Monday, June 10, 2013

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Carlsbad 13.1 and Triabetes Training Camp

Carlsbad Half Marathon- January 2013

2013 was my fourth year at the Carlsbad Marathon weekend with Insulindependence. We had over 100 runners and volunteers on the team. This year, I signed up to set a new PR at the 13.1 road half marathon distance. I succeeded with a 1:38 holding a steady, consistent effort.

Mile 11- Photo by Brennan Cassidy
As I gain more race experience, my sense of pacing at each distance improves. I had no illusions of outstanding specific fitness for this particular race, yet I managed to hold a very even pace from start to finish. I started in the third wave and picked my way through minimal traffic before finding a good rhythm. I enjoyed having dozens of friends at the race, many wearing the same jersey and running for a shared cause.
Friendly competition can be a great source of motivation. At least two teammates led the way and, in the spirit of racing, I tried my best to catch them while also staying within my own limits. Two other friends followed just minutes behind, promising to pass if I slowed. Late in race, I got a boost of energy at the Insulindependence pirate-themed water station. I was happy to see them, but purposely ran through without slowing. The ideal So Cal winter beach weather allowed me to rely on prehydration during this less than two hour effort. I only took water a few times to chase the gels.

Triabetes Training Camp- February 2013

I was honored to be invited to participate in this year’s Triabetes Training Camp in Tucson, AZ. This year’s captains are training for Ironman Boulder 70.3 in August. We were led by Coach Cliff Scherb, a triathlon and diabetes expert who is aiming to become the world’s fastest diabetic ironman. Club Manager Vic Kinnunen handled logistics and served as a team dad of sorts. IN Staff member Brennan Cassidy who recently had a strong IM debut of his own, drove SAG and facilitated the camp. My role was to participate as a past captain alongside the current group of captains; a treat to say the least. Accomplished T1D athletes Bill Carlson and James Stout also joined us.

Halfway up Mount Lemmon with Vic

The highlight of training in Tucson, besides making new friends, is riding Mt. Lemmon. It is a long, sustained climb that rewards you with a fast descent full of wide, sweeping turns. The cool weather this year made for perfect climbing conditions.

Looking Ahead

I might run the LA Marathon in March. A friend offered his bib that he is unable to use due to an injury. My goal race is the Leona Divide 50M in April. I ran it last year in under twelve hours. This year, I aim to take up to an hour off that time. While my diabetic friends across the country help me confront living with a broken pancreas, my So Cal Coyote Running teammates are my regular, local training partners, coaches, and mentors especially out on the trails. Looking forward to ramping up the mileage this month... after all, it's the journey, not the destination, that matters most.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

XTERRA Boney Mountain

The Boney Mountain 21k starts with a pavement descent, then a 500+ foot climb before dropping again. At mile six, another climb begins gradually. It gets steeper and continues to take you up the mountain for four miles. A fast two miles follows if the runner has saved enough energy to keep a high turnover bombing down towards the finish line.

This year, the temperature was cool. It rained overnight, but the trails in the Northeast section of Point Mugu State Park held up well. I ran a personal course best 2:15. Here is a comparison of the six minute difference between 2012 and 2013 on the same course. As for nutrition, I started with a bottle of Accelerade, refilled with plain water, and took one or two gels during the run.

My next race is the Carlsbad 13.1 on January 27th, but looking ahead to the Leona Divide 50 Miler, this practice for my nutrition strategy in attempt to finish in under 11 hours at LD50. My 2013 goals are ambitious: set a personal course best at every race I enter. 

As I mentioned, Carlsbad Half Marathon is next. My course best there is 1:46 and I have run one other half in 1:39.59. While my training is focused on improving climbing ability for Pine to Palm 100M in September, I run sufficient pavement miles and downhill trails to make a PR feasible. We’ll find out in less than two weeks.

I have not yet registered for LD50 which takes place at the end of April. I want to see how Carlsbad goes first. If it is sold out by the time I decide, my longest run in preparation for Pine to Palm will be pacing at a friend’s 100M race. Pine to Palm has a cutoff of 34 hours and I ran AC in 32:30 in 2012.