Monthly Archives: September 2012

KANSAS, WYOMING, WISCONSIN

Hosted our Sunday morning long run and was the first to return.  Strangely pleased to note the license plates on the cars in my driveway.  There is always new talent coming to the area and I like the way it makes its way to 18312 Ontario St. on weekends.

Six strong women showed up.  Alysha (Wyoming) was making her first appearance and initially had that deer in the headlights look.  “How far is everyone running this morning?”  Linda- “28 miles”, Lily (Wisconsin)- “24 miles”, Megan (Wyoming)- “20 miles”, Natalie (Kansas)- “16 miles”, Alex (Michigan)- “16 miles”.  Alysha ended up doing 16 and holding her own well.  She’s got some big wheels (1:25:47 for 2nd at last weekend’s Omaha Half, 38:50 Omaha Corporate Cup).

Natalie is running Chicago next weekend.  (So is Suzanne Higgins.)  Linda is running the 50K on the 13th.  (So is Ashley Shurman.)  Megan is making her 26.2 debut on the 14th in Wichita.  Lily is running NYC Marathon on Nov. 4th.  Alex is building base with an eye on the start line in Hopkinton next April.

Strong, Long Distance ladies.  No matter what their license plate reads, all working together and getting better for it.  And wearing the Red & White.

 

 

TRAIL BOSS

Even with the Big Blue Run tomorrow my mind is on this weekend’s River City Roundup, now billed as the 2nd largest Rodeo in the world.  In 2007 & 2008 Linda and I had the privilege of being Trail Bosses, positions we were accorded in our status as Race Directors for the Rodeo Run Omaha Mile.  We got to work with Matt Gunderson and the rest of the Knights of AK-SAR-BEN staff, some of the biggest movers and shakers in Omaha.  It was a treat to get to know the people, the organization, and the event.   In fact Matt and the Knights were named our Team Nebraska Contributor of the Year in 2008.  Another little slice of Omaha running history.

And speaking of running history, always good to hear from my old buddy Tim Dooling.  Tim reached out this week for the first time in over a year, good to know he is still kicking it.  A real Omaha Icon.

Many thanks to Tom Whitaker, President of the Omaha Running Club for all his hard work and assistance with the Big Blue Run.  There’s not much goes on in the metro’s running scene without Tom having some hand in guiding the success.  Tom and the ORC were Team Nebraska’s Contributor of the Year in 2011.

Don’t forget packet pick up and registration will be at Red Dirt Running Co. today from noon until 7:00 pm.  And then we’ll have race day beginning at 6:30 tomorrow morning.  Looks to be the Perfect Day for a 5K and with a USATF Certified course, a great opportunity to get out and run a personal best on a fast, scenic course.

We gave out cowbells for the Rodeo Run 1 Mile.  Ryan Kleimenhagen would win the race in 3:59.4 to become the first sub four minute road miler in Nebraska history.  Was that really 5 years ago?

 

SIX HOURS STRAIGHT!

A few odds and ends today.  First off I’ve received several emails and messages congratulating me on the opening of Red Dirt Running Co.  And while I’m as excited as everyone else, I’m just a working stiff, Joe lunch pail, Johnny punch clock, Mr. Everyman tax paying, got a Real job employee.  I have no ownership or other vested interest in the company other than helping to keep my children warm and clothed and fed.

I’m getting a lot of smiles and chuckles when I relate how I work six hours straight, it is an accomplishment for me I must admit.  Especially given that my hours conflict directly with my nap time of the past 25 years.  Thank goodness for A Hill of Beans and their wonderful Kenya AA+ fresh brewed coffee.

We will be hosting packet pick up and Friday registration for the Big Blue Run/Walk at Red Dirt Running Co. tomorrow from noon until close at 7:00 pm.  A great opportunity to stop in and see Ande and the gang.

Team Nebraska welcomes Nate Stack as our newest mate.  Nate had a breakthrough performance at Sunday’s Omaha Marathon and is ready to step up his training and racing.  He’s shown good development over the last couple of years, working steadily through the 2:50s and now down to the nice 2:42:47 he popped last weekend.  A self professed “recreational” runner, we look forward to working with Nate to find out where his true potential is.  Welcome Nate!

Ashley Shurman is running from Yankton to Vermillion this weekend as she continues her prep for the Market to Market 50K.  This young lady is the epitome of Strength.

Ashley has some guns.  But her true strength lies in endurance.  She’ll be hard to beat on Oct. 13th.   I will let you know though that Linda ran 90 miles last week and will be a strong contender too.

 

COURSE MATTERS

The 3rd annual Big Blue Run/Walk is this Saturday morning.  USATF Course Certification #NE11010KU.   Last year we submitted to the might of the Missouri River and its epochal flooding, this year we debut the Real 5K course.

8:00 am start time at Miller’s Landing.  Race day registration and packet pick up begins at 6:30 am in the shelter next to the start/finish line.

All proceeds from the event benefit the Midwest Prostate Cancer Coalition and remain here in the Omaha Metro.  Still time to register online at www.active.com keyword “Big Blue Run”.

 

Congratulations to Danielle Galvin for rocking the Branson 70.3 Half Ironman this past weekend.  Danielle trains hard, works hard, plays hard, and still finds time to serve on our Kids Run subcomittee for our road race management team.    Busy, talented lady.

No you weren’t seeing things Sunday morning.  That really was Angee Henry sporting her Team Nebraska kit and finishing 5th overall at the Omaha 10K.  Angee has parted ways with NIKE, rejoined TeamNebraska (once a mate, always a mate!) and will soon be turning her attentions back to her two lap specialty for indoor track season.

Wednesday Night Track tonight back at Millard West.  6:00 pm sharp.  Only 4 or 5 weeks left to our weekly sessions, better come out and get your Giddyup on while there’s still time (and daylight).

 

EL VIEJO MAS RAPIDO!

Today is a great big tip of the sombrero to Jose Badillo.  70-74 age group phenom.

Last weekend Jose competed in the Kansas Senior Olympics.

Friday was the first event, the Road 5K,  he took the Gold Medal with a speedy 23:15.

Saturday was the 10K and Jose earned another Gold Medal winning in 49:31.

Sunday was the 1500 and incredibly Jose pulled off the hat trick winning again in 6:18.

What an amazing triple.  Jose qualified for the 2013 USA Senior Olympics in all 3 events.

We’re proud to call Jose a Good Mate!  Jose is shifting focus back to the longer stuff now as he begins his training cycle for the Virgin London Marathon next spring.  Giddyup, Andale, y Vamanos amigo!

OMAHA MARATHON RECAP

With just a couple of notable exceptions it was a relatively quiet morning for the mates yesterday.  We didn’t load up the fields like we have in the past but did Run Strong where we were entered.

Performance of the morning:  Jeff Nielsen‘s huge pr of 2:39:50, good enough for 2nd overall!  When Jeff came to me earlier this year indicating he wanted to tackle Killer Coach’s marathon training program I told him it would get him under 2:40.  A 6-7 minute personal best, I’m not at all surprised.  He rocked the training cycle and then kicked it on the streets of Omaha.  Great Job Jeff!

Todd Nott was a 3 hour pacer and came in at 3:02:06, good enough for 2nd in the 45-49 age group.

Nod here to Nate Stack who rocked the Red Dirt Running Co. singlet and also pr’d in 2:42:46.

Ashley Shurman was our lone entrant into the women’s full.  She pr’d in 3:19:35 to take 5th overall.  She was using Omaha as a training run for the Market to Market 50K next month, she’ll be tough there.

In the Half Marathon our women were led by 46 year old Stacy Shaw (5th, 1:28:36), Jen Viehrig (6th, 1:29:17), and 42 year old Natalie Jetensky (7th, 1:29:31).

In the Men’s Half the Amherst Flash, 52 year old Brian Bergt finished 4th overall in a very fast 1:21:28!  Steve Stender ran barefoot for the 13.1 miles in 1:34:25.

In the 10K Matt Seiler was 2nd overall in 35:19.

At Saturday’s Dean White Invitational XC Meet in Crete, Nebraska Eric Rasmussen led all finishers in 26:09.

Brian Bergt, the “Amherst Flash”.   52 years old and one of the top runners in Nebraska!

Stacy Shaw of Hastings.  46 years old and still one of the top runners in Nebraska!

Natalie Jetensky of Tekamah.  42 years old and still one of the fastest runners in Nebraska!

Steve Stender of Omaha.  45 years old and still the fastest barefooter in Nebraska.

Jen Viehrig.  A veritable spring chicken at 31 years young.

Nate Stack and Jeff Nielsen worked together for the first 23 miles before Jeff pulled away to his incredible pr performance.  Only Aaron Carrizales and Cameron Cumings have run faster marathons for the mates this year.  And a Very Nice debut for Red Dirt Running Company’s singlet on Nate.

Be sure and stop in at Red Dirt to see me for your new shoe and apparel needs.  We perform a free gait analysis on every customer to ensure  the very best possible fit!

 

 

 

DOJO’S OJOS

The dojo has eyes.  And ears.  It feels and speaks too.  It is kind in its words but can be equally as harsh. It possesses all the  magic of a mystical place.

It has been anointed by thousands of gallons of sweat over years of hard working athletes.  And has become anthropomorphous through this baptism of effort.

Honesty is its message if you are willing to hear.  Whether the murmurs are at each quarter mile mark, or half mile mark, or 5K split, its truth is there for you.  You need only the courage to listen.

You never run alone at the dojo.  It is your friend, receiving footsteps as loving strokes.  Accepting and delivering miles, no dichotomy in the symbiotic give and take, only fitness of body and mind.  And Good Mother Earth.

Each season offering unique gifts, appealing to and delighting different senses.  Pleasing vistas to behold, bird songs to hear, scents both sweet and ripe, the taste of anticipation and completion equal on the palate.

Maybe right now is my favorite, the crunching leaves underfoot portending colder mornings, fewer bikes and strollers and dogs, different wildlife, and quieter, more serious runners.

Good Clean thoughts.  Honesty, there’s that word again.  Being truthful in your pursuits, whether casual or vigorous.  Accepting what you have to give and what the dojo returns.  A special relationship found only here on this 7.395 mile loop around Ed Zorinsky Lake.

The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner that is never truly alone.  Not at the mecca, the hallowed ground, the dojo.

 

 

 

NICE WORK! GOOD JOB!

Kevin Brown started the following thread on the Omaha Running Club facebook page last week about how some people just won’t or can’t return a well intended salutation.
” Why is it when I run at a lake here in town or paved trails that I rarely get a wave, a nod, a “hello”? But when I run on The Wabash no matter what time of day I get nothing but happy people (runners) and mostly happy and enthusiastic bikers? I hate to be a downer but running the paved trails in town is a total bummer any more. /mini rant”

There were a lot of good responses, most encouraging him to continue his daily greetings and a few explaining why some people may not feel comfortable obliging a return.

Over the years I’ve had quite a few people come up and thank me for acknowledging them out at my dojo.  People I wouldn’t necessarily recognize in “civvies” but undoubtedly see regularly on their tours around Zorinsky.

I do offer a sincere “Nice Work” or “Good Job” to just about every single person I see.  Doesn’t matter how fast or how slow, I even praise some walkers-those that are out there for obvious health reasons (to lose weight).

Most people are genuinely appreciative for their labours being commended and return a smile or a wave or a nod.  But not everyone.   I’ve pretty much figured out whom they are and respect their wish for privacy/solitude/personal space.

But if you are out at the dojo and a particularly handsome bald headed fellow wishes you some good cheer as you get your exercise on, chances are it is either Kevin, or me.

Speedy recovery to our mate John Tully.  He really did break his foot during Sunday’s Corporate Cup.  Managed to drag it in over the last 1.5 miles, one tough cookie, he’ll be off for quite a while but will come back with as much fire as ever.

The Official results for the Corporate Cup are wrong up top.  Luka Thor finished 1 second in front of Matt Pohren, saw it with my own two eyes.  Their names are reversed in the results though.  Just thought you should know.  Strangely, the same exact thing happened at the Shamrock Shuffle 8K in Chicago this past March.  Conspiracy theorists care to chime in?

 

 

Alec Blenis, age 17. He is the 2nd ranked obstacle course racer in the United States behind the killer Hobie Call. These two guys and alot of the other crazies are gearing up for the Spartan Beast Obstacle Race up and down Killington Mountain, Vermont this weekend. On average, 50% DNF’s and +4 hour finishing times for the non-DNF’s. If that ain’t enough, they are having an “Ultra” version where you can run the course twice non-stop.

Hobie Call with a tire and a rock and some fire.

Warrior dash, shmarrior dash.

 

 

AND THEN THERE WERE TWO

I’m keeping sunny side up, but it isn’t easy.  Presenting a smiling facade while getting my dear sweet Allison all packed up and ready to go.  Shipping necessities out today, will board her on the plane early tomorrow morning.  What a strange, wonderful, and painful time.  Sat down for a few games of Kings on the Corner last night, a last and cherished opportunity to spend time with my little girl that is all grown up now.  I was strong but eventually the tears did come hard.  I’ve known this day would come but foreknowledge doesn’t make it any easier.  There is going to be a great big empty space in my house if not my heart.  I’ll miss her laughter, her curls, her cooking, her self assurance, her wit, her art, everything that has brought me so much joy over the last 18 years.  I’m taking an extra big box of Kleenex to the airport in the morning.  Man this is hard.

And so it will be just me and my dear sweet Katie.  And she with her hyper social life, I’m going to be having a lot of alone time here at 18312.  3500 square feet of quiet and lonesome and memories.  This is where life has brought me and I’m glad but at the same time do feel melancholy.  Sad knowing that I’ll be going through one final separation in another 3 years when she too sets out on her own adventure.  I’m going to make the most of what I have left with her though.

Real Life as I know it.   As a stay at home dad for the last 20+ years, this is what my life has been all about.  Preparing my kids to be confident and curious and capable in the wide world.  I’ve done my best with Miles and Allison, and Katie soon to be.   The three greatest gifts of my life.

I’ll be back to writing about running tomorrow, today it is my kids, and especially Alli,  that are my world.

Alli & me on our trip to Coos Bay last July.  I’m going to miss her more than you can know.