summer 2016

 

plodding and stumbling and shuffling and crawling…

The winter doldrums of 2016 took longer to shake off, with a knee injury and the hit in motivation that entailed. Some professional therapy and a shift in my running gait means things have been on the up and up for the last couple of months. One day at a time.

Pistol 55k

This was my third time running the 50k/55k. It’s just one of those events you can’t miss out on if you live in the area. We are lucky to have Will and his crew organizing such a quality event. This also by the way marks at least the second time I’ve dropped down to the 50k. There’s a theme here for me. Better luck next year. Yes, I’ll sign up for the 100 again, fingers crossed.

Three Sisters Ultra Festival

Ran this fun loop course in Maryville set up by your friendly neighborhood bad-ass runners Kathy, Tony and Leah. I had a surprisingly good day pushing towards 60 miles for the 12(13hr) race. A couple of local bands played good americana and bluegrass type music. Besides the nice spread and ample supply of adult beverages the home roasted coffee was a nice cap on a fun day.

Trail Series Races

I got asked to help out with the local trail series organized by the Knoxville Track Club. Treadin Troddin Tails. Luckily they’ve not given me anything important to mess up yet. It’s a nice group of level headed local runners. The series is fun and attracts a wide level of experiences, a great introduction to running on trails.

Knoxville Marathon (Covenant Health Marathon)

Third time running this marathon. This time was a little different as I was pacing the 4:00 hour. Trying to keep an even pace was a good experience. Kathy and Billy were good fellow pacers keeping things fun. It felt much like a long training run. It was odd not finishing with anyone, I passed many and had a few folks follow along for some miles. But they all trailed off at some point. Knoxville isn’t the easiest of road marathons. The climbs and rolling hills start adding up after awhile.

Race Under the Stars

A 10 hour event loop course on Oak Ridge city park. This was more spur of the moment and I ended up sleeping in the car for 4 hours. The day was just too filled up for me to handle. Happens all the time. My nick name should be “Napster.” Other than that the usual suspects were out + the random people I’ve never seen before. The flat timed events attract a slightly different breed of runner. There is a similar race later in the summer I may sign up for. Not sure why I keep doing these, must like them on some level. Nothing beats the mountains though.

Scotland

Always a good experience to run in different places. Technically they speak English here although that could be debated. Running the West Highland Way was a highlight although I cut it short at about 50 miles and called it good for now. My body was not cooperating and ran out of gas early on. Some more manageable day hikes and runs in the mountains were on the menu for the rest of the trip. Overall a great two weeks away from the stress.

Back to the South

Back to the heat, the humidity, the forests, the lakes, the smokey mountains. Good times.

Odds and ends

-Finally signed up for Strava. Much better than Garmin Connect.
-Seems everyone is getting a coach these days?
-Have a ton of new shoes and other equipment I may or may not share some thoughts on.
-Ran without a watch for a few months thinking it would be helpful to get away from technology. Turns out it just made me slower…

cheers

>Ken