Sunday, October 12, 2014

Race Report - 2014 Mystery Mountain Marathon

Race start.
If I remember correctly, I had registered for this race two times before and both times, I ended up with a DNS due to a previous commitment or injury. This time, I wasn't going to let that happen. After racing in the Fleet Feet Monte Sano 15K on Saturday morning here in Huntsville, AL I headed home to watch some soccer before loading up my car to head to Fort Mountain State Park just outside Chatsworth, GA. I didn't feel like making the 3 hour drive on the morning of the race, so instead I headed West Saturday afternoon to pick up my race packet and make use of one of the primitive campgrounds inside the state park that was reserved for runners. However, the weather forecast called for thunderstorms, so instead of unloading my minimalist tent and potentially having to deal with lots of wetness at night and on race morning, I decided to camp out in the back of my car. It wouldn't particularly comfortable, but it would be dry and warm.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Race Report - 2014 Southern Tennessee Power Classic Marathon

It was Thursday night and I was roaming on Facebook to see if I anyone was looking for a long run this weekend. Pinhoti 100 was only 4 weeks away and I was in need for another long run. When I came across Ryan's post about running a marathon or half marathon race in Winchester, Tennessee about an hour north of Huntsville, I was immediately interested. I looked up the Southern Tennessee Power Classic Marathon to find out more. I was still undecided when I came across a post where a fellow runner offered up her free race entry coupon. Initially, she was asking for a nominal fee, but when we both realized that online registration had closed prematurely, she offered the coupon to me for free in hopes that the race director would still honor it. When I contacted the RD, she did just that. Now I had a free entry and a free ride (compliments of the Chaffin family) along with great company (Blake came along to run the half with Ryan while Aleisha was doing the marathon as a training run), so how could I not go.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Race Report - 2014 Georgia Jewel 35 Miler

Hanging out with Jerry and Todd prior to their 100 Mile start.
Originally, I had planned to run the 50 miler as part of my Pinhoti 100 training. However, things changed. By luck, I was able to run a tough 100K mountain race in Poland during a business trip 3 weeks earlier, so I figured there was no need to beat up my body more than necessary in preparation for my goal race. I also found out that my wife and I had been invited to a wedding that race day afternoon, so the 35 mile distance was the only distance that would even give me a shot at making the wedding 3 hours away in Birmingham that same afternoon.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Race Report - 2014 Bieg 7 Dolin 100K

The ultimate reward after a hard day's work, a local beer:-)

The adventure begins...
I got the opportunity to run this race completely by accident. A business trip required that I visited Ireland and Poland in early September and as usual, I immediately started to look for races in those locations or just cool places to run. After about a week of research, I located a really cool looking ultra marathon in Poland at the site of last year's World Mountain Running Championships. The "Festiwal Biegowy" or Festival of Races takes place in Krynica, Poland just a couple of hours drive outside of Krakow in the Carpathian Mountains (Eastern European extension of the Alps) over the first weekend in September. There were races on the calendar from the 100 m dash all the way to a 100K ultra marathon, the "Bieg 7 Dolin" or Seven Valleys Run 100K. In between, there were 5Ks and half marathons, and 33K and even a 66K distance as well, but I figured go big or go home. After all, I probably will never ever get the opportunity again to run an ultra in this region.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Race Report - 2014 Coldwater Mountain 50K

Great t-shirt and master's and finisher's awards.
Ain't nothin' cold about the Coldwater Mountain 50K
I don't think I have ever committed and signed up for any race as late as I did for this one. After realizing on Wednesday before the race that I needed a long run on Saturday, because my Sunday was already booked with other activities, I decided that it was much more likely for me to finish 31 miles in a race than it would be for me to get out there on the hottest day of the year to run 31 miles on my own. After all, I had nothing to loose, every race prior to November is just part of my training for Pinhoti. I just needed the miles, no need to worry about being race ready or tapering or anything.