Afton 50km

Afton 50km
After racing 6 weeks of intense racing between May and June, I wasn’t going to race Afton this year. However, after a couple days training on the SHT and then racing Bryce, I realized that I needed more time on the trail. My trail fitness was disappointing. I lagged behind both Jared and Bunda, unable to do anything more than plod along at a determined, but pathetic shuffle. Quick on the road doesn’t necessarily mean quick on the trail. After a relaxing 4:45am car drive out to the park, our crew of trail people magically assembled. This included Bekah, Jason, Bunda, Jared, and Todd.
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Briefly, six glorious weekends

Briefly, six glorious weekends
Week one: Superior 50km Post here Week two: Med City Marathon Downtown Rochester is comprised of corridors that connect in a seemingly linear fashion. You leave a point, travel to another point, and arrive there without ever diverging from a direct route by more than 100 feet. However, these linear paths are achieved via a jagged meander that reveals a look of utter disbelief when you actually arrive at your destination. “What the…” The streets are largely empty and unused, with people crammed into restaurants and skulking in the apocalypse-ready catacombs or skyways.
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Spring Superior 50k

Spring Superior 50k
The Mill City trail running crew, sans Gary and a few others, assembled at Burrito Union in Duluth. Jason declared the weekend one of no limits by eating two of the legendary Rasputin burritos—an item of such impressive volume and density that each is accompanied by a sticker meant to chronicle the achievement. Sadly, there was not an even more impressive sticker for double fisting it. Jared, Bunda, and I opted for the much less impressive, perhaps even un-American, Vegan Socialist. It was a pleasant start to the weekend. We soon arrived at Caribou Highlands.
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Irish Run 8km race report

Irish Run 8km race report
I finished my first 8km in 31:23, or about 6:17 min/mile pace. The horrible photo above reflects the effort that I exerted, which was substantial. Having never run a race shorter than a half marathon, I didn’t really know what to expect, so I used this strategy—run as hard as possible for as long as possible. Madeline and Ken met me at my house for a warm-up. I felt pretty terrible during this 3.5 mile stretch, struggling to breathe normally even at an 8:30 pace. I considered whether running 15 on Saturday, 12 on Friday, and 10 on Thursday might not have been the best taper.
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Pacers for the Superior 100

After finishing the first MCR supported long run of the season, Jared, Bunda, Gary, Jason and I went to the Triple Rock for brunch. Since it was the first day of registration for the race that has been my obsession for three years, I brought my laptop. Leaving nothing to chance, I ensured my name appeared on the list before passing the laptop clockwise, beginning at 12 o’clock. Four out of the five people at the table would register, with three out of those four doing so to Metallica’s Master of Puppets. This does not bode well for the fourth.
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My first 80 mile week

The prospect of competing in my first hundred mile race later this year has dictated a more concerted effort to acquire base fitness. For the first couple months of the year, that has meant 60 mile weeks. However, last week, the confluence of nice weather, increased involvement with the Mill City racing team, and Jason’s preparation for the Zumbro 100 signaled that it was time to put in my first 80+ mile week of the year. Here’s how it went down. Monday (10.2 miles)This was just an easy loop down the River Road and backup up the other side via Ford Parkway.
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Grip studs for running

Grip studs for running
I must confess this an unoriginal idea. One of my favorite bloggers did a thing, I marveled, and then eventually proceeded to do the same thing. The severe cold and abundance of snow this winter has made ice an infrequent concern, so when I first read Lael’s post, I admired her ingenuity, but did nothing more than catalog the information with other neat-but-useless tricks that occupy my mind. However, the sloppy freeze-thaw cycle has arrived for the spring, leaving me feeling like a stranded animal in one of those well documented hovercraft assisted deer rescues.
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How and why I quit coffee

The reality of quitting coffee was starkly different from the projections that I made each time I would vaguely consider taking the first step. Traumatic visions—aided by coffee’s elicitation of a bodily stress response—made the task seem not only undesirable, but insurmountable. Now twelve days clear of the situation, I can see that it was a classic case of addiction. The thing made me need the thing more, and the fear of needing the thing made me consume the thing with increasing frequency and volume. In the end, I estimate that I was consuming over 300mg of caffeine each day.
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Recent Photos

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