Saturday, June 30, 2012
Arvada to Gillette, WY 44.32 miles
Friday, June 29, 2012
Otter, MT to Aravda, WY 40.24 miles
Thursday, June 28, 2012
Jennifer and I ran together most of the day enjoying - once again - nice scenery in very remote southeastern Montana. We were joined by my good friend Frank Dembia whom I will write about tomorrow. Today's route was all nice gravel roads in this remote land, and due to shifting winds there was not much smoke from the fires to bother us.
Birney to Otter, MT 31.31 miles
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Justin ended the day early due to potential issues, but the plan is for him to make up the missed mileage Thursday after seeking appropriate advice.
Busby to Birney, MT 36.2 miles
Justin 4:57:51 (23 miles)
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Since we started the day with only one crew vehicle this morning Justin, Jennifer, and I planned to run together for the early miles. We had a good run for 12 plus miles basically following the I-90 Frontage Road to US-212. I note that we will run all the way to Bell Fourche, SD almost 200 miles away all on US-212. Since I eat constantly while running (GUs, peppermint puffs, life savers, hard candies, Sport Beans) I don't usually have a problem with my energy level, but the heat probably did me in. With virtually no cloud in the sky, it was already hot and the day was just warming up into the hottest day of the Run so far as the temperature in Busby was 101 degrees shortly after we finished. Anyways, the three of us plodded along on the rolling road near each other or together all day fighting off the heat and a cross wind that at times nearly knocked us off the road. Bottom line, the running wasn't fun after mile 12 today, and the three of us walked it in the last five miles to finish together. The forecast is for slightly cooler weather the next few days - we keep our fingers crossed.
Hardin to Busby, MT 39.47 miles
Monday, June 25, 2012
An interesting weather pattern appears to occur here in Montana in that the high temperature of the day can be reached late in the afternoon or even early evening time frame. This is good for the runners who would prefer to run in lower temps vice higher temperatures. While waiting for Jennifer to finish the iPhone stated the Hardin, MT temperature was 97. Shortly after Jennifer finished the reported Hardin temperature was up to 101, and after we ate dinner the temperature was 103 degrees. Brutal - especially for Crew Dog Daphne.
Billings to Hardin, MT 41.43 miles
Sunday, June 24, 2012
Everyone who knows music from the mid-80s should be able to recall Glen Frey's hit The Heat Is On which appears to have also been one of the Beverly Hills Cop songs. Sorry, I don't remember the song being in the movie, but I remember Beverly Hills Cop to be a super movie. Well, it took 25 days for the temperature to reach the 80s on the run so no complaints - but we definitely felt the effect of the heat. I was in a great mood as we started the day as I was running better than I had since all the way back to the beginning of stage 15. Although the super scenery of the Montana Rockies was now behind us, the Big Sky state still provided plenty of views to enjoy. When I saw Heidi at mile 13 she told me that 13 cyclists who were biking from Seattle to New York City weren't far behind me. I was stoked - I looked forward to seeing the cyclists on the "lonely road". The cyclists passed me shortly thereafter and "way to gos" were passed from the running side of the road to the cycling side of the road and vice versa. And just a couple minutes later I round a bend and I see Heidi parked on the running side of the road and the support van for the cyclists parked on the cycling side of the road. I enjoyed a few more minutes of talk with my fellow road warrior and it was time for all of us to continue down the road. One could say that the cyclists were now taking the lead for Justin, Jennifer, and myself to follow since we were all on the same route for the day. Just two miles later I took my first picture from the road with my cell phone that I have carried with me every day. I noted that the Old Milwaukee Road rail-bed rejoined the road and that a railroad trestle used many years ago had been severely damaged and left in place. I enjoyed the views of the old rail-bed with missing trestles for a good two miles before the left hamstring decided to give me fits. Yes, another "injury or overuse issue" to slow me. Stuff happens on the open road. Once again it was Advil and recovery cream to the rescue and I slowly returned to slow running while only slightly favoring the left leg again. Another point of note today was that I enjoyed passing through the small towns of Ryegate and Livonia. Love those old post offices!
The weather forecast wasn't a good one for runners with the temperature to reach the high 90s. So one day after running for the first time in the 80s we would now run for the first time in the 90s. Thankfully, however, complete overcast kept the heat at bay for the first 15 miles or so - yeeeaaaahh!
All three of us started slowly this morning - Justin fighting off a left knee issue, Jennifer fighting off the heat, and myself with the left hamstring now my biggest complaint. Jennifer and I started running together at mile 4 since we were running the same pace and Justin wasn't too far ahead. At mile 8 Jennifer and I could see Justin ahead leaving Margaret and the "Scooby Van" (ie. Justin's van). Seeing Justin at mile 8 of a stage was a first for me since he is usually out of sight in minutes. Jennifer and I made good time despite the overuse injuries and heat up until mile 18 at which point a new left leg issue started to bother her. Still the miles rolled on and we were "quickly" (quickly is definitely a relative term here) into the final third of today's miles to run at which point my left hamstring decided it should bother me more. Bummer. Jennifer and I carried on with our overuse injuries together until mile 34 at which point I moved on at a slightly faster pace to the end. Justin picked up the pace for the day and - unfortunately - also ran some additional mileage do to a confusing intersection.
We passed the 1000 mile mark today!!! We celebrated the 1000 mile mark in the hotel with my favorite Whoppers and some iced chocolate chip cookies - yummmmmyyyy.
Broadview to Billings, MT 39.61 miles
Saturday, June 23, 2012
Friday, June 22, 2012
OK - the day started with temps in the mid-50s with 6.3 miles of no-shoulder road (US-12). There were no turns today - only the second day with zero turns. Not wanting to be on the section of US-12 with no shoulder any longer than needed, I immediately started to jog vice walk at the start. I was very happy that the left posterior tibial tendon didn't cause me any problems - hence no further report is required on this tendon. However, my right quad wasn't happy. I applied KT tape to the quad prior to the start, but every right footfall was quite painful for the first six miles. I realized I had forgotten to take any Advil before starting, so when I saw Heidi at mile 5.3 I took three pills. Shortly thereafter the awful pain started to subside and by mile 11 or so I was really enjoying the run. I hadn't run this well since stage 14, so no surprise I was now quite happy. I am a testament to the fact that Advil works. Nevertheless, there was still the work zone that had to be traversed. Margaret called Heidi when Justin reached the work zone to report that there was not a flagman at the entrance to the work zone so Justin ran into it. So far so good, but I could tell from the limited traffic that I saw that there must be a pilot car in the work zone since all the passing cars were in groups. When I get to the work zone Margaret calls back to report a flagman was directing traffic a mile into the work zone. Since Justin and Jennifer were already past that point, I wasn't too concerned, but again a runner isn't through a work zone until he or she is through the zone. No problem with the first flagman for me and I am running well - avoiding cars and construction vehicles - when I note a slow moving - well a slow moving something up ahead. As I get closer I can plainly see a person pulling a rickshaw heading east like myself. WOW!!! This is completely unexpected. I found out after finishing the run that this gentlemen has walked about 35,000 miles pulling this rickshaw - at least that is what Justin reported since Justin talked to the gentleman for about five minutes when he passed him earlier. This chance passing in the work zone brought a smile to my face and helped push me through the zone. I note that the workers were all very friendly and many waves were exchanged between myself and the construction workers. I don't think the presence of the RAAoT runners impeded any work being done on a Friday afternoon, but one will never know. There will most likely be other work zones - may our passage through those zones go just as well as today.
Selkirk to Shawmut, MT 38.52 miles
Thursday, June 21, 2012
I note that we ran parallel to an old rail line which I am almost certain is part of the Old Milwaukee Road which is the same rail line transferred to trail in WA and ID as the John Wayne Pioneer Trail and Trail of the Coeur d' Alenes.
Justin and Jennifer ran fairly close to each other all day following Justin's slow start. They pushed each other - a good thing.
White Sulpher Springs to Selkirk, MT 42.60 miles
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
We ran a fairly quiet section of US-12 today which included more super views and scenery. Of Miles 19-31 were all uphill as we ran in a canyon paralleling Deep Creek. We lost our Big Sky views when in the canyon, but the canyon views were just marvelous. At mile 31 we reached the top of our climb today and were rewarded with more Big Sky views of a high valley. If you really want to see America, you definitely see a lot at 4-5 miles per hour.
Once again Jennifer and Justin were out of sight in mere minutes after starting due to my slow starting requirement.
Winston to White Sulpher Springs, MT; 40.50 miles
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
For the 13 hours between finishing stage 19 and starting stage 20 I barely moved the left ankle, and Justin immobilized the ankle with a super tape job to keep the stress of the inflamed tendon to an absolute minimum. Soooooo starting stage 20 was quite a challenge as it was quite painful to get the tape to adjust to a supportive role vice an immobilizing role. The first mile took 21 painful minutes but slowly the tape started to "come around" and I was soon walking 15 minute miles. I then started to shuffle a number of times for just a few yards each time before quickly resuming a walk. Ugh. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. However, as I neared mile 6 the left foot allowed me to transition from walking to an ugly looking favor-the-left-foot slow jog. Thankfully the ugly jogging morphed to jogging and at mile 22 I was able to run a sub-12 minute mile with little favoring of the left foot!!! I ran well the rest of the day except for the four mile climb at the end of the day up MacDonald Pass - the highest point of the run at 6325 feet (according to the sign) or 6299 feet (according to Wikipedia). Bottom line, MacDonald Pass is the highest elevation of the Run route - so it is literally all downhill from there.
For the second night in a row I went from finishing running, straight to the Roadrunner, straight to a shower, and straight to my bed to rest the ankle with Heidi bringing back pizza and Quiznos to keep me fueled.
Helmville to MacDonald Pass, MT 42.44 miles
Day 21 dawned and I needed to make a decision with the left ankle. Have Justin immobilize it again, use KT tape on the ankle, or use KT tape and an ankle brace I last used in the 2006 Western States 100 in which I finished in 29:24. I chose the KT tape and brace so Heidi and I watched the ankle support video and Heidi did a great job of taping my ankle. Once again I started the day quite slowly and a little painfully as the ankle/tendon warmed up. As hoped for it took less time than the day before to transition to a jog and then an outright slow run. I note that the pace wasn't hurt by the fact that the day was almost 100% downhill and there was a good easterly wind to push us. As I approached mile 24 I spotted the dreaded orange "road work ahead" signs. I figured that if Justin or Jennifer had a problem passing through the work zone I would have already heard about it, but one is not past a work zone until one is past the work zone. Thankfully there was no issue as I continued to run on the left shoulder through the nearly three mile work zone. I was quite relieved when I had passed through.
I didn't realize how much downhill running we had done today until finishing and noting that my quads were somewhat sore. The weather was good again, but the heat will get here soon I am sure. Tonight we all went out to eat at the Wood Family Grill in Townsend, MT and enjoyed some fine food. It was nice to not be stuck in bed.
My Aunt Margaret arrived and Justin's brother Adam left us so Heidi and Margaret and Crew Dog Daphne are doing an excellent job of crewing for the three of us now. We look forward to seeing Adam again in IN!!! Thanks Adam!!!
Just like on day 20 Justin and Jennifer were out of sight in seconds at the start. Maybe I will actually be able to see their backs for a couple miles tomorrow - we can hope!
MacDonald Pass to Winston, MT 41.97 miles
Monday, June 18, 2012
Great running weather today with complete overcast and some light rain in the morning and a fairly cool afternoon with easterly winds in the afternoon. Some sun. Unfortunately, I couldn't take advantage of the great running weather since my left foot posterior tibial tendon was inflamed and not happy. The tendon bothered me late Saturday some but was manageable until I made a misstep with a quarter mile to go to the finish point. Then this morning (Sunday) I tripped while running and made what I call an almost-fall; ie I didn't fall, but the only reason I didn't fall is because the flailing arms and rapidly moving legs worked in concert to somehow keep me upright. The car passing me by seemed to be quite amused by my comedic flailing arms show. Anyway, the left foot took the brunt of this misstep and quite simply I knew I needed to walk or risk further injury. Bottom line, I ended up walking from mile 6 to the finish today. Not fun, but I felt this was the correct action to take. Thankfully after Justin finished he drove back on the route and taped my foot for me so the foot was much better for the final 11 miles of the "run" today. Justin has retaped the foot for tomorrow and I am icing the tendon. We will think positive thoughts about Monday's running. I believe that I actually tripped on a nail nailed into the asphalt - stuff happens. I have new shoes and new running shoe inserts ready to go tomorrow to assist the posterior tibial tendon to do the job it is designed to do so I can run - or at least run/walk.
Justin and Jennifer had great days today - although Justin is fighting off hamstring issues.
Seeley Lake to Helmville, MT 38.95 miles
Saturday, June 16, 2012
Day 17 was the easiest day yet to follow the Run route as there was just one turn all day. The Big Sky state continued to provide fantastic views as there was very little cloud cover to obscure all the Rockies within view. Northeast of us a portion of the Rockies with complete snow coverage could be seen. The second half of day 16 we ran downriver paralleling the Clark Fork River. Day 17 we continued to enjoy river views as we ran upriver with the Flathead River to our left. The road - MT-200 - ran next to another train track and I was quite surprised when I noted the tracks were laid with somewhat of an S curve at one point. I didn't think that trains could turn like that - learn something new each day.
Day 18 started off fairly cool with great cloud cover. The day never got hot due to cloud cover most of the day and a nice wind. The route today was near zero trafficked gravel road over a ridge-line for a lack of a better word. Up the west side of the ridge to start the day and down the east side of the ridge to finish the day. Piece of cake - not really anything to write about right? In the remote section of the route today a total of four cars passed Jennifer and I who were running together. It turns out that we didn't choose wisely when we reached a fork in the road about mile 9 or so and we went the wrong way. Who the heck came up with this Run route anyway?! Car number one that passed us did so before we reached the infamous fork. I waved down car number two while on the wrong road and the driver told me we were indeed on the incorrect road and he told me how to get back to the correct road. The directions weren't picture perfect, but we made it back to the correct road just in time to flag down car three who confirmed we were now on the correct road and provided some much needed water. Saviors are everywhere. Adding 4.4 miles to the run today was not in the original plan, but it worked out in the end. I might have uttered a few Oh Bothers while on the incorrect roads, but I am positive(?) that I didn't utter any stronger words. For confirmation, please contact Jennifer. I note that once again the views from the road were grrrreeeaaattt and that Justin didn't make a wrong turn!
Arlee to Seeley Lake, MT, 36.27 miles
Friday, June 15, 2012
Thursday, June 14, 2012
I woke up today with a very tight right calf so it was tough to look forward to the start. Heidi applied KT tape to my calf per the applicable instruction video and I downed three Advil. It was a mid-40s low clouds cool start - not the best for tight muscles - so I walked at first to warm up and then slowly threw in some jogging. About three miles into the run I was running OK which greatly improved my spirit. Jennifer wasn't feeling 100% either today so I ended up catching her on an uphill nine miles into the day as the sun burned off the clouds and the temperature started going up. Heidi reported that Justin was about a half hour ahead of us at mile 12 so he was moving well. We ran together until near the halfway point at which I slowly moved ahead due to Jennifer fighting both quad issues and shin splints. Shortly before we split up I noted a street sign in St. Regis. ABBA Ln was on the sign which I believe was a private sign for a church since there doesn't appear to be a street in St. Regis called ABBA Ln. Since I am a big ABBA fan Jennifer took a picture of me at the sign - and of course all I could do was sing another smash ABBA hit to myself the rest of the day - this time it was Fernando (1976).
We are three for three now as Montana drivers have proven to be as considerate as Washington and Idaho drivers.
40.29 miles, Deborgia to Plains, MT
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Justin continues to run well as he fights off ankle swelling.
Nearly 99% of the 600 miles remaining to be run in Montana are road miles. Will the Montana drivers be as considerate as the Washington drivers? We shall see.
41.65 miles, Osburn, ID to Deborgia, MT
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
And the answer is no - I don't have too Much Time On My Hands
43.25 miles, Harrison to Osburn, ID
Monday, June 11, 2012
After a mile and a half on dirt and asphalt road we transitioned to a very nice gravel road. Just like that the scenery also changed as everywhere we looked there were acres and acres of wheat fields. It was a beautiful sight. Someone stated our views were similar to one of those spectacular Microsoft screen savers. The first twelve miles of this short day flew by with the continuous picture post card views and great weather (a little on the cold side and a nice tail wind). Justin was less than a mile ahead of Jennifer and myself as we transitioned back to the John Wayne Trail for 13 and a half of the remaining 21 miles for the day. Thankfully not all of the old trestles were removed as we crossed a large one just south of Rosalia which allowed for fine viewing of the surrounding area. All in all a good day which would have been better if there weren't so many rocks on this portion of the trail.
Run times reported previously.
Day 13 started with Karen leaving us to head back to Illinois. Besides being a great friend, Karen has been an amazing member of the Run Team. The Run is much better off than we would have been if Karen hadn't been here. GREAT THANKS Karen - we look forward to seeing you again in Illinois!
Two final miles on the John Wayne Trail (which included another trestle crossing - very nice) followed by six miles of rural gravel road through - you guessed it - more acres of wheat and two miles of asphalt road and we were in our second state - The Gem State - Idaho. Jennifer and I were running a similar pace and we arrived at the Idaho sign at the same time. Appropriate pictures were taken by Heidi. The high of passing into another state kept us running strongly for a few miles before the heat finally hit. Yes, after 12 days of cold and cool weather the Run finally found some warm weather. Today was day one for starting a stage in just a t-shirt.
Mile 22 found us turning onto the 72 mile paved Trail of the Coeur d' Alenes which is one of the most outstanding rail trails in the country. One of the highlights of the trail is the 1921 bridge that passes over Coeur d' Alenes Lake which we ran over at mile 31 today. I will harken back to the 1980s and simply state, "Awesome, Dude."
Fairbanks, WA to Harrison, ID 37.63 miles:
Sunday, June 10, 2012
All runners in good spirits on this cool windy morning! Many thanks to Corky and Marty for staying to help crew until Justin's brother, Adam, could join us last night!
The day starts with all three runners in good spirits and run/jogging well. Jen's feeling well as is Justin....Mike still fighting the beginnings of a cold...not much coverage today as we're in the middle of "no man's land".
Enjoyed a short stop to say hello and a huge thank you to Joan Harder yesterday...she and her husband, Jack, we're kind enough to allow the runner to run through their property due to a tressle being removed from the JWPT...
Thanks also to Lois and Randy Gust for helping jerryrig Justin's van to dislodge Jen's suitcase:)
Looks like it's going to be a sunny day for the crew and runners:).
Saturday, June 9, 2012
44.74 miles - Vantage to near Warden, WA
The day 10 start was once again cool. Seven miles into the day we entered the small town of Warden followed by a Saint Bernard who was with the three of us for three miles. Did the dog make it bakc home? Answer - Unknown. Not surprisingly I thought of my cousin Don who attended Warden High many moons ago. I didn't miss the post office which I would call a typically brick post office built in the 1960s. On the eastern edge of Warden we rejoined the John Wayne Pioneer Trail. We were once again rewarded with great vistas as we continued our way east. Just west of the town of Lind we transitioned back to road to bypass a section of the rail trail with at least five original railroad trestles removed. I enjoyed running through Lind as the small town was being besieged with visitors to the combine derby. Janice took some pictures of me for The Ritzville Adams County Journal to go along with a story that Katelin Davidson was writing about the Run. It was nice to see folks enjoying themselves as they waited for the festivities to start later that night. On the east side of Lind we returned to the trail for another nine miles before calling it a day. For the record, hand warmers were once again used, and we were rained on for the ninth out of ten days.
41.45 miles - Warden to Ralston, WA
The cold temps continued on day 11 - and it rained on us - and we used hand warmers - but overall the weather was very nice as the sky was gray, and for the most part the drizzle was light enough to not really be a bother. Bottom line, it was a super run through Washington scablands with incredible vistas from a rail trail. The route was entirely on the John Wayne Trail today except for five miles run through private property. Great thanks to Jake and Joan Harder who allowed us to pass through their property so that we could easily bypass the removed Cow Creek Trestle and save eight plus miles of running on the trip across the country. Jennifer, Justin, and I were together as we ran into Jake and JC working on a bridge as we ran through which allowed us to enjoy a few minutes of good conversation. Heidi and Karen enjoyed a good visit with Joan and took in the super views of the Harder property and the removed Cow Creek Trestle while we ran. Jennifer's quad was responding to the rigors of the crossing much better today!!! I expect that it won't take long before Justin (who is fighting off some swelling issues) and Jennifer leave me in the dust again just minutes after each day's start.
37.84 miles - Ralston to Ewan, WA
Day 11 is off to a good start with all 3 runners walking for a bit to warm the muscles. Start temp is 40 something, but feels like 30 something! 30% chance of rain....well...let's make that 100% chance of sprinkles are in store. Who would have thought we'd be shaking handwarmers to "hand off" to the group as they enter the 3 mile mark??? Good thing the crew packed all those shorts! Lois and Randy live near the start today and came down to wish the runners good luck as they start the day. Lois assured us this is not the normal weather for this time of year in this area of WA :).... indicating that this is the "dry spot". hmmmm.... guess we'll be wishing for this kind of weather in the near future;). Take the blessings where you can get them;)
Friday, June 8, 2012
Cool weather turned to rain. Jen's quad muscle was still bothering her so Mike walked the route with her.
Needless to say the sun popping out toward the end was welcome. The rainbow was beautiful.... but the storm that followed was daunting!
The 44.74 mile day ended with all soaked, but pizza putting them in a good state of mind.
Justin's Time: 8:30.27
Jen and Mike in at 14:39.23
Heidi updated for day nine as Mike just wanted sleep. More tomorrow....well guess that would be today....later tonight;)
Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Today was once again filled with high winds that just about knocked us down at times, but the day slowly warmed. Sunglasses were even called for late in the day. Yes, in a matter of mere moments it seems our group transitioned from the wet dark forest to the dry open high desert - from hand warmers to sunblock - from sea to shining sea (ok - that last part will take 80 days). I enjoy high desert scenery, but I know it means that the heat is coming.
A shout of THANKS to my sister Kari who provided some Kinesiology Tape to me to take on the Run. I believe Jennifer benefited from using the tape today, and I might use some of the tape on my left hip as the hip is just not one hundred percent.
Once again, it is the crew that deserves the credit for getting the runners through the day - THANKS!
Scorekeeper reports the day eight times for the 30.40 miles from Ellensburg to Vantage, WA:
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
23 miles on the John Wayne Pioneer Trail (yes, the trail was named after the famous actor) today and 16 miles on lightly traveled road. Once again I was running well - although it seemed to take a bit more effort to run just a tiny bit slower than previous days. One possible reason for this is the John Wayne Trail surface. It is a great trail with a fine running surface, but I believe running the stone and gravel ballast surface of the trail is just not as efficient as running a paved road. For the first time in the run my right Achilles tightened up a bit, but it is fine as I write this. As has been the case in five of the previous six days, Justin and Jennifer were out of sight in just a couple miles after the start, but I caught up to Jennifer this afternoon when she was forced to a walk due to a muscle issue. I walked with Jennifer for a number of miles this afternoon and we finished the run together.
Scorekeeper reports the day seven times for the 39.84 miles:
Monday, June 4, 2012
41 miles today - about 8 miles on road and 33 miles on trail - mostly on the John Wayne Pioneer Trail - also called the Iron Horse Trail and the Old Milwaukee Road. We were treated to fantastic views - the best of the run so far - as we passed Keechelus and Easton Lakes and enjoyed the scenery of the western Cascade mountains - at least when the clouds lifted. Five days out of six now we have experienced rain, but no injury issues to report.
Jennifer slowed down enough so that we could run together today. The miles passed quickly as we talked about running, friends, and family. We both got a little colder than we would have liked at several times in heavier rain periods. Hand warmers helped to fight off the cold - great thanks to the hand warmer inventor(s)!!!
Justin and Katie celebrate their first anniversary today - Happy Anniversary! Katie is returning to work, but we look forward to seeing her again in Des Moines.
I appreciate all the positive encouragement and thoughts sent our way from my family and friends/runners. Be safe out there!
Scorekeeper reports the following run times for the 41.00 mile day six:
For more pictures, please join the Facebook Group:
Run Across America on Trail
It seems to be the best way to upload current pictures at the moment until the iPad and Heidi make nice again :)
Sunday, June 3, 2012
Lots of turns today due to city streets and the use of portions of six different trails today - Interurban Trail, Rainier Trail, Issaquah-Preston Trail, Preston-Snoqualmie Trail, Snoqualmie Ridge Trail, and the Snoqualmie Valley Trail. I really enjoyed the trails today as we one again ran through some lush green areas. Justin saw a bear cross the trail about 50 yards ahead of him while running the Preston-Snoqualmie Trail!!! WOW! Primarily due to a wrong turn I was actually able to catch and run with Jennifer for 5 or 6 miles today. I note those miles passed quickly as we had our first chance to talk about past races we have run and to discuss other run related topics.
Food has been important to Justin, Jennifer, and myself as we have to consume enough calories to fuel the body each day. On Friday and Saturday the three of us and crew went to Harmon's Hub in Tacoma for dinner. We went two nights in a row because the food was absolutely superb!!! I had Italian Sausage pizza - a small one on Friday - but I went for the large on Saturday to keep me fueled. Riley was our server both nights and we received first class service for our dinners. Thanks Riley. Joining us for dinner Saturday night was Jim and Bernadette Miller. Jim and I served together at the Navy Personnel Command in Millington, TN and it was fantastic to see Jim and Bernadette for dinner two weekends in a row as we also had a great night the previous Saturday before the Run started. Tonight Karen and I ate dinner at Scott's Dairy Freeze in North Bend which has been in business since 1951. Later Jennifer, Karen, and I went back for ice cream. I already knew that the Dairy Freeze was a fantastic place since I stopped there twice while preparing for the Run, and I was not disappointed once again as I had a super Philly Cheesesteak and fries for dinner tonight which I followed later with a hot fudge sundae with whoppers as an additional topping. Ken - who had made my Cheesesteak earlier - struck up a conversation with the three of us as we waited for our sundaes to be made. It was enjoyable to talk to Ken about the Run. Later Ken came out into the dining room and introduced himself as the Mayor of North Bend. No wonder North bend is a great place. Seriously, I note that Karen really likes this town as the view of Mount Si is exceptional. North Bend - from what I have seen - is indeed a nice place. The Mayor's business card says, "North Bend; easy to reach, hard to leave." No disagreement from me!
Scorekeeper reports the following day five times for 39.23 miles:
Saturday, June 2, 2012
Fast forward to day four of the Run Across America on Trail. The weather was perfect at the start - 54 degrees, overcast, no precipitation. After three good days of running the legs felt a little "heavier" this morning - and the left hip (my biggest injury concern due to previous left hip issues) wasn't 100%. Not surprisingly it took more effort to get the legs to turnover at the start, but turnover they did as I covered the first four miles of the day at exactly 11 minutes per mile. I was very happy when I looked at my watch and noted that time. However, the good times didn't last long as a rain commenced and I got just a bit colder than I would have liked. The hip didn't like that at all and I was forced to a limp by mile 6. I didn't panic. I met up with Heidi and Karen (and Daphne - our dog) at mile 7 and changed from my RaceReady split cut running shorts to my RaceReady compression shorts that I wear when biking. I did this since my hip has proven to prefer the slight compression of the compression shorts. I took some Advil and applied some Qi Extra Strength Recovery Cream. I left the Roadrunner and executed Operation Fast Walk, ie. walk quickly which I am able to do. For you number folks out there I walked mile 9 in 14:48. The hip kept feeling better and better and at mile 10 and a half I started to punctuate the walking with a little slow jogging. As the miles went on I slowly increased the running to walking ratio so much so that the I ran the last four miles of the day at 11:10 pace. I could have definitely done without the forced limping and walking today, but with the help of Heidi and Karen I was able to resolve my issue and continue the needed relentless forward motion. All in all it really was an enjoyable day of running - but days of 50 and 60 degree temperatures won't last long.
National Trails Day is the first Saturday of June each year. There were many trail event held throughout the country today at state and national parks. We did our part by running 12 of the 14 paved King County Interurban Trail miles on the 2012 National Trails Day.
Scorekeeper reports the day four run times below for the 38.06 miles:
Friday, June 1, 2012
The "on Trail" part of the run got off to a good start with the inclusion of the 14 mile paved Yelm-Tenino Trail - a rail trail. We crossed our first rail trestle over Johnson Creek(?) shortly after enjoying some views of Lake McIntosh. It was fantastic to be on the trail surrounded by a sea of green and to be off the road away from the cars. Possibly the most enjoyable part of the trail was a section about a mile and a half north of Tenino - the southern end of the trail. After the trail crosses WA-507 from the east to the west, the trail gradually ascends the side of a hill allowing for a super view of the valley below and the foothills across the valley.
The day didn't start out with rain, but the heaviest rain of the three days hit the runners this afternoon quickly soaking us. The least inviting thing about the rain was the spray sent our way by all the passing cars on the highway we ran for the last 11 miles of the day. No complaints - as it is a virtual guarantee that more spray will be sent our way by numerous cars in the upcoming days.
For the music folks out there, Waterloo played in my head all day long. Maybe I will hear a classic rock song on the way to the start on Saturday?!
Scorekeeper reports the day three finish times for the 35.82 miles: