Race report: Night Hawk 50K

Night Hawk 50K

June 25, 2016 — Lawrence, KS

Ultra (attempt) #7

50K (attempt) #4

Place: DNF

Time: —

This was supposed to my ultimate training run for a potential 100. It would be hot, humid, dark, hilly, and all the stuff I hate. I wanted to learn to run when I’m ridiculously uncomfortable.

However, this race taught me that there’s a huge difference between pushing through discomfort and pushing through something that just isn’t fun.

Trail running, particularly the type one must endure at Clinton Lake in Lawrence, simply isn’t fun for me. The rocks, roots, low-hanging tree branches, etc. were never-ending, it seemed. The humidity made everything worse. By the time darkness hit, my decision had long-since been made.

I knew less than 3 miles in I was having a miserable time. Not just because I was struggling; I just wasn’t having any fun. I wanted to go home.

I called it quits after one 10.3 mile loop and went home to reassess. Took 5 days off from running — my most in, well, maybe since I started running.

I have since signed up for Heartland 100, minus the arduous training run I was expecting. But while 100 miles will be the most challenging thing I have ever attempted, at least that’s something I want to do.

Running over miles and miles of rocks? Not so much. If I ever want to be a rock climber, I’ll just be a rock climber. The sort of stuff this race had to offer, I never intend to attempt again. It’s just not fun.

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Goofy, flimsy hat I’ll never wear + my eventual DNF bib.

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At least the race photographer was legit. Too bad I didn’t give him a good photo op. Credit: Mile 90 photography

Cheers,

Derrick

 

Race report: Heartland 50

Heartland 50

April 30, 2016 — Cassoday, KS

Ultra #6

50-miler #1

Place: 36/37

Time: 13:38:51

I’ll keep this short since I’m rather delayed in writing this — and since you can read the column I wrote on the race while still managing editor of Wellington Daily News here — Sometimes we fail, but this is not that story.

It was not pretty. In fact, it was downright ugly. Mud on the way out, wind on the way in. Damn near quit at 25. I had no intention of finishing this race after about mile 21 or so. Got talked out of it and trudged along my not-so-merry way.

Goal was to not only improve, but improve by a lot on my time from the year before. Failed miserably in that regard, but all things considered, this was a win just to have finished after enduring the physical struggles and the mental doubt that I did for as many miles as I did.

I’m already gearing up for the 100 in October, though that decision gets put in doubt as the temperatures continue to rise on these hot summer runs that have only just begun.

Maybe someday I’ll run 100 miles. On this day, I was pleased to just get through 50.

Race report: Choose Your K

Choose Your K (30K)

April 2, 2016 — Edmond, OK

30K #1

Place: 18/19

Time: 3:55:35

Race this race with my wife, Kami, on the 3-year anniversary of us being a couple. It wound up being a slow, warm day, but we had fun together.

You got to “choose your K” from a 5K to a 30K and everything in between (in increments of 5, of course)… We opted for the 30K. Me, for the miles and the better value. Her for the challenge of logging her longest run and going with me the whole time, rather than just a portion of it.

She wasn’t feeling well for much of the race, but she soldiered on and finished her longest run ever in one of our favorite cities in America. Not sure what it is about Edmond, but we love it down there.

It was our second time on the campus of Oklahoma Christian University. The previous time was for a 10K race in December. Both times we’ve been there, we’ve been met by lots of friendly folks, we’ve gotten really cool shirts and had just an overall great time.

I hope we get the chance to make it down there again.

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Race report: Hangover Half Marathon

Hangover Half Marathon

January 1, 2016 — Wichita, KS

Half marathon #11

Place: 59/200

Time: 1:57:55

My slowest road half marathon. Since it’s taken me months to catch up on race reports, all I remember is being cold and having my knee hurt a bit. But this is a fun event and a great way to kick off the new year.

It was a different route than two years prior when I ran it, and I didn’t love the new route as well, but it beat the heck out of -15 degree temps for the NYE/NYD 10Ks I ran in Lincon, NE the year in between.

If able, this is definitely a race I will do again.

Hangover half marathon

Race report: Holiday Hustle 10K

Holiday Hustle 10K

December 5, 2015 — Edmond, OK

10K #15

Place: 144/159

Time: 1:08:34

Nice little getaway weekend in Oklahoma to wrap up my much needed week vacation. Concluded with a Thunder-Kings game Sunday evening, but started with this fun 10K in Edmond Saturday morning.

Two loops around Oklahoma Christian University. Such a gorgeous campus. Nice facilities, scenic views and friendly people. We also got a pretty sweet shirt and some pancakes and sausage for a nice post-race breakfast out of the deal.

Kami wasn’t feeling the best, so we went pretty slow and stayed near the back of the pack throughout the race. But like always, we had fun together.

Love holiday races. This was a fun one.

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Our sweet shirt + my bib

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Pre-race shot.

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Our obligatory pre-race photo.

Race report: Trail Stomp

Trail Stomp 5K

November 28, 2015 — Belle Plaine, KS

5K #36

Place: 14/25

Time: 32:02

Slick course with some freezing taking place the previous two days. Still, this would prove to be the easiest of the three race courses on the day.

Ran with Kami in each event. This was the one we fared the best in. We were slow, but remained steady most of the way.

Trail Stomp 1-mile

November 28, 2015 — Belle Plaine, KS

5K #36

Place: 18/21

Time: 9:47

Got a slow start and never really sped up, but this day was just about having fun. Had to work the event, too, so I was there to take photos and write a story as well as participating. Monetary/food donations went to local food bank, so a good cause always makes it worthwhile.

Trail Stomp 2-mile Xtreme

November 28, 2015 — Belle Plaine, KS

2-mile #2

Place: 31/33

Time: 48:21

Most difficult course ever. Not sure how anyone “raced” this. Much slower than even a walking pace for us. Lots of climbing up hills and muddy slopes, trudging through mud and sliding all over the place. We wound up going about 1/4 mile too far and nearly getting frostbite. But we still managed to have a good time. We always do, I suppose.

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My muddy shirt after the morning festivities.

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Prior to the 5K start.

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Kami posing after the races.

Race report: Love Life Run 10K

Love Life Run 10K

November 7, 2015 — Hutchinson, KS

10K #14

Place: 4/99

Time: 44:20

What a great event for my 100th race. My/our amazing friend Sonya Caley does a great job putting this race on. I’m not sure who made it exactly, but her son Declan gave me a sign congratulating me on my 100th race. How cool is that?!

I mean, 100 races may or may not be a big deal. Lots of 5K/1-mile combos in there helped it add up quickly. I suppose when you consider my first race wasn’t until a St. Patrick’s 5K in March of 2012, maybe it’s a big deal? I dunno. Anyway…

Although I haven’t been race ready for any distance in ages, I decided to at least try and see what I could do. I expected somewhere in the 46-minute range. By the way, my PR is 39:57. It would be great to beat that someday, but hey. It is what it is.

Started off fast, like always. Slowed a bit, but actually wound up with one of my more consistent races ever, thanks to a guy named Tim chasing me down for the last 3-4 miles or so. I was certain he’d get me; I just thought I’d make him work for it.

I managed to hold him off and edge him out by 5 seconds, taking 4th place overall. He later thanked me for taking 10 years off his life. I said “You’re welcome.” But seriously, he made me work hard. I hated it. And I loved it.

Post-race environment was a blast as always. Managed to see Kami finish with her new 10K PR — 55:30. She was amazing, as always.

Great day, all-in-all. Here’s to another 100…

Pre-race the wife; all smiles. Well, she is. I don't like smiling.

Pre-race the wife; all smiles. Well, she is. I don’t like smiling.

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Podium, son.

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My favorite race shirt yet. Great color, awesome fit (for once) and neat font.

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Me and my race director friend, Sonya. And the sign her family made for me.