Friday, January 29, 2010

Running in Snowshoes?

photos: Joel Wolpert
I had a fun time giving snowshoes a try for the first time last Sunday at the Whitegrass 5K. The race is held at the Whitegrass Cross Country Skiing Center near Davis. It was definitely much harder than I thought it would be. After face planting in my "warm-up", I was sort of dreading the idea of trying to actually run a 5K in the darn things. Luckily I figured them out as the race went on and finally was able to get into a rhythm similar to normal shoe clad running after a mile or so.

Kadra ran as well and had a really good time..... and ran a good time. She is a natural, she just doesn't know it yet.

The rest of the photos can be found HERE and results HERE. If you're looking for something to break the monotony of winter, give snowshoes a try and be sure to visit the mystical lands of Whitegrass if you find yourself in Canaan Valley.

Sunday, January 24, 2010


Congratulations to my friend, fellow ultrarunner, and world class bow hunter Bradley Mongold on bagging a Rocky Mtn Bighorn Sheep ewe in Colorado.

This is an arduous hunt even with a rifle, but to successfully take one with a bow is quite impressive. Of course this is merely child's play to the guy that shot two caribou, a moose, and a sitka blacktail deer with his bow last year alone (I'm sure I've left a few species out as well).

Nice job Mongold!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Are you ready for the Trilogy?

Dan Lehmann and I have been hard at work planning a new and exciting race at Spruce Knob coming this Oct. 8, 9, and 10. Complete information and entry should be ready to roll within the next week, but I just wanted to give folks a jump start on planning....or a little tease. Trust me, you will not want to miss this!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Winter Running: Yaktrax vs Screws


The more than usual amount of snow that we have received this year in WV has given me the extended opportunity to test out my devices for effective snow running. In the past, I've ran most winters in just my regular running shoes with the occasional day or days of slapping on the yaktrax. This is the first year that I've ever been tempted to try screws in my shoes. So what's the verdict? Well, I have to say I kind of like the screws. Running with screwed shoes you don't have some of the negatives associated with Yaktrax (snow clumping, elastic cords breaking, coils getting displaced, etc.). Yaktrax still have a place in my running arsenal, mainly running on packed snow, but the screwed shoes seem to work much better when running on partially clear roads or trails with snow/ice patches interspersed.

I'm interested to see what everyone else does to make winter running more functional. So what works for you in the winter?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cheat Mountain Open!

If you are interested in running 50 miles by the light of the night, be sure to sign up for Cheat Mountain! I hear the RD is quite a guy......

Saturday, January 9, 2010

WVMTR Winter Run

Fun in the Snow

A good time was had by the few brave souls in Helvetia for the WVMTR Annual Meeting at the Lehmann house. We had tons of food, plenty of snow, and enjoyed each other's company on a chilly poker run. Who says you have to stay off the trails in winter?

Katie, Greg, Dan, and Bill

view of one of Lehmann's trails

Katie in the "ice cave"

Dan "I Lick Icicles" Lehmann

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Sharing the Journey

Today I had the pleasure of sharing a run. Company while running is a rarity for me, but I gladly accepted the request when two local college runners home over break called to see if I wanted to run.

I forgot how quickly time passes, even in the dead of winter, when you have someone to share the time with (or commiserate with). I led the guys on one of my standard morning routes. A simple run of eight miles, a mix of paved and dirt roads, and a good creek crossing. Although I have done this very loop over a hundred times, I had forgotten how enjoyable it is to share a run of "mine" with others that are running it for the first time with fresh eyes for the scenery and terrain. Today was different; mundanely cold, snowy, and blustery, but different. It was crossing a frozen creek, revealing an unknown side-road, and sharing a part of me that made it different.

During this morning's run I had a thought; this is why I love directing races. Directing a race is much more than months of organizing, clearing trail, ordering schwag, and making preparations. Directing a race is about sharing part of you; a trail and mountain that is intimately known and challenging runners to reach new heights upon it. I absolutely love seeing people reach new limits in life and running. The runner that is beaten down by their pursuit yet persists, crossing the finish line with tear-filled eyes only to match my warm handshake or hug with a priceless "thank you"....It means so much and is probably one of the most meaningful experiences for me in all of running. Don't believe me? Try it!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Frozen Sasquatch 50K

Well the sasquatch was definitely frozen for the Frozen Sasquatch 50K yesterday. Starting temps around 17 degrees made for a fun day slip sliding around in the snow-covered Kanawha State Forest in Charleston, WV. RD Mike Dolin (above on right) did a great job directing this inaugural event with the weather presenting him some extra challenges this year.

I ran a solid race and finished 4/5 minutes back from my friend and Montrail athlete Eric Grossman (above left) for second place overall in 4:34 and change. The course is a two loop course and I came through the first loop just as Eric was leaving the aid station; somewhere around 2:14. We ran close together for the first climb, then Eric handily dropped me on the next downhill stretch never to be seen again until the finish line. I ran well on the second lap, but knew I was nowhere near the even splits that it would take to catch Eric. I was happy with the race and to finish somewhat closely behind Grossman. Anytime someone is beaten by Eric and it's only a "few" minutes, consider it a good day!

Check out results and pictures HERE and some photos that Kadra took HERE.

Photos: Dan Todd
It was great to start the year out right with a 50K! I was pleasantly surprised by this fitness test and I'm excited to see what I can do in 2010.