Monday, November 23, 2009


We head back to Colorado this afternoon. I love the Birmingham area (geographically) as it reminds me vaguely of the North West. Hilly and wet. My legs feel very good today with just a faint tightness in my right hip flexors and my feet feel great which surprises me the most. At one point on Saturday I kicked a rock and tripped. I kicked it so hard that my insole folded back under my foot about 3". I managed to work it back in to place with my toes while I ran. I thought for a moment that I broke my big toe as my entire foot lit up like fire and my toe went numb... today there's nothing. And another thing I learned on Saturday is that tripping and falling may be less painful than tripping and catching yourself. A few times later in the run I tripped and the shock of catching myself (picture yourself flailing forward trying to hold yourself up) sent electric shock waves through my back and pelvis. The few times I actually hit the ground were quite pleasant in comparison. And I learned how to pee and run on Saturday, not sure what spurred this ability at this point in my life, but I've never been able to do this in the past. With out going in to detail I will say this is a valuable skill as I had to go 6 times total.
A few things that stand out in my mind from Saturday:
I never walked a single step or felt the need to. On the big climb I felt my best and strongest.
I lost track of time and miles during the race. I would start a loop, look down at the trail, and what felt like 5 seconds later, the loop was done. 6:38 felt like 1 hour in my mind.
When I'm confident, I'm supremely confident. Now I need to figure out how to always be confident in races.
Going in to the race I thought I would be confident up until mile 35 because that was my longest run this year. But I was actually the reverse. At mile 15, with 35 miles to go, my confidence came rushing to me.
The GPS is a useful training tool but a handicap in a race. Even wearing a simple watch would have taken away from my race. The difference in how I felt from wearing the GPS to not wearing it was quite profound. It was like someone took shackles off my legs and flipped a switch in my brain. Up until mile 11 my thoughts were the same old negative and weak thoughts I always had in the marathon. Once I eliminated the goal pace factor and just ran with a freedom of spirit... it was the easiest and most enjoyable run of my life.
I could have run 20 more miles. Even with 1 mile to go I believed this. And I thought about Leadville frequently during the race. Every mile built my confidence in regards to August.
My nutrition couldn't have been better. I fell easily back in to my Ironman mentality and taking in calories was simply a natural thing to do. Never an unclear moment.
Shoes... it's time to buck up and buy some.
Weights... it's time to get back on them.
And I appreciate all the kind comments! Thank you.


Claus Bech said...

Good job, man! Ultras sounds like a perfect fit for You. Of course Your first place and time is rewarding, but I find it much more interesting that You dwell with the process along the whole run. I think that's what develops us in to better athletes. Even when winning the best/open minded/searching athletes strives for perfection and bettering an already elite performances.
A lot of people tend to evaluate a performance only in terms of placings and time. Winning is an exclusive luxury and I think too many people are too obsessed with winning and outperforming others, to thrive in the long run. If You have different smaller goals like "not walking, except when eating/peeing/extreme uphill", "drinking at fixed times", "being friendly to the crew" and so on, there are so many small victories in one race, regardless of the outcome. I'm not surprised that You have that kind of attitude, having come this far, and choosing the ultras makes the mind game so much more important than "just" a marathon distance. I'm looking forward to follow Your mental and physical development towards being a happy ultra, Claus Bech, Denmark

Brett said...

I think my car's tires have less mileage on them than your shoes!

Anonymous said...

Check out the quote from the Inov-8 team blog.

DeWayne Satterfield won the Dizzy Fifties 40 mile race in Huntsville, AL this past Saturday (5:46). DeWayne wore the Roclite 295's and said they were perfect for this course which had a rocky loop and a smooth single track loop.

I thought it was a 50 mile race won by Tim Wagonner!

Get sponsored.


Anonymous said...


Sorry I spelled your name wrong, forgot the double g. Guess I'm still used to Luchinske.


Josh R said...

Sounds like for your 1st ultra-type event you nailed it almost spot on. Its very interesting to see how unlike Chicago training which put you to a point of being disinterested, you enjoy this so much more. On the shoes....I picked up some of the Avi-Stoltz you may wanna check them out. Going up and down Rattlesnake gulch they took the rock beating pretty damn well

Fred (aka ace) said...

That's what I'm talking about! I just read your last two posts and couldn't be happier for you. Congrats not only on your results but on the peace of mind you seem to have found in obtaining them. Recently I've been reading Born to Run and one of the things that echos in my mind is finding the sense of pure joy while running which can transcend both fatigue and time. Even when you talk about falling, I can't help but imagine finding some joy in that when you "let go". Rock on man!

Mary IronMatron said...

Congrats on a well executed race! I'm not surprised you were confident at 15 in, b/c at that point you had 35 LEFT, and you felt good.

Lucho said...

Thanks MIM!

Eric- I still misspell it too. Dewayne was entered in the 50? And technically speaking... I also won the 40 mile :)

Josh- Avi-stoltz? Are those the Conrad Stoltz Xterra shoes?

Brett- I'll take a picture of them and blog it. The shoes are wasted. They fit like slippers though and are awesome on roads.

Thank you again Claus! I love the falling analogy! I may use that in the future. Cheers!

Josh R said...

Those are the ones. The only issue is finding them. I gambled and bought online and they fit well. I'm sure someone in boulder does Avia