Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Every Single Street Sugar Land, TX

#EverySingleStreet

Sugar Land, TX, USA 


At the end of 2018 a well known ultrarunner, Rickey Gates, created and took on a very unique project. He set out to run every single street in his town, which was San Francisco, CA. Rickey has a large following on social media from a variety of his prior accomplishments and projects and so it was very cool to follow along on his daily updates via twitter and see all the cool photo collages he would post to his Instagram feed. He is a great story teller by the way of these running projects. Plus the idea was novel and so that it had a ton of appeal. On December 17, 2018, 46 days later, Rickey Gates completed running the San Francisco streets. His main sponsor, Salomon, made a very cool documentary on the project.


Flash forward to November 2019, I had personally run 45+ ultramarathons now and be focusing on many specific races for this year. The year of 2019 I was focused on a year long goal within the TROT (Trail Racing Over Texas) community of trying to win the TROT Cup. I have yet to venture into ultrarunning projects or FKTs (Fastest Known Time). During those last months however, these ideas have been stoking away slowly in the back of my mind.

Just over one year after Rickey Gates had begun his Every Single Street project I randomly stumbled across this website one day: CityStrides. And just like that, the thought of my own #EverySingleStreet project was born. Right then and there I synced up my Garmin Connect account and started digging into it more.
website that syncs your STRAVA data (created by James Chevalier)
https://citystrides.com #CityStrides

At first I did not tell my wife about this project since I was not going to do something drastic. Instead I was simply going to take my everyday training and move it to a new and unique spot each day or at least a couple times a week. My goal was not to complete this as fast as possible, it was just a project to complete over the course of 2020 during my regular training miles. I was unsure how long it would take me but again I was not concerned about the time frame, but more just the process and fun of the project.

I would come home from my runs and my two oldest daughters would always race to me and ask if they could help me trace my map. Since I started this #EverySingleStreet project they have been helping me color in the streets as I completed them. The website tracks all of this as well, via STRAVA, but including my kids in this has been an awesome experience to share with them. Plus it gives them some lessons on long term goals and working on something that is not instant gratification - which I think can be a good lesson for today's youth.
Marking off latest section with Lillian (2nd daughter). Photo: Katie Meding 2019-11-25.

manually filling in my streets on my printouts. I used this to cross-reference with CityStrides, but it provided the visual cues I enjoy to see where to go and the progress I was slowly making. 2019-12-04.

I have had fun progressing through the process of checking off street by street. I am a very numbers, data, and analytical person so this type of project was a fun thing for me. At times it was also very catering to my obsessive-compulsive side of my brain which can be quite daunting at times (I am sure a lot of ultrarunners experience this).
Garmin tracks on my Garmin Fenix3 HR watch. 2020-01-29.


Tracking got super easy with maps feature on my new updated Garmin Fenix 6X Pro Solar. I love this watch! 2020-02-27.

Data analysis with Lillian (2nd daughter). 2020-04-25.

One of my six printed out cheat sheets I would fill out manually to show visual progression. 2020-04-26.

Progress of My Project

Over the early months in this project I would grind out many streets then take a break to continue my ultra races. Like I stated above I did not really have a timeline goal in mind for this project, I just wanted to complete it. During the month of May I did a bunch of virtual 50 km runs, and I used 2 of these runs to do some urban running and complete more streets in the progress.

START

I did not actually track my progression until I discovered CityStrides, which was on 2019-Nov-21. But from there I did a somewhat concentrated effort over the next 7.5 months to complete this project. When I started I was initially at 8.22% done, only 91.78% to go.



FINISH

The completion of my #EverySingleStreet was done on 2020-Jul-25. I actually finished it up with a 100 mi virtual solo effort. I had 2 very long sections left and I utilized my virtual race to get these knocked out.

My self completed cheat sheets printed out from City Strides website. The purple was done and then I printed these. I would then color in with pen as I went to track manually and provide the visualization of the progress. My daughters enjoyed helping me fill these in.

DATA RESULTS:

So CityStrides has Sugar Land listed as 1,699 streets. But I found out there are actually a lot more. The city limits on that website was not quite updated and so was missing a bunch of the new existing neighborhoods that were annexed into the City in 2019. This was also another bonus of me using my printed out sheets to help track and cross reference the streets as I went. Anyway I do not know the exact number of streets but I would place it between 2,000 and 2,400 range. I do not know the total mileage either but I have broken it down to show my data (see below).

Mileage breakdown of the project.
(i) 8.22% - initial 115 runs were not on purpose just random over course of living here
(ii) 91.78% - after committing to the project this was my effort to compete #EverySingleStreet.

Considering the first 2 years living here I just basically ran close to home and did not pursue finding streets it got me to that 8.22% where I initially claim to start the project. So I broke out my stats that way to show the 91.78% effort to complete it. Overall I have run a total of 678 run activities in Sugar Land since moving here in the fall 2017, but only 253 are directly contributing to the progress of my #EverySingleStreet project -- and again just over half of those (138) were the later 91.78% part of the progress. I totaled over 1,800 miles but some of those are overlapped a little.

Tracking to the nearest tenth percentile milestones as I progressed. This is based off CityStrides which only listed the 1,699 streets but there were a lot more as mentioned.

Similar graph but shown on the 1st of each month to show progression over fixed timeline. Again based on the CityStrides streets of 1,699, not the true number.

This is a screen capture from CityStrides website which is taken from your Garmin or STRAVA data.

Created by utilizing all my .gpx files from Garmin and STRAVA and then with the assistance of GPS Heatmaps website to create this visual. I am going to research either how to get a large print of this or my wife suggested a wood cutout model type piece of art.

THANKS:

A big shout out to Rickey Gates for the inspiration to perform my own project of my current city of residence. I know the area a lot better now that is for certain. Who knows, maybe I will continue my adventures into the small towns and urban areas next to Sugar Land as there is a vast amount to explore here in the entire Houston metropolis area. But for now I want to get back on the trails more for my usual training when i can.

More reference to the original Rickey Gates project

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Thank you for following along.


Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Blazing Good Time

Blazing 7s

A Solo 100 mi Virtual Run Effort


TROT (Trail Racing Over Texas) has been amazing with supporting out running community and has offered a variety of virtual runs since the lock-down from the COVID pandemic has started. When the spring/summer virtual events opened up there was very limited options for a 100 mile option, and so naturally I jumped on that opportunity and snagged a spot in the Blazing 7s 100 Mile Virtual Run, and a chance at another buckle. This was back at the end of March and we had a deadline of August 1st to complete the distance and submit the data in order to earn the buckle. I had no initial plans of when, where, or how to run this 100, I just knew I wanted to join in the fun as I have come to love the 100 mile distance. I kept busy in the spring and did a bunch of smaller 50 km virtual races so I kept delaying when I put this one on my schedule.

Fast forward to July and I managed to sneak in a 100 mile real life trail race in Colorado (see prior blog post). Since I had delayed scheduling anything else this left me with basically 2 weekends to get my Blazing 7s done. I choose July 24-25 since I could finish my work a bit early on Friday, head out running and then finish up by Saturday evening to have Sunday with the family...pretty simple right? Seemed like a great plan to me and then the Tropical Storm in the Gulf started forming and was about to hit SW Texas coast at this time as well.

Pre race photo by Katie Meding.

Set up my garage as a nice little aid station with my essential supplies around my chair and foot stool. I had a plan of running as much local trails as possible prior to the mass rain that was inevitability making its way to our region from the edge of the storm. I placed plenty of socks nearby as I thought this might be a time I'd change between loops (this turned out to be good foresight).
Victory Sportdesign (Cougar II) and my much needed Trail Toes anti-friction.
Also had some emergency GU roctane gels for some extra energy boost if needed. 

I set off mid afternoon on Friday after completing my tasks at work for the week. I figured I could get a nice jump start on my miles and then arrive back home for dinner with my family for our regular Friday pizza movie night. My first "loop" consisted of hot humid miles where I linked up a bunch of my local trails. I got in 3 hours on nice easy paced effort to kick off my race. It was now Meding family movie night, and so i kicked off my shoes and came into the house for pizza, beer, and family time with the wife and kids as we watched the kids pick of Ugly Dolls movie. I relaxed for just over an hour and then decided I better get back out before the rain crept in. This loop I set off for a section again on my local trails, 2 miles to the trailhead, a 7 mile trail segment, and then 2 miles back home. I took my headlamp with me in case I was longer than anticipated. The storm clouds were getting closer and darker too. I knew staying dry at this point was now just a luxury I should enjoy. Of course about half way through my trail segment it started raining hard which made the trail super slick. Here in the Houston area it is super clay like and so rain on the trails is much like ice in terms of the surface. My pace slowed dramatically, but i was still enjoying the miles in nature. My thoughts also drifted to the fact this would be my last trail miles for this run as the trails close with rain storms. I arrived back home darkness now here and had finished around a marathon in distance. A quick stop this time around and off I went for an hour more of running, this time on local sidewalks. Finished this off and i basically had done 50 km at this point (31.9 mi to be precise). I then kicked back on the couch and grabbed some more pizza and sat with my wife on a family zoom call (in lieu of the usual family get together at this time of year).

Just over 2 hours had gone and it was nearing midnight now. Time to get back at it, as my wife was heading to bed. Put on my third pair of socks thus far and got some podcasts queued up for the night sections. I had these 2 long road segments planned to get done which were my last 2 streets to complete my #EverySingleStreet Sugar Land project that I have been working on (*full blog post to follow on this project). The miles were pretty boring and lonely, which is why i brought my podcasts to keep the time ticking by. This brought me to almost 59 miles done and nearly to sunrise. I got out of my wet clothes from the non-stop humidity and light rain all night. I took a small nap and spent another 2 hours at home before getting back out.

The day brought on more intense rain storms that were unavoidable. My pace seemed very slow and i was getting annoyed by the squeaking of my constantly wet socks and shoes. By around mile 73 I noticed that chaffing was occurring from the constant wetness even with my regular Trail Toes use. THe problem was i got a bit of irritation in a spot that had not happened to me before, so i had to deal with that unpleasantness. After stopping and then getting running again seemed to be the worse pain until i got in a groove and everything was lined out so to speak. I utilized a lot of Trail Toes (anti-friction body creme) to get this run complete - but it definitely helped save my race.

After 81 miles the skies were nearly black again, cause of the next wave of storm clouds. I did not want to keep taking extended breaks as i found it hard to start back up. My next loop I choose to run nearby our house and just do loops around this small neighborhood pond, which is like 0.7 mi around. I did I think 8 loops here and came back for more hydration and snacks, and of course another pair of socks (I lost count of how many pairs at this point). Only 12 more miles to go.

Since i was getting lazy and tired i kept my last 3 loops simple as can be. I ran around New Territory Homeward Way which is a nearly 4 miles from my doorstep to doorstep. I made the stops between these 3 loops more like true aid station stops where i just came in the door filled up my bottles and was back running in under 2 minutes. At this point I was moving much better than earlier and I started to count down the miles. With one neighborhood loop to go I noticed I had exactly 45 minutes to go sub-30 despite all my stops. With that I had a new goal and put the hammer down to keep pace on that last loop to get under that round 30 hour mark. It turned out to be my fastest "loop" at 09:44 min/mi (fast pace for me during a 100 miler).

Results


My map from STRAVA.

  • My miles were also used to advance myself and my 2-man team further across Texas (virtually) for the Trans-Texas Virtual Run
  • Mentioned above the final 2 streets of my #EverySingleStreet was completed during this run. A full blog write up on that will follow soon.
  • This was my 65th ultramarathon and my 17th 100 mi (or more).

Gear Used

Thank you to my family for letting do my crazy ideas and even running virtual races from our own home.

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Saturday, July 18, 2020

Silver Lining During a Pandemic

Silverheels 100

Rocky Mountain bliss | my 64th ultramarathon



Pre Race

Sitting at home on the weekend I got a notification from HPRS Facebook that their pre-race meeting was on for tomorrow night (Jul-06). I had somewhat been looking around to see if any races had been on for the last few weeks. Training solo and being alone for all of my pandemic miles I was itching to get back to a race atmosphere. I was ready for another 100 miler. I tuned into that Facebook Live broadcast, and after hearing Race Director John Lacroix go through the new race protocols and the new procedures of the race to help protect runner and volunteers alike I felt like this was a viable opportunity. I had mentioned the idea to my wife and she was encouraging me to go, as long as i was safe. Monday prior to this Facebook live pre-race meeting I had also talked to my work peer and confirmed if I would he would be able to take off an extended weekend. And just like that the conditions were in place for me to get away and run in the mountains. I entered my name on UltraSignup, paid my entry on Tuesday and informed work I would be off over the weekend, confirming my days off and coverage (I'm thankful to have flexibility like this). Just like that my weekend plans were set.

Ready to hit the road. This was taken
Wednesday night as I packed. My
Victory Sportdesign bags carry all
my gear in my travels.
My alarm buzzed nice and super early for 02:00 Thursday. I had packed and prepared my gear the night before. I kissed my wife goodbye and tried not to wake her fully. By 02:30 I had my coffee made and everything into my car and started my solo journey North West. 16.5 hours later and only a few stops for random bathroom breaks, 3 fuel stops, and 1 shakeout run stop in New Mexico, I had arrived in Fairplay, Colorado late into the afternoon. I got some food and then walked around the small town exploring the area on foot. Fairplay is a very small old mining mountain town that is home to the Burro Running National Championships each year. It is also the town famous for being where the cartoon South Park is based off of. Fairplay sits at the base of the mountains and is at just shy of 10,000' elevation.
View of Fairplay, Colorado looking back toward the "South Park" area. Elevation 9,953'

The Day Before Race

After a nice dirtbag style night in my car (trunk/backseat) where i was able to get some decent sleep. I got up with the sunset in the chilly Rocky Mountain air - how I missed these cool temperatures! I relished the fact I was able to wear a hoodie first thing in the morning. I had gone to a local coffee stop and grabbed my essential for the day and then went out to meet up with the HPRS volunteers. They were organizing a hike and trail work day. I joined them for this and used it as a nice little way to enjoy the morning. I spent just over 5 hours helping out clearing, clipping, and brushing a local trail that was going to be used in the race. This event was done well as everyone kept their distance and also wore masks.
HPRS trail work pre-race. This is on a section called "Jungle Hill". 2020-07-10

After my morning I decided to get a little shakeout run in and spend a tiny bit more time on my feet before taking rest before the big race. Looked up some local areas on the map and settled on a short drive to Hoosier Pass, not too far north from Fairplay at all. There was a small little parking lot there on the pass where a trailhead existed. I got out my running shoes and headed out on a short adventure. I've been "run streakin' " for a little bit now and always aim for minimum of 5 km (3.1 mi) per day, and therefore that was my goal. I headed down the trail and then climbed up and up shooting for about 2 mi out before I'd turn around. The beauty of the area and the pure exploration was exciting. I managed to keep my run under 4 miles although I definitely could of gone on for hours exploring. I did manage to sneak up to over 12,000' elevation as well (my 1-day acclimatization plan 😂)
Just splashing in puddles like a little kid that I am at heart.

Taking in the views and enjoying my short shakeout run. Hoosier Pass, near Breckenridge, CO.

After my run I went back to Fairplay to check it for the race in the evening bib pick up, dropped off my 2 drop bags, and then enjoyed a nice filling meal before enjoying the mountain sunset.

Race Day 2020-07-11

Another night dirtbaggin' it in my car I was up long before the sun. The race times were rolling starts in waves of 15 people at a time starting at 03:40. It was dark, it was chilly, but it was great to get up and be excited for a mountain adventure. I was set to start in the first wave, so at 03:40. I stayed in my car prepping the last minute stuff and ensuring i had everything in my NATHAN hydration pack. To maintain my safety and my promise to my family i did not walk over to the start until 1 minute before go time after putting up my bluff wrap mask (this was also one of the requirements of the race at the start and aid stations). I looked down at my watch and saw 03:42 and the RD was counting down. Here we go...

We set off from Fairplay on a flat section out of town for a couple miles down a county road before ducking into the forest and back country. I was running with the lead 3 people for about 0.5 mi then they dropped back. We were not going particularly fast so I just kept my own pace and continued on in front solo. It was also a bonus as I was keeping my social distance bubble by doing so (😂).

Silverheels Mine turn around. We had to obtain a bracelet here
to prove being there: once at 11.4 mi & then again at 91.9 mi.
Elevation here is listed at 12,070'
After passing the Alma water drop station the trail took us up into the mountains. The elevation gain started in a big way with a large climb from here all the way to High Park and then ultimately to the high point on the course of Silverheels mine at 12,070'. By the time I arrived here it was 11.4 mi elapsed and already about 2,000' of gain.

I headed back down the mountain and eventually passed the runners whom started in the first wave. Everyone was in good spirits still and waved as we passed. We all had our bluffs up when we passed each other as was the request and race protocol. Once back down to High Park the course then went down over the other side of the pass of the mountain. I was still running in front. A long descent down into the valley past some old gold prospecting sites following the little creek. I rounded a corner and heard a rustling in the bushes to my left. Since I was alone in my thoughts it startled me a little and then I spotted the moose just hanging out eating some vegetation no more than 30 feet away from me.
Cow moose about 15 mi into the race. I got this picture once I waked away a few yards, hard to see in this picture, but it is there in the middle enjoying a morning snack. I was about 30 feet away initially when i spotted her on the side of the road.

I continued on exploring the course and enjoying the mountains. There was a couple very small creek crossings and mix between singletrack, gravel roads, and some double wide jeep roads. Around mile 24 I was passed for the first time and lost the front running position. Another large section of climbing occurred just before the Jungle Hill aid station. It was a long USA forest jeep road that climbed for what seemed like miles. Once at the top there a tiny bridge then was a 1.5 mi descent of singletrack down into the aid station - this may have been one of my favorite sections (coincidentally this was the area I was doing trail work the day before). A short stop here for some fruit and then I continued on to another out & back section where a water drop and hole punch (for verification) was. On the way back from this check point (Crooked Creek) I passed a bunch more runners who were not that far behind as we were now nearing the 50 km mark into the race. I was still moving fairly strong at this point keeping a nice even pace, not too labored.

After the next aid station down in a little valley I could tell the course was taking us back up in elevation. I peered off in the distance and saw the climb that lay ahead beyond the alpine meadows were we trekking through. Somewhere around here another runner passed me and I dropped back into 3rd position. From the Trout Creek aid station I ascended upwards through these meadows and saw a good size mountain pass that I assumed we would be heading over. You always feel so small in the mountains and I just took in the views as I kept glancing up to my right thinking...."yup, we are going to be climbing up and over that". I think I was even telling myself I wish we would just go straight up and get this over with. Well I should've wished for something different because once at the true base of this small pass the trail went literally straight up for about 0.5 mi but gaining a bunch of elevation topping out at 11,400' or so.
on top of pass between Trout Creek and Tarryall aid. At about 11,400' elevation.
 
Coming down the other side it was much more North American style traditional trails with switchbacks and zig zagging back down into the treeline. Not too far was Tarryall aid which was the main aid and large crew station on the NE portion of the course. Runners hit this aid station a total of 3 times, and thus I elected to have one of my Victory Sportdesign drop bags here. Just before Tarryall the 3rd person caught me and we ran in to the aid together, and left up towards Gold Dust together. Here she dropped me on the climb and thus I dropped back to 4th place. I attempted to catch on the downhill but did not push to much as I was trying not to blow out my quads since the race was still not even 40% complete at this point. A 4th runner passed me pushing me back to 5th before reaching the aid station.

Heading back towards Gold Dust,
about 50 mi completed.
A large section of gravel country roads was the next portion of the course. Looping around from Gold Dust through Halfway Gulch and returning back to Gold Dust, Taryall aid stations. It was a long gradual climb up and around the initial portion of the loop but then it turned directions and was a ridiculously long gradual downhill. Again I tried to pace myself here to save my legs. I managed to pass by one of the runners moving back up into 4th position (he was having stomach issues, just before Halfway Gulch). I kept it steady as I could. The biggest and most annoying part of this section was the dust from all of the vehicle traffic on the road. It was so hot and dry the dust just lingered. But man the views were great from up on this road. The road circled around another peak and headed back up towards Gold Dust aid. I passed the female in front of me here as she was walking towards me (backward on the course). I asked her if everything was good, and she assured me it was but that she was dropping from blowing out her quads. I still not quite sure where she was self extracting since the aid station in front of us was the shortest way of course I thought. So arriving back through Gold Dust and back to Tarryall (second time), I was not back to 2nd place since 2 in front of me had dropped.

The large aid station of Tarryall was a relief site as it was very hot now in the middle of the afternoon and have completed 55.8 mi of the course. Now was a longer out & back section that took us out to Camp Como. It was a great section of trail that had some nice technical rocky terrain mixed in with singletrack winding through the woods. It was a great section of trail, I just wish I had more energy. About 2 miles from the turn around I passed the front runner which means he was about 4 miles in front of me (nearly an hour).
Rockier terrain on the trail to Camp Como turnaround aid station.

All the way back to Tarryall for the third and final time, I sat down here briefly for the first time and enjoyed a bit of food and nutrition before setting out on tackling the large climb back over the pass that brought us into this area of the course. Another runner came into the aid station not far behind me and was also sitting down for a break. I left before him and headed out trying to get to aid and over the pass before needing my headlamp from the impending night darkness that was coming. The grind was slow and long climb back up the pass, and it wasn't long before I was caught again. We worked together for a little bit but I could tell he had slightly more energy so I let him go ahead on the final portions of the pass ascent. At the top of the pass I had to take a bio break and stepped off into the woods. I used some leaves of sort that somehow was not the best choice as later on it caused a little irritating rash that bothered me for the rest of the run (this is the first time this has happened to me during a race). I did manage to keep it under control while running once I got to an aid station and used some of the best anti-friction lube there is: Trail Toes.

After my bio break and then tip toeing down the straight down side of the pass I managed to get running decently again. But at this point there was another runner and his pacer who were "flying" and passed me with ease. Not too far later I actually caught the guy who had passed me about a mile back coming over the pass, but he hung on and so we ended up jut running together for the last half mile or so back down to the Trout Creek aid. We started chatting to keep each other company and distract ourselves as the darkness was nearly engulfing now.

Early morning feelings.
We arrived into Trout Creek and both sat down and got some hot ramen noodles soup here from the great volunteers. It appeared neither of us was trying to run away from each other at this point so now with headlamps on we headed out for the remaining 35 mi leaving together. Myself and Thomas, as I finally discovered his name, worked together for the next couple hours which made the time go by a lot faster than running solo. We got all the way to Jungle Hill climb before he was now moving better than me on the climbs. I told Thomas to continue on and I would try and catch him back on the downhill section. But I never did catch him again. I was back on my solo trek running in 4th place with a marathon or so to go. The hours ticked by slowly and my usual early morning lows were catching up to me. I had the biggest longest climb ahead from Poor Man Gulch up to High Park and all the way to the high point of the Silverheels Mine to obtain my second summit bracelet.

My feet were killing me and drastically slowing me down. My legs felt pretty good considering so really it was my sore tender feet that were my issue at this point. After the looooooong grind back up to the mine negotiating the near sunrise hours I finally started to feel awake again, opposed to the sleep walking pace the last couple hours were. Grabbed my second bracelet and then turned around headed back down the mountain. It was a long half marathon all the way to the finish with 80-90% of it being downhill. It was still slow going as the pain of the constant downhill started to creep into my quads, but still mainly my feet. Near the very final "aid" stop of Alma, which is actually just a water drop, I got confused and was actually going bakwars on a section repeating a portion i just did. Here the leading female and her pacer met me and asked me where i was going. I double checked my gps and realized that I doubled back on a trail i was looping around on. Luckily it was only maybe a 0.25 - 0.5 mi of extra mileage, but who knows how long before i would have noticed if I did not meet them there. I tried to keep up with these ladies as I was now knocked down to 5th overall. I kept up for a good while all the way to the country gravel road section with 4 mi to go. My feet were causing me to shuffle a lot slower than I wanted to go and there was no way for me to keep up. I settled into my own pace and kept pushing forward towards Fairplay.

Finally of what seemed like forever on that last gravel stretch, the town of Fairplay came back into view. Like one does in the end of long endurance runs i was walking for a bit until I turned the corner and the South Park track was within view. I then resumed my ultra shuffle and "ran" onto the track making the 3/4 loop around and under the arch for the finish! 5th overall and done in under 30 hours this was my longest 100 mile finish yet. I had a goal of 24 hours initially, but i did not know if that was possible. I know the altitude had a little to do with it, but honestly for the most part my feet are what did me in. The altitude does not affect me in terms of headaches or altitude sickness that some people seem to experience, I guess I am lucky that way. This was my 64th ultramarathon.
Start/Finish arch with Mt. Silverheels in the background. Thank you HPRS.


I sat down in the field and took off my shoes to reveal large heel blood blisters on both feet. I got my chair and put my feet up for awhile trying to relax and nap a bit as I watched the first few 50 milers whom started to trickle in within the next couple hours. I got in a bunch of fluids and a few snacks. Before some afternoon showers rolled in I packed up my car and started out on my next portion of my endurance weekend: the 16.5 hour return drive back to Texas. There was a lot of stopping for naps and a few walk breaks to try and keep legs loose as possible, while keeping my feet swelling down. I arrived back in Sugar Land, TX later afternoon Monday returning to elevation of 85'. I went straight to a quick testing facility and got my blood drawn to get a COVID-19 test - which turned out negative. I did this for peace of mind returning to my family. I then did get in a recovery run that Monday night keeping my #runstreak alive which is now nearing 100 days. Time to rest up and continue onto the next adventure whenever that maybe.

Course Details

This was a great course. Essentially a long lollipop style course with a couple out & backs thrown in there. HPRS shared the detailed map, aid stations, and eve the .gpx course prior to the event for everyone. The course was very well marked (but not over marked 👍). Silverheels is a very tough challenge for everyone since it is known as the 2nd highest 100 miler within North America, behind only Hardrock 100. Silverheels comes in at an average elevation of 10,813' and let me tell you that it feels that way especially on the second half of the run (of course I am coming from sea level).
Detailed map and elevation profile provided by HPRS. Available on their website.

Nutrition

I stuck with mostly BASE Performance hydration mix and water (1 bottle of each). I supplement this with fit for the most part all the way up until about 70 mi mark. From there I started using GU Roctane gels one every 45 minutes or so to keep my energy up for the last quarter of the race (I think i went through about 6 of them total). I also downed Coca Cola every aid station for that quick sugar and caffeine hit. I think i also sat down and ate ramen noodles 2 separate times for the broth and warm fluids during the night hours.

Results & Data

Mileage: 105.70 mi (170.11 km)
Elevation Gain: 14,914' (4,554 m)
Total Time: 29:47:41
Place: 5th overall (4th male)
Silverheels 100 buckle and (x2) Silverheels mine summit bands

Gear Used


Thanks

  1. A big shout out to all my supporters and sponsors for this year - check out my Friends page.
  2. Human Potential Running Series (John Lacroix) for putting on this event and taking the new race protocols and social distancing seriously to make this event happen. I did feel quite safe out there.
  3. The volunteers! As always fellow ultrarunners and non-runners alike that help make these events happen deserve the majority of the credit. Thank you for assisting us runners and aiding us through the night on the mountain.
#staysafe everyone and remember to continue to social distance and follow your local guidelines. I know that some people may think me travelling at this time is not the best idea, and well I may tend to agree I put in all the mitigation measures possible to keep myself and my family safe. In the end I felt like I did everything I could. There is still a lot of people out there not wearing masks. 

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Thank you for following along . 
This was ultramarathon #064 for me, and 16th 100 mile (or longer).  Next up: 
(i) Blazing 7s 100 mi Virtual Run (date: t.b.d. before Aug),
(ii) completing my #EverySingleStreet Sugar Land project
(iii) Trans-Texas Virtual Run 879 mi