Saturday, December 31, 2011

Year in review

2011 is done. 2011 was a mixed year for running for me. 2011 was still good.
Sure I did not reach the mileage level of 2010 and I didn’t run any marathons or ultras. Sure I had some in my thoughts but sometimes things change in life and to be honest I don’t mind.
Total miles 779 (vs. 1100 in 2010). Four races ran (vs. 7 in 2010)  
I lost weight in 2011. How much? No idea but I know I’ll be buying new shorts in 2012 as my current ones are too loose on me. And I had to put a new hole in my new belt. That’s good.
My 779 miles were a mix of road, trail and limestone. I might have ran more road than last year even on less total but there was days when I ran around the local area instead of driving to the trails. I did more night running thanks to the New Leaf Ultra Runners. It was fun running the Illinois Prairie Path in the dark keeping my headlamp off as much as possible.
My four races included one road, two limestone and one dirt trail.
At two of these races I surprised myself with, for me, good (current) times. Sure neither is even close to my best times from years ago but I was happy with my effort and times.
First race was Solider Field 10. That is a road race except for the last 0.1 miles when we ran across the field inside the stadium. I really liked this race. Very well organized, great T shirt and finishers medal. Of all the races and runs I did in 2011 this was my best effort.
Second race, NLUR Sunburn Six and Twelve hour event. Had to be the hottest day of the year. It lived up to the race name. I took it easy and didn’t run as far as 2010 which in itself was hotter.
Third was my “A” race for the year. Des Plaines River Trail half marathon put on by my friends Terry and Ed. Last year I ran the full marathon. It was nice this year to be done earlier and get to see the marathon and 50 milers finish. Course and time of year was “refreshed” for 2011. Another good T shirt and medal plus awesome after race lunch meal.
Fourth race was really a non race put on by the Midwest Misfits. A trail 5k the day before Thanksgiving. Think there was around 22 runners. A nice little trail system and a unique wooden finisher’s medal.
For 2011 I picked a favorite race for the year, Rock Cut HOBO 50k. This year all four events I did earn that honor. They were all different for different reasons.
What else. I volunteered at many races this year including a mile race, a triathlon, a 100 mile trail race, two lakefront ultras and worked many events in a manager/staff role. 
I did miss not traveling out west to crew at Badwater and Javelina but maybe I’ll make that trip to a west coast/southwest event in 2012. Maybe I’ll finally get to run that 50 mile event I’ve want to do one of these days. And maybe I’ll finally get the dust of my mountain and road bikes.
Big thanks to all my running groups: CHUGs, NLUR, Misfits, MUDDs, Coyotes, Buffaloes. Even if I didn’t see much or any of you in 2011 I read the group members words posted on Facebook and yahoogroups. You all inspire me more than you know and I know you will inspire me to run well and further in 2012.
I must mention one story in 2011 that stands out and inspires me more than most in the running world. My good friend Lisa Bliss and her Badwater solo. Not only was it solo but it was self supported. Lisa became the first women and only second person to go from Badwater Basin to the top of Mount Whitney all the while pushing, pulling and no doubt kicking a cart on wheels with ALL her supplies and water for the journey receiving absolutely no supplies, restocking or advice along the way.   Congratulations Lisa. Yeah it was all my fault all those years ago.   
Good luck to all my friends in 2012 whether you run or not. Happy New Year to All.