Saturday, December 29, 2012

Recap of 2012

January 1
Started the year off with a bang by completing a 20 mile solo run.  Only the 2nd time I had ever run that distance before.  I would have a few more of these over the next 12 months.

Week of January 30 thru February 4.  I had just completed a long run of 18 miles the Saturday before and felt really good until the last couple miles of the run I started feeling funny.  The next day I got hit with the flu and it hit me like a ton of bricks.  I hadn't had the flu in maybe ten years, much less had really ever been sick.  I never get sick.  It would prove to be a blessing as I had some nagging knee and hip pain that was crying out for rest, possibly the beginning stages of an I.T. band issue, however I was too hard headed to rest them.  That flu put me out for almost a week and I believe helped my wheels heal up.  Good thing because my marathon training was about to become very vigorous.

February 5.  DRC North Dallas Runners group created.  Created for the folks in the DRC who could not make it to White Rock Lake for thursday social runs.  This would become a weekly staple.  Most runs started in Addison or Richardson.

DRC North Dallas Runners before a hot summer run in late July 2012.

The Month of March
Ran for more miles (218) than I ever had before in one month.  Still my highest monthly total to date.  And I'm still not sure how in the hell I did that and don't remember much about that month except for the two races below.  It was a total blur. 

March 3 - Trinity Levee Run - Didn't really prepare for this run, but gave it all I got and finished with an 8:14 average pace.  What I remember most about this race was the festivites afterward.  Had a ball drinking several cold Michelob Ultras and later ate barbeque with the rest of the DRC family and for the first time was referred to by other runners as 'fast'.  I really don't think so compared to others that I'm trying to chase but, it was nice to see that my improvement was being noticed.  This would also be the last time I ever ran with, ate and drank beer with DRC buddy Bob Philpot who I had just really gotten to know, but would later lose a battle with cancer on Thanksgiving day.
Enjoying free beer after Trinity Levee Run 03/03/2012.  The late Bob Philpot is to my left.

March 25 - Rock N Roll Dallas Half Marathon
My best race to date.  Was told by my marathon pace leader/coach Steve Griffin that the best way to train for a half marathon was to train for a full.  He was dead on.  Only a couple weeks away from completing training for the Big D Marathon, I couldn't beleive how comfortable I was at some points of the race running at or around an 8min/mile.  A couple times I dipped sub 8 and had to slow myself down.  Caught my traditional leg cramp at mile 12.5 but still managed to P.R. at 1:50:07.  Without the cramp I know I would have gotten around a 1:47.

Dallas Rock N Roll Half 03/25/2012.  Left:  Me getting my traditional cramp at mile 12.5.  Right:  Me and DRC Member Amy Z posing just after finishing.  We passed each other several times during the last quarter of the race.  She blew past me right at the finish.

April 15 - Big D Texas, Marathon - My first full on the books.  I never really had that "fullfilling" feeling after getting a full marathon under my belt or got too excited about it.  I was a little dissapointed, hoping I would sub-4 it.  I was on track to do that until mile 22 things went south.  Still grinded it out and ended up with a decent time 4:13:09.  After really bombing in the Dallas Marathon six months later, I now appreciate this one even more.
Big D Marathon 04/15/2012, somewhere around mile 17 or 18 just as it started to rain.

June 9 thru July 7 - El Scorcho training -  I consider this training, the start of my fall marathon training.  I didn't know it at the time.  But my fitness was at a very good level by the time the end of August came around.  Every friday night at 11:00 pm, a group consisting of me and other fellow DRC members would meet up at the Farmers Branch Police department and run from there around the Brookhaven College area and into the wee hours of Saturday morning.  This in preparation for the El Scorcho midnight 25k/50k run.  Special thanks to whom I consider my coach, Steve Griffin for coming up with the most monotonous, but most awesome course to train on.  It was almost a perfect simulation of the course we would race on.

 July 15 - El Scorcho - The funnest race I have ever participated in.  Maybe because I only did the 25K which consisted of five 5k loops around Trinty Park in Fort Worth, then sat drank beer and watched the looks on the faces of the 50Kers who had to run out their additional five 5K loops for for the rest of the night.

Picture collage from El Scorcho 07/25/2012.  Clockwise from top:  Me flanked by my inspiration Blanca G and her friend Kelley / Me enjoying a post run beer after finishing the 25K in 2:14:59 / Bal B and I before the start of the race / Finisher's Medal

July 21 - First run with the 2012 DRC fall 3:50 Marathon Group - Running late and almost missed the first ever run with the greatest team that I have ever worked or played with, period.

DRC 3:50 Marathon Group before start of 5 Mile Breakfast Bash race on 09/01/2012
  July 29 - First ever trail run - First ever trail run at the LB Houston Nature Preserve.  Loved every minute of it and got hooked.  A whole different kind of running which I beleive helped with my overall training in general.  Also to date, my first an only trail run fall happened on this run.

Picture collage- Trail runnin' 2012. Clockwise from top:  On my first ever trail run at LB Houston / At Northshore Trails led by Jackie C / Trail running friends at the mid point of a 9 miler / Down and dirty after the end of a trail run.
September 19 - First stint at coaching (C25K training) - Having the reputation of being an advanced runner at work, I was to help train a couch to 5K group as a leadership project.  I didn't realize how much of an influence I would have on this group and just the same they had a great influence on me.  Successfully trained maybe a dozen folks to complete their first 5k race.  And a couple of them seem to be on their way to be serious runners.  It don't get no better than that.

Cigna GO YOU Couch to 5K Training project 2012

September 30 - 55 mile week - My largest pile up of miles for one week to date.

October 21 - Honored Hero Run and the discovery of mustard - Signed up to run the Honored Hero run with my freind Tim.  My strategy was to use it as a training run and keep my pace at about a 9min/mile throughout.  For the most part I did that in hot humid conditions.  I took a hand full of mustard packet with me as I was told they help for cramps which I have had a history of during races.  The mustard did work as I felt crampy from 15 miles on in.  I popped a couple packs every mile and it kept the cramps from coming.

November 4 - My full marathon group ran in the DRC Half, I chose to skip the half and get in some more long milage.  I got in a 23 miler and it may have been the thoughest run I had ever done.  It mad me appreciate group runs as I know it would have been a lot easier if I had 15-20 people running along side me.
December 9 - Dallas Marathon.  I have mixed emotions about this one.  All the long hard training from July to December and a 5:40:57 finish due to shitty weather.  On the other hand, I received I beleive the best and funnest training I could have possibly got.  As I sit here in this chair, I'm confident that I have the fitness level to complete a marathon in or around 3:50.  This will happen I beleive sooner than later. 

2012 Metro PCS Dallas Marathon me and Pace Leader Steve Griffin

December 22 - Surpassed 2,000 running miles in one year for the first time.

December 26 - Added to pace leader lineup for DRC Spring training.  If you had told me three years ago when I first started running, that I would be co-pacing a group and training them to run a marathon in 3 hours and 50 minutes do you know what my reply would be?  "What's a pacer?"  lol.  Exactly.  Paired up with the only pace leader I've ever had since I've been training with the DRC, Steve Griffin, I can't lose.

What's up for 2013? 

Well of course I have some unfinished business.  I still have a marathon P.R. of 4:13:06 dangling out there just begging to be shattered.  When it happens, it will happen.  I know of 3 marathons that I will be running for sure, that's the Cowtown in February and Tulsa Route 66 in the Fall.  My half P.R. is 1:50:12 and that is going down soon as well.  My focus however right now is to be the best pace leader that I can be and improve my skill in that area.  I have people depending on me now.