Tuesday, May 24, 2016

TEXAS TREASURE QUEST - 2016


Going into the Texas Treasure Quest I really didn't know what to expect but I knew I would have a great time running it with the group I had. We all worked well together to find all the treasure that we could in 12 hours.
I hope I captured it well enough for those on the fence about trying out this "running game" to sign up next year. Enjoy!
Thanks Rob, Rachel, and all the volunteers for putting on a great race.



Sunday, February 28, 2016

Gusher Marathon 2016 - Redemption!

DNF! DID NOT FINISH... That's what happened to me last year. Although some may say I finished 13.1 miles and completed the half marathon, the half marathon was not what I had signed up for and that is not what I had in my mind that morning to complete. In 2015 I had set out to do 26.2 miles at the Gusher Marathon but because of a lack of training, doing a 50 miler 3 months before, pacing a marathon the the week before the 2015 race, my feet just couldn't take the pounding and I took a DNF. But before I took that DNF I told myself that I would be back in 2016 to tow the line at the Gusher Marathon and finish all 26.2 miles.


My training for this race was going well I had run a good amount miles with Ana leading up to the race and I felt that we were ready to take on the Gusher. I even set out a plan to run the race in 4:39:00 which I believed was achievable based on our training.

It was also Lent which meant I was going to give up something until Easter. Both Ana and I decided to give up sugar. THAT MEANT NO GU!!! This had me worried as I'm not a small guy at a weight of 225 lbs to 230 lbs I need those calories and energy that Gu provides me. I made a concoction of honey, chia seeds, salt, and calamansi juice (a filipino citrus fruit) with the hopes of that providing me with the calories needed to finish my race.

RACE DAY

It's a chilly and in the 40's, we park, set up the GTS tent, and welcome all the members of the GTS group that came out to do the race. I'm pretty loaded down with a fuel belt full of the chia seed concoction, 5 packs of applesauce in my backpack, and my gopro with extra batteries. I love filming my races but this may have been a little too much for me to carry.

The strategy that I had was to do progressive splits throughout the race. For this I used the MARCO racing calculator where you input your time and it gives you the splits to get you there. So the plan looked like this.

  • Miles 1-2: 11:09 pace
  • Miles 3-9: 10:53 pace
  • Miles 10- 17: 10:41 pace
  • Miles 18-26.2: 10:25 pace


START OF RACE: MILES 1-2 (11:08, 11:03)

These miles were the fun easy miles at at 11:09 it felt really easy. Just enjoying the race and people passing us by. There were a lot of aid stations at this race and we hit 2 by the time we reached the end of mile 2.


MILES 3-9 (10:48, 10:48, 10:35, 10:53, 10:43, 10:48, 10:44)

Spencer and his brother Ben have joined us and we are now a group of 4 running my planned pace of 10:53. The pace is still relatively easy but with the water stops we have to speed up at times to remain on pace. There are still plenty of hydration stations where Ana and I are only drinking water, eating oranges, and sipping on the chia fuel.

Ben, Spencer, Ana, and myself during the first loop

Feeling good during that first loop.


MILES 10 - 13.1 (10:57, 10:56, 10:46, 10:40)

The miles are flying by as we get back to the Montagne center to finish the first loop. At this point all of our feet are starting to feel the pain from the pounding of 13.1 miles. While my feet did hurt this was in no way the amount of pain I felt last year that stopped me. As we cross the halfway point, the point where I stopped last year, I remember the promise I made to myself that I would be back to finish this race and I knew that today I would.

Crossing the halfway point feeling good!



MILES 14 - 17 (11:31, 11:19, 13:19, 11:23)

Things are starting to hurt a little more and we start walking more, at this time I realize that our goal of 4:39 was not going to happen so I let go of the plan and decide to just run at the pace that we were comfortable with. I tell Spencer and Ana that the rest of these miles are going to suck but we are just going to have to bear down and embrace it. Spencer and Ana are running strong and at this point I'm feeling the weight of my backpack and fuel belt dreading running with them for the rest of the way. Everyone is in pain from the waist down as we go on our journey to get to one aid station to the next. With all the water we are drinking I start to worry about hyponatremia as we need to replace our electrolytes and ask for salt packets but no aid station had any, only gu to offer. At least I still had my chia concoction and I would rely on that for the rest of the race.

Heading out on MLK


MILES 18 - 23 (11:57, 14:10, 11:44, 12:15, 13:24, 17:03) 

Around this point of the race we see Aimee driving around on the course to check on the runner's and she stops and gives us vaseline for some chaffing spots. I'm also able to unload all the gear I have on me including my gopro. I had to think twice about unloading my GoPro since I love recording my races but I knew that it would only hinder my time, so I left it.

It was so good to see Aimee on the course as there is nobody for us marathoners on the 2nd loop. Where we had aid stations every mile for the first half, the second loop we are presented with just about every other aid station abandoned with warm water and gatorade set on tables that have been sitting on the sun for who knows long.

We get out of downtown Beaumont and onto MLK where things are slowing down drastically. Mile 23 was a tough mile for Ana starts having some sort of piriformis pain and is hurting with every step. At this point I tell Spencer that he can go ahead and go without us if he wants as he is still going strong. Ana and I walk for a good portion of mile 23 and then she finds the strength to dig deep and start running again. Determination, grit, and pure awesomeness was what I saw in her.

MILES 24 - 26.2 (14:51, 12:56)

Ana is running strong again but now I'm really starting to feel the effects of running for 24 miles sans GU. I'm struggling to keep up with her and ask her if we can walk for a bit. She's motivating me to keep going and I know that she has pain so I focus on positive thoughts to get through the Lamar campus.

As we past mile 26, Ana and I are both so relieved and so ready to be done. We pick up our pace and run together to the finish line to the cheers of our fellow Golden Triangle Strutters group. Medal's, hug's and congrats were given.

Finishing up the Marathon together!

The marathon is no joke and reminds me why it deserves my respect each and every time I run the 26.2 miles. The 2nd loop for the Gusher can be a lonely one but I was lucky enough to run it with Ana and Spencer.

Thank you to Ana for running with me and helping me get my redemption. I struggled towards the end but knowing that she was next to me feeling just about the same way got me moving forward. Thanks also to Spencer for filling the run with laughter. His attitude to finish really was inspiring and I thank him for that. Thanks you all for taking the time to read this. I hope you enjoy.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Rocky Raccoon 100 - A Pacer's tale


Pacers - Ana and myself

I knew that Rocky Raccoon 100 was coming up in February but I wasn't exactly sure when in February it was since I wasn't planning on doing the race. The Monday before the race I get a Facebook message from my friend, Anthony Mireles, where he casually slipped into conversation this message.


Woah!?!?!? What Tony was running the 100 miler in 5 days and he was wanting Ana and I to pace him? It was short notice and I was pretty shocked by this. So I thought about it and figured it would be a great opportunity to pace a friend, I would get to hang out with Ana, and also it would make a great video for my youtube channel. So we told Tony we were in and the game day plan was for Ana to pace 20 miles on the 4th loop and I would bring him in for the 5th loop. Team Tony was set!



Race Day:

MILE 1-20: 1st loop

Tony didn't want to just finish the race, his goal was to do it in under 24 hours which on paper looked easy but we would have to see how his body reacted on race day. His first loop did not go as planned and he was behind his goal of doing 20 miles in 4 hours as he came in about 16 minutes late. He rushed in and out of the aid station and we cheered him on as he left for his next loop.

Mile 20 - 40:  2nd loop

Tony said he would take 4 hours and 45 minutes for this loop at the most. So when that time passes we start to worry. We figure he is struggling and could use a pacer for his 3rd loop out. (Since Tony is 61 it is within the rules for him to have a pacer for all of his loops if he wanted.) As I'm running to the trailer to change into my running gear I see Tony come in and ask him if he could use me to which he replies yes. 

After a quick change I get back to pace Tony for this unexpected 3rd loop. I was thinking at this point, does this mean I'm going to have to pace him for the last loop too? I was willing to do it but was hoping that somebody might step in. I was also thinking of my video and knew pacing him for the 3rd and 5th loop would only add to the film I was going to make. 

Mile 40 - 60:  3rd loop

During this loop Tony updates me on how his race has gone thus far and he tells me how he had fallen twice on his 2nd loop, which is why it took him so long. I had never really paced anyone for a 100 miler but as a pacer I'm trying to push him as hard as possible by seeing his body language and to me it looked like he was pretty spent as would be expected at this point of the race. We would run the downhills and flat sections and walk the hills.

We hit the Damnation loop which is just about a 7 mile loop and it starts to get dark. I turn on my headlamp and its dim. As the night gets darker I realize more and more how dim my headlamp is as I can barely see in front of me. I decide that I would not worry Tony with this fact and just run/walk to the best of my ability. I kept tripping and almost going off the trail but we for the most part did not slow down. When we get out of the loop to the Damnation aid station I ask for batteries and life is good again. We finish off this loop with no further incident.
Change of batteries

Mile 60-80: 4th loop

Ana takes over pacing duties and they go off on their 20 mile loop. During that same Damnation loop, which is one of the more technical portions of the whole race, their batteries both die on them and they are running with dim headlamps. They try calling me to bring fresh batteries around 2 am but at this point I had fallen asleep to rest up to pace Tony for his last loop. I wake up around 3 am, see all the miss calls and start and then I rush to meet them up at the Park Road aid station with fresh batteries. 

Damnation loop! LETS GO!

Mile 80 - 100: 5th loop

There is no one to take my place as a pacer so I have to suck it up and do the 20 miles to get Tony to his 100 miles. At this point we have 6 hours and 19 minutes to complete the 20 miles. We would need to go faster than Tony did his 2 previous loops in order to finish.  So we get going and I'm pushing Tony as hard as his body will allow him. As we hit the Damnation aid station at 5:45 am they tell us we have to finish the 7 mile loop by 10 am or Tony will have a DNF. Tony is doubting that we can make it but we keep pushing and make it out with about 40 minutes to spare. We make it through to the end and I can remember thinking wow this guy is still running after all these miles! As we close in to the finish Tony picks up his pace and runs across the finish line to claim his buckle. 




This guy is 61 years old and doing a 100 mile race! Pretty inspiring stuff and I'm glad that I was there to help and witness it. Congrats Tony!


Check out the video I made of the whole experience.


Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Brazos Bend 100 Race Report - 2015 Struttes take over the park

As much as I wanted to do this race my running has taken a back seat to my lifting so with my crappy marathon last week there was no way I was going to be able to do this race. So what to do when you can't race? You support your crew!

We had 10 100 milers, 

8 50 milers


7 Marathoners


and 12 half marathoners

These Strutters all ran their hearts out on a course that was very challenging especially in the latter miles. I was there to film, refill water bottles, take course pictures, and do whatever else they wanted me to do.

I saw smiles, tears, moans and groans all throughout the race. It was so inspirational to see everyone out there gutting it out to go the distance and even though we had a good amount of Strutters take DNF they gave it their all and thats something to be very proud of. Congrats to you all!

Check out the experience I had by watching the video below! Get some tissues ready its a tearjerker at the end.



Monday, December 7, 2015

San Antonio Rock n Roll - 2015

I've been lifting way more than I have been running so I knew that the San Antonio RnR marathon would be a challenge for me. They only gave away finisher's jackets to marathoners so that's what I went for. Check out the footage below to see my day at the expo.


As for the marathon itself you can see below how much of a struggle it was for me. The first half felt relatively good but then everything blew up after mile 14.


Thanks for checking out my page and please subscribe to my youtube channel so that I know there are actually people out there that watch my stuff. 

Happy Running!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Habanero Hundred 50k

A summer race in Texas that starts at noon in August? Sounds crazy right... and it soooo was. Respect the heat cause it will drain you so fast you won't know what hit you. Feeling your tachycardic heartbeat pounding in your head through your eyeballs was a scary feeling but I got through it. Thanks in big part to finishing it with my friend Angela. This was not a race it was a journey of being smart and slowing it down to finish it. "SURVIVE DON'T DIE" was my motto that day. 

Check out the video down below to see what I went through. 

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Westlake Triathlon Race Report & Video


I haven't really swam or cycled this year but when I heard that the Westlake Triathlon coming up I had to sign up. This triathlon is put on by the Westlake Recreation Department to promote health in the area. It's beginnners friendly with it being only a 120 meter swim, 4 mile bike, 1.5 mile run, and its FREE.

I had brought my Garmin 910xt but unfortunately never experimented with the functions in multisport mode so my times a little off.

Swim: Just a little 120 meter swim shouldn't be so bad right? WRONG. At first I go out and I'm thinking to myself that I'm such an awesome swimmer then I get about 50 meters into the swim I'm spent. Doggy paddle/breast stroke was my savior in the pool and also the shallow end. You could actually walk on that end. I get out of the pool and have a pretty nice transition into my bike.

Bike: Haven't been on my road bike in probably 2 years but as the saying goes.... The route had a few turns in it and a nice roundabout at the midway point which made for a nice ride. I get back and transition into the run.

Run: 1.5 mile run and it's getting hot now. I push myself to keep running and then push myself more when I see the finish line so I can finish strong.

My total time was around 43 minutes which is pretty good considering I was also recording the whole triathlon with my GoPro Camera.

Speaking of the video, go check it out below. Let me know what you think and please subscribe as well.