Thursday, December 15, 2011

Running and UFC!

Wow how time fly's when you're having fun!! Coming off of JJ100 I have been just basically taking it easy in the run world and resting my foot as much as possible. I have been more on the weight training and TRX training plan for the time being along with some elliptical training and other cardio work but running has been far and few between. Now I know that I am losing my cardio fitness for running but overall I think at this time its okay as soon I work to build it back.

One of the cooler things that has been occurring is working with 2x UFC Heavyweight Champ Frank Mir in preparing for his UFC140 rematch with Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. I have been stretching and utilizing Chiropractic to help him improve his range of motion and recover between training sessions. Since the fight was in Toronto, Canada he asked me to come along for the days leading up to the fight. This was a totally great experience and I am very blessed to be asked to be a part of his traveling team, Team Mir!

While in Toronto I also had the great pleasure of introducing Fascial Stretch Therapy to Ricky Lundell from University of Grappling, Mike Whitehead, and Danny "DeeOne" Davis Jr. all part of Franks training team. I also got to meet some really great people involved in the UFC world and just experience the world of UFC. Fight night was very exciting with Frank submitting Nogueira in a Kimura and earning Submission of the Century! and submitting a legend in the UFC world, it did end in a break of Nog's arm.

It was a fast fun week and again I am very thankful to all of Team Mir!

Since I got back I was interviewed by Chris Fredrick co-founder of Stretch To Win on working with MMA/UFC fighters and Frank Mir. Check out the video here:

Also, back in the run world, I didn't get selected for the Western States 100, boo!! but I should be in for New York Marathon 2012!! its my 4th year to enter so 3 times prior I have been denied! NYC watch out, JT is coming to town!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Javalina got me early

The short story: I dnf'd at mile 46.2, 12 hours 26 minutes. Next Year!

The long story: 
My foot had been bothering me for a few weeks leading up to JJ100 and finally about 3 weeks out I just took completely off from running, with my last long run of 20.5 miles. I did all I could to help relieve it but finally the week of the race I was able to get some KT tape on it and although I have never been a big believe as I have used it before for an ITB issue but didn't notice it helping, this time I noticed a quick 180* on the foot, so it works, maybe better in other areas but I am glad it got my foot under control before race day. Hat's off to Dr. Victor Leach, from Bio-Mechanics of Las Vegas for helping me out. 

Tim and his wife, Catherine and I left Friday morning in there RV and I would pick Dez up later that night in Phoenix as she was flying in late. The ride down was cool as I have never really rode in a 37' RV, its a house on wheels so that was pretty cool. Cynthia and her husband, Tim, were already at JJ100 and had set up a tent/canopy site and gave me the location and save a spot next to them. Once we got into Fountain Hills we unhooked the SUV and I went down to set up our canopy area and Tim/Catherine went to set up the RV at the camp ground site. I came back after setting up and then we all returned to packet pickup where I saw my great friends, Andy and Catra, George V, and Connie and her husband David. The line for the pre-race food was pretty long but that was okay, because we were not staying and heading back to the RV for some grilled chicken and pasta that Catherine was cooking. We got a pretty neat soft cooler but Dez would later say it leaks so maybe it's not that great but looks cool, and of course a great tech shirt. 

Once back at the RV we ate and I chilled out for just a few then I headed off to the hotel room I had reserved for Dez and I on Friday and then would pick her up later. The hotel was an Extended Stay and it was pretty nice with all the kitchen stuff but just a little far from the race site. After picking Dez up and returning back to the hotel it was lights out as I had everything ready to go for the morning and 3:30am would come fast since it was already 10:30pm. 

As I woke up I was already excite and feeling good. I quickly cooked up some scrambled eggs and a bagel and cream cheese and some coffee. I would drink an Isagenix shake just after this on the drive to the race. We had to pick Tim up from the RV at about 5am and get our drop bags checked in. Once all that happened it was preparing for the start, filling water bottles, putting gels and Isagenix bars in my pockets, ipod and a light. I had about 10 minutes and was finally ready to go. I kissed Dez and made my way to the starting line.

The Race: 15.5 mile loop and is run odd # loops clockwise, even # loops counterclockwise for a total of 6 loops and then a short 9ish mile loop to make it complete. This year there would be 3 aid stations. First on 2 miles from the start, then 6.4 miles, then 4 miles then another 3ish and your back at the start/finish. Last year there was only 2 aid stations on the course so it was good to have another one. There was 391 registered to start but looks like 339 actually started.
173 completed 101.4 miles of which 65 were Sub-24 finishers, Tim was 23:26! (the winner Hal Koerner 13:47! wth!! this guy actually lapped me twice) There was 126 runners credited with 100k finish. This course is talked to be flat but it really is not and is quite deceptive. It has many short rollers and is a gradual up and down hill portions depending on which way your running.

With the start of 339 people on some narrow trails almost single track at times it takes a while to thin out the crowd and so I just stayed my easy walk run pace and let people pass as they needed. As we started clockwise there is a section I had remembered from last year about mile 2-5 that was pretty rock and this year it was still rocky but seemed to me a little less or maybe it was just me. As I was in the rocky section I just took my time and being careful not to jam my foot and make it hurt early and once through the section it was back to running the rollers and finally making it to the 2nd aid station which was 8.4 miles from the start. I remember thinking that later on this was going to seem like forever but being as it was early I didn't worry about it. I checked in, found my drop bag and ditched my light jacket as it was warmer now than the start. 

My nutrition was pretty simply, use some Hammer gel's and a few Accel Gels along with Isagenix IsaLean Lemon and a Chocolate/Peanut Butter bar and I would drink an Isagenix Shake at then end of each lap. An interesting twist to all my hydration is that I would be using water, other than from the aid stations, from a Kangen machine that alkalized all the water with at least 9.0ph. I would fill all my bottles each time I came in from the lap and drink some with my all my shakes and just take a few drinks before I left. I actually felt a difference in using/drinking this water and with a task of a 100 miles at hand, anything to help.

By the end of the 1st loop I was feel okay and all was good. I felt a little tight in the legs but I figured that was from lack of running over the last 3 weeks and so I kept things nice and easy finishing up the loop in about 3:30 mins, on track. I started the 2nd loop and remembered what fun it was going counter-clockwise as its a long continuous uphill grind, although not steep just a gradual incline for the next 6 miles and while I took it easy and walked/jogged at times I was soon to the downhill section. All nutrition was going well and I was liking the use of the Isagenix shakes and the lemon bar, the chocolate was not the best and played with my taste buds so I backed off on it for a while. The Hammer gels were okay too for the time being. As I hit the rocky section I really started to run and was enjoying this part of the trail. I started to pass a few people and then I just found myself in the groove and was hammering down the trail through this rocky area and feeling comfortable. Once passed this its the 2mile aid station and then back to the start/finish which seems to take forever to get to because my legs were not happy running this easy non technical portion, weird. I finished up the 2nd lap about 3hrs 45 mins and had to take some time to work on my feet as I could feel some hot spots coming on and needed some BlisterShield. I also ate some sandwich's, another shake and refilled all my waters. Being as my hip was starting to hurt I had mentioned it to Tim, Cynthia's husband and he said he had some Kool n'Fit spray I should use, so he sprayed me down right through my shorts with a bug sprayer. I immediately felt the coolness of the spray but then soon came the warm sensation, similar to a Bio-Freeze but different, I felt good quickly and then I was off for the start of the 3rd.

As I left on the 3rd loop my right leg was bothering although not nearly as much as before I had the Kool n'Fit spray, it had actually been more in my right glute region and I was stopping to stretch it several times during loop 2 but now it has moved to more of ITB/Hip flexor region and making it difficult to run. I started back up the rocky section and quickly settled into a strong power hike and worked my way past some people but once I was through all that and back on the more runnable portion they all passed me back. It was hear where I started to become really hungry and not having the lemon bar was down side, I only had the chocolate one. I took hammer gel and was lucky it didn't come back out. My pace was much slower now and I was just in the total Funk Zone, it was warmer out now too and I knew that wasn't helping. I kept moving but noticed my pace was 18-20 min/miles and so I tried to work a little harder to keep it lower but then my leg was just happy. Getting to the aid station at mile 8.4 from the start finish took what seemed like forever but I had a little goal in mind and that was to beat Tim and Bill Andrews there as I had got a text from Dez as to when the left starting there 4th loop. I was also trying my hardest to get there because I wanted some FOOD! I finally made it there and grabbed Cynthia's bottle of Kool n'Fit she had in her drop bag, ahhh,, but this time I sprayed both legs! Then I made my way to 2 cups of soup, 2 cookies, Mt. Dew, and then I was back on the trail. I knew eating all that food I would need a little time to digest it so I took it easy for a mile or so then I started running and that's when I finally saw Tim and Bill coming, Yes, I had not only beat them in/out of the aid station but even a little farther down the trail. We stopped and chatted briefly and then I started walking again but I noticed my leg was nagging again so I would run for a short distance just to shake it off but then have to walk. The sun was setting and I was behind on my time to arrive back at the start/finish before it got dark and knew I would be in the dark soon. Several other people had passed me while I was walking after eating and it had been about 30 minutes and all of a sudden I got a good song going and started jogging, then I replayed the song 3 more times and was running! It came to me to take advantage of this moment for as long as I could because 1) it would be dark soon and I wouldn't be able to see the trail that good to run safely, 2) I couldn't feel my leg and 3) I wanted to catch some of those people that had passed me. I caught all but one guy before I finished the 3rd loop but about 2 miles out it became too dark to run and I had to stop. I would use the lights from the oncoming runners to jog for a brief time but then walk again and now my leg was really pissed off at me for all that running and chasing I was doing. I was limping now. Looking at my time I would be finishing this 3rd loop in about 5 hours and I immediately knew I was done!

I wasn't even back to the start/finish but I knew my legs just didn't have it in them to go 100 miles, or 64 more miles. Excuse me for saying but I was also not interested in walking the 4th loop for 6 hours and dropping at 100k being as I had finished the 100k last year. I came into the start/finish, found Dez got some pizza and went to sit down. I told her what was going on and that I was going to drop. This is always the toughest part simply because she works hard and is out there for me and to tell her I am stopping is just not a  fun thing, not so much that I am physically just not there but telling her. She supports me and understands to some level and with that, I am done. I sit around for a while and get some more food and then really start to stiffen up so walking like a mummy is very apparent now. Tim and Bill have arrived and Bill has finished the 100k and in a qualifying time for Western States so he is done, he actually took 3rd in the 100k! Tim's stomach is on the blink and finally moves out to start his 5th loop. I calculate he will be back in about 3:30-4hours so we go to the RV where I showered up and slept. 

As I was sleeping the rain started to come down pretty good and knowing that Tim was out there working it was very inspiring because it just makes it that much tougher. He finished and arrived back at the RV where we congratulated him, then went back to bed. 

Dez and I went in the morning to get all of our gear, drop bags and stuff from the start/finish area and grab some breakfast while Tim rested up. We later were packed up and headed back to Vegas.

Overall, the race was a blast and I enjoyed it, even if I did dnf. I knew going into the race that not running the 3 weeks before would have some effect on me. My base for going the distance felt good but just the lack of time on the legs/feet was the missing link. The foot issue leading up to this event was a definitely a factor that changed my mechanics and effected my kinetic chain. Now its time to recover and then get to work on my strength factor and make sure my leg/s are back in action before another big run is taken on. I will enjoy my time off from longer stuff and look forward to getting back to it next year. I will be back at Javalina100 next year, as I know it is a race I can finish!


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

my nagging foot and Javalina100.

One more race to go and it seems like it's taking forever to get here but the days are rolling by so fast I need more time to train, does that make sense? 

Javalina100 is 24 days away and although I have been getting some runs completed I have been having some continuing problems with that right bone bruise from a year ago. It has it's days where its just not happy to walk let alone run so I have been training with it annoying me, which sucks. The plan was to have 3 weeks of 50+ miles but I have been lucky to get into the 40's with the foot issue, so I'll have to take what I can leading up to the race and play a smart race day strategy to get me to the finish, which despite any other crazy things I should  complete it. 

Last weekend was a great event fascial stretching lots of triathletes at the Pumpkinman Triathlon and a great opportunity for Hurt Less Play More, LLC to show its expertise! Thanks to all the people that came and got stretched, must have been about 45+, it was a long day but went pretty fast.

I was watching the Ironman World Championships a couple of weeks ago and was really excited to see a great race in both the men and women's fields and while I was watching I really got the tri-bug going and now for 2012 I will be looking to jump back in the tri-arena, just have to find the right race and distance but I do know it will be a 70.3 or 140.6, maybe not "M-dot" but a sure distance. 

As for ultra-running I am looking to get this Javalina100 under the belt and take a little time off and recoup the foot. I wanted to look at applying for Badwater2012 but with the foot and still needing another 100 by Feb, its just not a good time so I will focus on crewing for my 4th year. Overall I haven't really thought much about next year which is probably a good thing being as I usually plan so far ahead but I will revisit this thought after JJ100.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Wow, what a busy last couple of weeks. Not only have I got a little busier at the office, which is much welcomed coming back from India, but my run training has also increased.

I put the plan in action to increase my run volume heading towards Javalina 100 and although I could probably be doing a little more I am keeping at 50-60 mile weeks simply because my right foot has been bothering me more after my runs and in early mornings. I did need new shoes and so I purchased a new set but no real change in the pain to my foot after an 11 mile run. This foot pain is the same one that I have had since this time last year when I hit my right 5th metatarsal base while running at Mt. Charleston and my foot slipped. It hit right on the bone and bone bruise occurred and at times it feels fine but since my volume has increased it has just not been happy. Maybe also because I have been primarily running on the road because JJ100 is a very runnable course and I wanted to keep my speed and overall running up vs. run-walking on other trails.

The team we had scheduled for Las Vegas Ragnar Relay fell apart this past week which is no worries as the timing just seemed to be off the mark heading into JJ100 and work.
On a cool note, this weekend, Oct. 15th.  I will be out at the Pumpkinman Triathlon providing some recovery stretching all day long!! I am excited to be out working in the community event and getting as many bodies on the table as I can. I know it will be long tiring work but all worth it.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Fitness Challenge - Vegas, Who's in?

This week has been a totally recovery week, not that I did a lot of miles at RDL but the heat really took it out of me and it took several days to really feel "normal". During this time I have been looking at my training schedule leading up to Javalina100 and wanted to incorporate some other fitness training and along with my office get some people interested in joining me to get in shape. I figured why not, I'm already working out so let's see if anyone in the community wants to come along. 

Announcing the Hurt Less Play More - Fitness Challenge! 
I will be teaming up with Jill Birth, 2011 IsaBody Grand Champion who won $120,000 in doing so. check out Jill's Way and see her story. Jill released 131 lbs and went from dress size 22 to 4! It didn't happen overnight, it took 8 months and she achieved her goals and changed her life forever! 
The challenge will be starting in October and will include fitness routines during the week and sessions to work out with me personally. Jill will also attended as scheduled and assist in weekly team calls for questions/answers as well as assist in nutritional counseling to educate the team on daily meals to prepare/cook and to incorporate Isagenix nutrition. 
80% of all fitness and health gains are nutritionally with 20% being the physical aspect so its very important in this challenge to educate the team on changing there lifestyle habits. 
Various workout routines will be held at different locations in the city of Las Vegas and will be using various exercises to train, example: running/jogging/walking, TRX, circuit routines, jump ropes, kettle bells, swimming, biking, weight training. A variety of things to keep it fresh and have fun!

I am excited to offer this to the community of Las Vegas and help people change there lives and improve there health! 
I've always helped people in my live/career and now this is a huge way to help! I am so excited!

If you live in Vegas and are interested in joining, email me at for more details.


Monday, September 12, 2011

RDL100 went down in flames.

I am not really sure where to start this recap so let's start at the end..
I dnf'd at mile 33.5! 11 hours 10 mins into the burning depths of the RDL100 course.
I was totally dehydrated, dizzy, throwing up, and had a slight chest pain, I knew my day was done.

The morning was great, waking up, excited ready to go. I ate a bagel on the way to the start and showed up with about 10 mins to go, I didn't want to get there too early and just wait around so my timing was good. I quickly checked in and did last minute checks for things I needed as I would not see Dez, my awesome crew support till mile 15 or more so I needed to be prepared. It was dark for the 5am start and we would be running  in the dark for at least an hour. The temperature at the start was low 70's and felt okay. The great race directors gave last minute instructions and then lined us all up and here is where I found Tim Duffy, who also ran LOL100 with me, he was ready to go as well and at the count down we shook hands and this was the last time I saw him as the we all started.

The excitement was great and I was nervous. I told Dez I wasn't sure why I was nervous because its not like a sprint, its a long ass day and it will be slow and steady but I loved the way I felt and that made me realize that I enjoy preparing, training and getting to the start line! I started running nice and easy but the pull of pack of 80+ runners was immediately noticed and I knew I was running fast but thought I would hang with everyone for 3 or 4 miles and then settle down. I ran with Ed Ettinghausen and caught up on his Badwater135 run from July and we talked about AltoLabs, La Ultra - The High and other cool stuff. After about 2 miles I knew I was just running too fast and started slowing down and was chatting with other runners at the back. It was approaching 6am and the Sun was starting to shin as we moved through to the single track portion of a lot of this run, soon the headlamp was off and I was enjoying the morning.

I could tell it was warming up but running in and out of the trees along the Folsom Lake was a great feeling. The rolling hills of the course also made it fun and somewhat interesting as I knew I could run these little rollers but then made me think that these little rollers could come back and get you later in the miles, as I learned at JJ100k last year, even after Sweet Baboo warned me about them. I would continue to run some and walk some but overall was just taking my time, my current pace after 6 miles was a nice 13mins/mile and although I knew it was too fast I was taking it because with the Sun coming up I knew I would be slowing down per my race plan and I would need the extra time bank.

The first 15 miles were pretty nice running on the trail, its really a neat place to run and even though there were some rocky sections and some shorter climbs it was great. By the time I hit Rattlesnake Bar aid station, mile 15.71 I was feeling good, eating well, drinking and not really too hot, although I was sweating and fighting off bugs who seemed to like my chap stick I came refilled all my bottles, took a great picture with my friend and aid station captain Dr. Bill Andrews, CEO of Sierra Sciences and off I went. 

When I left Rattle Snake aid station I had grabbed a couple of small PB&J's but soon noticed that my stomach was not to happy about that. I had been drinking Succeed - Ultra since then and at Rattle Snake I dumped it out as I noticed it was changing my stomach as well. (I think I actually used too much of this in the early hours, I double up and sipped on it but I think it was enough to throw my system off early in the day.) Being as it was starting to heat up I started taking my electrolytes, S-Caps, one per hour but it had already been about 4 hours since I started that I had take my first one, as Ultra drink has electrolytes I wanted to make sure I didn't over salt myself. 

Rattlesnake Bar to Cardiac Hill aid station was 6.28 miles. This section of the course was more technical, rocky at times and lots more of the shorter steep climbs. I remember thinking that this section was going to be tough at 3am!! I was starting to get a hot spot on the ball of my left foot, something that I have noticed in a couple of my last longer runs so I knew I was going to need to take care of it at Cardiac and apply BlisterShield, great stuff. During this section I was really noticing the heat starting to come out and we were in less covered areas, I was still running good at times when I could but I would start to heat up so I would slow down or walk just a short ways. I had already started using ice under my hat to keep cool and since I was in miles 15-21, my standard Suck-Zone I was feeling it. I am not sure why this is usually my "wall" area but 18-20ish is always a low spot for me and today was no different. I was hot. I had cramped already one time in my lower shin, so I took more salt and seemed to walking a little more than I wanted to, even in nice areas where I should be running but nothing I could do but keep moving and get the aid station. When I got there just before 11am Dez was waiting and I was glad to see her. She helped me with my BlisterShield in my socks, refilling my bottles, and ice in hat and bandanna. I also took a small Dr. Pepper bottle to carry with me and get something to calm my stomach. I hadn't anything in a while but knew I needed to as the couple of gel's I took were not going to be enough. Just before I left out of Cardiac there was a Rattle Snake crawling across the trail just about 20feet from the aid station table!! crazy!! but cool to see. I left feeling better after about 10 mins of getting cooled down and some hydration.

The climb from the bottom of Cardiac Hill to the top is a little less than mile but pretty much straight up with just a couple of switch backs, about 700foot climb and once at the top another 1/2 mile to the next aid station at Maidu. I took my time climbing up and had passed a great lady attempting her first 100, as she had passed me earlier in the day. I actually felt good climbing up and although it was hot I did my best to keep water on my head and stay cool but now after 11am its just getting hotter out, luckily this section has more trees so shaded areas were nice for a short rest. At the top I started running along the water canal that is here and would stop and wet my head down instead of using all my water in my hand held. I got to Maidu and was feeling good, another short refill stop with Dez, a couple of gels I picked up and ice and off I went to Auburn Damn overlook another 1.52 miles.This section at first was great because it was still along the canal and I was feeling good so I started running as much as possible and making up some time, I passed a couple of runners here but soon hit a couple of short steep climbs getting up to Auburn but was still moving good even though I was really feeling the heat and pouring water on me every few minutes. My stomach was still not happy even though I shoved a couple of gels down it along with more S-Caps. It seemed the more I tried to get a balance on my stomach the more it seemed to go the opposite direction. I got to Auburn Damn and again refilled all water and ice. Dez tried to get me eat something but I was just not having it, I didn't want anything. I put more sun block on and Dez had made a great duct tape job on a different hand held bottle I wanted to use because it help 4oz more and was insulated. This was a great idea and worked great but I also noticed the extra weight of it and had to switch hands more often.

Heading to No Hands Bridge from Auburn was 4.34 miles away and now I was just overheating like crazy. This section also was more exposed to the sun and I found myself walking a lot! I simply could not run as I would start over heating like crazy and I just felt worse, so my walking pace was about 18 mins/mile at times I would get to 16s but it didn't last long. I was bummed at this point because this part of the course is very runnable and I wanted to run but the heat was still killing me and I knew this was not part of the race plan. Stick with walking as fast as possible during the hot portion of the day and then we'll run at night was the plan. It was great seeing the leaders during this section of the course and encouraging them on as they did the same for me but it only last for minutes as my thoughts were fried from the heat on my head. Have I mentioned its hot? I forgot how far it was to No Hands Bridge and as I saw others coming towards me I would ask them which wasn't a good idea because the first time I asked the guy said 2 miles maybe a little more!! SHIT!! I kept moving and soon got close enough that one guy said, Just around the corner, maybe 1/2 mile probably less!! Yahoo!! that was great news as the dude before him said "yo man, your pushing the cut off, you need to run".. WTH, no shit dude! I was irritated by that comment but kept doing my race not his! As I came around the corner I saw No Hands Bridge and I was just about out water. I had used all 64oz I was carry, drinking probably 45oz of it but in 90 mins that may not have been enough in this heat. I was glad to see Dez on the far end of the bridge at the aid station because we had talked about her not stopping her as she would have to walk a little ways to get to the aid station and so I would just see her at Cool Fire Station but nope, she was here! As I was walking across the bridge I got closer to her and she was talking pictures and I had posted on my facebook that I would be Planking at No Hands Bridge and now was the time, unfortunately, one of the aid station ladies was not aware of this and I felt bad because I scared the shit out of her as I moved to the edge of the bridge and laid down on the edge as Dez was getting closer to take my picture, Sorry nice aid station lady for scaring you. I really think she thought I was going to jump or passing out or something. Anyway, we took the picture and I got into the station, mile 29, 2:00pm.!!

I sat down for a few minutes as everyone helped to refuel my bottles and get me ice, I must have looked bad because they were all over me with cooling aids, which I welcomed. Dez said I needed to eat something as it had been hours since I had anything so I ate 1/2 a cookie and drank some Pepsi. I drank lots more water and took a S-cap, sat around for about 5 mins and started to head out to Cool Fire Station which was at the top of K2!! 3.31 miles away and 1200 feet of straight up climbing, no switch backs in less than couple of miles. I was still in good spirits and was ready for K2 leaving out, I told Dez I would probably be a 30min/mile pace so at least 90 mins before I got to Cool Fire Station. I was still ahead of the lady I passed at Cardiac but we were pretty much together by 4-5 minutes.

K2 hell:
As soon as I left out of the No Hands aid station I was walking up the short switch back in the covered tress and it happened. My stomach had decided no way and out come contents from previous aid station 5 minutes ago. Maybe it was too much at one time, but the cookie seemed to be the factor that pushed the button. Blow and Go as I'm told so that's pretty much what I did. It didn't seem all that bad and I wasn't worried about it other than, Okay, let's drink some water. The trail here is pretty much a straight up climb with 6 or 7 false summits, so unless you're at the top you're not at the top! I mean this thing was so steep I could only walk a few steps at a time before I was wobbling all over the place from over heating and exerting myself. I took it slow and steady but that didn't seem to matter to my stomach a 2nd time as I had to spit up a bunch of water I had drank, again, too much at one time. About half way up I finally just sat down on the side of the trail and rested as I poured ice water over my head and cooled down. Some other guy came storming up the trail with walking sticks and blew right by me, the first time I had seen him all day. I got up and kept moving, now just about mile into the climb and then I got dizzy again, this time it was a little different. Dizzy followed by a sensation to breath deep but couldn't, followed by a slight pain in my left chest.! NOT GOOD! I immediately sat down again, more water on my head, body, and sipping. I knew my race was over!! I had two options: go back down the trail to No Hands or continue up K2 another mile-ish to Cool. Well, I wasn't going backwards even if I wasn't going to finish this thing and the stubbornness of I will get to the top of K2! Just then the lady was coming up the trail and asked how I was, I said okay but severely over heated, dizzy, and puking, she laid down on the trail about 10 feet from me and said yeah me too! I kind of laughed as I though, well at least I am not the only one but I do believe our feelings were quite different. She encouraged me to get moving again and so we started but she soon dropped me and I caught back up a short distance later but then got dropped again. On this climb, I felt the worse I have ever felt in any endurance event. An all time LOW in my experience, I wanted to cry but couldn't, I wanted to scream but couldn't, I wanted to stop but couldn't! I was a little lost in my feeling and what to do so early in a race but I knew the heat and dehydration had dealt the winning hand. I finally made it to the top of K2 after all the false summits and was walking a great open meadow area and off to the right there were 4 deer's standing there watching me, Yes, they were there, I was not hallucinating! and I enjoyed the mutual stares we shared as I passed. Knowing that Cool was still a little less than a mile away I kept moving as much as possible because I wanted to be done. I started seeing runners coming towards me again so I knew I was closer and then I saw the top of the Fire Station bldg in the distance but also this helicopter flying circles overhead like a vulture waiting to start eating me. It eventually landed at the Fire Station and as I got closer it was a good distraction to the fact that I was done.

I got to the aid station, mile 32.5 and Dez approached me asking how I was but I was in a pretty low place, I just said not good! Not Good at all. I quickly checked in and saw Tim Duffy standing here, he had fallen down 4 times during the day and said he was dropping from the race, he was at mile 39.  I quickly told him that I was done too but wanted to get to the car to cool off. I sat down in the car and Dez was checking on me to refill my bottles but I told her I was dropping, that I had a pain in my chest and that was not a good thing. My body was telling me to stop or it was going to shut down on its own. Just then the aid station lady came over and said that if i wanted to continue the 100 I needed to go now or if I wanted to drop to the 100k I could just continue back down but I needed to make a decision. I just said I was dropping overall. 
Tim was here and we were chatting about things. I was still very over heated and it was hard to focus at times. Part of me really thought about going on but I just knew it was not a smart thing to do. The lady came back and asked if I was dropping to the 100k and I said no, I was dropping completely. She said okay and I called Molly to inform her. There was also another gentleman that had just dropped and needed a ride back to Auburn so we all piled in the car with the AC and left. This guy was done because he was over heated and exhausted and realized he was going to finish a 100k in 21 hours and didn't want any part of that. Matter of fact this guy had actually left Cool heading back and turn around and was walking back to Cool when I was coming in and I saw him turn around and thought what the heck but just eventually thought he was heading into Cool Station for the first time and I had caught up to him.

After getting cooled down and drinking more water and taking another S-Cap I was feeling a little more with it. We dropped off Tim and the other guy and headed back to the hotel. Dez and I got showered and cleaned up and headed to eat. I was feeling so much better, just tired and some soreness. After dinner we returned to the hotel and as I laid down I was restless and slept restless with a calf cramp in the middle of the night. The next morning we packed up and drove back to Vegas.

I am feeling totally good now, still some minor soreness but normal stuff. Ultimately, my demise was the Heat and lack of preparing for it and some training. I feel if I would have had known we were going to have 96* heat I may not have changed from Wasatch and taken the climbs and elevation more but when I made the decision I was still having some climbing issues with my hamstring, which are okay now. I learned that I have a new low in feeling like shit and despite the heat I made it to the top of K2! I know I need more heat tolerance when picking a race with these temps, especially Badwater! I know I have some training in the next 7 weeks to get ready for Javalina 100 as I am not going down in an dnf there!

I learned that my stomach shut down completely in the heat and will need to find some sort of nutrition to use, maybe Amino or Clip from Succeed would have worked but I didn't try it. All I know is I can't wait for the next one!


Wednesday, September 07, 2011

race to Rio Del Lago 100

This weekend, in 3 days, I will be running the Rio Del Lago 100 put on by Desert Sky Adventures and with the expected temperatures to be in the low 90's I have my work cut out for me.

This race came about as a change from Wasatch 100, which I am a little bummed in not heading to but with my little issue I have been dealing with in the glute/hamstring area I was not feeling confident in my hiking pace and climbing power as it was aggravated by any uphill climbs, so while I was in India I had made a decision to change races and stick with something a little more flat but now I also have HEAT to deal with and that is something I am not looking forward to.

I mean for Badwater I prepare with sauna training and hey, come on! its BADWATER!  but I have not had that much heat training or run training heading into RDL so it will be quite interesting on how this goes down. I am confident I can get to the end it will just be a matter of how I get there. I will also be using a lot of Isagenix nutrition products, such as shakes, bars, and of course Product B! so I am excited to try out some new things during this run, you know me, forget trying it in training, slap it down on the race! haha! totally not the way to do it but again I feel confident in Isagenix and myself so I am not worried.

I am also happy to report that Dez will be crewing me along the way and she is quite familiar with Isagenix and all that I will be needing during the run.

I will look to get another post up before I head to RDL up in Granite Bay, CA. area so stay tuned!! also I will have cell phone service on the course so check out my facebook for updates.

If you're not familiar with Isagenix products or heard of Telomere support you soon will as Product B will become known. Check out for information.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Follow Ups post Race.

The morning after the race I woke up with a severe sore throat, sharp to swallow and just plan sucked! I felt it coming on the last 10k of the race and sleeping on the way back to Leh and now it was totally killing me! I went to the medical team to see if they had any meds and after a quick exam and some talking I was given a Z-pack and took some serious amounts of ibuprofen. I had gone to breakfast with Molly and Bailey but could barely swallow and nothing was fun to eat, the first time I didn't finish anything on my plate since being in Leh! Bummer! I later then went back to bed and slept for half day waking up and feeling much relief! I mean it was still there but the sharp pain was gone and a lot less swollen.

As I started to pack for home I was thinking in moments of the overall race and how Molly has accomplished completing the race, even when she was at her worst. Now remember, I crewed Molly in 2009 Badwater and I remember seeing some pretty low down and out times but this race took her farther and at times in longer periods of the what I call the Suck Zone! I mean she literally had thrown up 5 times, that I know of, within 24 hours! One specific time she was getting sick she asked home many times had she gotten sick while I was pacing her? I replied, Do you want to know within the last 24 hours, the last hour or since I have been pacing this time? haha. poor thing! but all in all Molly is a very Patient runner! Persistent! and Dedicated! I think in tough races/events like these, if you lack any one of the 3, your toast!

Packing was just about finished and the afternoon approached and soon dinner with a big celebration victory bon-fire party was to occur. There was also going to be lots of beer so that was a plus!

First the Party: the party was great! everyone celebrating, having some drinks and enjoy the guitar that was being played by various locals and some of the crew from Lisa's team! After the presentation of the finishers trophy, which is way cool! no belt buckles here, plus you get a nice cloth hanging finishers certificate and shirt. Then there was the finishers picture and a few words from each of the runners all stating there difficulties and the having experienced the toughest race they ever completed, which is saying a lot because these runners have completed a lot of tough races in their running careers! The night was fun and again lots of beers were appreciated!

The Race: First off, let's remember this is the 2nd year this race has been offered. Last year only 3 runners accepted the challenge and only 1 finished! People have to remember that this race takes part in a 3rd World Country! in a remote part of India, so usually and customary things are simply not offered. Since it is the 2nd year to be put on, the logistics of putting the event together are still being worked on and so a participant should be open and flexible to change, with that the great race director, Rajat Chauhan is still working on his perfect race team. It takes a lot of help and getting the right people for the jobs needed is tough, this year he had some great help but some of the race help thought they became the race director in making decision when only the RD can make the decisions and along with those people some of there attitudes were just not comfortable or fit with the overall attitudes of the participants so there was drama and tension at times. With time Rajat will have things worked out for the better of the race and participants, but just remember, if you select this event, you experience not only one tough ass event but a great destination and experience for your life of memories. Not only will this event challenge you in terms of distance but altitude and obstacles such as exhaust from many diesel truck/cars as they pass on the race course!

City of Leh: the city is 11,500feet so landing here you immediately feel the change in altitude so be prepared to acclimate in the days leading up to the race. The city offers lots of shopping and food, surprisingly the food was very good, Yes, there is curry but there is lot of other food as well. Westernized food as made it way there and again eating around the city was not a hard thing to do, especially, when you find the restaurants that you like, as we did, you just keep going back. The city also has great culture and temples to visit as well as driving up to Khardung La, during your acclimation periods. I also did white water rafting this year and that was fun, cold, but fun.
The hotel we stayed in was an older style hotel but nice, toilets, running water, sometimes hot water but the beds were overall hard, which I think that is the standard in the city as Molly's room was the same. Molly's hotel was a little nice in the rooms but they did not have a shower head in the bathrooms and therefore a splash type bath had to be taken, I had a full shower head and it was nice to have a regular type shower. You can pretty much get around everywhere on food in the city, if you decide to go farther and up to Khardung La than you will need a taxi service.

Personal: I love this event! I loved Leh and the people! Yes, the city was very interesting in dealing with dusty roads, diesel exhaust, squat toilets, and other fine changes in our standard lives but that's what it's all about! Even though there was drama and some of the attitudes of the race organizers were a little much to deal with it, it was nothing that couldn't be handled or avoided for less stress. One of the toughest parts a participant will have to deal with is staying health in the days prior to the race and acclimating to the altitude.

I am also excited to see the documentary that Barry Walton, who filmed Profiling Hurt, is working on for this event! He did an exceptional job, filming, interviewing and taking pictures! It will take him some time to get the final work out there but I will be keeping you posted on when its available, most likely a year he estimated.

Experiencing not only a 16 hour flight but a different world in Delhi and Leh has been one of the best things in my 40 years of life experience and I thank Molly for everything! I also thank Dez, who always has supported me in all my endurance sports since day 1. Now both her and Molly will have to return in 2012 as I look to take down those mountain passes and become part of an elite group of finishers!


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Day 3 - some Drama, The Finish!

Rumptse, 161km/100miles, 13,675ft. The past 5 hours have been in the rain and getting here was the first main goal. We Arrived! The plan was to take up come rest in the cottage, eat some warm food and dry out and then make our way up to Tanglang La, the 2nd 17,500 mountain climb of the race. It's 11:30pm and the original time to have left here recommended by the RD was 10pm! We are obviously well behind that but Molly is feeling good, tired of course and is looking for the short break we planned on.

When the Mothership picked us up back in town Bailey had informed us that all the runners, well, 2 of the runners, Lisa and Samantha and there crews, Jason was already on the other side of Tanglang La and Ray and Sharon were on the way back to this camp from finishing and would be her shortly, so this posed an immediate problem, no further rooms were available for us to rest, so we were told they would have 2 tents pitched for us when we got there. After being in the rain and outside for some time now I immediately spoke freely and said, Fuck that, we're not resting in tents outside! Also, Bailey had said that all the food had been packed up and they were unloading it out of the truck for us and reheating it, sure! We pulled into the cottage and sure enough there were the other runners crew cars and two tents were being set up. We all jumped out of the mothership and went inside to a dining room area and the food and tables were there, about this same time Ray and Sharon arrived and the medical team was checking them and debriefing so it was a little hectic in the room. Several of us started eating and most everything was cold, at this time I didn't know they had just brought back the food and no wonder it was cold. Anyway, Bailey and I got Molly some tea and food for ourselves as well as Jigme did and we all started eating.

The reason the other runners were here was because it had started snowing up on Tanglang La, which we could see from afar as were getting closer to Rumptse, and the race officials said the conditions were bad and for safety reason pulled the runners from continuing up Tanglang La. The race officials didn't plan on everyone being at this cottage at one time, hence, no room for us back of the packers. The race officials had made an agreement with the runners that they would let the snow pass and not return till 4am, I think it was just after 10pm before they got pulled because I remember one of the other crews saying they were down for 6 hours! When we got there there was also talk of extending the cutoff time due to the weather but word came quickly that this would not be happening, 60 hours remain. During this whole time the clock is ticking and although we are getting some rest/recovery/food we had been talking and had decided that staying here was NOT an option for us at this time in the race and with Molly pushing the time limits we needed all the time we had so we had to get moving up the mountain.

While we were eating some race officials came to us and asked if they could speak with Molly outside. Molly said she would be right back and walked out. I sat there a little perplexed and my gut feeling was WTF! why are they talking to her alone? I quickly turned to Bailey and said I don't like that they pulled her from us to speak to her, I think they are going to try and bully her or something, and being as she is not really in a frame of mind to handle complex conversations I think we should go! Bailey replied, Yeah this is Bullshit! Let's Go! We got up and walked outside the door and sure enough, the setting appeared like a bully session as 3 race officials were standing there talking to Molly and her in the middle. They all looked at us like deer in headlights and I just remember saying something like, What's up? We're all part of the team, or something like that. There whole concern was the safety of the road conditions and the snow, stating that 10k up the road the snow line had started and that's where the conditions go worse. They also tried to instill the 4am agreement on us saying that was the deal made, Molly was quick to jump on that one saying she made NO Deal about 4am and no one came back to inform us of the agreements being made! We've been here 45 mins so far!

Finally, after talking some sense into the race officials, we had stated to let us go to the 10km snow line and if its unsafe, deemed by our driver as he would make the call for our safety, then we would return to Rumptse but allowing us to get at least 10km more up the road gave us a better chance of completing the race within 60 hours. After just a few more minutes the race officials said they would discuss it and get back to us. We all got back in the Mothership and were waiting just a few more minutes, now its been 50-55 mins and still wasting time. Finally, I said we Have To Go! Let's Find Out What's the Deal! Molly jumped out and tracked down an official who was talking to a medical team member and it was agreed upon that she could continue to the 10km line and deem safety issues, was in good condition and any finish within the 60 hours was official, as it had been said now, that because she didn't make Rumptse by 10pm she would be unofficial! That sent her blood boiling and was actually good motivation for the climb to come, turns out that unofficial talk was just talk and she would be official if she made it within 60 hours. After all this mess, now an hour later, we hopped in the Mothership, back out to the road and off we started up Tanglang La.

Since Molly's blood was boiling and she was over all the drama she had a great pace and we starting moving quickly, yes, still in the RAIN! It's now about 1am and the rain would turn to snow and back to rain over the next 12 hours, so everything from here till the finish was in the rain/snow, well maybe the last 1 hour was not in the rain. When I came out to pace shortly after Rumptse it was great to see Molly fired up! Don't tell her she'll be unofficial when there is still time on the clock! Don't tell her she can't complete the distance! (actually Yes, tell her!! because she was motoring up that mountain in the rain!) When we hit 10km it was still raining and there was no snow, the driver said it was clear and we could keep going until it changed, if it did, which it would start snowing in the early AM but not enough to make conditions unsafe, just cold. Within 10km we were at 15,692feet, already climbed 1,692 feet since Rumptse! and still had more to go as the top of Tanglang La is 19.5 miles from Rumptse.

As we approached the 4am time for the other runners we knew we would soon see car lights coming and by 4:30am we saw them and as they passed us and slowed down to shot encouragement and great excitment it was nice to finally see other runners in this race and knowing that Molly had now closed the gap on them. They had gotten word that she came through Rumptse long ago and was on the way up the mountain and later I would learn that they were happy for her and stating that was the best thing we did was not stop at Rumptse and sleep with the cockroaches and spiders that crawled in the rooms! The early morning light was trying to break through but the heavy clouds and now snow where keeping it from lighting up which was a good thing because by this time Bailey and I had a run in with the Poop Monster due to the cold food and determining it was the noodles we both ate, ughh!! Climbing Tanglang La was much different than Khardung La because of the overall pitch of the mountain. Khardung La was more steep and the switch back were shorter and steeper getting you to the top quicker but Tanglang La was longer pitch, resulting in longer, less steep switch backs and so it took longer to reach the top and we were up at the higher 16000+ feet longer! Both Bailey and I had taken diamox early in preparing for this but now we were both fighting some severe sleep deprivations. (One funny thing before we got to Rumptse, it was raining like crazy and Molly was just in a low spot, trudging along step by step. We were approaching the Mothership and from about 50 yards out, I see Bailey waiting for us, but all of a sudden I see a blinking/strobing light! I tell Molly, hey check out Bailey. As we looked at her, the strobing light flashing, she busts out the Robot moves and starts dancing and pop-locking! freaking Hilarious!! and such a perfect time as Molly needed the amusement! After that while it was still dark we would good with the strobe light from the headlamps and do the Robot for Molly)

As the morning came I had been calculating our pace and everything was looking good to finish within 58-59 hours but still we were not at the top of Tanglang La. Bailey and I had been switching out frequently but this turned out to be a bad thing because just as you got settled in the car it was time to come back out and getting cold again was worse than just staying out there, and besides when you went into the car you were pretty much down for the count, so we had to adapt our rotation and just stay out longer. Once we went over 16,300 feet I had a seriously hard time staying awake, pacing or sitting in the car. We were about 2-3 miles from the top and although it is highly recommended that you do not sleep at this elevations I could not stay awake and neither could the Jigme and the driver. I was working hard and trying to get Molly to the top but I knew I didn't have it in me, I needed to rest/sleep, go higher or go lower, something! The last 1.5 mile you can see the top of the mountain but there is a seriously long double switch back to get there, when Molly saw this she was seriously NOT HAPPY! haha, at this time Bailey and I had switched out and I told her we would head to the top and wait. Once at the top we got some tea and I was walking around taking a few pictures, I actually felt better than being a 1,000 feet below, weird. After a while Molly and Bailey appeared and we took a great picture at the Tanglang La sign and of course Bailey and I planked at 17,582ft! Molly was super excited and happy to be at the top, 192km/119.5miles, and now it was all downhill for quite some time and mostly to the finish.

Once again as we descended I was in that I cant Stay Away zone and looking to get below the 16300ft mark and sure enough once I did I was much more awake and ready to go. We had seen Lisa Tamati and her crew come by and she had completed the race and was heading back to Rumptse/Leh and speaking with her was great and exciting giving us that needed energy to make the final push as the crew, later I would learn that she actually got out of the car when she caught up to Molly and walked with her for short time giving her encouragement, thanks Lisa! When I took back to pacing we were moving along great and knowing that Samantha was just a short ways of head of us and actually being able to see her and her crew on some of the down switch backs gave Molly a little boost of energy to run. The rain was still coming down and pretty much all mud and puddles so I have basically stopped trying to avoid wet feet and just make the shortest route around the corners. By now we are somewhere about 210km/130 miles all is feeling great! Molly is happy and knows that she will make the finish with time. Its a great feeling knowing all the hard work that has occurred in the past 50 hours! Get to a what I call a Tent City about 10km from the finish, the locals came offering some sandwiches and soup but Molly's stomach is not in the mood for any of the kind offerings. I grab some tea and we quickly head off down the road as we are close, Bailey is out pacing now and I am still calculating our time to make sure. Once we reached this fork in the road, we moved left and as the road seems to go completely no where in the distance, which is actually a major psychological blow as you are so close but yet no where in site is the finish. This are is called Morey Plains and the name is perfect because all you get is More and Morey of plains in sight! haha. The good thing is now were about 15,300ft and feeling much better.

On the last 3 miles, Molly wanted all of us to walk together and so we all enjoyed the highlights of Morey Plains, the last 58 hours and all that we just went through. It was an amazing time out there all together for that last hour, holding hands as we walked, laughing and recalling the Werewolf sightings that Molly had, the sign that I thought was a port-a-potty, the Robot dancing, the Wave we all performed and the dogs chasing Molly and Bailey with Molly armed with pebbles and Bailey with boulders! Finally, we could see around the bend and there was the finish line! We had American Flags that we each held and as we approached the finish I had my video phone rolling.

The last 100 meters! The finish line banner was now so close! The great race director, Rajat Chauhan, brought us a prayer flag La Ultra sign and we draped it around us, everyone clapping, cheering Molly! Then it was the last run and we all took off in a jog to finish it out! We crossed the line all together, hand in hand, just like we had in 2009 at Badwater! 58 hours 56 minutes, 222km/138 miles, TWO - 17,500+ft mountains! Molly had finished! It was great cheers, congratulations and photos and a joy of accomplishment, together, we all did it! The ISAGENIX DREAM TEAM had success when others had counted us out, when others believed Molly was too far behind to make it, when others thought it couldn't be done if you were not to Rumptse by 10pm!

Once we finished it was quickly back to tent city for some quick food and then we headed back to Leh, which meant going back over Tanglang La and all the way through course since Leh. It was already evening and once we started driving back we all quickly feel asleep in the car, at first, all of us were proper and trying not impede on each others space but a while later and we were all one unit leaning on each other and bouncing from side to side down the roads. The drive back was actually pretty fast as I know the driver was in a hurry to get back and that was super okay with me, I woke up a couple of times to see where we were but watching him maneuver down the road was not a pleasant sight and my eye lids weighed like 10lbs each so I went back to sleep. Once back at the hotel we quickly unpacked and Molly and Bailey went back to there room and I to mine where a warm shower was wonderful and the hardness of the bed was actually welcomed! I was still so tired that falling asleep quickly was not a problem and now I was experiencing a sore throat.

stay tuned till the post-race day post and thoughts on the race itself, race officials , etc.!!


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Day 2 - Race, La Ultra - The High.

Day 2:

As we rolled through town and getting closer to the Main Gate (mile 50) the town was already awake and people were on the streets watching as we ran by. We were excited to get to the Main Gate as the road then started to head down hill and later would bring more open roads but first it was to get through town before early morning traffic got heavier.

Molly's stomach was feeling much better, although she said she could still feel it just a little bit but as long as it was it better we were taking advantage of the all the run time. We passed gas station which was the Petrol Pump, 86km/53miles and 10,770ft. which was nice to be running so low in elevation, this would be actually be the lower parts of the course. As we continued to dodge traffic and some stray dogs the rest of the crew had went to make a breakfast run and said they would catch up with us shortly, so we made sure we had water and were ready to run solo for at least an hour, luckily, I had eaten a Isagenix bar when I first started pacing. This morning run was really nice because it a gradual downhill and as we kept moving out of town the roads were a little wider and traffic seemed to be a little less but the occasional diesel bomb would come by and gas us! After an hour went by we were starting to wonder if the crew had actually gone to South America to pick the coffee beans for our morning coffee and made jokes how they must be sitting around enjoying breakfast somewhere while were out getting diesel bombed! haha.. but then they appeared and as we all stopped to enjoy our eggs, toast, and coffee it was a crew heaven! We were all happy and spirits seemed to really be lifted, Molly was feeling good, we had some rest and now food.

After a quick eat, Bailey and I switched out pacing as I had now been out for about 11 miles and this was a nice road to run on and enjoy. As we pulled ahead and waited to crew them, I started unpacking the back of the mothership and house cleaning, it was a mess and lots of things were disorganized and with another day on scheduled we needed it back to original status. I basically took everything out of the back and re-stacked/organized and threw all the trash away. It was much needed and later Bailey would come by for another round of reorganizing and all would be set for the day/night leading up to Rupmtse but first we had to get to Karu.

Karu was 117km/72.7miles, 10,977ft and still about 15 miles away. The Sun was out and Molly was actually starting to make up some ground during the day, she fit well with the temperatures of the day, now mid-upper 80's and still her stomach was finally on the plan. Sitting in the mothership out of the sun only made me realize how much heat there was out there and now that the driver was actually parking in the shaded areas as we waited made things nice for us. As we made our way to Karu I was out running another time with Molly and we took some great pictures and talked to a nice man on the side of the road who just couldn't believe she was running 222km and where she had started from! He knew the Khardung Village where the start was and he knew where she was at now and was really beside himself to understand WHY? Finally, we got to Karu and although there was to be a medical check here they had once again pushed on not waiting as they did at South Pullu but Molly was fine and no reason to take us out of the groove we were now in. Before we got to Karu there was this awesome drainage area from the river and as we parked next to it I thought I would run across the road and check it out. This overflow area back into the river was pretty awesome and as I stood next to it you could feel the splash of the water and the roaring was pretty loud. It was a nice few minutes to slightly cool off and explore while waiting. As we went back to the car and Molly was approaching and we decided to provide a little entertainment and the official Isagenix Dream Team Wave would do just the trick! After a great laugh and picture, the next city was Upshi.

During the day we all continued to eat Isagenix shakes and bars. Over the course of the last 2 days I had even been drinking Want More Energy to change up the pace of plain water. Today, I was feeling hungry so it seemed like I was eating every 15 mins and maybe I was as shakes, bars and IsaDelights were all going down nicely! The only thing I couldn't do while running was take IsaGreens as it just seemed to take longer to digest and I felt it running so I had to stay away from my greens for now.

The road to Upshi goes through a couple of military areas and there are road blockades which just have be driven around and of course military personnel are on the various gates standing with machine guns and full uniform, I wanted to take a pictures but thought otherwise. Upshi is 131km/81.3 miles and 11,184ft so we have started to slowly go back up in elevation. It was late afternoon at I remember at one point Molly has a stomach issue purge but seemed to be okay. Bailey was out pacing her now and I was trying to catch up on some sleep as I knew the night and getting up to Rumptse was gonna be a huge push. We were still behind on estimated time of arrival by 10pm and looking more like 11:30pm but our overall goal of under 60 hours was still very clear. I don't recall how many times I calculated out pace, distance to next town, what our avg. pace needed to be but I do know I got pretty good at calculating quickly! One time when Bailey and Molly passed and all was okay for crewing the driver and Jigme were sound asleep and very tried, again it was early afternoon and since the road was now starting to go uphill more I decided we would wait here and take a 20 minute nap, I set my alarm and went went to sleep. 20 mins later it went off but I didn't really wake up, it took another 10 mins and then I woke up in a panic as we had been gone now from them for at least 30 mins. I quickly woke up the other two and off we went to catch up, when we got there I told them I had fallen asleep, haha! During the day Molly had been drinking Sprite to keep her stomach calm, something she had not really been used to using before but it had been working so why change it, at this time she needed more but we only had coke until the next town so good thing Coke worked too. The arrival in Upshi was much needed and after a few bites for Molly she was quickly out pushing out to Rumptse.

I am thinking before we got to Upshi the medical crew back tracked and found us and actually performed a medical check on Molly and all was good. She was still dealing with some swollen hands which turns out to not be any electrolyte malfunction but a cause of the altitude as the medical crew informs us. This instills relief in Molly worries that its not something else and after she is checked we continued on. Outside of Upshi I started pacing again and now we were down into a nice power walk as Rumptse was over 20 miles away and it was going to take some time to get there but getting there was Key as this was the start of the 2nd mountain, Tanglang La. The sun was starting to set and the presence of clouds were visible and it seemed rain would be coming shortly. Somewhere along this time it started raining and I remember I was not longer pacing but the driver was at this time, so we gave him a pancho to stay dry. The night had come and we had broke out the night gear, lights and again decorated the Mothership in glow sticks. Overall, the driver, myself and Bailey all paced in this section as the night and rain seemed to drag on and not bring Rumptse any closer. At one point I remember seeing the driver sleep walking as he was pacing and I knew he was fried so I jumped out and took over.

The night was actually not too bad despite the rain and it being dark. After a few minutes you were used to it and although it seemed like it was cold from the mothership, it was actually quite nice being out there. Molly was definitely feeling tried by this time and keeping her mind occupied with easy talk and keeping her moving was the primary goal, at times she would just get behind me and follow my feet, other times she would be next to met and talking about this or that and then others there was simply no talking at all and nothing but work being done. I will say again that the road to Rumptse seemed to take freakn' forever, maybe it was the night, maybe it was because we wanted to be there so bad, and maybe because it was just far! As 10pm came and went, the recommended time to leave Rumptse for the 2nd mountain and we were still 90 mins away but having spoke to other race officials and them letting us know that as long as Molly was doing good physically she would not have a problem moving to the finish, famous last words as the drama at Rumptse would prove otherwise!

The town before Rumptse, Lato, 154km/95.6miles, 13,300ft. was a great little village and with the rain coming down consistently there happened to be a little tent place that was still open and serving tea. It was such a blessing to be able to go in the tent out of the rain and drink some tea. Jigme had informed the owners what was happening and now that we were all there they were very interested in what we were doing and watched with amazement. The tea really hit the spot and the 5-10mins rest we took there was super nice as I had been out in the rain for a while and was committed to staying out as long as it took to get to Rumptse, in the back of my mind that was my goal and then I would get some rest for Tanglang La. Molly changed out of some wet clothes here in Lato and we were off pushing to Rumptse, another 5 miles away and about 2-2 1/2 hours away.

Finally, those last miles rolled by quickly and as we approached Rumptse we sent the mothership ahead to find the rooms/check in and get some food/tea situated for us, they went ahead about a mile. Molly and I approached the town of Rumptse and we could see many houses and business that were closed and keeping an eye out for our Mothership and signs. We basically walked through the whole town and out the other side and still nothing that designated our race area. We continued to walk past the town as it looked like another house in the far distance but as we got closer it was even farther then it appeared and after walking at least 1/2 mile outside of town I concluded that we missed it, so we turned back around walked the 1/2 mile back to town and through town again, this time with me shining my lights on every house, nook and cranny I could see to find our area, I was somewhat pissed at the lack of sign designation, glow sticks or fire they could have used to mark it but as we approached the start of town, again, a car was coming and it was our Mothership, they said it was way past the town. We jumped back in the car and drove to out the 1/2 mile we had just turned around from and then just past that there was the cottage, the place we saw in the distance but said it was too far away. Rumptse had officially arrived. 161km/100mile, 13,675ft.

Rumptse, drama... Stay tuned!! the defining moment for Molly.


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Day 1 - Race, La Ultra - The High.

I have titled it #1 because this is going to be long with all the happened over the 58 hours 56 minutes, so the best place to start is obviously at the beginning.

The place we were staying was approx. 10k from the start and on the race course as we came back through the village. We were all up early, packing and getting ready to leave. Jigme and the driver came about 5:15am to load the vehicle and we were off to the start. The morning was exciting and after all the waiting and prior days it was kind of surreal that the race day was here! As we drove down to the start, around some corners and in the middle of no where on the side of the road all the race/crew cars were parked and this was the make shift start line of 222km. As soon as we arrived the medical team was performing weigh in's and blood pressure checks, Molly got that taken care of quickly and then headed for last minute preparations. As soon as we arrived it seemed like time accelerated and the race director was yelling 2 minutes till start time, then 1 minute!

Day 1: All the racers, 6 of them, Molly Sheridan, Ray Sanchez, Sharon Gaytor, Samantha Gash, Lisa Tamati, and Jason Rita were at the banner of the start line, quick photos were taken and the count down was on, 10, 9, 8, etc. 3, 2, 1.. Bang! There off and running of the 2nd La Ultra-The High, current elevation 12,545 feet. As all the runners took off on a slight uphill grade they were all excited and running and about 1/4 mile down the road and around the first corner Ray was taking a fast pace to lead the pack, followed by Samantha and the others. Molly and Lisa soon walked and would use the run walk strategy early on. All the crews soon loaded up and off we went to catch our runners, it's like the Badwater start line, Don't all rush out of the start to catch your runner a mile or less down the road but we all did, haha. Molly was set for a while and we enjoyed the other runners as they all moved down the road back towards Khardung Village where we stayed. As the runners spread out and we approached the village we quickly ran back to our place we stayed, visited the Poop Monster one last time and moved through the village. Molly was doing great and enjoying her morning.

Once passed the village it was easy sailing as Molly proceeded closer to Khardung La mountain, the weather was nice about mid 60's, light winds and partly cloudy so it made running quite nice, crewing you could feel the coolness in the air standing around and we were all waiting on more sun shine to warm things up as we continued to climb in elevation. We were given a detailed Altitude Map and distance chart for the race and one funny thing on the map was the location of
"Boulders to Shit" 12.8km from the start, LOL!! Good thing we were all okay and headed right past that area on to North Pullu, 26.1km (mile 16.2). Once we reached N. Pullu it was quite busy with other tourist and race people, I saw Samantha's 2nd team car and spoke with Nic for while as we got some tea/soup/food and Molly prepared for the next 10 miles up to the top of Khardung La, current elevation here is: 15,193ft. We all left out of N. Pullu feeling good but 5km up the road things turned a little different for Molly.

Approaching Buddha Statue/Park (30.3km/18.8miles) Molly's stomach was starting to feel uneasy and was starting to feel a little sick but was pushing on, there would be many times over the next 24 hours where stomach problems would try and take her down. Around this time Jigme and the driver had asked if they could help pace so they were out walking with Molly at different times. As we got closer to Khardung La and the road became more steep with numerous switch backs and now all dirt road I decided to jump out and start pacing as Molly was moving pretty slow and just not feeling well and with about 10km to the top she needed to get there as soon as possible. No sooner than I started pacing she had stomach issue #1 with a basic purge of all lunch consumed at N. Pullu and electrolytes. She said she felt better once her stomach was emptied but this not becomes a delicate situation as to try and find nutrition that can go back in without getting purged, calories are needed! Also Molly's hands had started swelling and we were trying to determine the electrolyte imbalance vs. H2O situation. The traffic now on the road was much greater and many diesel trucks were coming by leaving a cloudy of exhaust fumes we tried not to inhale but was mostly unavoidable, sometimes there was a convoy of trucks and you just had to stop on the side of the road and let them all pass and try not to breath, but again, you are at 16,000+ft so it's pretty hard not to. As the K-Top drew closer Molly's pace slowed with short bursts of picks up and of course there was #2 stomach purge.

At around 39km/24mile, (17,089ft) there was a road blockage as the road was being worked on from a bulldozer and had everyone waiting in both directions, Jigme was able to talk to the bulldozer driver and he allowed Molly and I to pass on foot so we didn't have a lot of down time, the Mothership came through about 20 mins later. Earlier, Bailey and I had taken some Dimox meds for the altitude as we knew we were going to be going up and over the mountain slowly, the original plan was to give Molly a camelbak about mile 23 and have her run up to K-Top then we would crew her and she would continue to run down the other side till about 16000ft, and then we would take the camelbak and she could continue with hand held bottles, but leading up from N. Pullu she was very fatigued and with the stomach issues there was no way she was going to carry a pack so we changed to plan B and as long as everyone felt okay at the elevation we would continue our standard crewing duties. Approaching the top to Khardung La was pretty difficult and although I felt good I could tell it was work and I had only been pacing for 6 miles! My goal was to get her to the top as soon as possible and once she reached the top it was very busy with tourists and traffic. Again, the top is 42km/26.2miles, 17,600ft.! We quickly got Molly some soup and Bailey was quick on the crewing duties with food and tea for both of us. I was ready to jump back in the mothership and head down as I needed a break, Molly underwent a quick medical check and all was okay, she was feeling very fatigued and her stomach was still not with the program. I traded places with Bailey and the mothership and I moved down the mountain a mile or so ahead as Bailey was now on pacing duties, they both started running at times which was good because the faster you get to lower elevations the better everything works!

Earlier in training and acclimation we had gone up to Khardung La and run down about 4 miles and this is the same section Bailey was now on so the mothership moved to the same spot and waited, about 4 miles from the K-top, approx. 49km/30mile, 16,400 ft. we waited and as I recovered feeling much better Molly and Bailey arrived, Bailey was taking a break and now Molly would be on her own for a while to get to South Pullu. Molly had stated that one of her goals was to get up and over Khardung La with the least amount of energy but as fast as possible, but with the stomach issue I knew that had robbed valuable energy which would soon show its face. On of the deceiving factors on this course, in this section, is that you can see all the switch back going up and down so at this point in the race we can South Pullu check point but its still 4 miles away on the road and as you run down you can easily look down the mountain and see it, sucks! Molly kept running and by now we are close to the 7pm check in time and she is working to get there asap. We eventually drive to S. Pullu (55km/34miles) 15,400ft. and tell everyone she is coming in just a few minutes and arrives at 6:45pm, feeling tired, fatigued and stomach STILL not wanting to cooperate! She once again eats some soup and some other little bits of food and off we leave from S. Pullu heading to the city of Leh.

It was now almost dark and we broke out all the night gear and lights and even decorated the Mothership with glow sticks. I started running with Molly again and if I remember correctly we had another stomach issue purging all the food she had taken at S. Pullu. Damn! Again, no ingested calories and stomach is just not wanting to play the game. The night drove on slowly and getting down into the town of Leh was very slow as severe fatigue from lack of nutrition, stomach purge and overall effort of climbing 17500feet has not taken its toll. Bailey and I had made a plan to switch out and I was going to go with the Mothership into Leh to refuel, get some food and come back, it was about 9pm. I left Bailey and Molly on there own and off we went to refuel.

As the driver, Jigme and myself approached the city I noticed we turned off the main road and soon stopped at what appeared to be the drivers house, he jumped out and Jigme took over driving. I asked what was going on and he said that the driver had to get some warmer clothes, food, and meds because his head was hurting from the elevation. An interesting thing about the locals for the race, they were used because of there natural ability to acclimate to the area since they lived there and wouldn't have any issues with the altitude but once we started the race I noticed that these two would walk from the car during crew stops only to figure out they were smoking. Later when we were up closer to K-top, approx. 16500feet I tested my pulse/O2 and there's and Holy Shit if mine wasn't better than both of theirs! My O2 was higher and my pulse was lower, it was crazy but just goes to show even if you live there and you Smoke, your not as good as people that don't smoke and train for altitude! After dropping off the driver we got gas and its here where I caught up with Samantha and her crew, she was feeling sick to her stomach as well and they were trying to find the rest area that was set for crews to take a break and steak out for runners. After chatting with them it was back on the road and Jigme stopped at the pharmacy to get meds for his headache too and then off to get food. I was starting to freak out a little because we were coming up close to an hour being gone and still no food. I went to Oh, La-La cafe, our favorite spot since we got to Leh and the owner was great enough to pack up some spaghetti and pesto pasta for us along with coke and sprites and we headed back to pick up the driver and get back to the girls, as it had been almost 90 mins now. During this time I was pretty stressed out and telling Jigme that we couldn't waste time driving all over and making stops and then there was some issue with the cell phone he was trying to take care of and this only stressed me out more, poor guy, as earlier while he was driving up Khardung La he wasn't used to the stick shift of the mothership and actually stalled the car 3 times in a row on a hill causing us to roll backwards and making me freak out! There were cars and trucks behind us honking and I kept yelling at him to give it gas to not stall it but he interpreted that as Yes, it has petrol, not Push the gas to prevent it from stalling. This was the first time Bailey saw me freaking out and assumed I was definitely suffering from High Altitude Sickness! HAHA!

We made it back to the girls and just in time as Molly was desperately needing to lay down and just give her body and stomach a break. We stopped on the side of the road about 70km/43miles, 13,160ft. and she went to sleep for about 30 mins. Myself and Bailey went to the back of the car sitting outside eating the pasta and recapping the last 90 minutes. After we ate Bailey and I jumped back in the car and went to nap as well, the driver grabbed his sleeping back and crazy as he is laid down in the middle of the road in front of the car about 25 yards. The road/check point at South Pullu has been closed for the night so no further vehicles are allowed past the S. Pullu but since we are lower or before Pullu, there is still a potential for vehicles and sure enough, about 10 mins into sleeping I wake up to honking and headlights and there is a truck facing us stopped because the driver is laying in the middle of the road and he didn't want to run him over. After a few more honks he wakes up and gets out of the road and lays behind the mothership near the side of the road and goes back to sleep, we laid there another 10-15 mins and then Molly woke up and said let's try a little more.

She walked at a good pace even though her stomach was really bothering her and just so upset, I was hoping we could get her into Leh and then stake out for the rooms but we only made it another mile or 2 before she said she couldn't go anymore, we were still 3km from the city of Leh and it was after 1am. We made staked out and headed for the cottage for sleep, this took about 20 mins to get there and once there Molly and Bailey hit the beds and passed out very fast! I decided to take a shower and after I cleaned up I found a blanket in the closet, laid it on the floor and went to sleep.

Sleep was only about 2 1/2 hours and the alarm went off at 4:50am. We were all up, loaded and heading back to the stake point, Molly said she was feeling much better and her stomach wasn't upset. Back at the stake point she started off walking and feeling good so she started running, the Sun was already coming up and as were on the edge of the city heading in she started running. Mothership pulled forward about a mile down the road and on this stop Molly yells out for me to pace her as she was just chased by a pack of dogs and they scared the crap out of her! I got my things ready, still trying to wake up myself and off we went as she told me the story of the dogs chasing her, quite scary! As we entered the city and heading for the Main Gate in Leh, mile marker 50, I was glad to be running in the early morning with her and chatting about the day before!

To be continued on Day 2...

In thinking back about Day 1 and what went wrong with the stomach issue was hard to pinpoint but after breaking it down I concluded with the help of the medical team that being at that elevation for extended periods and breathing the amount of Exhaust fumes Molly and the others were subjected to caused some upset. Its basically poison! and the body can only handle so much of it, once the stomach purge set it in it was a matter of damage control, Samantha and Lisa also experienced stomach issues and they were all the last 3 to get off the mountain and spent the most time here. Overall the only precaution to take is to try and limit the amount of ingested fumes and work as fast as possible to get up and off the mountain. The 2nd day brought much more running and enjoyment to Molly, as by this time many of the race crews/directors had worries that she was not going to make the overall race cutoff, but Molly is a Rocky!! so again, stay tuned for Day 2 and Day 3!