New trail!

Time on the trail has revealed to me a whole new perspective on running, getting outside and getting fit.  We sometimes find ourselves running the same old route for multiple reasons.  Sometimes, it’s simply having the time.  Balancing a growing family and full time job, it can be super tough just to get a run in at all.  Sometimes, it can be a mental block that x and y and z all have to be in place or the run won’t go well or even happen at all.

As my running has evolved and I’ve been exposed to new and different things I’ve been shown some of the more fun aspects of running.  I’ve found all kinds of fun people and apps to point me to new and different trails and experiences.  Sometimes it’s concrete/asphalt and sometimes it’s dirt.  I’ve changed most everything about my fitness to accommodate these differences.

The one I’d like to mention today is @Strava Global Heat Map for helping me find new fun places in my own backyard.  Only a short drive away and I found some really fun concrete and dirt.  IG Post here.

The past week our family had some sadness and I have been able to see new trail 4 times since.  There is something cathartic about getting outside and venturing into new territory.  It’s not too extreme, but just enough.

I’ve decided to push back my goal to run BrazosBend100 (50 miler) to 2018.  I was presented with an opportunity to run the Chevron Half Marathon for $5 with one of my longest running buddies.  I look forward to one of my other longest running buddies being home in 2018 so we can spend some time catching up.  2018 will also have another runcation or 2 with Pirate Hawkins the Runner to look forward to.

Most thanks of all to my family for supporting me while I’m off on some trail experiencing something new.  Thanks for joining me on this journey!



I would just like to say how thankful I am for the past year of support, training and racing.  Every month has brought a new and different challenge.  I had a few small injuries along the way that kept me from training and posting.  However, I’ve been training and doing pre-hab to keep me going lately.

I recently found a new tool to help me find new routes which has proved very fruitful: Strava heat map

Thankful and sending love to everyone today!


Wisconsin Half results are in!

Wisconsin Half is done – @Pirate_hawkins_the_runner and I had fun!



We had a great time! It was about 40 degrees and wind was about 20 mph.  We didn’t wear pants but we had gloves on 😉  First 10K went really well, was mostly flat and mostly not windy.  We were doing 15min jog / 1min walk and running negative splits!  Every mile or so I pushed a little harder.  I wanted to see how “the Pirate” and my knee would hold up.  The second 10K got a little rough.  This is when the “elevation” started.  For most of you I know it’s not really elevation, but for us it was 🙂  Also, the wind was now 20mph headwind!  Adding that to negative splits really tore up his calf.  Therefore we decided to change it up to 4 min jog/1min, walk, just have fun, slow down and finish.  We finished with hazelnut beer and a brat!  That’s the way it’s done!  We danced a little while we warmed up and we danced a little while eating brats 🙂  After that, we hit the shower and returned to Chicago.  I got to see FleetFeet Chicago and then went to Coalfire Pizza!!  I got a Viking Vacation (drink) which was nice.  From there, a relaxing time on the couch watching a movie was in order.  Next day we hit up the 606 path for a recovery run.  Super cool running path with padded edges to run on!  Perfect trip with awesome friends!

Thanks for joining me on this journey!

Wisconsin Half is here!

This is my first “travelling” race!  I’ve driven 3 hours at most to a race.  However, this is my first the I’m flying to the race!  I’m super excited.  My packet arrived via snail mail, whew!  Shoutout to Crystal Ware for also encouraging me to do some travelling races!  Weather looks great!  Low 36 / high 53 20% precip 17mph N 55% humid.  This is looking like PR weather.

I’ve had 3 shakeout runs this week and my knee is holding up, but my hip flexor is still a little tender.  @Pirate_hawkins_the_runner and I might have to change our goals though.

Tips on how to pack for travelling races:

– Race weekend checklist

– Travelling race checklist

– Race site

Runner Tracking 

The race does not have traditional tracking at the race, but we do have split mats along the course at a couple locations. When you cross these mats, your split times will be automatically uploaded to this site where your family and friends can see your progress: Results

Thanks for joining me on this journey!

Some fun info for the weekend

Documentaries over the weekend:
Life in a Day – amazing video about Western States 100 – “You live a life of emotions in one day of racing a 100”
Life in a Day podcast on Trail Runner Nation – cool podcast that follows 3 of the 4 stars from the video above
Texas Trail Blazer  – documentary about the RD for Trail Racing Over Texas (the races i run)
Darkness – interesting piece of ultrarunning you hear everyone talk about
The Caballo Blanco Experience – youtube video about running in the canyons (have you read Born to Run yet?)
Losing Sight of Shore – full length documentary not out yet, but the trailer is.  It’s about some super powerful women completing an amazing challenge, check it out 😉

Thanks for joining me on this journey!

50 is DONE!

50K is done!!  What an amazing race and amazing park!  I had my crew there to support me!  Mom was not able to make it to this race, but she helped with encouragement and visualization discussions previous to the race.  Brazos Bend State Park was beautiful and the gators were out!  I think I saw about 4 of them (and a snake).  I ran 7 hours 40 min (took a break at the half way point-16mi) so my overall race time was 8 hours 40 min.  I came in my first loop faster than my goal pace which was amazing!  My overall pace was 15:32min/mi which aint bad considering I did 1/4s the second loop (as opposed to 4/1s).  I had a buddy Steven Cox to help me get through the second loop!  That made all the difference of getting it done and not being angry at the end.  I felt really good from the waist up after the race.  My nutrition and hydration were on point thanks to @HoneyStinger and @NUUN Hydration.  My knee, hip flexors and ankles were the most painful I would say.  In order to get through a few intervals I could tell I did something weird with my right leg and hips.  This led to my hip flexors being overworked.  My ankle soreness was probably the least expected and most surprising.  The rest was expected.  When I got home I took an ice bath and ate some pizza!  Leading up to the race I put together my stretching list which I’ve never done.  It’s super helpful to ensure that you don’t miss a required stretch on race day.   I’m blessed and thankful to be able to get out of bed every day, stretch, roll out and run with my buddies.  It’s a get to, not a have to 😉

Thanks for joining me on this journey!