Sunday, December 8, 2013

B-CS Marathon Event Report

Wow to all of the responses!

I just made it home a little while ago – a little after 12 noon -- after stopping to get a bite to eat.

I made the Facebook post earlier because I’m fortunate enough to have a lot of people in my life who enjoying seeing the things that I get a chance to do or they are or have been a part of similar activities in the past.

It is an honor to have that respect from others.

I shared my experience today – not to gain sympathy (because I probably self-inflicted a little of it) – but because there might be somebody wandering through via a mutual friend and might be afraid to ask – in a similar situation – what to do or to know that it is OK to shut it down when they know that they should.

I had a chance today to continue to learn a lot more about my limits and my body.

I don’t classically train, because a specific time (i.e. BQ, break 4 hours, etc.) or distance isn’t that important to me.

Rather I just enjoy trying to be in well enough shape to jump in to something whenever I want to.  (This I would say, ah, don’t do what I do!  And most don’t anyways.)

Back to limits, wind chill under 40 for more than 13 miles is not a win for me.

At the Ocean Drive Marathon in New Jersey, I jumped into an ambulance at around mile 23 for six minutes just to warm-up because the conditions never improved from a 41-42 degrees race start temperature.

And in Raleigh early last month, I started walking after mile 20, but the wind picked up with temperatures in the mid-forties.

The body temperature starts to drop when you begin to slow down and by mile 25, I started to feel the onset of hypothermia.  (In fact, mile 25 was like ~18 minutes because I was really feeling beleaguered.)

Therefore, I knew with four layers today soaked in perspiration - and not rain or drizzle - that it was going to be like me trying to run in a cold freezer before too long.

Some other things that didn’t help me today:

1.) I helped setup the  Texas10 Conroe start and finish area Friday afternoon for about 4.5 hours.  On my feet all of it.

2.) I then was on my feet for six (6) hours Saturday announcing - and working - the race.

3.) I then drove over to College Station to pick my packet up and drove home.

4.) And although I got a pretty good night’s sleep after visiting with friends earlier in the evening, I didn’t go through my normal regimen of taking extra strength Tylenol pre-race (but in the case below, it might have just delayed the onset of what I experienced to later in the race).

Otherwise, nutrition and hydration was good.  I was running well.

Here were my splits:

Mile 1 – 10:20.42
Mile 2 – 10:54.35
Mile 3 – 10:19.87
Mile 4 – 10:46.54
Mile 5 – 10:16.39
Mile 6 – 11:25.27
Mile 7 – 10:17.85
Mile 8 – 11:02.55
Mile 9 – 11:16.25
Mile 10 – 10:15.06
Mile 11 – 11:16.81
Mile 12 – 11:23.34
Mile 13 – 12:50.14

And at this point, my lower back and my hip flexors were hurting, which would have forced me to walk most of the back half.  Being soaked through four layers (two long-sleeved technical shirts, one short-sleeved one on top and then a windbreaker, in case it rained) would have caused me to work toward hypothermia.

I was in the medical tent last year for dehydration and, as a result, severe cramping.  I didn’t want a repeat for the opposite.  Even if they gave out a separate medal for it!  :-)

And, finally, I've accomplished so much more than I ever set out to do in the beginning -- which was lose some weight and run one marathon.

Beyond that, everything has been gravy.  And the attempt for marathon #52 will come on New Year's Eve in Allen, Texas, which will be a new Texas city of town too.

Thanks for commenting earlier and listening.  I appreciate your friendship and your support.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

2013 Top Turkey Trots in Texas

Texas Turkey Trots with over 1,000 Cumulative TIMED Finishers

6,449 - Capital One Bank Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot 8M/5K
4,527 - ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot 5M, Austin
4,285 - TXU Energy Houston Turkey Trot 10K/5K
3,780 - GE Run Thru The Woods 5M/3M/1M, The Woodlands
3,708 - Katy YMCA Turkey Dash 10K/5K
2,709 - Moritz Kia Fort Worth YMCA Turkey Trot 10K/5K
1,366 - Triangle Therapeutics Turkey Trot 10K/5K/1K, Beaumont
1,219 - Comal Cops for Kids Gruene Turkey Trot 5K

Complete list to-date of all Turkey Trot races in Texas (totals are TIMED finishers only):

4,527 - ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot 5M, Austin (Cadence Sports)
3,602 - Capital One Bank Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot 8M (Run Far)
2,847 - Capital One Bank Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot 5K (Run Far)
2,810 - Katy YMCA Turkey Dash 5K (Run Far)
2,538 - TXU Energy Houston Turkey Trot 10K (Run Far)
2,488 - Forest Park Medical Center North Texas Turkey Trot 5K, Frisco (Racing Systems)
2,014 - GE Run Thru The Woods 5M, The Woodlands (Run Wild)
1,747 - TXU Energy Houston Turkey Trot 5K (Run Far)
1,634 - Moritz Kia Fort Worth YMCA Turkey Trot 5K (Run Far)
1,328 - GE Run Thru The Woods 3M, The Woodlands (Run Wild)

1,281 - 10th annual Abilene Runner's Club Turkey Trot 5K (Abilene Runner's Club)
1,219 - Comal Cops for Kids Gruene Turkey Trot 5K (Athlete Guild)
1,075 - Moritz Kia Fort Worth YMCA Turkey Trot 10K (Run Far)
930 - Triangle Therapeutics Turkey Trot 5K, Beaumont (Cajun Timing)
906 - 4th annual Arlington Turkey Trot 5K (RunTIME Racing Services)
898 - Katy YMCA Turkey Dash 10K (Run Far)
825 - YMCA of El Paso Turkey Trot 5K (Chasing 3 Race Productions)
811 - Sugar Land Turkey Trot 5M (Run Wild)
769 - Brazos Running Company Turkey Trot 5K, College Station (All Sports Timing)
747 - Lone Star Running Club Turkey Trot 5K, Amarillo (Lone Star Running Club)

680 - Carlston Law Firm's Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot 5K, Temple (Pro-Fit Event Services)
650 - Forest Park Medical Center North Texas Turkey Trot 10K, Frisco (Racing Systems)
599 - Double Oak Turkey Trot 5K (Racing Systems)
516 - Bay Area Turkey Day 5K (Campbell Timing Systems)
516 - Iron Turkey 5K, El Paso (Race Adventures Unlimited)
512 - Sachse Turkey Trot 3M (Racing Systems)
502 - West Texas Running Club Turkey Trot 2M, Lubbock
438 - GE Run Thru The Woods 1M, The Woodlands (Run Wild)
409 - 32nd annual Turkey Chase 4M, Corpus Christi (IAAP)
340 - Triangle Therapeutics Turkey Trot 10K, Beaumont (Cajun Timing)

332 - Georgetown Turkey Trot 5M (Run Far)
323 - Bay Area Turkey Day 10K (Campbell Timing Systems)
259 - West Texas Running Club Turkey Trot 12K, Lubbock
247 - Paris Fitness Turkey Trot 5K (No Limits Timing)
207 - Schertz Turkey Trot 5K (Athlete Guild)
205 - Midland County Greater Works Turkey Troy 5K, Midland (Texas Go Time)
197 - Junior Hands Across South Texas 6th Annual Thanksgiving 10K, Laredo (IAAP)
150 - Wally Watkins Turkey Trot 5K, Wylie (Delta View Timing)
124 - 4th annual Pilgrim's Turkey Trot 5K, Nacogdoches
119 - Turkey Trot at Bridgeland 10K, Cypress, 11/23 (Athlete Guild)

116 - 8th annual Central Texas Turkey Trot 5K, Waco, 11/23 (Waco Striders)
112 - Turkey Trot at Bridgeland 5K, Cypress, 11/23 (Athlete Guild)
96 - Triangle Therapeutics Turkey Trot Kids 1K, Beaumont (Cajun Timing)
93 - Tanger Outlet Turkey Trot 4M, San Marcos (All Sports Timing)
77 - Horseshoe Bay Resort Turkey Trot 5K (Run Far)
69 - Junior Hands Across South Texas 6th Annual Thanksgiving 5K, Laredo (IAAP)
68 - Midland County Greater Works Turkey Troy 10K, Midland (Texas Go Time)
62 - Sachse Turkey Trot 1M (Racing Systems)
60 - Brownwood Turkey Trot 5K (Race Day Events Services)
46 - Paris Fitness Turkey Trot 2M Prediction Run (No Limits Timing)

38 - Wally Watkins Turkey Trot 1M, Wylie (Delta View Timing)
35 - Tanger Outlet Turkey Trot 10M, San Marcos (All Sports Timing)
30 - Horseshoe Bay Resort Turkey Trot 10K (Run Far)
14 - Paris Fitness Turkey Trot Kids 1M (No Limits Timing)

Thursday, November 14, 2013

178 Complete Space City 10-Miler and Houston Half

- A -
Adam Mullins, 38
Alberto Medellin, 38
Alfonso Torres, 55
Alice Keelin, 64
Andrea Rinosa, 42
Andrew Sharenson, 42
Andrew Young, 29
Anh Hunter, 39
Anna Rodriguez, 54
Anne Gill, 34
Anngela Caron, 32
April Zimmerman, 33
Art Sherry, 30
Audrey Calkins, 28
Avel Esmeralda, 27

- B -
Barbara Rogers, 65
Barry Rabon, 57
Bradley Eaves, 42
Brandon Weaver, 30
Brendan Rodgers, 59
Bruce Boyd, 57

- C -
Candace Dartez, 47
Cassandra Hinshaw, 18
Chad Barton, 37
Chris Anton, 21
Chris Gould, 37
Claudio Rodriguez, 34
Corrina Jimenez, 41
Crystal Coffman, 32

- D -
Dana Hill, 40
Darrell Sterns, 62
David Blake, 48
David Hixon, 34
David Martin, 47
David Nemoto, 50
David Raines, 52
David Stockton, 60
Deepa Patel, 25
Don Padilla, 64
Donna Sterns, 60
Dusty Cook, 59

- E -
Edward Fry, 58
Elijio Serrano, 55
Elizabeth Ahrens, 67
Emile Hanna, 37
Erika Alvarez, 38
Erin Phillips, 29

- F -
Francisco Balbuewa, 60
Francisco Gonzalez, 40
Fred Mathis, 53
Fred Queen, 64
Fred Ward, 69

- G -
Garrett Rychlik, 46
Garrett Velarde, 23
Gloria Mahoney, 63
Gracie Trejo, 47

- H -
Harve Truskett, 41
Heather McKeon, 35
Hector Marin, 41
Howang Lee, 39

- I -
Ian Whittlesey, 17
Ike Gibbs, 38

- J -
Jack Lippincott, 67
Jack Swartz, 49
Jack Torregrossa, 57
Jackie Shepherd, 34
Jacob Tonge, 51
Jacques Smuts, 48
Jamal Jamalyaria, 61
Jennifer Scott Williams, 35
Jennifer Wells, 26
Jeremy Saums, 34
Jerry McDonald, 48
John Fredrickson, 75
John Kelly Kincl, 48
John Paul Garcia, 43
Johnny Lopez, 53
Jonathan Miller, 51
Jose Amador, 55
Jose Cisneros, 42
June Harris, 57

- K -
Kaleigh Camp, 26
Kanishka Desilva, 49
Karen Lancer, 62
Katelyn Schwing, 28
Katherine Rodriguez, 39
Kathryn Vidal, 62
Keith Beeman, 38
Keith Willhelm, 59
Kelli Vance, 30
Kellie Moeller, 52
Kelly Ayers, 32
Kelly Holland, 47
Kerry Lee, 38
Kevin Bell, 44
Kevin Lang, 54
Kim Harrison, 24
Kim Tran, 47
Kimberly Wilson, 49
Kristin Clermont, 35
Kristin Echerd, 28
Kyle Evans, 32

- L -
Lara Allen, 45
Laura Greivenkamp, 53
Laura Kayes, 22
Lauren O'Neal, 25
Lee Echerd, 28
Leo Henny, 62
Linda Neely-Shelmire, 49
Lisa Deleon, 53
Lisa Garces, 33
Lisa Hardcastle, 52
Lisa McDonald, 33
Lisa Sanchez, 38
Lisa Thompson, 45
Liz Chavez, 39
Lori Callaway, 51
Loris Fusi Goldberg, 44
Lucia Gentry, 52
Luis Armenteros, 41

- M -
Margaret Montgomery, 72
Marian Pruet, 55
Marjorie Nicol, 48
Mark Chavez, 29
Mark Conran, 54
Melissa Hargrave, 32
Micah Lipperd, 36
Michael Heeney, 49
Michelle Bitterly, 47
Mike Purvey, 40

- N -
Nancy Holcomb, 67
Nikki Herrin, 40
Nilda Luna, 35
Nora Wilson, 57
Norma Evans, 43

- P -
Pablo Perez, 43
Pam Rodriguez, 32
Paul Danilewicz, 50
Penny Garcia, 46
Pete Cao, 29
Peter Griffiths, 43
Peter Lawrence, 41
Priscilla Fierro, 44

- R -
Rashmi Saikia, 39
Ric Hartung, 57
Rich Fredrich, 56
Rich Wickboldt, 38
Richard Pett, 28
Rick Liang, 28
Robert Walters, 53
Roberto Moratilla, 35
Robin McConaughey, 52
Rogelio Pena, 40
Ronald Arrington, 48
Ronda Perguson, 49
Ruth Ann Luna, 37
Ruth Mescall, 58
Ruth Ruffino, 62
Ryan Whitlock, 37

- S -
Samantha Cayton, 48
Sandra Simmons, 53
Scott Bounds, 61
Selina Alaniz, 30
Shelly Higgins, 40
Sifa Mvoi, 47
Skip Teel, 54
Stacey McDowell, 36
Steve Court, 50
Steve Davis, 56
Steve Fanos, 58
Steve Schroeder, 47
Steven Stinemetz, 55
Suzy Seeley, 54

- T -
Taushah Crawford, 30
Theresa Hendrikse, 58
Thomas Piotrowski, 70
Tim Herrin, 43
Tom Camp, 59
Tom King, 44
Tova Lipperd, 29
Travis Shirley, 42

- V -
Vaughn Gibbs, 39
Veronica Hoge, 43
Vicki Jones, 62
Victor Aguirre, 61

- W -
William Crochet, 41

- X -
Xochil Hinshaw, 45

- Z -
Zane Penwell, 54

Texas' 10-Mile Races (2012-2013)

Below is a list of all of the known 10-mile road and trail races in Texas between July 1, 2012 and November 1, 2013:

4,834 - Austin 10/20 (1,648m / 3,186w), April 14, 2013, Austin
2,170 - Memorial Hermann Ten For Texas (884m / 1,286w), October 12, 2003, The Woodlands
1,964 - Memorial Hermann Ten For Texas (782m / 1,182w), October 13, 2012, The Woodlands
1,931 - Run For The Water (878m / 1,053w), October 28, 2012, Austin
1,834 - Run For The Water (866m / 968w), October 27, 2013, Austin

   734 - USA Space City 10-Miler (376m / 358w), October 14, 2012, Houston (On The Run)
   628 - Space City 10-Miler (301m / 327w), October 13, 2013, Houston (On The Run)
   622 - The Great Taco Run (286m / 336w), September 30, 2012, Dallas (Luke's Locker)
   443 - Texas10 Katy (152m / 291w), September 29, 2013, Katy (Texas 10 Series)
   361 - White Rock & Roll (171m / 190w), April 27, 2013, Dallas (Dallas Running Club)

   244 - BCS 5 and Dime (72m / 172w), November 2, 2013 (BCS Race Series)
   235 - Prickly Pear 10-Mile Trail Run (118m / 117w), March 9, 2013, San Antonio (SA Road Runners)
   221 - Purgatory Trail Run (104m / 116w), February 23, 2013, San Marcos (Core Running Company)
   216 - Texas10 Conroe (86m / 130w), November 3, 2012, Conroe (Texas 10 Series)
   188 - Battle of Mac Park 16K (99m / 89w), August 3, 2013, San Antonio (Scally Wompus)

   179 - Gusto Push 10-Miler (57m / 122w), October 27, 2013, San Antonio (Carrera Races)
   154 - Disco 10-Miler (49m / 105w), October 14, 2012, Gainesville (Dallas Athletes Racing)
   135 - Texas10 Huntsville (44m / 91w), April 7, 2013, Huntsville (Texas 10 Series)
   125 - Mission 10-Miler (73m / 52w), December 15, 2012, San Antonio (San Antonio Road Runners)
     94 - Piney Woods Trail Fest 10-Miler (46m / 48w), February 9, 2013, Houston (Run In Texas)

     88 - Tropical 10-Miler (51m / 37w), December 16, 2012, Fort Worth (Fort Worth Runners Club)
     83 - Lighthouse Hill Ranch Trail Run (49m / 34w), September 29, 2012, Johnson City (Run In Texas)
     74 - Lighthouse Hill Ranch Trail Run (35m / 39w), September 21, 2013, Johnson City (Run In Texas)
     58 - Depot Days 10-Miler (26m / 32w), October 13, 2013, Gainesville (Dallas Athletes Racing)
     46 - San Marcos Manufacturers' Association Gear Up 10-Miler (24m / 22w), February 10, 2013, San Marcos (San Marcos Runners Club)

     34 - Toughest 'N Texas Trail Run (19m / 15w), March 16, 2013, Waco (RunnerOne; Tim Neckar)

The metric is the number of official timed finishers, not registrants.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Texas' Top Winning Half Marathon Times in 2013

With less than two (2) months remaining in 2013, Texas' running season will be soon coming to a close.

Listed below are the top winning half marathon times in Texas this year.  Those races where the combined winner's times totaled 2:40 or less were included.  Also any winning time that was underneath the worst winning male and female times from those races were also added to the list.

We'll have to see what transpires this Sunday at the Rock 'N' Roll Half Marathon in San Antonio and at the B-CS and MetroPCS Dallas Half Marathons the second Sunday in December.


1:01:54 - Feyisa Lilesa, 22, Ethiopia - Aramco Houston Half Marathon
1:04:03 - Shadrack Kiyai, 29, San Antonio - St. Luke's The Woodlands Half Marathon
1:05:20 - Barnabas Kirui, 27, Dallas - Dallas Running Club Half Marathon
1:05:56 - Sammy Kiplagat, 39, San Antonio - Rock 'N' Roll Dallas Half Marathon
1:06:05 - Sammy Kiplagat, 39, San Antonio - 3M Half Marathon (Austin)
1:06:46 - Lee Troop, 39, Boulder, CO - Livestrong Austin Half Marathon
1:07:28 - Sammy Kiplagat, 39, San Antonio - Memorial Hermann Half Marathon (Sugar Land)
1:09:49 - Jared McNeil, 25, Keller - Cowtown Half Marathon
1:10:07 - Jose Munoz, 28, San Antonio - Alamo City Run Festival Half Marathon
1:10:23 - Stewart Horwell, 29 - Houston Half Marathon
1:10:50 - Richard Powell, 24, San Marcos - Armadillo Dash Half Marathon
1:10:53 - Erik Burciaga, San Antonio - Harbor Half Marathon (Corpus Christi)
1:11:22 - Wesley Ruttoh, 24 - Longview Half Marathon
1:12:08 - Rio Reina, 25, Austin - Bearathon Half Marathon (Waco)
1:13:20 - Hector Ganadera - Fiesta Half Marathon (Edinburg)
1:14:09 - Phillip Keller, 32, Albuquerque, NM - Tropicana Homes El Paso Half Marathon
1:16:52 - Ryan Smith - Carrabba's Classic Half Marathon (San Antonio)
1:17:12 - Ryan Kelly, 23, Bridge City - Pleasure Island Bridge Half Marathon (Port Arthur)
1:17:51 - Leonardo Frayre, 34, Dallas - Allstate Life Insurance 13.1 Half Marathon (Dallas)
1:18:09 - Nicklas Huff, 20, Tyler - Run The Line Half Marathon (Texarkana)


1:09:53 - Mamitu Daska, 29, Ethiopia - Aramco Houston Half Marathon
1:13:17 - Etaferahu Wodaj Temesgen, 23, Dallas - St. Luke's The Woodlands Half Marathon
1:15:25 - Melissa Johnson-White, 31, Lake Orion, MI - Livestrong Austin Half Marathon
1:16:18 - Kelly Williamson, 35, Austin - 3M Half Marathon (Austin)
1:16:25 - Rachel Booth, 32, Austin - Memorial Hermann Half Marathon (Sugar Land)
1:18:14 - Emily Daum, 26, San Antonio - Rock 'N' Roll Dallas Half Marathon
1:18:46 - Florence Mose, 21, Grand Prairie - Dallas Running Club Half Marathon
1:19:48 - Dawn Grunnagle, 35, Dallas - Allstate Life Insurance 13.1 Half Marathon (Dallas)
1:21:25 - Monika Korra, 31, Dallas - Cowtown Half Marathon
1:23:26 - Anita Quirino - Helotes Run Festival Half Marathon
1:23:59 - Amber Brunmeier, 24 - Houston Half Marathon
1:24:58 - Leah Thorvilson, 34, Little Rock - Run The Line Half Marathon (Texarkana)
1:25:02 - Dorota Gruca, 42, Las Cruces, NM - Tropicana Homes El Paso Half Marathon
1:25:18 - Hellen Rotich, 33, Manor - Bearathon Half Marathon (Waco)
1:26:03 - Stephanie Bonk, 23, Pittsburgh, PA - Pleasure Island Bridge Half Marathon (Port Arthur)
1:26:13 - Lisa Welsh, 34, Cibolo - Alamo City Run Festival Half Marathon
1:27:52 - Ina Ables - Bloodgusher Half Marathon (Midland)
1:29:08 - Liza Hunter Galvan, San Antonio - San Antonio Roadrunners Endurathon Half Marathon
1:30:48 - Meredith Gardner, 28, Austin - Armadillo Dash Half Marathon

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Cape Cod Marathon Race Report

Where do I start?  It always seems that I have a lot to process after running a marathon and Sunday's Cape Cod Marathon in Falmouth, Massachusetts was no different.

I was registered for last year's race.  However, with Superstorm Sandy in the Atlantic about to make landfall, I opted not to get stuck in Boston for three to four days and ate the entry once I learned that I could change my flight on United for in the future without penalty.

(They actually ran the race last year before the storm blew in.)

My marathoning, for those that know me, isn't as serious as it is to many.  Once I accomplished my first one nine years ago (this past weekend), all bets were off, so to speak.

I've learned a lot about myself over the years.

When you (I'm speaking to whoever is reading) run a race of any distance, I hope you enjoy it and do well (however, you define "well").  That's it.  I'll ask you, "Did you have fun?"  And if you tell me, "Yes," then I'll say, "Fantastic.  Congratulations."

And then it is time for me to move on.

As well as it is for me once I finish a race, I'll move on and won't discuss it unless I'm asked about it -- or something that I learned from it that may help another person if it comes up in conversation.

I get more enjoyment out of maintaining regular workouts and then going out and running a marathon than I do following a rigid schedule.  I've done both with similar results.

When I've trained the right way, I've posted my third and fourth best times ever.

My best time ever?  It was the third marathon in three weeks.  Two weeks after that, I recorded my eighth best time (out of 50, to date).

I digress.  I had done half marathons in July (Erie, Pa.), August (Parkersburg, W.Va.) and September (Mansfield, Tx.), but missed the one two weeks ago in Charlottesville, Va. while visiting Waverly at Liberty University.

However, I had been trying to get back to the track on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings to find out where my steady marathon pace was at.  Yes, again, non-traditional; however, it works for me.

In the middle of the week, I had checked on the temperature, which was to my liking (cold), but it also had some rain in the forecast.  This week, I came prepared with every possible combination to race in.

I also did something that I normally never do and that’s to look at the course profile.  And I’ve done some doozy of some races at altitude such as Bozeman (MT), Boise (ID) and Park City (UT).

Here were some of the reviews posted at comments on one version of a course map:

+  Very scenic, very hilly, very windy last 4 miles, very challenging, and a whole lot of fun & satisfaction.
+  I recommend it if you LOVE hills.
+  Hills are deceptively tough. Lots of up and down.
+  Those hills don't feel like much to skilled runners or those who train in real hills, but for those of us who are flat-land-recreational-runner-types... it's hard.
+  Very scenic but challenging course, particularly the second half.
+  Miles 15 to 23 beat you up pretty good.

So you get the idea.  They all basically said to go easy at the start because you’ll need it at the back end.  And they were right!

Since I went to an NCAA Division III college football game between Amherst and Tufts early Saturday afternoon, I opted to pick up my packet before the race on Sunday morning.

I stayed in Raynham, about 45 minutes to the north-northwest, to save $30-$40 per night in hotel expense since I was flying out on Monday morning.

With an 8:30 a.m. start, I didn’t have to get up at the crack of dawn.  And even though I got off a wrong exit and lost about 10 minutes on a turnaround on the freeway, I still made it to Falmouth a little after 7:30 a.m.

Picking your packet up was easy and I was given a coupon for a shirt.  They actually printed your screen on your shirt while you waited with a hot press.  You could – for a price, I assume – get your name among a list of all others in your alphabetical grouping on the back of the long-sleeved t-shirt.  (I bypassed this option.)

I had elected to wear the shorts I had purchased in Boerne the weekend before – as they were a little loose-fitting -- with a long-sleeveNike technical top that I could tuck in underneath to avoid chafing around my mid-section.

I checked the weather on my phone and saw that the rain we had experienced earlier in the morning would subside within an hour and that the temperature wasn’t going to get any higher than 56.

I first opted to put a short sleeve technical shirt (my blue Lunar Rendezvous Run one) over top, but as I walked to the starting line – through a baseball field near the school where everyone parked – I felt like I should put the long sleeved Brooks technical shirt on instead.  (And later, as the winds picked up, it would pay off even as the sun made it a bit warmer towards the end of the race.)

I started near the back of the approximately 850 starters and looked to get into a rhythm.

“The first 10.5 miles are relatively flat, with the exception of one short hill at 3 miles, as the course goes east along the shore for about five miles and then heads inland through the farmland and cranberry bogs of East Falmouth.”

Mile 1 - 10:22.88
Mile 2 - 10:20.76
Mile 3 - 10:58.44
Mile 4 - 10:21.75
Mile 5 - 10:23.37
Mile 6 - 11:47.90 (water stop and pee break)
Mile 7 - 10:38.82
Mile 8 - 11:23.90
Mile 9 - 10:55.85
Mile 10 - 10:49.25

As you can see, I ran pretty consistent with course description.  The aid stations, though, were stretched out to about every 2.5 miles versus every 1.5 to 2.  I made sure that I got water and Gatorade at every stop.

At the mile five aid station, which was at the front of the driveways of two houses along a long road, I asked a guy that lived at one of them if I could slip in behind some trees and take a leak.  I did, thanked him and he was pretty happy that he could be of assistance!

“When the course turns onto Thomas Landers Road, the route climbs for 1.5 miles about 70 feet to the highest elevation of the course (about 100 feet above sea level).”

Mile 11 - 11:50.84
Mile 12 - 11:28.45

Indeed.  I acted as if I was in an ultra, walk the uphill and run the rest.  And this section was no different.  I felt like if I could go as many miles as possible under 12 minutes a mile, that it would give me a short of trying to be at or around 5:12 – for not being ready.

“From mile 12 to mile 15, the course heads south into West Falmouth and is primarily downhill or flat. There is a 3/4 mile downhill at mile 12 that starts that sequence.”

Mile 13 - 10:52.93
Mile 14 - 11:24.21
Mile 15 - 11:36.40

Again, the description was on the money.  Even though I was starting to fatigue a little, the mile 13 split was indicative of the long downhill stretch before we made a left-hand turn into West Falmouth and start our return to downtown.

Along the way, I passed these two young ladies that I would later learn – from looking at the results - that both were from Buffalo.  As well as an older gentleman that was running the course as a bandit and was always trying to engage in conversation.  I was focused on taking down one mile at a time – and not in the best mood to converse with others.

Past the mile 15 marker, I was spent.  I did the math – 16 minutes times 11 miles to go (for 2:56) – and added it to the 2:45:15 that I had already gone and signed off on a 5:43 finish.

However, as it normally goes, I try to find opportunities to shave time off of that.

“Between mile 15.5 and 23.5 the course proceeds south into Woods Hole and picks up the first part of the Falmouth Road Race course, going past Nobska Light at mile 22. This 8 mile stretch of terrain consists of a non-stop series short rolling hills mixed in with some flat and with some noteworthy hills (1/4 - 1/3 mile) at 15.5, 17, 20, and 22 miles.”

Mile 16 - 13:44.54
Mile 17 - 12:18.23
Mile 18 - 14:26.28
Mile 19 - 13:52.08
Mile 20 - 14:15.22
Mile 21 - 13:33.87
Mile 22 - 14:09.55

The Nobska Lighthouse was right at the mile 22 marker.  During this stretch and in miles 23 and 24, I walked much of it, especially the uphills, and then did my best to run as much of the downhills as possible.

The thing is that my lower back was taking most of the beating (and this is from my weight).

However, when I tried to run, I did so at a faster pace to alleviate my lower back discomfort and would end up being gassed.  If I could have just kept running steady on a flat course, I might have been able to have kept running longer – because I never really felt fatigued.

Starting at about the mile 18 marker, while I was wondering when the two young ladies from New York state would pass me, I saw a tall gentleman with a red top, black running tights and a white cap.

That could have only been one person and it took me until almost the mile 20 marker to catch up and confirm my suspicion.  It was Jim Simpson of Huntingdon Beach, California, who has almost 1,110 career marathon finishes to his credit.  He was running with Frank Bartocci from Minnesota.  Both of these guys I knew from their multiple appearances at the Texas Marathon in Kingwood on New Year’s Day.

As it turned out, though, I was having a better day than the two of them as I soldiered on.

“Just beyond 23.5 miles, the terrain flattens out again for the last 3.2 miles along the Vineyard Sound shore and back to Falmouth center.”

Mile 23 - 14:43.98
Mile 24 - 14:58.66
Mile 25 - 13:34:23
Mile 26 - 13:51.24
Last .2 - 2:16.86

And it was where, right before the 25-mile marker, the two young ladies passed me – as well as some others.

I finished in front of a couple – one of which was pushing their child in a stroller.  It reminded me of Iram Leon’s win at the Gusher Marathon this past March in Beaumont.  I thought to ask if he had seen that, but I thought that it was just bringing attention to myself (because I had a chance to have the finish line call of that event) and I decided against it.

It might have been before I caught up to Jim and Frank, I saw a woman with shorts that looked like a Texas flag.  She was from Sunnyvale in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and after later looking at the results, she had done the half marathon on Saturday to finish up the Clam Chowdah Challenge.  As I was walking back past the finish line on my way to the parking lot, she finished up a couple of minutes behind me.

I had no regrets running the race in Salem the day before.  To me, every race experience is different and special.

Before the race, as I walked back to the car from picking my bib up, I cried.

I was missing Waverly being with me.

I’m not sure how I’m going to handle Houston in January as I will help drive her back to Liberty the weekend before.

She hasn’t been with me at a majority of my marathons, but she’s been with me enough – 21, to be exact -- that it brought me to tears then – and even now, as I write.

I know that my starting to run was the key for her to be able to lose the weight that she carried up until the end of her freshman year – and it is something that we enjoy together today.

People can – and maybe do – judge me for my lack of training, et. al., but they will never be able to take away the joy of sharing something with my offspring that no fast time nor BQ could replace or better.

Oh, my finishing time?  5:20:59.  Oddly enough, it was my 19th best finish out of 50 to date.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Devil's Chase 6.66-Miler Race Report

When I was looking at airfares to come to Boston to run tomorrow's Cape Cod Marathon, I stumbled upon the Devil's Chase 6.66-Miler in Salem, Massachusetts.

Of course, the race's tagline is to "Run like hell!"

I knew with running a marathon the following day that I certainly didn't want to be doing THAT; however, I thought it was just too much to pass up.

I was very fortunate in getting a $216.30 fare, even though I would end up spending an extra day here (not flying out until Monday morning).

I stayed in Woburn  - about a half hour west of Salem - and arrived at the race site at about 7 a.m. at Salem Willows Park for a scheduled 8:00 a.m. start.  (I mention scheduled because it didn't get started until 8:05 a.m. or so.)

The atmosphere was great with every "devil" song you could think of, including Charlie Daniels Band's "The Devil Went Down To Georgia".  A wide range of abilities of runners were dressed up in various outfits.

The most prominent, though, were horns, tails and pitchforks.

I even saw one woman with a Tom Brady jersey on and wondered if I should have come disguised as Matt Schaub.

I've never ever thought about doing a Color, Electric or Glow Run, but since I'm running Cape Cod I could see where I wanted to treat this like what I perceived one of those events to be.

Yeah, right.  Good luck with that.

Especially when the temperature was probably right at 40 degrees at the start.

I would estimate that there was approximately 1,000 people and since we ran in and near an older, historic part of the city of Salem, it wasn't until about mile 4 that it started to thin out at all.

We ran with Collins Cove on our right and just beyond mile 1, we ran two-thirds around Salem Common - a community park that has been in place since the early 1800s.  We took a right and another right (which put us on to Essex) and kept heading further west.

We took a pair of left turns, passed mile two (which I never saw) and we were on Derby, which merged with Fort Ave. and we soon were at mile three.

It was there that I had my first time reading -- 30:05.07.  Crap.  10-minute miles.

You know the old adage, "If you feel like you're going slow, you're going too fast."  That was me this morning.

I tried slowing it down as we hit an out-and-back that took us on to Winter Island/Waikiki Beach (East, I guess).  When we came off of it, I had passed mile 4 in 9:56.99 for a cumulative time of 40:02.06.

So mile 5, which is shaped on the map like the Little Dipper star formation onto Juniper Point, is one I did slow down, but not my much.

10:25.65 for a total time of 50:27.69.

Since I felt good, I went back to the former pace as we started to return - toward the soccer field in the Park - on the street we started, which included a little decline as we hit mile 6.

That mile was 10:05.87 that put me a 1:00:33.56.

For the last .66 mile, we hit a small trail that went out to a point that looks out into Beverly Harbor before turning back onto Fort Avenue and down the street with a hard right across the finish line.

The last .66 miles came in at 6:23.26 for a finishing time of 1:06:57.82.  Right about at 10 minutes per mile - even.

If I were even doing a half marathon tomorrow, I'd have pushed it as hard as I could, which might have only been another minute or two off (with how I've been running lately).

All in all, a fun event and glad that I took in the experience.

It was a race in my 104th city or town in North America outside of Texas -- and no. 196 overall.

There were 968 official finishers.  I ended up in 648th place with an average time per mile of 10:03 and an official time of 1:06:56.

If you take Arizona and Indiana out of the equation, I think I was the top finisher from south of the Mason-Dixon Line.  :-)

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Boerne, Seguin and Kyle Make 92!

Don’t you always love when a plan comes together – even when it changes?

Last weekend, I was scheduled to do the following:

Saturday morning – Announce a race.
Saturday evening – Run a race.
Sunday morning – Run a race.
Sunday afternoon – Have lunch with a friend.

During the week, some extraordinary circumstances caused me to make a decision not to announce the Saturday race that I had done since its inception.

And the friend that I was to have lunch with needed to postpone because her mother was coming in to watch her son compete in a UIL band competition Saturday evening.

With some additional time on my hands, I went looking for opportunities.  [My first choice, of course, would have been to do something with my daughter, but she’s in Lynchburg, Virginia going to college.]

I’ve had a goal, as stated many times here, of running a race in 100 different Texas cities or towns.

So off to the Internet I went surfing and to my delight – and other people’s thought of acute psychosis – found a race Friday night and Saturday morning that fit my other logistical plans.

I left my office between the Texas Medical Center and Reliant Stadium at about 12:30 p.m.  In the middle of rush hour traffic, I checked into my hotel near the Airport on I-410 in San Antonio.

Unpacking, I realized that the shorts I had stacked on the bed never made it into the travel bag.  The pair that I traveled in I could race in, but it wasn’t my preference.

However, getting on the road (and fighting the I-10 West traffic to Boerne) was foremost on my mind.

Once I arrived in Boerne, a little more than an hour before the race started, I found a Wal-Mart and bought the only pair of running shorts that they had and off I was to the elementary school – near downtown – that was hosting the race.

It was the Fabra Elementary School Howl at the Moon 5K and the school was hopping in full fall festival mode.  People everywhere.  An awesome sight, actually.

I registered, went back to the car to swap shorts and made my way back to the track on the grounds from where the race would start from.  (Things are nice in Boerne as the track was really soft – a mix between crushed granite and the rubbery material a regular track is made from.)

Even though it clearly was a community race, it was being chip-timed.  Worked for me, even though I’m always prepared to measure my time without.

We probably went a 100 meters before exiting the track and onto the street.  It was cool and my goal was just to run strong and steady the whole way given that my plan was to run a 10K the next morning followed by a 5K Saturday evening and then on Sunday morning.

During the race, which was all on the streets close to the school, I started to deal with a little stomach discomfort that kept me from going as hard as I wanted to at times.

Nonetheless, I finished in 29:47.86.  (The timer’s chip time was 29:46.)

And city #90 was in the books.  (I had checked with a fast high school runner towards the front to see if he thought the distance was spot on, but he had been misdirected at the front and got to run extra.  I measured it on later and it seemed accurate.)

The next morning, I headed to Schertz and the Blue Bonnet Palace, the site of Purnell Racing’s Texas Rocks and Shines 10K and 5K.  I hadn’t pre-registered and that was a good thing.

It was 52 degrees and windy, but I had no “cold weather” gear with me.  I didn’t want to pay $30 to run a 5K and I just didn’t think that I was going to be able to push myself through a 40-degrees wind chill for an hour.

I headed back to the hotel to get a little bit more rest before driving north on I-35 to Georgetown to catch the Trinity Tigers and the Southwestern Pirates in Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) NCAA Division III football action.

I checked into the hotel in Round Rock and planned my drive down to Seguin.  (I’m sure people are wondering that I spent two night’s money for hotels to run a handful of 5K’s.  Not exactly.  I picked up these nights on Marriott Rewards points.)

I was able to find Max Starcke Park relatively easily, got my packet and went back to my car to warm up as the temperature started to dip.

The race was the Seguin Police Department’s Moonlight 5K Run and it was a fundraiser for the Department’s Cops & Kids Picnic in the spring.

It was a loop in Riverview Park, which was on the east side of Hwy. 123, to get things started before running towards and crossing under a bridge that was part of the Highway.

There the route went along the Guadalupe River, which you couldn’t see at all, and by the outskirts of a golf course.

Again my focus was to run solid and steady.  I was doing so and I had clicked my watch at the first orange cone (which they told us were the mile markers) and – it was for the last .1 mile to turn back into the finish.

I knew I had been running well, but not a first mile time of 8-something.

When we finally crossed it, it read 10:31.94.  I knew that I wasn’t going that slow.

So we crossed under the bridge and ran on River Drive, which was closed to vehicular traffic.  Honestly, I thought it was a golf cart path, but looking at the satellite image of the Park it is an open road!

We got to the turnaround and as we made our way back towards Riverview Park, mile 2 showed up as 11:00.53.  I was disappointed because I felt like I was really, really running solid.

I had also passed a few people who now were in hot pursuit, and that pushed me on.

I bypassed the water station near the Bridge on the return and ran every tangent that I could legally (and logically) run.  (Turns out that part of the course was the same as the Hallo-Weiner 5K, which was certified three years ago by San Marcos’ Moe Johnson.)

Nonetheless, I resolved myself to running strong, holding off other runners and dealing with whatever the time was when I crossed the finish line.

I passed by the three-mile cone, which signaled a left down the finish stretch that led to a finish adjacent to the Pavillion.  Once I could see Athlete Guild’s clock display monitor, I was in for a surprise – the distance was right, but the cones were off!

I had covered the last tenth of a mile in 53.30 for a finishing time of 29:42.37.  (Timer had me at 29:41.)

Needless to say, I was pretty happy as I punched my entry on the #91 spot of the 100-race Texas city or town dance card.

Back to the hotel and a good night’s rest before running the Kyle-O-Meter 5K in Kyle, which is a neat little community just south of Austin along Interstate 35.

I left in time to put me at the race site about an hour before the event’s 8:30 a.m. start, but got routed to the feeder road at one spot where the Interstate had been closed down.

I still arrived in plenty of time for the event that was produced by Kyle’s Chamber of Commerce.

It was another similarly-sized crowd as well as its makeup – community-minded as opposed to a race for the fastest runners in the area.

On these types of races, though, I never look ahead at the course map.  I take whatever is doled out to me.  Makes it more of a challenge to me, I suppose.

We exited the Wallace Middle School parking lot, turned to the right on a smoothly-paved street before we crossed a street on to a roughly-paved country road.

My legs felt a bit heavy and I made it to the first mile marker in 9:54.09.

The rest of the way to the turnaround was more downhill than uphill, although I wouldn’t say that the course had full scale rollers (maybe like Flintridge for those who live in The Woodlands).

I was at the turnaround in 14:41.59, which slightly gave me some hope for another 29-minute time but knew that I had some uphill ground to cover.

I passed the mile 2 mark in 9:41.39 and a cumulative time of 19:35.48.

I pushed as much as I could, but the last 1.1 mile took 10:36.93 for a finishing “chip” time of 30:12.41.  (The timer had the same.)

And with that, I now sit with eight (8) Texas cities or towns to go to run a race in to meet one of my many goals!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Space City 10-Miler Single Age Records (2003-2013)

Sunday was the annual Space City 10-Miler, produced by Jana and Kevin Landry and Jay Lee.

It has been four years since I updated the single age records based on the times captured by Run Wild Timing.

Normally, I will only leave those marks that were updated in the current year.  Since I haven't updated them since the 2009 race, I've left all of those record "replacements" on this edition.


10 - 1:48:35.1, Jared Jankowski, 2007
11 - 1:24:19.4, Aaron Chandler, 2012 (replacing 1:42:10.3, Andrew Whitener, 2007)
12 - 1:30:49.8, Chris Garcia, 2004
13 - 1:35:43.5, Spencer Buxton, 2005
14 - 1:16:18, Mark Halle, 2006
15 - 1:05:45.0, David Tate, 2012 (replacing 1:06:04.9, John Boettcher, 2004)
16 - 0:58:57.7, Timothy Messen, 2012 (replacing 1:09:28.3, Adrian Slusher, 2003)
17 - 1:10:54.3, Joshua Rake, 2007
18 - 0:57:49.8, Alex Hoeg, 2004
19 - 0:58:42.2, D.J. Bean, 2006
20 - 1:47:19.4, Michael Campbell, 2009
21 - 0:54:58.1, Jason Schweitzer, 2006
22 - 0:56:47.1, Paul Goodwin, 2007
23 - 0:50:11.5, Joseph Gray, 2007
24 - 0:51:49.0, David Fuentes, 2011 (replacing 54:20.9, Alex Moore, 2007)
25 - 0:50:13.2, Shadrack Songok, 2009 (replacing 54:57.6, Alan Foolkes, 2008)
26 - 0:48:26.7, Samuel Kosgei, 2010 (replacing 50:16.8, Richard Kimeli, 2006)
27 - 0:49:46.8, Richard Kimeli, 2007
28 - 0:50:25.1, Enoch Nadler, 2013 (replacing 51:02.8, Jacob Rotich, 2005)
29 - 0:54:19.5, Jacob Rotich, 2006
30 - 0:53:13.0, Bethel Akuma, 2010 (replacing 56:07.0, Gabriel Rodriguez, 2008)
31 - 0:52:20.9, Luis Armenteros, 2003
32 - 0:52:29.9, Luis Armenteros, 2004
33 - 0:52:26.7, Kevin Castille, 2005
34 - 0:54:03.9, Junior Mitchell, 2007
35 - 0:53:04.6, Luis Armenteros, 2007
36 - 0:53:39.3, Luis Armenteros, 2008
37 - 0:55:43.4, Vaughn Gibbs, 2011 (replacing 56:25.1, Junior Mitchell, 2010)
38 - 0:52:07.3, Sean Wade, 2004
39 - 0:53:39.4, Sean Wade, 2005
40 - 0:51:49.8, Sammy Kiplagat Cheptoo, 2013 (replacing 57:58.8, Steven King, 2003)
41 - 0:56:44.5, Peter Lawrence, 2013 (replacing 58:43.3, Tommy King, Jr., 2010)
42 - 0:52:27.9, Sean Wade, 2008
43 - 0:50:39.5, Sean Wade, 2009 (replacing 55:33.2, Wilmer Bustillos, 2008)
44 - 0:55:29.3, Joe Flores, 2004
45 - 0:53:47.8, Sean Wade, 2011 (replacing 1:01:08.1, Richard Peoples, 2004)
46 - 0:58:33.0, Wilmer Bustillos, 2011 (replacing 1:02:07.8, Jack McClinitic, 2007)
47 - 0:57:19.7, Wilmer Bustillos, 2012 (replacing 58:06.5, David Washburn, 2003)
48 - 0:58:26.0, Jon Butler, 2010 (replacing 58:39.4, Joe Melanson, 2004)
49 - 1:03:12.0, Richard Peoples, 2008
50 - 1:00:58.2, Sim Cuevas, 2010 (replacing 1:01:23.5, Rich Fredrich, 2007)
51 - 1:01:44.2, Richard Peoples, 2010 (replacing 1:03:34.7, Larry Tidwell, 2007)
52 - 1:00:16.0, Joe Flores, 2012 (replacing 1:02:01.9, Miguel Lopez, 2003)
53 - 1:02:49.0, Rich Fredrich, 2010 (replacing 1:03:06.5, Dale Lee, 2009)
54 - 1:00:37.2, Joe Melanson, 2009 (replacing 1:04:50.8, Keith Willhelm, 2008)
55 - 1:02:20.3, Dale Lee, 2011 (replacing 1:04:38.1, Edward Fry, 2010 )
56 - 1:00:48.5, Steve Brammer, 2007
57 - 1:00:54.5, Steve Brammer, 2008
58 - 1:02:03.3, Steve Brammer, 2009 (replacing 1:06:57.0, Ted Traynor, 2007)
59 - 1:04:35.6, Miguel Lopez, 2010*
60 - 1:05:13.9, Peter Mullin, 2011 (replacing 1:07:10.5, Ben Harvie, 2007)
61 - 1:02:45.8, Peter Mullin, 2012 (replacing 1:08:13.0, Ben Harvie, 2008)
62 - 1:03:08.3, Peter Mullin, 2013 (replacing 1:08:52.3, Ben Harvie, 2009)
63 - 1:06:37.5, Mike Glasscock, 2010 (replacing 1:10:16.0, Kenneth Ruane, 2004)
64 - 1:09:09.7, Mike Glasscock, 2011 (replacing 1:10:34.7, Rich Siemens, 2004)
65 - 1:09:44.2, Allan Conley, 2009 (replacing 1:11:02, Kenneth Ruane, 2006)
66 - 1:09:52.6, Kenneth Ruane, 2007
67 - 1:13:05.4, Kenneth Ruane, 2008
68 - 1:10:21.3, Rich Siemens, 2008
69 - 1:11:49.8, Rich Siemens, 2009 (replacing 1:22:55.0, Don Brenner, 2008)
70 - 1:15:55.3, Don Brenner, 2009 (replacing 1:21:38.0, Jim Braden, 2005)
71 - 1:16:54.0, Ino Cantu, 2005
72 - 1:18:06.2, Kenneth Ruane, 2013 (replacing 1:25:10.1, Orville Kremmer, 2004)
73 - 1:14:54.6, Ino Cantu, 2007
74 - 2:03:17.7, John Fredrickson, 2012
75 - 1:25:01.3, Robert Ellis, 2005
76 - 1:31:23.3, Orville Kremmer, 2008
77 - 1:28:34.7, Robert Ellis, 2007
80 - 1:40:33.8, Robert Ellis, 2010


12 - 1:39:15.1, Priscilla Houk, 2007
13 - 1:18:47.6, Emily Shulik, 2003
14 - 1:13:18.9, Sara Collazos, 2004
15 - 1:14:51.3, Sara Collazos, 2005
16 - 1:29:08.3, Haley Odom, 2010 (replacing 1:35:22.1, Amanda Hayley, 2004)
17 - 1:18:31, Sara Collazos, 2006
18 - 1:11:59.1, Kate Taylor, 2012 (replacing 1:16:16.4, Sara Collazos, 2007)
19 - 1:07:59.9, Zoey Beckner, 2005
20 - 1:31:35.6, Courtney Spann, 2013 (replacing 1:33:14.0, America Hernandez, 2009)
21 - 1:27:22.5, Leslie Ethridge, 2011 (replacing 1:29:38.7, Calyn Copeland, 2005)
22 - 1:02:21.2, Lauren Smith, 2013 (replacing 1:04:11.5, Lindsay Harkema, 2007)
23 - 1:00:19.4, Emily Loeffler, 2009 (replacing 1:02:50.5, Kate Gorry, 2007)
24 - 1:01:22.6, Emily Loeffler, 2010 (replacing 1:01:47.9, Melissa Cook, 2004)
25 - 1:00:48.9, Emily Daum, 2011 (replacing 1:03:38.0, Melissa Cook, 2005)
26 - 1:02:23.3, Emily Daum, 2012 (replacing 1:04:33.0, Mary Davies, 2008)
27 - 0:58:07.6, Mary Davies, 2009 (replacing 1:01:27.4, Dawn Domaschk, 2007)
28 - 1:02:12.9, Jessica Armenteros, 2003
29 - 1:06:25.7, Heidi Zimmerman, 2012 (replacing 1:07:33, Olya Perevalova, 2006)
30 - 0:56:42.0, Lilian Chelimo, 2007
31 - 0:59:35.5, Mary Davies, 2013 (replacing 1:03:38.8, Virginia Jones, 2012)
32 - 0:57:51.2, Kelly Keane, 2004
33 - 1:02:43.0, Debbie Arzola, 2007
34 - 1:04:15.2, Diana Hirst, 2008
35 - 1:00:46.9, Debbie Arzola, 2009 (replacing 1:09:14.5, Debbie Rudisill, 2004)
36 - 0:57:26.2, Liza Hunter Galvan, 2005
37 - 0:57:15.0, Jody Hawkins, 2004
38 - 0:59:31.1, Jody Hawkins, 2005
39 - 1:06:35.4, Caroline Burum, 2004
40 - 1:01:05, Jody Hawkins, 2006
41 - 1:11:13, Rose Chi Chi, 2006
42 - 1:03:45.4, Kimberly Mac Namee, 2013 (replacing 1:06:38, Susan Walters, 2006)
43 - 1:04:43.8, Susan Walters, 2007
44 - 1:08:47.6, Heide Mairs, 2004
45 - 1:05:31.6, Heidy Lozano, 2008
46 - 1:03:21.9, Heidy Lozano, 2009 (replacing 1:05:10.0, Christie Lammers, 2003)
47 - 1:02:36.3, Heidy Lozano, 2010 (replacing 1:04:53.5, Christie Lammers, 2004)
48 - 1:08:45.1, Margo Braud, 2007
49 - 1:07:47.7, Jody Berry, 2009 (replacing 1:15:59.9, Yong Collins, 2004)
50 - 1:08:21.3, Jody Berry, 2010 (replacing 1:08:48.0, Christie Lammers, 2007)
51 - 1:10:49.5, Suzanne Day, 2008
52 - 1:12:01.5, Suzanne Day, 2009 (replacing 1:18:59, Eva Luckey, 2006)
53 - 1:13:52, Donna Sterns, 2006
54 - 1:11:41.7, Karen Bowler, 2004
55 - 1:13:35.8, Geri Wood, 2003
56 - 1:14:09.0, Geri Wood, 2004
57 - 1:13:41.9, Donna Sterns, 2010 (replacing 1:22:45, Alice Keelin, 2006)
58 - 1:18:03.8, Donna Sterns, 2011 (replacing 1:36:59.3, Gloria Mahoney, 2008)
59 - 1:17:16.7, Donna Sterns, 2012 (replacing 1:22:48.6, Alice Keelin, 2008)
60 - 1:17:44.1, Ann Ferguson, 2003
61 - 1:21:31.7, Ann Ferguson, 2004
62 - 1:16:08.1, Nancy Prejean, 2007
63 - 1:13:28.1, Sabra Harvey, 2012 (replacing 1:19:57.9, Nancy Prejean, 2008)
64 - 1:12:08.4, Sabra Harvey, 2013 (replacing 1:19:35.5, Nancy Prejean, 2009)
65 - 1:17:24.6, Nancy Prejean, 2010 (replacing 1:35:03, Ursala Spilger, 2006)
66 - 1:33:22.4, Eizabeth Ahrens, 2012 (replacing 1:50:58.1, Judy Richards, 2009)
67 - 1:37:41.0, Nancy Crane, 2010 (replacing 2:05:19.4, Margaret Montgomery, 2008)
68 - 2:04:23.7, Judy Richards, 2011 (replacing 2:07:00.5, Margaret Montgomery, 2009)
69 - 2:16:26.4, Margaret Montgomery, 2010 (replacing 2:31:06.6, Sandy McKinney, 2009)
70 - 2:20:53.6, Margaret Montgomery, 2011 (replacing 2:29:57.4, Sandy McKinney, 2010)
71 - 2:16:57.8, Margaret Montgomery, 2012 (replacing 2:34:07.4, Sandy McKinney, 2011)
72 - 2:10:07.1, Sadie Greenman, 2003
73 - 2:03:43.5, Sadie Greenman, 2004
74 - 1:45:44.0, Kay Duplichan, 2010
75 - 2:12:09, Sadie Greenman, 2006
76 - 1:51:58.0, Kay Duplichan, 2012

Monday, October 7, 2013

Monster Mash Dash 15K Race Report

I bit the bullet not too long ago to run the Cape Cod Marathon on Sunday, October 27 near Falmouth, Massachusetts.  Therefore, you guessed it:  non-traditional training.

I’ve kind of really had it on my mind for awhile.  It is why I did a half in July, August and September, but I needed something a bit closer to give me a test or two.  Today, Sunday, October 6 was one of them in the Monster Mash Dash 15K at Sam Houston Race Park.

I looked for something out of the area that was a half, but nothing was more attractive then to stay at home.  It was a wise choice after being totally, completely wiped out after working – and announcing – Nike South on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning.  With any event that I work, I don’t just stand around announcing.  There’s a whole lot more that I do, but I digress.

I was at the race site by 6 a.m. and had picked up my packet.  Saw Cheryl Stitt and Anita, who works for Other Brother, and eventually my very good friend Leanne Rosser arrived with her friend, Dawn Johnson, who was running her first 5K ever.

We all socialized for a little bit with their husbands.  Earlier I had seen and talked to John Moyer, Willie Fowlkes and spent a good 10 minutes or so catching up with David Nemoto right before the race.  (Later it included Kevin Lang and Walt Yarrow.)

I found Leanne and Dawn.  Dawn wanted Leanne to go on, but Leanne, with the Chicago Marathon on Sunday, knew that she really needed to be running easy.

I started off with them as they seemed to be settling into a nice pace.  Dawn was doing well.

I thought we were going about 9:45-9:50, but my watch confirmed that at the mile 2 marker we were at 21 minutes even – a 10:30 pace.  Just didn’t think that the track was going to slow us down that much.

As we turned right onto Fallbrook Drive, the right-hand turn would soon appear that the two of them would take to the finish.  I gave her some tips as we were running, including about ensuring that she keeps her head up at all times – to be able to breathe easier.

As I continued straight onto Fallbrook, the rains masked in the dark clouds looming distantly over the track at the start now started to appear.

I passed the mile 3 mark at 31:21.87 with the last mile being 10:21.30.

Then what started to occur was very surprising.

Given my body frame, I don’t do 40-50 miles a week.  While I might be able to trim some pounds that way, I’m afraid that I’d become injured and couldn’t run.  Therefore, my goal is to get in 4-to-6 workouts a week of 60 to 90 minutes.

So as the air became a little cooler and the rains fell, so did my mile split.  I passed the mile 4 marker in 41:05.81 after a 9:43.94 mile.

I’m starting to do the math as I’m running:  10:15 pace will get me close to 1:33 or 10-minute per mile for the entire race.

I was running strong.  I focused on the pace and form that I work to establish while doing most my training on the treadmill.

Mile 5 took us off the feeder road as we made a right-hand turn onto the street we had come off of the race track on to.  This was a nice and steady 9:51.53 to get me to 50:57.34.  (This might have been one of only two accurate mile splits after leaving the race track oval.)

A 9:50.61 mile 6 got me to 1:00:47.95 on the watch.  At this time, I decided – as I saw a number of runners in front of me – that I would see how many that I could catch.

Miles 7 and 8 were 9:41.37 and 9:51.92 for a cumulative time of 1:20:21.24 – right at 10 minutes per mile.  I started to think to myself if I got the right conditions and the right weather with a totally flat course – and I could hold it another few miles – that I might soon be staring at a half marathon PR.

It was after last Sunday’s Texas10 Katy – it is always good to have some motivation (the same type that allowed me to really get ready for Philadelphia in 2010) -- that I decided to put the hammer down on my training which had been a little lackadaisical the last few months.  Maybe this was a surprisingly quick return on my investment.

Then the last 1.3 miles and knowing what is right or not is a pain in the butt.

So after I passed the mile 8 marker (after hitting a water stop where I caught one or two people), I motored past a female as we turned back onto the Sam Houston Race Park parking lot.

I, at that point, including some 10K’ers, had passed 10 people since mile 6 – nice!

However, here came the kids on the 1K run streaming onto our course.  Ugh!  I looked at Angie Henderson and was like, “What the heck?”  She was like, “Jon, you’re just going to have to run through them.”  Well, not necessarily through them, but around a bunch of kiddos and moms and dads wearing costumes and getting soaked.

It later turned out to reveal that the mile 9 marker wasn’t where it was supposed to be, but that mile turned out to be 9:25.17.  Wow!

And then the last .3 miles was 2:01.72 (actually 2:00.xx), but I accidentally – typing my splits out – hit my watch real quick.  That’s how I knew, however, that the mile 9 marker was misplaced:  the time and then looking back at the certification map.

1:31:46.41 was the “chip time” that I ended up with, but Mike Hutchinson with No Limits Timing had me at 1:31:41.  I’ll gladly take the five seconds.  

However, it appeared that the course – near miles 3 and 6 – wasn’t set up properly, according to the certification map.  We were supposed to go off of Fallbrook Drive into the SHRP parking lot, run towards the Tollway, take a left at light pole 5D, make another left at light pole 6D and then a right back onto Fallbrook.  And, of course, we would have done it twice.

What you couldn’t tell from the certification map is how far from the road to the light poles we had to go to determine how short the course was.

My note to the race director after the race was, “If it was an issue that SHRP couldn’t get the gates open or something, we still should have been notified before the race about how short the course might have been.”

The other could have been too if you didn’t have enough volunteers, which simply didn’t seem to be the issue on Sunday.

Either way, the pace on the results could have been adjusted.

Still it was a pretty solid effort for me that I was happy with, given what’s on my calendar through early February.

Next weekend?  Races in Virginia while visiting the red-headed princess!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Largest Road Races and Triathlons in Greater Houston?

What are the largest road races and triathlons in the greater Houston area on an annual basis?

There always seems to be a discussion from time to time as who has the largest event or not.

Well, guess what?  We're going to keep score.  And the only way to do so is by official timed finishers.

This first posting is going up on Tuesday afternoon, September 24 (a second update was made on October 2) and the total is now 219 races.  However, there are many, many more to capture from earlier in the year and I'll be updating this through the end of 2013.

Timer Legend:  CS - Cadence Sports, CT - Cajun Timing, FLS - Fastlane Services (Brian Muck), IAAP (San Antonio), NLT - No Limits Timing (Mike Hutcheson), RC - Richard Campbell, RF - Run Far (Raul Najera), RHT - Run Houston Timing (Jack McClintic), RW - Run Wild (Gary Mulvihill)

Note:  Relays, listed at the end of a line, are not counted as individuals and included in the totals.

10,065 - Aramco Half Marathon, Houston, January 13
6,530 - Chevron Houston Marathon, Houston, January 13
6,314 - ConocoPhillips Rodeo Run 10K, Houston, February 23 (RF)
3,447 - The Woodlands Half Marathon, The Woodlands, March 2 (NLT)
3,183 - ABB 5K (Houston Marathon), Houston, January 12
2,489 - Blue Bell Fun Run 5K, Brenham, April 13 (RF)
2,054 - Memorial Hermann Ironman Texas, May 19 (SportsStats)
2,017 - Running of the Bulls 5K, Houston, September 22 (RW)
1,763 - Conn's Green 6.2, Houston, April 27 (RW)
1,671 - Bayou City Classic 10K, Houston, March 9 (RF)
1,380 - 9/11 Heroes Run 5K, Houston, September 7 (FLS)
1,268 - Texas Med 5K, Houston, February 9 (RF)
1,230 - Kinsel Ford 5K (Gusher Marathon), Beaumont, March 9 (IAAP)
1,175 - Run Wild 5K, Houston, July 4 (RW)
1,162 - Shell Strides for Schools Fun Run 5K, Deer Park, April 13 (RHT)
1,126 - Bridgeland Triathlon, Houston, August 4 (NLT) - 18 relays
1,008 - Dad's Day 5K, Houston, June 15 (RF)
1,000 - USA Fit Half Marathon, Sugar Land, January 27 (RHT)
967 - Blue Bell Fun Run 10K, Brenham, April 13 (RF)
949 - Angie's Half Crazy Half Marathon, Clear Lake, April 7 (RHT)
949 - Houston Kids Triathlon - Juniors, Houston, April 14 (RF)
921 - Armadillo Dash Half Marathon, March 3 (RF)
917 - The Woodlands Marathon, The Woodlands, March 2 (NLT)
914 - Fleet Feet Sports 5K (TW Marathon), The Woodlands, March 2 (NLT)
885 - Heights 5K, Houston, June 1 (RW)
839 - CB&I Sprint Triathlon, The Woodlands, May 4 (CS) - 28 relays
823 - Girls On The Run 5K, Houston, April 21 (RHT)
802 - Galveston Half Marathon, Galveston, January 27 (RW)
780 - Memorial Hermann Half Marathon, Sugar Land, March 3 (RW)
774 - Armadillo Dash 5K, College Station, March 3 (RF)
724 - Kingwood YMCA Bridgefest 5K, Kingwood, February 2 (RHT)
681 - Muddy Trails 5K, The Woodlands, April 6 (CS)
673 - Run For The Rose 5K, Houston, April 14 (RHT)
669 - Baytown Bud Heatwave 5-Miler, Baytown, July 4 (FLS)
653 - Calder Twilight 5K, Beaumont, May 3
629 - SCOPE It Out 5K Run For Colon Cancer Awareness 5K, Houston, March 23 (RHT)
624 - Kemah Olympic Triathlon, Kemah, April 28 (NLT) - 20 relays
616 - Kemah Sprint Triathlon, Kemah, April 27 (NLT) - 17 relays
580 - Freedom 5K, Sugar Land, July 4 (RW)
575 - Houston Kids Triathlon - Seniors, Houston, April 14 (RF)
574 - Shadow Creek Ranch Triathlon, Houston, July 14 (RW) - 24 relays
558 - Race Against Violence 5K, Houston, March 2 (RW)
557 - Blue Bell Kids 1-Mile, Brenham, April 13 (RF)
517 - Seabrook Lucky Trail Half Marathon, Seabrook, March 16 (RC) - 54 relays
511 - Tejas Triathlon, Sugar Land, June 2 (RW) - 17 relays
482 - Houston Triathlon - Sprint, Houston, September 2 (NLT) - 18 relays
480 - Stride for Stroke 5K, Houston, March 2 (RW)
478 - ChocoLoco 5K, Houston, January 26 (RW)
476 - Gusher Half Marathon, Beaumont, March 9 (IAAP)
472 - Rise and Shine 5K, Houston, May 11 (RF)
467 - Houston Triathlon - Olympic, Houston, September 2 (NLT) - 18 relays
465 - NBA All-Star Fit Run/Walk 5K, Houston, February 16 (RW)
463 - Memorial Hermann Sugar Land Triathlon, Sugar Land, June 23 (RW) - 22 relays
455 - Alaina Dixon 5-Miler, Houston, September 2 (RW)
450 - Lake Houston 5K, Kingwood, August 24 (RHT)
443 - Texas10 Katy 10-Miler, Katy, September 29 (NLT)
438 - Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer 5K, Houston, August 10 (RW)
418 - Y Freedom Tri, Pearland, June 30 (RHT)
405 - Bellaire Trolley Run 5K, Houston, April 13 (RHT)
398 - Lake Houston 10K, Kingwood, August 24 (RHT)
395 - Run 4 The Children 5K, Katy, Febraury 16 (RHT)
380 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, June 30 (RHT)
373 - Espirit de She 5K, Houston, May 9 (RF)
365 - Spalsh of the Titans 5K Mud Run, Galveston, July 13 (RHT)
363 - Walk To End Lupus Now 5K, Houston, May 5 (RHT)
360 - Just Run For a Just Cause 5K, Katy, September 7 (RHT)
355 - Causeway FunD Run, Galveston, March 2 (CS)
355 - Village Creek Festival 5K, Lumberton, April 20 (CT)
354 - Texas Exe's Lone Star Stampede 5K, Houston, May 4 (RHT)
353 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, July 28 (RHT)
350 - Seabrook Lucky Trail Half Marathon, Seabrook, March 17 (RC)
342 - Galveston Sand Crab 5K, Galveston, September 7 (IAAP)
338 - Surfside Beach Half Marathon, Surfside Beach, February 23 (RHT)
332 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, August 25 (RHT)
329 - Bellaire Fall Fever 5K, Bellaire, September 28 (RHT)
322 - Du The Polar Bear Duathlon, Houston, February 10 (RW) - 11 relays
321 - Lookin' Good Shamrock Strut 5K, Houston, March 16 (FLS)
318 - Pear Run 10K, Pearland, May 11 (RHT)
316 - Muddy Trails 10K, The Woodlands, April 6 (CS)
315 - Sugar 'N Spice Half Marathon, Clear Lake, February 17 (RHT)
311 - Tri Girl Sprint Triathlon, Houston, August 18 (RW) - 5 relays
311 - Memorial Hermann Sugar Land Bunny Hop 5K, Sugar Land, February 23 (RW)
302 - Pear Run 5K, Pearland, May 11 (RHT)
298 - Alief ISD After School Rocks 5K, Houston, April 13 (RHT)
294 - Nederland Heritage Festival 1-Miler, Nederland, March 3 (RHT)
289 - Run For Hope 5K, The Woodlands, April 20 (RF)
287 - USA Fit (Marathon) 5K, Sugar Land, January 27 (RHT)
282 - Just Run For a Just Cause 10K, Katy, September 7 (RHT)
279 - Clear Lake International Triathlon Sprint, Clear Lake, August 24 (RW) - 35 relays
279 - KBR Sprint For Spring 5K, Houston, April 27 (RF)
273 - Jeff and Brede's Triathlon, Houston, July 17 (RW) - 10 relays
273 - Run For Recovery 5K, Houston, September 29 (RHT)
265 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, January 27 (RHT)
260 - Jail Break Half Marathon, Baytown, February 16 (RC) -- 174 (2012) -- 149 (2011)
260 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, September 29 (RHT)
259 - Texas Half Marathon, Kingwood, January 1 (RHT)
257 - Keller Williams Premier/Cinco Charities 5K, Katy, June 1 (RHT)
254 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, February 24 (RHT)
248 - Texas Marathon, Kingwood, January 1 (RHT)
248 - Darling Dash 5K, Sugar Land, February 24 (RW)
247 - Clear Lake International Triathlon Olympic, Clear Lake, August 24 (RW)
246 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, May 5 (RHT)
239 - Tomball Bunny Run 5K, Tomball, April 13 (RHT)
238 - Oak Bend Medical Center Race to Attack Poverty 5K, Richmond, April 6 (RHT)
237 - Espirit de She 10K, Houston, May 9 (RF)
234 - San Jacinto Texas Independence 5K, La Porte, March 9 (RHT)
230 - PPOWA Fallen Heroes Memorial 5K, Pasadena, May 11 (RHT)
227 - Run By The Bay 5K, Texas City, June 8 (RW)
221 - Kingwood YMCA Bridgefest Kids 1-Mile, Kingwood, February 2 (RHT)
219 - Run For Wellness 5K, Houston, May 26 (RHT)
219 - El Chupacabra de Houston 10K, New Caney, May 19 (IAAP)
219 - Bridgeland Kids Triathlon, Houston, August 3 (NLT) - 2 relays
219 - Woodforest Charity Run 5K, Conroe, September 28 (RF)
214 - Keep Kids Connected Superhero 5K, Katy, September 21 (FLS)
210 - Kiwanis Kids Triathlon - South Montgomery YMCA, The Woodlands, July 27 (RHT)
205 - Cross Creek Ranch Kids Triathlon, Fulshear, May 19 (RHT)
204 - GTS Livestrong 5K, Beaumont, September 21 (CT)
203 - Riverfest Fun Run 5K, Port Neches, April 27 (RHT)
202 - The Rugged Race 5K, Pasadena, April 13 (CS)
201 - Buzz Run 5K, Sugar Land, August 11 (RHT)
195 - El Chupacabra de Houston 5K, New Caney, May 19 (IAAP)
195 - USA Fit Marathon, Sugar Land, January 27 (RHT)
191 - Bearkat Bash 5K, Klein, September 21 (RW)
190 - Lookin' Good Shamrock Strut 10K, Houston, March 16 (FLS)
186 - Gator Chase 5K, Houston, May 4 (RHT)
186 - YMCA Mardi Gras 5K, Port Arthur, February 2 (RHT)
185 - Seabrook Lucky Trail Marathon, Seabrook, March 17 (RC) - 40 relays
184 - BPOA 5th annual Run To Remember 5K, Beaumont, September 14 (CT)
183 - Love.Run.Marathon Half Marathon, Huntsville, February 9 (RHT)
181 - Heroes and Hope 5K, Sugar Land, May 25 (RHT)
181 - La Porte High School Project Graduation 5K, April 6 (RHT)
179 - Run For Hope 10K, The Woodlands, April 20 (RF)
177 - Big Little JC Association 5K, Houston, June 9 (RW)
176 - Sylvan Beach Triathlon, La Porte, June 9 (RW) - 5 relays
174 - UNCF 5K, Houston, Setpember 14 (RHT)
171 - Kiwanis Kids Triathlon - Stude Park, Houston, June 8 (RHT)
166 - Texas Kids Triathlon, Houston, August 18 (RW)
166 - Dawson Winter Dash 5K, Pearland, January 26 (RHT)
164 - Stop Drop & Roll 5K, Galveston, February 23 (CS)
158 - Galveston Marathon, Galveston, January 27 (RW)
157 - 4 Alarm 5K, Sealy, July 12 (RW)
155 - Toga Fun Run 5K, Kemah, September 14 (RHT)
147 - Summertime Blues Sprint Triathlon, Clute, August 11 (RHT) - 7 relays
146 - Houston Young Lawyers Association 5K, Houston, August 24 (RHT)
145 - Tomball Pregnancy Center 5K, Tomball, September 21 (RHT)
145 - Big Dipper Dash 5K, Houston, September 7 (RHT)
144 - Interfaith Caring Ministries 5K, League City, February 11 (RHT)
143 - Houston Kids Tri, Houston, August 31 (NLT)
143 - Love.Run.Marathon 10K, Huntsville, February 9 (RHT)
142 - Jog The Journey 5K, Crosby, March 30 (RHT)
140 - Houston's Family Triathlon, Houston, May 5 (RHT)
136 - Kiwanis Kids Triathlon - Pearland, June 29 (RHT)
135 - Davy Crockett Bear Chase Half Marathon, Groveton, April 13
135 - Galveston Sand Crab 10K, Galveston, September 14 (IAAP)
135 - Texas10 Huntsville, Huntsville, April 7 (NLT)
133 - Texas Star Triathlon, Montgomery, July 14 (RHT)
133 - Sienna Spring Fling 10K, Sugar Land, March 23 (RHT)
132 - CASA Superhero 5K, Beaumont, September 28 (RHT)
127 - Run By The Bay 10K, Texas City, June 8 (RW)
127 - Heart of Katy 5K, Katy, February 9 (RHT)
127 - Woodforest Charity Run 10K, Conroe, September 28 (RF)
118 - Pasadena Rodeo 5K, Pasadena, August 24 (RW)
118 - Stallion Stampede 5K, Spring, April 6 (RHT)
117 - Conroe Family YMCA Trail Run 5K, Conroe, May 11 (RHT)
113 - Kiwanis Tri Kingwood, Kingwood, September 7 (RHT)
112 - Diploma Dash 5K, Deer Park, May 18 (RHT)
112 - Virginia Gandy Mothers Against Cancer 5K, Kingwood, September 28 (RHT)
106 - Junior League Downtown Love Run 5K, Bryan, February 9 (CS)
105 - Sylvan Beach Duathlon, La Porte, June 9 (RW)
105 - Gator Chase 1-Mile, Houston, May 4 (RHT)
104 - NAHREP Running For The American Dream 5K, April 6 (RHT)
103 - Surfside Beach Marathon, Surfside Beach, February 23 (RHT)
98 - Exygon & Baptist Hospitals Gusher Marathon, Beaumont, March 9 (IAAP)
98 - Lion Pride 5K, Vidor, March 16 (RHT)
97 - Buffalo Wallow 6K, Houston, February 9 (RW)
94 - Piney Woods Trail Fest 10-Miler, New Caney, February 9 (IAAP)
94 - Spring Assistance Ministries 5K, Spring, June 15 (RHT)
90 - Kemah Kids Triathlon, Kemah, April 27 (NLT)
87 - Angel Run 10K, Montgomery, May 25 (RHT)
86 - Kingwood YMCA Bridgefest Kids Half Mile, Kingwood, February 2 (RHT)
85 - Blues Capital of Texas 5K, Navasota, August 10 (RHT)
85 - Seahawks by the Seawall 5K, Port Arthur, May 18
85 - Texas10 Katy 5-Miler, Katy, September 29 (NLT)
84 - Alief ISD After School Rocks 1M, April 13 (RHT)
83 - Kiwanis Tri Clay Road YMCA, Katy, August 3 (RHT)
82 - Riverfest Fun Run Kids 1M, Port Neches, April 27 (RHT)
80 - XTERRA Magnolia Hill Triathlon, Navasota, July 14 (CS) - 1 relay
78 - Riverstone Heart and Sole 5K, Missouri City, September 21 (RHT)
74 - Kiwanis Kids Triathlon - Langham Creek, Houston, May 18 (RHT)
70 - Davy Crockett Bear Chase Marathon, Groveton, April 13
70 - Kemah 5K, Kemah, April 28 (NLT)
68 - US Vets 5K, Houston, May 18 (RHT)
67 - Jog The Journey 10K, Crosby, March 30 (RHT)
66 - Fort Bend County Parade 5K, Richmond, September 27 (RW)
63 - Piney Woods Trail Fest 5K, New Caney, February 9 (IAAP)
63 - Patriot Day 5K, Houston, September 28 (FLS)
62 - Tri Girl Duathlon, Houston, August 18 (RW)
61 - Lake Tejas Triathlon, Colmesneil, April 20 (RHT)
59 - PCOS Awareness 5K, Houston, September 28 (RW)
54 - Conroe YMCA Tri For Fun Triathlon, April 7 (RHT) - 5 relays
51 - Dream Center 5K, Conroe, September 21 (RHT)
47 - Running for the Rights of Victims 5K, Friendswood, April 27 (RHT)
44 - Onalaska Half Ironman, Onalaska, September 8 (RW) - 10 relays
44 - Love.Run.Marathon, Huntsville, February 9 (RHT)
43 - Conroe YMCA Tri For Fun Kids Triathlon, April 7 (RHT)
42 - Sienna Spring Fling 10K, Sugar Land, March 23 (RHT)
42 - Texas Birthday Bash 5K, Navasota, March 2 (CS)
40 - HL&R Rowdy Rodeo Run 5K, Baytown, September 28 (FLS)
36 - Angel Run Half Marathon, Montgomery, May 25 (RHT)
31 - Nederland Heritage Festival 5K, Nederland, March 3 (RHT)
30 - Texas10 Huntsville 5-Miler, Huntsville, April 7 (NLT)
29 - Davy Crockett Bear Chase 5K, Groveton, April 13
29 - Dream Center 1-Mile, Conroe, September 21 (RHT)
24 - Piney Woods Trail Fest 20-Miler, New Caney, February 9 (IAAP)
23 - Stallion Stampede 10K, Spring, April 6 (RHT)
22 - Bridgeland Doggie Duathlon, Houston, August 3 (NLT)
19 - Piney Woods Trail Fest 50K, New Caney, February 9 (IAAP)
19 - YMCA Mardi Gras 1K, Port Arthur, February 2 (RHT)
10 - Lake Tejas Duathlon, Colmesneil, April 20 (RHT)

Monday, September 23, 2013

This Past Week's Top 10 Moments

1.  My Sunday night phone call with Waverly.  She's doing well at Liberty University, yet always will be positively covetous of your prayers.  So excited for her and the opportunities that she gets to experience every single day there in Virginia.  Big week ahead for her as she has three tests, but lots of campus excitement in both Convocations and school events.

2.  My niece Hunter's 9th birthday party with family Sunday evening at Pappasito's.  Family comes first.  I have two very, yet differently talented nieces.  Just like I believe for Waverly, my hope is for God to reveal to both of them His plan in their lives in the days, months and years to come.

3.  Working Saturday's Toughest 10K Kemah.  Despite the event dealing with some unanticipated traffic and timing issues, I can't tell you how much I enjoy working races with the team that Robby Sabban has put together through the years.  The Running Alliance Sport team is much like the Win Win Events team:  Lots of people who know what needs to get done and when, but keeping in mind that they're serving other runners.  And while 80% of the runners who run Robby's races aren't going to get a sniff of an age group award, the majority of them also are working their hardest to get to the finish line as fast as they can.

4.  Thanksgiving plans have been finalized!  Waverly and I will be running the Run Thru The Woods 5-Miler together.  Other than the Thanksgiving that we were in New York City for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, either one or both of us have worked a race the last few years.  This year, we're going to partake for once and run our hometown race.  Would love to help Jay Lee and Robby as they assume the reins of the Clear Lake race that Pete Rake started via Bay Area Fit, but it will make for the start of a special day with family.

5.  Announcing Nike South and Nike Cross Regionals in October and November, respectively.  Actually this has been on my calendar since May, but firmed all of the particulars with The Woodlands boys cross country coach Juris Green the middle of last week.

6.  Announcing Pleasure Island Bridge Half Marathon in November.  This is also an event that has been on my calendar since the date was set by Richard and Amie James in Beaumont, but Amie and I made sure that I'll be in Port Arthur on Saturday, November 9.

7.  The Woodlands Marathon Committee meeting Tuesday night.  Always good to visit with folks that you're going to be working with in putting on the sixth largest marathon event in the state of Texas with.  It is great to be respected by the many great individuals that are on this team.

8.  Tuesday morning visit with a former race partner.  A situation placed this individual in close proximity to my work location so I made an effort to take a short break from work - and go to a neighboring building about a block away - to visit with them.  I think the biggest thing that I strive to seek in my world these days is clarity, where possible.  Seeking it - and making the actual effort - doesn't always guarantee the results you desire, but a genuine, heart-felt effort leaves no regrets.  Left feeling positive about the exchange.

9.  Kind words from an endurance sports colleague.  A third party shared with me that I was recognized by this colleague for starting something that part of the community forced me to step away from.  Even though I've continued to contribute to the community event annually in a visible, yet unknown to most way, it appears that I might even get the opportunity to once again be visible.

10.  Running races last weekend in Texas cities #88 and #89.  A half marathon in Mansfield and an 8K in Cedar Park put me two more cities closer to my 100-city goal of running a race in.  In the Metroplex, I ran OK while getting the chance to visit with friends Raul and Meghan Najera and Michael Clark before taking in a half of Ball State vs. North Texas in Denton and then traveling south for a fun, first-year 5-miler on Sunday that facilitate some communication with a friend in the area.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

NCAA College Football Pick 'Em - Week 3

Jump in and play at any time!

If you post your picks in the Facebook comment, I'll know who you are (obviously).  If you leave your picks in the comment here, please leave your name.

This week's schedule smells worse than the Hudson River and good games on it are harder to find than WMD in Iraq.

Nonetheless, a little homework to a double-digit win week may be necessary.

Week 3 Schedule

(Sat.) - #16 UCLA at #23 Nebraska - NEBRASKA
(Sat.) - #21 Notre Dame at Purdue - NOTRE DAME
(Sat.) - #7 Louisville at Kentucky - LOUISVILLE
(Sat.) - #20 Wisconsin at Arizona State - WISCONSIN
(Sat.) - #19 Washington at Illinois - WASHINGTON

(Sat.) - #1 Alabama at #6 Texas A&M - ALABAMA
(Sat.) - #25 Mississippi at Texas - TEXAS
(Sat.) - Kansas at Rice - KANSAS
(Sat.) - Ball State at North Texas - BALL STATE
(Sat.) - Texas-El Paso at New Mexico State - UTEP

(Sat.) - Morgan State at Liberty - LIBERTY
(Sat.) - Central Florida at Penn State - PENN STATE
(Sat.) - Mississippi State at Auburn - AUBURN
(Sat.) - Vanderbilt at #13 South Carolina - SOUTH CAROLINA
(Sat.) - Boston College at USC - USC

Week 2 Recap

I followed up an 11-4 week with a 12-3 effort (that included Texas and Florida laying eggs), but Rick Cook slammed home a 14-1 showing.

Holy "Geaux" Tigers!

Rick Cook (14-1 - only missed South Carolina/Georgia)
Jon Walk (11-4)

Rick Cook (14-1; Wk. 2)
Ed Parker (8-2; Wk. 2 - No Jon's Top 5 picks)
Jon Walk (23-7)
Anonymous Yahoo User (11-4; Wk. 1)
Don Womble (8-7; Wk. 1)

(Sat.) - #13/#14 Notre Dame at #17 Michigan - MICHIGAN (Win - Michigan, 41-30)
(Sat.) - #6 South Carolina at #11/#12 Georgia - SOUTH CAROLINA (Loss - Georgia, 41-30)
(Sat.) - #12/#9 Florida at --/#24 Miami (Fla.) - FLORIDA (Loss - Miami, Fla., 21-16)
(Sat.) - #2/#3 Oregon at Virginia - OREGON (Win - Oregon, 59-10)
(Sat.) - Hawaii at Oregon State - HAWAII (Loss - Oregon State, 33-14)

(Sat.) - Sam Houston State at #7 Texas A&M - TEXAS A&M (Win - Texas A&M, 65-28)
(Sat.) - #15/#16 Texas at BYU - TEXAS (Loss - BYU, 40-21)
(Sat.) - Montana State at SMU - SMU (Win - SMU, 31-30)
(Sat.) - Houston at Temple - HOUSTON (Win - Houston, 22-13)
(Sat.) - Prairie View A&M at Texas State - TEXAS STATE (Win - Texas State, 28-3)

(Sat.) - Eastern Michigan at Penn State - PENN STATE (Win - Penn State, 45-7)
(Sat.) - Monmouth at Liberty - LIBERTY (Win - Liberty, 45-15)
(Sat.) - Syracuse at #19/#20 Northwestern - NORTHWESTERN (Win - Northwestern, 48-27)
(Fri.) - Wake Forest at Boston College - BOSTON COLLEGE (Win - Boston College, 24-10)
(Sat.) - Duke at Memphis - DUKE (Win - Duke, 28-14)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

NFL Pick 'Em - Week 2

Jump in and play at any time!

If you post your picks in the Facebook comment, I'll know who you are (obviously).  If you leave your picks in the comment here, please leave your name.

Biggest game of the upcoming week?  Denver at the New York Giants.  Manning vs. Manning.  Another win here for Peyton.

Some games that could go the other way?  Tennessee over Houston, Seattle over San Francisco and Miami over Indianapolis.  That is, if my picks are right.

Week 2 Schedule

(Thu.) - New York Jets at New England - NEW ENGLAND
(Sun.) - St. Louis at Atlanta - ATLANTA
(Sun.) - San Diego at Philadelphia - PHILADELPHIA
(Sun.) - Dallas at Kansas City - DALLAS
(Sun.) - Miami at Indianapolis - INDIANAPOLIS
(Sun.) - Tennessee at Houston - HOUSTON
(Sun.) - Washington at Green Bay - GREEN BAY
(Sun.) - Cleveland at Baltimore - BALTIMORE
(Sun.) - Carolina at Buffalo - BUFFALO
(Sun.) - Minnesota at Chicago - CHICAGO
(Sun.) - New Orleans at Tampa Bay - NEW ORLEANS
(Sun.) - Detroit at Arizona - DETROIT
(Sun.) - Jacksonville at Oakland - OAKLAND
(Sun.) - Denver at New York Giants - DENVER
(Sun.) - San Francisco at Seattle - SAN FRANCISCO
(Mon.) - Pittsburgh at Cincinnati - CINCINNATI

Week 1 Recap

Three played last week, including myself, and we all went 10-6.  And I needed both wins on Monday night to make it there.

Rick Cook (10-6)
Matt Shoemaker (10-6)
Jon Walk (10-6)

(Thu.) - Baltimore at Denver - DENVER (Win - Denver, 49-27)
(Sun.) - Tennessee at Pittsburgh - PITTSBURGH (Loss - Tennessee, 16-9)
(Sun.) - New England at Buffalo - NEW ENGLAND (Win - New England, 23-21)
(Sun.) - Atlanta at New Orleans - ATLANTA (Loss - New Orleans, 23-17)
(Sun.) - Tampa Bay at New York Jets - TAMPA BAY (Loss - New York Jets, 18-17)
(Sun.) - Kansas City at Jacksonville - JACKSONVILLE (Loss - Kansas City, 28-2)
(Sun.) - Seattle at Carolina - SEATTLE (Win - Seattle, 12-7)
(Sun.) - Miami at Cleveland - MIAMI (Win - Miami, 23-10)
(Sun.) - Minnesota at Detroit - MINNESOTA (Loss - Detroit, 34-24)
(Sun.) - Oakland at Indianapolis - INDIANAPOLIS (Win - Indianapolis, 21-17)
(Sun.) - Cincinnati at Chicago - CHICAGO (Win - Chicago, 24-21)
(Sun.) - Arizona at St. Louis - ST. LOUIS (Win - St. Louis, 27-24)
(Sun.) - Green Bay at San Francisco - SAN FRANCISCO (Win - San Francisco, 34-28)
(Sun.) - New York Giants at Dallas - NEW YORK GIANTS (Loss - Dallas, 36-31)
(Mon.) - Philadelphia at Washington - PHILADELPHIA (Win - Philadelphia, 33-27)
(Mon.) - Houston at San Diego - HOUSTON (Win - Houston, 31-28)


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

NFL Pick 'Em - Week 1

First game is Thursday night and, of course, we have a full schedule.

Here's who I think is going to win ...  What about you?

(Thu.) - Baltimore at Denver - DENVER
(Sun.) - Tennessee at Pittsburgh - PITTSBURGH
(Sun.) - New England at Buffalo - NEW ENGLAND
(Sun.) - Atlanta at New Orlenas - ATLANTA
(Sun.) - Tampa Bay at New York Jets - TAMPA BAY
(Sun.) - Kansas City at Jacksonville - JACKSONVILLE
(Sun.) - Seattle at Carolina - SEATTLE
(Sun.) - Miami at Cleveland - MIAMI
(Sun.) - Minnesota at Detroit - MINNESOTA
(Sun.) - Oakland at Indianapolis - INDIANAPOLIS
(Sun.) - Cincinnati at Chicago - CHICAGO
(Sun.) - Arizona at St. Louis - ST. LOUIS
(Sun.) - Green Bay at San Francisco - SAN FRANCISCO
(Sun.) - New York Giants at Dallas - NEW YORK GIANTS
(Mon.) - Philadelphia at Washington - PHILADELPHIA
(Mon.) - Houston at San Diego - HOUSTON

There might be a reach or two here, but isn't that what it's all about?


Monday, September 2, 2013

NCAA College Football Pick 'Em - Week 2

Jump in and play at any time!

If you post your picks in the Facebook comment, I'll know who you are (obviously).  If you leave your picks in the comment here, please leave your name.

The lack of challenging games continues into week 2 of the NCAA college football season.

Notre Dame vs. Michigan and South Carolina vs. Georgia headline this week's dance card.

Florida at Miami (Fla.) used to be a marquee matchup any time the two teams played, but the battle for recruiting is the hottest here.

The rest?  I simply tried to pick the games that would produce the closest result either by knowledge or from looking at the point spread.  Enjoy!

Week 2 Schedule

(Sat.) - #13/#14 Notre Dame at #17 Michigan - MICHIGAN
(Sat.) - #6 South Carolina at #11/#12 Georgia - SOUTH CAROLINA
(Sat.) - #12/#9 Florida at --/#24 Miami (Fla.) - FLORIDA
(Sat.) - #2/#3 Oregon at Virginia - OREGON
(Sat.) - Hawaii at Oregon State - HAWAII

(Sat.) - Sam Houston State at #7 Texas A&M - TEXAS A&M
(Sat.) - #15/#16 Texas at BYU - TEXAS
(Sat.) - Montana State at SMU - SMU (Don't be surprised if Montana State gives the Ponies a game)
(Sat.) - Houston at Temple - HOUSTON
(Sat.) - Prairie View A&M at Texas State - TEXAS STATE

(Sat.) - Eastern Michigan at Penn State - PENN STATE
(Sat.) - Monmouth at Liberty - LIBERTY  (Monmouth lost to FCS #2 Montana State on the road.)
(Sat.) - Syracuse at #19/#20 Northwestern - NORTHWESTERN  (Media Bowl)
(Fri.) - Wake Forest at Boston College - BOSTON COLLEGE
(Sat.) - Duke at Memphis - DUKE

Week 1 Recap

Went 11-3 going into Monday night's game between Florida State and Pittsburgh.  Missed two games - Clemson vs. Georgia and BYU vs. Virginia - by a total of six points.  My two reaches, I thought, paid off.  They were UTSA over New Mexico and Northern Illinois over Iowa.  New Mexico has been horrible as of later and UTSA's coach is former Miami (Fla.) head man Larry Coker and Northern Illinois has a Heisman candidate in Jordan Lynch and played in the Orange Bowl.  Iowa is always up for an upset.

Jon Walk - (12-3)
Anonymous Yahoo User - (11-4)
Don Womble - (8-7)

(Sat.) - #5 Georgia at #8 Clemson - GEORGIA (Loss - Clemson, 38-35)
(Sat.) - #12 LSU at #20 TCU - LSU (Win - LSU, 37-27)
(Sat.) - #19 Boise State at Washington - BOISE STATE (Loss - Washington, 38-6)
(Mon.) - #11 Florida State at Pittsburgh - FLORIDA STATE (Win - Florida State, 41-13)
(Sat.) - Mississippi State at #13 Oklahoma State - OKLAHOMA STATE (Win - OSU, 21-3)

(Fri.) - Texas Tech at SMU - TEXAS TECH (Win - Texas Tech, 41-23)
(Sat.) - Rice at #7 Texas A&M - TEXAS A&M (Win - A&M, 52-31)
(Sat.) - Idaho at North Texas - NORTH TEXAS (Win - North Texas, 40-6)
(Sat.) - UTSA at New Mexico - UTSA (Win - UTSA, 21-13)
(Sat.) - New Mexico State at #15 Texas - TEXAS (Win - Texas, 56-7)

(Thu.) - Liberty at Kent State - KENT STATE (Win - Kent State, 17-10)
(Sat.) - Penn State at Syracuse - PENN STATE (Win - Penn State, 23-17)
(Sat.) - Houston Baptist at Sam Houston State - SHSU (Win - SHSU, 74-0)
(Sat.) - Northern Illinois at Iowa - NORTHERN ILLINOIS (Win - Northern Illinois, 30-27)
(Sat.) - BYU at Virginia - BYU (Loss - Virginia, 19-16)

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Kickoff Run For Sight 5K Race Report

Getting ready to head into this weekend's events, I haven't had a chance to blog a little about the Kickoff Run For Sight 5K that I ran in Mobile, Alabama last Saturday.

I made the trip over to the Mobile area to see a very good friend of mine, Rebecca Massie, get married to a good, down-to-earth guy in Keith Bell.

I guess you could say they've been together for a little while (I don't get into a lot of that ... i.e. keeping up with how long, etc. ... even with friends), but the one thing that has always impressed me about Rebecca is that she doesn't do friendships half-way.

If you're her friend, she goes all in.  A very risky, yet admirable trait.  So when I was invited to attend her wedding, I was fortunate enough to be able to make the trip.

And shortly after making the travel arrangements, of course, there was a race to be found!

I've run in Mobile before; therefore, it wasn't a new north American city - as I have over 100 outside of Texas to my credit, but it was on the campus of the University of South Alabama.

One of my better half marathons was the First Light Half Marathon a few years ago and then, two Januarys ago, Bill Dwyer and I traveled to Jackson, Mississippi so I could run the Mississippi Blues Marathon before venturing south to Mobile to watch Adrienne Langelier, Rebecca and a couple of her friends break the First Light Marathon women's relay record.

Actually, I think they shattered it.  Nonetheless, I historically digress.

The race benefited the sight programs of the University Lions Club and the one thing that was excellent - a rarity in the south - was that they had a "no shirt" registration option.  (You see this a lot in the Pacific Northwest, but rarely in Texas where I live.)

Start time was 7:30 a.m. and it was only about five minutes off of getting the race started on-time.  Not a major inconvenience, even though rains from the Gulf were threatening.  With the humidity, it wouldn't have been a bad thing.

The course (here) was a little out and back with a 1.5-mile elongated loop in the middle of it -- think of a lollipop, I guess.  Course map -

In that loop was the mile 15 marker of the First Light Marathon where there was a relay exchange.  If memory serves me correct, it is where Sam Gardner handed off to Rebecca.  (If I'm wrong, I'll be corrected!)

Coming off a good weekend the week before in West Virginia and Ohio, my fear was that the humidity would be a kick in the rear end again.

It was, but it really didn't seem to come in to play until the last mile.

A good bit of the first mile was slightly downhill as we ran toward the University of South Alabama Circle.  The left-hand turn onto Aubrey Green Drive brought the mile 1 marker at the top of a slight incline and I posted a 9:32.18 first mile.

Felt pretty good and even though I knew I was slowing down some - while just trying to run steady - I took a quick breather once or twice after making a right on to Health Services Road and then on to USA North Drive.

The mile 2 marker revealed a 9:56.85 time for a cumulative mark of 19:29.03.  Not too bad.  9:45 per mile.

But it was mile three, going slightly back up hill, especially even the last stretch that ran by the USA intramural soccer fields, that brought out a 10:39.01 butt-kicking on me.

Now, what's crazy is that all of my post didn't get "cut and pasted" in here.  And I didn't notice it until Adrienne made a comment Sunday morning on what was already here.

And I didn't save what I had entered into either Word Pad or when I cut and paste it to Note Pad before getting it in here.  Ugh!

Well, the bottom line is that I had a gun time that was a second off of the official timer, Little Red Hen Productions, but I had a 7-second offset for my "chip time" that put my overall time at 30:57.

The last tenth of a mile, of which the marker was set just past the last right hand turn to set up a straight shot to the finish, came in like 49 seconds.  I figured it to be "on" - or measured correctly - on the way out because I mentally remember it being 56 seconds (which is just under a 10-minute pace).

My summary was that this is a nice event.  The course isn't completely closed, but at 7:30 a.m. in the morning early in the semester there wasn't much traffic.  The University of South Alabama and the City of Mobile police monitored the course extremely well.

I think the official results had just 87 official timed finishers - and I think that I might have been 47th.  Ugh.  Nonetheless, I enjoyed myself.

Well, except for the one gentleman just outside of the finish chute.  Again, the official timer was really doing manual timing and using the tear tag at the bottom of the bib to keep people in order.

There were three workers and the first gentleman - as there was also a female and a second man beyond him - was rude and not any help at all.  He was hollering for me to tear my tag off after I came running hard to the finish line.  My thought was, "Buddy, why don't you do something and tear it off for me."

It left me a little perturbed.  But since I really was looking to get back to the hotel so I could get showered and begin the drive back to New Orleans, I quickly got my keys, which were under the timer's tent, went to a Pavillion area, grabbed a banana and a bottle of water and went to my car.

Since there was a tropical wave in the Gulf of Mexico, I wanted to get to the Louis Armstrong Airport to get on an earlier flight to make it home with plenty of time before I needed to go back out and get my parents, who were flying in from Pittsburgh after visiting my grandparents.