud was deep, the hills were steep and Greg's legs were cramping. Maybe that's why it was so much fun...It was a challenge. (5400ft total Acent 15 stream crossings)

Again, this is one of Bad Ben's races and he does a fantastic job. Plenty of aid. Hot food and drink. For Forty bones (entry) I got a cool shirt, event mug and bling. Ben puts on a great race, one you will likely never forget.

In short, we had a fantastic weekend. It's nice to go into the next season with a good base and look at what I need to work on with Coeur d'Alene only, 4 months way. One thing is for sure, my goals and agenda have not changed for 2008. HAVE FUN! My goal for Iron Man is to have an enjoyable Iron Man experiance and getting to know all of the Iron Man peeps.

Happy training kids.

Question: Every time I get out out of the pool my sinuses are so plugged up, and it's miserable. Does anyone have a good remedy for that?

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Playing Catch Up

I'll be the first to admit I'm terrible about keeping an updated blog so here is the Cliff Note version.

Three weeks ago was the first opportunity to take a four day week-end off. So what's a fella going to do? Go hunting. I traveled out to North Platte Ne, to go preditor hunting.

We called dogs for three days and had high winds and bad weather to limit our success, but the last day we were able to call in five coyote's and pulled off one good shot.

I even tried to get the Tri-Dummy to go one day but we weren't able to pull off a hunt. Dummy, we'll hook up next time.

Saturday I'm heading down to Kansas City KS for my first Ultra of the year. The 50k Psyco Wyco ultra. This is one of Bad Bens yearly races, and I'm really looking forward hitting the trails again. I'll give a full race report next week.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Coming Out Of The Closet

Well I've had a dirty little secret for sometime now now, and I've been reluctant to talk about it for the last few months. I think the reason for not talking about it is because it's probably not the best idea in the world, but sometimes you just have to say "fuck it" and just do something stupid. I signed up for the McNaughton Park 100 mile Ultra Marathon in Peking IL. For April 12th, 2008. This will be my second attempt at the 100 mile distance. My first attempt at the 100 mile distance was at Lean Horse 100 mile Ultra last August in which I fell short of the finish by quite a few miles.

One side of me says, take your time. Train harder. But the other side says quit acting like a pussy and just do it. If I have half the fun in this attempt as I did at the Lean Horse it will be worth it no matter what the out come is.

If you are not familiar with the McNaughton Park Ultra. It's the only 150 mile Ultra in the USA. They also offer a hundred mile and a 50 mile during the same race. The 150 milers start on April 11th at 12pm, and us 100 milers join them on April 12th at 6am. The McNaughton Park Ultra is a single track trail run on a 10 mile loop course. Each 10 mile loop has heavy hills and two stream crossings per loop.

I can honestly say, if I had to run this race tomorrow I would fail miserably but I do think April is far enough out to put in enough miles to get me ready for this. I've been running all hills and mixing in some pool time too. I'm banking on that combination to get me where I need to be.

Wish me luck on this next adventure and may the trail gods be good to me this next three months.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy New Year 2008

Happy New Year to all.
Well lets get this year started. The last football game is about over. Work is slowing down. With those two major distractions behind me, maybe we can start getting some miles in. The tough part is planning out the year and putting together a training plan. CDA will be the big focus and I think we will see at least three Utra's on my wish list year.
Good luck in 08.