Monthly Archives: January 2012

Race Report: 2012 Pikes Peak Ponderous Posterior 50K

Ok, not a ‘real’ race, but it seemed best to file it under a race report.  The PPPP50K is a Fat Ass event put on by Team CRUD in Colorado Springs.  Just over 30 miles and around 8,000′ feet of climbing were the stats for the main event.  I missed out last year and was very happy to be given the chance to make it down for this one.

I stopped for some supplies on the drive down, and smiled at the sunrise on the mountains.  January??  It was going to be a spectacular day.

Three different start times were offered (7, 8, and 9), and I chose the 08:00 group.  It was great to see and catch up with so many friends and familiar faces.  Ultra trail running is definitely alive and well in these parts!  After 1/2 mile warmup on the roads, we hit the nice dry dirt and started climbing up and over some small ridges.  I was happy to be feeling good after a rough day on Friday, and knew the full route was on (I had been wondering whether I would need to cut it short).

I was working hard, but happy to even be running in the same zip code as these guys.  I thought back to my first-ever double digit run.  A 12 miler exactly five years ago this same week in January.  That little run literally crippled me for several days.  Very surreal to be staring down the barrel of a 30 miler like this one and thinking of it as just a training run.  Go legs, go!

Our first of many vertical challenges came in the form of a short side trip up Red Mountain.  A quick regrouping took place at the summit, before we bombed back down grabbing on tree trunks to swing around the switchbacks.  I enjoyed some good conversation with Steve which made the time fly by.  We also got a great preview of our next objective.  The Incline.

You can see the scar on the mountain in the right of the photo.  Roughly 2,000′ elevation gain in one mile.

The pictures just can’t do it justice.  My goals were to keep moving, and not use my hands – which almost resulted in my tipping over backwards in one spot.  Steep!

The reward for reaching the top was an outstanding view of Pikes Peak, some 9 miles away by trail.

Ryan and Jeremiah led the way on the snow covered descent that seemed to go on forever down to the aid station.

I hung out for about 10 minutes taking time to dump some rocks out of my shoes and fill up my bottles.

The course was marked very well, better than a lot of races I’ve done.  I imagine Team CRUD’s tactic of filling trail markers with dog crap cuts down on vandals removing the flagging…

Seriously, though – the markings were great.  Just a few flags at each intersection kept us right on track and were a big help.

After spending the morning running and chatting with others, I was alone for a few miles and settled into an easier pace and was really enjoying things until wiping out hard on a patch of ice.  I thought my shoulder had been ripped out of its socket for a minute, but a few windmills and chicken wing moves proved it still worked.  I was a bit more careful after that.

After a final look at the peak, I focused on the plains ahead which were a welcome sight at this stage of the run.

Several miles of downhill 7 minute pace chasing Leila, Ryan, and Jeremiah left me feeling pretty worked and ready to be done, and I was glad to see the dozens of cars lining the street signaling the return to JT’s house.  I finished the run in 6:28 and immediately chowed down a huge plate of pasta, chips, and cheetos.  I was starving!

Couldn’t have asked for a better day on the trails.  The weather, terrain, company, and course were all fantastic!

2012 Training Log – Week 2

Back in the swing of things after taking it easier last week.

10 miles
96 TSS
New Balance MT110

Awesome workout. That’s more like it. Still not speedy, but way more solid and consistent.

Hill repeats:


Forgot the Garmin today, so no heart rate to watch. I focused entirely on my breathing. Keeping it right in the sweet spot (very hard, but not to the point of gasping or taking double breaths).

Ended up with a nice little progression downward, and felt like I had a few more in me. Last week I could only stagger through 4 of them.

7.1 miles
56 TSS
Saucony Peregrine

The odds were stacked heavily against getting any sort of run in today. Normally if I manage to get out under those circumstances it makes me antsy and I want to turn back early. Today I relished the challenge of running fast to get back in time for the rest of my day’s activities. The legs are finally waking up from their winter nap.

What is with the wrong-way runners on paths or closed roads?? I sort of get it out on the street, but don’t see the need anywhere else. Pretty much brushed shoulders playing chicken with a dude that would not give up the snowy tire track I was in (going the ‘right’ direction). He blinked first.

7 miles
48 TSS
New Balance MT110

Brutal. Very cold, snowy, and windy. Exact same route as yesterday. Crazy to be bundled up and grinding an 11:00 pace past where I was floating along at mid-7 in shorts the day before. Glad to get this one over with.

10 miles
87 TSS
New Balance MT110

Nice steady run in the new snow.

6 miles
42 TSS
Saucony Peregrine

Holy bleh. Woke up @ 01:00 with intense stomach cramping, finally drifted off again about 15 min before the alarm went off. Rough night. This run sucked as expected. Made the most of it and did an errand while I was out. Hamstring started cramping and threatening to seize up at mile 4.

Good thing I’ll be taking it easy tomorrow. I could use the rest…

30.5 miles
453 TSS
New Balance MT110

Pikes Peak Ponderous Posterior 50K.  Absolutely fantastic day on the trails.  Great group of people, lots of dirt, and a little ice and snow.  8,800′ of climbing.  Finished in 6:28.  More later.



Total: 70.8 miles / 12:43 / 783 TSS

Pic of the week.  Purple Mountain Majesty:

Arse wheat?

Lots of shoe giveaways going on in blogworld right now.  Bryon’s got 5 pairs of NB MT110s up for grabs and all you have to do is leave a comment here.  648 comments on day one…

For slightly better odds, you can enter to win some Merrell Road Gloves from the Maple Grove Barefoot Guy.  It requires a little more thought than just leaving your name and location.  He wants a haiku poem.

Pic from MGBG site.

I don’t know what is going on in my head lately with shoes and poetry.  I keep repeating phrases in my mind and coming up with different words that fit the sounds.  I’m sure there is a name for that kind of thing, but haven’t bothered to look it up.

My entry:

I think
them are el rowed
loves arse wheat