Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tank is empty

Rick just called and said that he is "all out of gas" and ended the trek at mile 90. The loose snow made the going tough and used up alot of energy trying to walk/run through it. More to come from him in the upcoming days. Safe travels to the ones that are still at it on the Arrowhead trail...... Kristy W

Track #50 - is he moving?

It gets kind of confusing watching the SPOT tracking after awhile because the last track numbered from the SPOT after it gets to #50 will always be #50 - even though Rick has moved and the last track has moved. You can tell the time of day of the last #50 track by clicking on the black circle.

2 hours and back at it

After a break of two hours, it looks as though Rick is back on the move leaving Melgeorge's at 12:14 p.m.

Melgeorge's Resort - Mile 72

Time of Arrival - 10:19 a.m.

Steady Progress

Nothing new from Rick since around 10 p.m. last evening. Looks as though steady progress was made throughout last night, with about a 20 minute stop at a shelter located at mile 59 around 4:39 a.m. Right now, the tracking shows Rick around mile 64. Melgeorges resort, the second checkpoint, is at mile 72. Rick has a cabin rented there and if all is going as planned, will probably sleep a bit and eat the Papa Murphy's pizza that he brought along. Kristy W

Mile 50

1:00 A.M. Tuesday, Jan 31st.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Mile 45

Time - 10.08 p.m. Rick called to say goodnight. He ate hotdogs and chips and drank some Coke at the Gateway Store. Laid down for a few minutes before he and Ben started on the trail again at around 7:33 p.m. He says that the temperature seems to still be around 17 with no wind. He put on an extra shirt before leaving Gateway - but proceeded to overheat as it is warmer now than it was at the start of the race this morning. Thankfully, there probably won't be any -40 to deal with overnight. That is certainly a blessing. Kristy

The Gateway Store

Rick will be stopping at the first checkpoint, the Gateway store, which is at the 36.7 mile mark and is planning on being there for about an hour. His SPOT tracking will be at a standstill, but no worries as he is inside probably drinking some Coke and eating a hotdog. He has been traveling along with Ben Clark, another ultrarunner from ND. Ben is a student at NDSU. He ran across the State of ND this past summer to raise funds for flood-ravaged Minot, ND. It's nice to know that they are together, at least for now. Rick used to pull the sled to work, work for 8 hours and than pull the sled home in preparation for Arrowhead, which was a 'day's work' of around 10 hours. Today in that 10 hour time frame, he traveled 36.7 miles to the first checkpoint - 'All in a day's work' PLUS 100 more miles to go! The conditions report was that the temperature reached a high of 25.4 today on the trail and is 17 degrees right now. The snow is very "bad" and is eating up about 20-30% of the efficiency of the toe off(that was from the college student, Ben). Rick mumbled something about beer and dancing girls before he said goodbye - I don't think he is starting to be sleep deprived yet.........????
Pray for a safe night for all runners and volunteers, Kristy

25 miles in

On the tracking page, it looks as though Rick is around the 25 mile mark of the race. You can view the participants check in and check out times from the three race checkpoints at the Arrowhead 135 Home page, click on 'Results' and then '2012 Results'. I received a picture at around 11:23 a.m. on my cell phone of some snow "art". It wasn't Rick's name, so he wasn't the culprit! The report at that time was that the trail was mushy. (huh, wonder why)
Word from the trail is: "12.5 degrees" at 8:52 a.m.
Posted by Kristy W.

Ready To Go

OK, thanks for following along. Knowing I have people following along at home/work is a huge boost when things get tough. We get started at 7:04 a.m. just after the bikes and skiers get going.

Trail conditions look pretty good considering the winter we've had. A little bit of grass and sticks showing through the snow but that really shouldn't have much of an impact. The snow I was on yesterday was firm though I would expect with the warmer temps it will loosen up. It's easy to forget that just because it will be 60 degrees warmer this year it really doesn't make it any easier. Just warmer and maybe safer. A different challenge. I'm ready to get going.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

I'm going on a diet starting at 7 a.m. tomorrow.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Busy Morning

Off for a group run this early a.m. before final packing and heading to I-Falls. Hope to get there mid to late afternoon for gear check.

Here is a neat story from MPR News on the Arrowhead 135.


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Trail Grooming

With the recent snow on the Arrowhead trail, the trails are being groomed in anticipation of a lot of snowmobilers that have been itching to get out all winter. They will tear up the trail though that is who the trail is there for and it will be better than pulling a sled over dirt. I'll take it.

I added a couple links relative to Arrowhead on the right hand side of the site. I have a satellite tracking device that I'll have with me throughout the event starting Monday morning, the event website as well as a couple maps to get a feel for where I am going.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Snow on the Arrowhead

Recent snowfall over the entire 135 miles of trail we'll use next week has lifted the spirits of those of us participating in this years Arrowhead 135. As of last week, there were parts of the trail that had so little snow that there had been no snowmobile traffic at all and no trail grooming. The race officials have assured us that the event would go on no matter what the trail conditions are. At one point I was considering a bike to traverse the 135 miles but then decided if there was no snow I would put wheels on my sled. I'm glad it snowed. Once less thing to be concerned about.

I'm like most and peek at the long term forecast though I've learned that it rarely is something you can bank on. Last years evening lows of -38 and -41 below was definitely not in the forecast even the day before. Every year they've had the Arrowhead 135 it has dipped to -20 at some point during the event and I would expect that this year will not be an exception. Right now the forecast low is 7 above. I'm not buying it. No worries though, as always, I'll prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Please Joe Pesci

Bring the Arrowhead some snow.

Addition To The Family

I've never pressured anyone to run a full marathon. For the most part, I'll encourage them to get moving and maybe to do a little more than they are doing now but when someone tells me they are going to run a marathon, especially a family member, I always feel a little responsible for the suffering they will experience. I've even tried to talk them out of it.
When I was training to run my first marathon, everyone in my immediate family took it upon themselves to start running and be part of the Fargo Marathon experience. Kristy and the kids started their 5k training when it was really cold outside. The twins, Becky and Liz who were 10 years old at the time, would faithfully put on their coats and run up and down the block. They didn't want to. But even at 10 years old they new it was something they should do. And they did it mostly without complaint.
Our oldest daughter Allie was going to school in Michigan and did her training on her own. I'm not certain if she ever even asked me for any advice. She's pretty intelligent and I knew she'd figure it out.
Marathon day came and we all had a great time. More family members joined in the 5k and one even did the half marathon. 9 family members in all joined in the fun. It was a day of healing, so to speak, for our family. Making the most out of losing a loved one to obesity. I know big brother Gene would be proud of our accomplishments.
Though Becky and Liz have hung up their running shoes, at least for now, Kristy and Allie continue to run. Mostly with no real goals but to help stay fit and maybe just to clear their mind. For 5 weeks, Allie walked 500 miles across Spain one summer so we know she has some endurance. They both ran a couple of half marathons and though they had good experiences, doubted they'd ever go further. I doubted it too and was totally cool with that. Although a half marathon is a huge accomplishment for anyone. The full marathon is all together different.
Much to my surprise they both started training for a full marathon. Allie ended up with an injury that kept her from hers but Kristy ran Fargo last year and did great. A few months pass and Allie told us she was training to run a marathon in January. I'm sure she felt a need to step up to the plate and get it done being her Mom had already done one though there was no pressure from us.
I was kind of stunned when she asked me for my opinion on the training plan she was considering. Like I said, she's pretty intelligent but I forgot to mention, independent. Being she was asking, I knew it was something that she had looked hard at, made sense to her, but was much different than the conventional marathon training that she heard me talk about. The one she was looking at had the longest long run of 16 miles. As which is normally the case for me, I pointed out the facts and let her make her own decision. One of the facts I pointed out to her is that this is the type of marathon/ultra-marathon training that I had been doing for the past few years. Though I pointed out the benefits to getting a few runs in over the 20 mile mark, she opted for the 16 mile long run program. I predicted, though not to her, that she'd finish but it would really be a struggle.
I only got to run one long run with her when she was home over Christmas and when it was over she looked fresh. Even so, as a parent, I was concerned that her preparation wouldn't be adequate to keep her from the inevitable suffering that comes with the marathon. It was too late now. She was on the downside of her training and with only a couple weeks to go there wasn't much you could do. Cramming for a marathon just does not work.
I've always said that my kids are way more intelligent than me. Maybe not smarter, as they haven't lived as long as I have, but they seem to be able to figure things out much more easily than I do. I've had to learn most things the hard way and that is not what you want for your kids. So going into the marathon yesterday, I thought that Allie was going to get a life lesson the hard way. Should have listened to Dad. Though I didn't pressure her, I did try to persuade her to use a conventional training plan for her first marathon. She didn't and I though she'd pay for it.
I predicted a 4:30 with lots of suffering the last 6 or 7 miles. As it turned out, I was way off. She ran a 4:11 running the second half 1 minute faster than the first. She said that she never hit the wall and didn't start thinking "This needs to be over now" until somewhere around the 23-24 mile mark. Kind of amazing when you think that is 7-8 miles further than she'd ever run at that point. I've had marathons that I trained well for that I was wanting over by 18 miles. But then, I seem to have a need to learn things the hard way. I guess I'll have to start learning more from my kids.
Though I don't carry much pride in my own accomplishments, giving credit to help from above and always thinking that I have yet to do my very best, I am so proud of my family and friends in their accomplishments even though I've had little to do with their success. Maybe it's just that I helped to get them moving.
Welcome to the marathon family Al. I'm so proud of you. No matter what direction your steps in life take you, you now know that you are unstoppable.