1 in 50,000

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This is a post about a great weekend. I went out to Spokane, WA for the 2014 National RRCA convention. This was by far the best trip to the RRCA conference I have ever had.

For starters RunSignUp was very well received by all of the attendees and we were also able to be a gold sponsor which made our little company very proud. Also the Bloomsday Road Runners just put on an outstanding convention.

This trip started out as me seeing that Bernard Lagat was going to be there…and I was going to make sure I got to go for a run with him. Sure enough at the cocktail hour I slinked on over to him and introduced myself and asked when he was running in the morning. He told me he needed to do 10 miles at 6:00 flat pace. I said no problem let’s do it…he asked if I was racing in two days and I said “Yes.” He then looked at me like I was crazy for going with him for a mild tempo two days before the race. I knew this would affect my race buuuut this was a chance in a lifetime so I smiled and said “It’s no big deal.”

Some wonderful folks from the Bloomsday Road Runners Club picked us up in the morning and took us to a nice rail trail that had a very subtle 300ft climb over 4 miles. So we set out for a run with Mariko, Jody, Evan, Tate, Lagat, and myself. Side note: Bernard’s coach wanted him to drop down to 8 miles instead of 10…this was good news for me. Until we stopped running 6 min pace 🙂
6:34
6:06
5:56
5:38
5:24
5:22
5:30
5:18

I was now a little worried about my race in two days on an extremely challenging course…again it was all worth it.
Lagat and I

The Bloomsday 12K was here!

What a great morning…there were so many people running around warming up and getting ready. The weather was amazing, Mid 50s with a little wind and nothing but sunshine. All of the elites had their game faces on and I was just happy to be there.

The only thing I was worried about was dropping a 4:20 mile on the downhill at two miles.

The gun went off and everyone was out HARD. The GPS watch was started at 3:55 and slowly worked it’s way up…I put on the breaks and made sure I strolled through mile one in 5:05…the leaders were gone.

The first mile is a basic city mile with very clean businesses along the way and some really cute houses…but once you hit the second mile you start your decent and there is the beautiful river rushing down through the mountains, just an amazing view. Bridge over Water

Mile 2-4 is a lot of climbing…then you bomb down another steep hill and everything opens up and you can see the river again and the leaders making their way up Doomsday Hill. That hill is very intimidating from this view.

Elevation Chart

Elevation Chart

So I hit this hill with a smile on my face. It reminded me of running ARB hills in Ann Arbor, MI. I kept telling myself “At the top is when you will start to push.” I started passing some guys that had obviously hit the wall. I also came across a couple wheelers that were working their way up the hill…I put a stick in their spokes 😉

Actually I had plenty of time to study them as I was catching up…It filled me up with joy and pride watching this woman fight for an inch at a time on this hill. She had to push forward one inch then hold tight on the wheels as she re set her hands to push again for another inch…I just wondered “If that was me, would I have the perseverance to keep pushing?” I couldn’t help but clap and cheer for them as I ran past.

I finally got to the top of Doomsday Hill and of course, Eye of Tiger is playing. So I had no choice but to fist pump and all of the volunteers (about 100+) started cheering and yelling “RECKLESS!” at me. It was too much fun.

That being said this great move/pace pick up I was gearing up for…just didn’t happen. I was whipped from that hill. I salvaged a 5:23 mile with half of it being on the up hill. After that I clocked a 5:02 as I pushed to catch a few more guys as we began to bomb down the little hill toward the finish line.

My Splits
5:01
5:00
5:16
5:02
5:06
5:23
5:02
2:28
My Results

This was an awesome race and experience. If you have yet to do this race then you need to make it happen. P.S. The hotel was about $150 a night for a super nice place and the race is only $17 so this is way cheaper then a Chicago Marathon Trip.

Reckless Finish

Reckless Finish

Also if you want any of this cool Reckless Gear there is a link on the right and if you enter in “JORDAN” as a coupon code you get a discount!

Chicago Chicago Chicago

Some good and some bad. I wanted to take some time before I wrote this to let the emotions simmer down a bit. Chicago was a really cool experience. I had a great time with Jamie, Joel, and Chase. We stayed in a hotel right at the start which was sweet and made for a short walk in the morning.

Let’s talk a little truth first…men and women just peeing in the street at the coral..mind you I’m up front with the elite sooo that was unexpected. I know we normally run to a tree or something but the women generally hide it…not here…again I get it but just wasn’t ready for it.

The race it self was odd…I new within the first few steps that my legs and body just were not feeling normal. There was a sluggishness to my body and a heaviness to my legs. This is never a good thing when you have 26 more miles to go.

I was very foolish in telling everyone I was going to run with the lead women…I was even more foolish is knowing how I was feeling and also being told they would be paced at 2:19 – 2:20 and at best I was going to run 2:22. Being the arrogant ass I was I jumped right up with them and went for it.

We had the TV cameras on us from the start. I was sporting my new Reckless Running jersey being all Billy Badass up there. In the back of my mind I kept thinking…slow down and just let them go…we don’t want a death march in the last few miles.

I tried to take it all in and enjoy this race but the thought of dying at the end was overwhelming. Chicago was amazing in that the streets are lined with people for 26.2 miles…it is insane. Also if you are going to watch the race you need to contact Wes Stoody as he knew all of the points to see us. He should be a paid guide for spectators…provided they can run fast enough to get to each point.

As predicted around the 18 mile mark the race began to take it’s toll on me. The elite women dropped something stupid like a 5:10 and I waved them goodbye. I was quickly in no mans land and ran almost the rest of the race by myself…with each mile getting slower and more painful.

This brings me to my next thought…I think for the next marathon I will be wearing trainers versus racing flats. My lower leg muscles hurt so bad by the time I get to 18 miles when in flats, yet with trainers I can run 20 miles and be fine.

I also have no disillusion of me being able to call myself a marathoner…yet. Maybe once I have run a better time and logged a few more races will I be able to say that.

So here are the split breakdowns
1-?
2-10:58
3-5:24
4-5:21
5-5:22
6-5:29
7-5:27
8-5:24
9-5:23
10-5:27 54:18
11-5:28
12-5:20
13-5:25
14-5:22
15-5:23
16-5:27
17-5:26
18-5:29
19-5:32
20-5:41
21-5:45
22-6:08
23-6:27
24-6:34
25-6:36
26-5:58
.2-1:12
2:27.42.

At 25 Miles I calculated my time and knew that if I pushed I could still get a PR…It wasn’t going to be much but for the $1,000 this trip cost me, I better get something out of this. So I ran my 2:27.42 which bested my Detroit time of 2:28.30 but no where close to the 2:22 zone I was hoping for.

Tom Clifford gave me a very long explanation in how the body builds up lactic acid and what happens if we take off to quickly with out a warm up (since you don’t really warm up much for the marathon) Had I started the run in 5:50 or so I might have had a better day…plus I pushed some of my workouts a little to hard against my Coach’s orders.

There is a lot to learn from this…will I try a marathon again…sure…but only if I truly commit to it and put in the miles needed.

Chillin With The Ladies

Chillin With The Ladies

Clentched Fist

Clentched Fist

Thank God That's Over

Thank God That’s Over

Probility 5K Recap

What a perfect day for a 5K. Especially a low key race in Saline, MI where they are offering up $500 1st place. I bet no one even knows about this race…I guess that’s what all of us were thinking. I did have the upper hand since the online registration was through my website…so I might have scrolled the list of runners already registered, looking for some fast names I might recognize.

News flash, most fast guys don’t register. As I’m parking my car I begin to see some fast looking guys decked out is MSU track gear, a guy decked out in brooks (Hanson’s), and a Kenyan looking fella. Figures…but at least I knew the race was going to be fast and that’s all I really cared about.

I was trying to prod the brooks kid asking him if he was going to break 15 min and he gave a silly round about answer then Blacklaws pointed out the MSU kid just ran 4:00 in the Willis mile that took place a week earlier at Saline High School. So now I got excited and knew I was in for a treat. My goal was 14:45 for the day which would tie my road 5K PR.

The race started off pretty damn fast and as usual I find myself in the front…Not the kinda front where I’m saying bye to the rest of the field but the kinda front where everyone is going to make their pace B!C#. I just kept thinking “if this guy is in 4:00 shape then I better run the kick out of him, so I pushed on.

Being that I’m the only A-hole who shows up to a road race without a watch, I had no idea what our first mile was. Someone later said they thought it was around 4:45. Quickly after that first mile we hit uphill and continued to push hard. There was a pack of four of us and no one was giving an inch. After a few more tight 90 degree turns we looped around to the hill we just ran up and everyone pushed the pace on the downhill…My body said “no chance.” These guys were just better prepared for this faster stuff than me.

I didn’t really slow down so much as they picked it up…I tell myself that so I feel better 🙂 The leaders hit the two mile at about 9:20 and I was trailing by just a few seconds. As we pushed on through the third mile the gap started to grow. I finally noticed the 4:00 guy broke and started to drop off the leaders. The two guys in front were battling.

Now here is the hard part of any race. Knowing you are not going to get passed but are also not going to be passing anyone. I had to keep my eyes up at the guy in front of me, maintain my quick leg turnover, and keep pushing. I was now racing the clock…and with no watch I had no idea how fast I was running which was playing on my mind.

We popped back out on the main road where we started and I knew I only had 400m to go. I began a subtle kick…the road was so broken up here you couldn’t get a decent stride. I could see the clock and it was reading 14:30…I thought I might break my PR…so now I started running balls out.

I crossed the ghost finish line at 14:40 then was told to keep running as that was not the finish line…really?!?! the place where you put the clock, first mat, and flags is not the finish line…so I jogged up to the next set of mats on the ground to get my true finish time of 14:42.8 which was still my fastest road 5K.

How many damn finish lines are there?!?!

How many damn finish lines are there?!?!

Even after getting my butt kicked I was still able to walk away with $50, a new PR, and a reassurance that my training was headed in the right direction for Chicago. As for the race, if you are looking for a good fast 5/k next year this will be the place to go. They are going to restructure the prize money a little better, the finish line will be correct, and the course will also be loosing two or more 90 degree turns which of course will make it faster.

Here is a link to the results

Here is a link to some pics.

If you like the singlet click HERE to see the Reckless Running store. Enter code “JORDAN” to get 15% off any order you make.

One more shameless plug…click HERE to check out my first road race that I am putting on. Run Thru Helloween

Hungry Duck 13.1 Brighton, MI 7/4

I hope everyone had a great 4th of July and found some cool runs to run and races to race. I decided to do the Hungry Duck half in downtown Brighton, MI. This was my 4th half marathon and it was on the 4th, that’s like double rainbow special. Also a quick shout out to my dad the big H.D. for getting off of work at 5:00AM and getting to Brighton to watch Chase since Jamie had to work and there was no way I was gonna get a PR pushing the little guy.

This was also the first half marathon that I have ever planned and trained for. If you have been following my blog you would remember that I just kinda showed up the day of or learned about the race the day before. I always used them as training runs. My wife Jamie even dropped me off six miles from the finish line and followed me while I ran the end of the race. I heard it was hilly and I didn’t want any surprises.

The Hungry Duck was the first race I actually had a plan for. Magic Mike Anderson and I had been planning to run this thing at 5:15 pace. He had a PR of 69:35 and mine was 69:34, 5:18 pace. I had my leg speed like always and he had strength since he was running 130 – 140 miles per week. There was no way we weren’t going to both rock this.

Mike and I said “Let’s stick to the plan for the first 8 miles then just go nuts from there.” You set it up this was because you’re both racers and everyone wants to win but you need each other to get through the bulk of the race. Corey and I had done the same thing in the Steeplechase several times. Work together for 6 laps then race the last 600 meters.

Race day was here and I was not nervous at all…I had been so excited to run this race I was like a kid at Christmas. I even texted Savedes “I feel like I paid for this PR already, I just need to go pick it up.” My dad was here and Chase was behaving to an extent. The weather was almost perfect.

I did make one last minuet decision and NOT wear racing flats. My foot had been bugging me a little so I wore my trainers. I know a shoe like that could cost me 2 seconds per mile and over 13.1 miles that’s around 26 seconds. I also thought not finishing because of foot pain will suck even more.

HOT DAMN…runners take your mark. Let’s do this! The horn blows and we take off. After a solid five seconds Magic and I are all alone. You immediately begin to analyse your body, making sure your breathing is good, the legs don’t feel heavy, no little ache or pain in the joints and tendons…everything seems to be good. Mike and I begin to make small talk. He had a Gramin on so I kept telling him to make sure we don’t go out in 5:00 min mile and blow up. We wanted to keep the first between 5:15 and 5:20 just get things going.

Up and over the overpass, turn down the dirt road for a quick out and back, 5:15 first mile BOOM! Right back out to the main road and everything seems good. Mike was a step behind me and I noticed that our pace slowed a tad. So I said “Hey we just slowed down.” Mike comfortingly replied “I’m done.” I hastily shouted “Are you F–King kidding me.” Mike replied “Nope.” I thought to myself “FML and that’s what happens when you run 76 miles in the three days leading up to the race.” I looked up at the first hill, put my head down, and took off.

5:15
4:51
5:24
5:05
5:20
5:06
5:20
5:10
5:16
5:09 (52:01)
5:08
5:18
5:01
0:43
68:12 5:12 pace 1Min. 21 Second PR

Running the last six miles of this course, two days earlier, made such a huge difference. When you are tired and getting rocked by hills, it’s nice to know how many you have left, so it’s ok to max on this hill because you have half a mile to recover before the next one. It just keeps you in such a better mental state when you are fatigued.

I also made the correct decision with the shoes. My foot started to hurt at 10 miles and I knew had I wore flats it would have started much sooner and the pain would have become excruciating. It was soo cool running to the finish seeing my dad and son there. Chase was in his stroller wide eyed and smiling from ear to ear. I was so happy. I don’t think he had ever seen me finish a race before.

I would love to see a picture of me finishing with Chase and my dad there on the side lines…but I think all of those people taking pics of the race must have forgot to upload them anywhere on the internet. If you happen to have a picture please send to me over Facebook.

Altitude 10K

O damn, first race of my life in altitude. For those of you have never experienced 5,000 ft or higher…it is a crazy feeling. Now if you hit that altitude and are not really doing anything active then you probably won’t notice anything.

Other then a subtle pressure on my chest I didn’t really notice it on my first easy 4 mile run at 7:30 pace, I didn’t really notice it on the next run when I did 10 miles closer to 7:00 pace. The first time I started to feel it was the day before the race when I dipped under 6:00 pace for my last mile. As you begin to push your body harder you’re expecting to take a deeper harder breath to fuel your muscles with Oxygen and it just doesn’t work the way you are expecting. When you attempt to take in that deeper breath there is a tightness in your chest that grows.

Time to race…The Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) brought their ringer out for the meet. Scott Bauhs (3:59 mile, 13:29 5k, 27:48 10K, and a 61 something 1/2 ) needless to say the boy is legit. Now neither one of us are really in good shape so we figured if we could run 5:00 pace for this race, it would be a good workout.

I won’t keep you in suspense…Scotty kicked my ass. There wasn’t really a race at all. We ran together for the first mile going out hard and slowing up to a 5:01 first mile. Then we turned right into the WIND…I figure caps will make the wind look more fierce. Mile number 2 was where Scotty just left me as I ran 5:27.

U Turn, now the wind was at our back again and I dropped back to a 5:09 for the third mile. I made sure to smile and give Scott the thumbs up as he passed me. I just could not stop smiling. My body was hurting but a ton of RRCA folks were cheering me on as I was passing them by. My legs felt OK but I just couldn’t dig deep for the O2 that I was used to.

The rest of the race/run came in at 5:17, 5:14, 6:19( 1.2 miles) = 32:29. All in all this was a great trip. We got to meet a bunch of club directors and catch up with some acquaintances that I only see at these running conventions. I was also able to meet Scott Bauhs, Howie Keflezighi and Meb Keflezighi.

I can’t wait to see how I feel when I get to Michigan and get on the track…

Wrightsville Beach Marathon

This will be the third re write of this…as some already read the other one and now it just isn’t there. The issue is typing it up on the ipad then finishing it on the PC. The ipad, not being closed down, auto saves…so it auto saved over the old story…So here we go for the third time.

Some good some bad but it was all a fun and new experience…lets start with the bad…I’ve only been averaging about 25-30 miles per week. I was only home for one full week in February and I find it difficult to get out the door when I travel but again that is a shitty excuse.

I have no more bad excuses. I think my foot is almost 100%. I can handle long hard runs without needing a day or two to recover. This is also a great example that it takes more than just good looks to win a marathon…you actually have to train 🙂

The course was great with only a few very small hills. The aid stations had water, Gatorade, and hammer gels. This was just a really well put together event thanks to Tom Clifford and his amazing Without Limits Team.

The race started out nice and smooth with a very slow easy first mile. I ended up finding the half marathon leader and running off of his Garmin. We raced together for close to eight miles until I started to pick up the pace, at least it felt that way. Turns out I ran even and he slowed and I just happen to pull away from him.

Tom saw me and told me that the leader was only about two minutes ahead of me so I figured I would spend several miles making up that gap. You can see on my splits I start to quicken my pace a little. I didn’t want to do it too quickly in fear of blowing up.

Once I could see the leader it was really hard to stay smooth and easy. The competitive drive just takes a hold of you and starts pushing everything like a salivating dog chasing a steak. I finally caught up to him at mile 21 and told myself “you should probably sit on him for a little” aaaaand I didn’t.

I slowed up a little…about 13 seconds for that mile and still just rolled past him. My next mile, 22, still maintained that 5:45 pace…Then there was little signal sent through out my body that said “Shits about to go downhill” So you think do I slow down to conserve or speed up to get there quicker…Kind of like when you have to poo when you are out running.

Mile 23 went 5:55…at that point I didn’t really have to do much thinking about my pace as my body was in control and I was just going off of the rails on the crazy dying train.

As I knew what was happening and knew it would not end well I told myself just keep Bleeping running. My head was together and my breathing was as relaxed as if I were sitting on the couch. I could tell my pace was slowing even more as I wasn’t passing people as quickly, Mile 24 – 6:26.

2.2 miles to go. I wonder how long it will take me if I walk it in from here? Shut up…keep running…I wish I had a beer right now. I should have ran the half. Then the demoralizing instance of getting passed back and falling to 2nd place. At this point I was just crushed as I knew there was nothing left in my legs to go after him, Mile 25 – 7:01

1.2 miles to go. My ham string on my surgery leg was just screaming at me. I was now keeping pace with the runners I was lapping. Every fiber in my body was screaming at me to stop running. Each step was a battle. Now the mental game was in full effect. “Stop Running, no one will notice” “Jamie is going to be so mad I didn’t win” “So much for owning the course record” “Why didn’t you just run a few more miles per week?” “Steal that big girls fanny pack” Mile 26 – 7:34

All of a sudden I hear “What are you doing?!” as I looked over and saw Joel Thomas David the man with three first names. I told him I was done. He said “Your not even breathing hard.” I told him my legs were dead and told him to jog it in with me.

I looked at Joel and asked him if he had a beer jokingly. Then he pointed over to Cameron’s West Virginia Alumni tent that was cheering on the runners and said “They do.” I shot straight over there and grabbed a little plastic cup that was filled with a little bit of the sweet sap, too bad they weren’t red solos hehe.

I slammed my beer and we laughed as I started to round the corner towards the finish line. I thought at this point I better try to put my Reckless Running uniform back on incase someone gets a picture of me. I had to take it off several miles ago in fear of my nipples falling off, which stung every time I showered over the next few days. I finally walked over the finish line. 26.2 – 2:34.51

True to my word I went out there and broke the course record…it’s just someone else did it a little faster than me that day. As hard as I died, miles 10 – 20 were just so smooth feeling…I was holding back the whole time…which really makes me wonder why I crashed so bad. My race nutrition was good as there was no way I could eat or drink anymore as my stomach was full.

Dead Man Walking

Dead Man Walking

1-6:12
2-5:55
3-5:46
4,5-11:45
6-5:46
7-5:50
8-5:43
9-5:43
10-5:43
11-5:42
12-5:43
13-5:36
14-5:39
15-5:36
16-5:43
17-5:35
18-5:33
19-5:37
20-5:33
21-5:46
22-5:45
23-5:55
24-6:26
25-7:01
26-7:34
.2-1:34
————–
2:34.51

Overal this race was a great time. The after race was also fun hanging out with a bunch of Without Limits Runners. If you are ever looking for a fun destination race this was awesome. Depending on the time line it will be a fun St. Pats time as well.

St. Pete Beach 13.1

So for those of you that didn’t get the full story. I was down in Florida for the ChronoTrack conference and Jamie and I decided to go for a walk to grab some food. We walked no more than 100 meters before coming across this giant Stat and Finish banner.

So over dinner I looked up which races were in town and turns out the St. Pete Beach Classic was going on all weekend. I was bummed I didn’t bring any racing flats or any racing stuff but I figured I would email the race director anyway.

He offered to give me a discounted rate on the entry, so I thought why not. Jamie and I walked over to the hotel expo and registered up for the race. Then we headed over to the running store display. They had all of last years or later shoes sitting there on clearance. I told the guy “Give me something that looks fast.”

So this is what I ended up with.

Nike Flats

Nike Flats

I figured I better break them in so I did an easy 4 mile run in them that night. I was also told there would be some good competition at the race. There were a few guys looking to run 70 min. I thought that would be perfect since I had no idea how in or outta shape I was in. I thought if I could run sub 74 that would be good for what little training I had been doing.

BLAH BLAH BLAH..Onto race morning!
It was a perfect Florida morning. It was about 62 out with a slight wind. I was the first guy to make his way towards the start line. I was looking for the guys who looked the part.

Two guy finally stepped up to the start. I asked them what they were looking to run and told them I’m just going to sit on them until they drop me.

The gun went off and it actually seemed like a nice casual run. We were clipping along at an easy 5:30 ish first mile. We were all talking a little bit and making polite conversation. I leaned that they were both 68 min. guys so I was a little nervous at how bad this was going to hurt but I just kept telling myself “If they are going to beat me I’m going to make them work for it.”

After about 4-5 miles of running an easy 5:25 ish pace I was starting to feel pretty comfortable and neither of these guys wanted to push the pace. Soon the local guy ,Hank, began to slow up. So the young man from Boston and I started to push a little.

Finishing up the 5th mile I was still feeling good and I told him that he could draft behind me for a little if he wanted a windshield. As soon as I took the lead I sped up to a 5:10 mile and put the hurt on him. That was the last I saw him…

The rest of the race was pretty uneventful…just me grinding miles solo. I crossed the finish line in 1st place with over a 2 min gap on second place and a 5 min. gap to 3rd place. Once again this goes to show you’re only as fast as your last race.