Once a month we’d like to showcase the races for members courageous enough to spend a few minutes filling out a Google Form, and until we get that sick shout-out from the CEO himself on Twitter or, preferably, Instagram®, we will *NOT* promote Run Gum!
First-placers, mid-packers, sweepers, we want to hear all the tales: heroism, zeroism, and everything in between. And as you see below, your submission can be as brief, or *long* as you’d like!
Are you racing this August? Probably! Here’s an incomplete list of “races” I accept:
- Real races! (road, track, trail, relays, obstacle courses, chasing that teen around the track after his friend Todd dared you to race him)
- Not really races(?) (stair climbs for cancer research, color runs, certain Mario Kart levels)
- Strava CRs! (no bikes)
- Strava CR attempts! (definitely no bikes)
- Beer Miles (5% abv or even PBR beer miles!)
- Beer ultras (Fat Glass is coming 9/22!)
Let’s hand it off to July 2018’s, SIGH, FOUR BOSS HOSSES!
Member #: 1578
Race name: Carnation Run for the Pies 5k
When was this race? July 4th
How did you place?! 2nd in my age group (aka won my pie)
Race website: Run For the Pies 5K
11 SRC runners turned up at this small town 5k on the 4th. We city slickers came hoping to win pies as one of the top 3 in our various age groups. While scoping out the competition for Club NW folks, I only noticed 3 orange singlets, but also a surplus of a new-to-me running group- ERC (Eastside Running Club). Competition looked high and I was instantly regretting my decision to run a 16 mile trail run with 4,000 ft. elevation gain the day prior. I started my race at a very fast clip, breezing past little kids who ran like zigzagging bumblebees. Noticing my high speed, I turned it down a notch, still managing to pass a CNW runner. The road section transitioned to gravel at a righthand turn. Some (perhaps) well-meaning volunteer decided to walk across the path to cheer folks on from that side just as I was making my turn. A quick “Woah, lady!” slipped out of my mouth. That fury fueled me for the gravel stretch. I finally slid past a teenage runner who had closed me off several times at 2 miles. At 2.4 miles, I passed a few more runners, including a Oiselle lady, then two guys who began a chorus of heavy breathing upon my passing, motivating me to run even faster. The finish line was closing in and I was neck and neck with a young man. Seconds to the finish line I was sure he would beat me, but I kicked it into high gear and beat him by 1 second on the clock… though his chip time was ahead of me by 1 second. Thanks to the flat course, competition, months of high mileage, and promise of a pie, I had myself a 38 second 5k PR! I got my lovely winning pie as 2nd in my age group, along with 7 other SRC runners. I think we have ourselves a new 4th July tradition!
Shoeless Joe Sez!
“11 SRC runners turned up at this small town 5k on the 4th.”
Nice, look forward to 10 more race reports from this race!
“While scoping out the competition for Club NW folks, I only noticed 3 orange singlets”
The rest of their club was washing my car that day 😏
(Looks around expectantly for a high-five, spills ice cream on shirt)
“I turned it down a notch, still managing to pass a CNW runner.”
“I kicked it into high gear and beat him by 1 second on the clock… though his chip time was ahead of me by 1 second.”
Ugh, the only thing I can think of off the top of my head that is more disappointing than finding out later you got chip-time’d at the finish line is that day you find out as a dad that your #teen son is going through his dog collar phase.
“…and promise of a pie, I had myself a 38 second 5k PR!”
Congrats Katelen; free pie and a PR is great way to start this post off on a high note! I can’t wait for the other 10 members to tell me their tales of glory!
Dan Sloat (also Evan Williams and Joe Kelly and Kevin Lin)
Member #: 1955
Race name: Ragnar NW Passage
When was this race? July 13-14
How did you place?! 2nd Overall, 1st Ultra
Race website: Ragnar Site
I’ve been wanting to try out NW Passage for a couple years. I could only find 5 runners and thought “hey, 34 miles isn’t that bad and I hate sleep” so we did an ultra. The team also included SRC members Evan “tempos in crocs” Williams, Joe “Willing to do an ultra on a week’s notice” Kelly, and Kevin Lin!
We started in the last wave and began what would be a 20+ hour struggle for the overall race lead with a 12-person team. Fast forward to 4:30am. Lining up for my third double leg, I contemplated how many more 6 minute miles I had in me. The answer was 9. Unfortunately, it was a 14 mile leg. Check out my Strava if you want to see my gradual descent into death. Shout out to the Club NW guys on the rival team who ran alongside me to give me water as I staggered through an epic bonk.
We held on to the overall race lead as late as 188 miles into the 200 mile race, but sleep deprivation and huge mileage took its toll. We shocked ourselves with our 6:08 average pace – a solid effort all around. The course was beautiful and the race well organized. We had a great time despite (because of?) the suffering. We swore we’ll never do it again, but I’m sure I’ll find myself fighting sleep to drive Evan’s little Honda along a country road while chugging a tailwind and luna bar smoothie again next year.
Heard at an exchange, as Evan flew by shirtless at 5:10 mile pace: “Man, that guy is in way too good of shape. He’s making us look bad.”
Also check out Joe’s face of regret upon shotgunning a 16oz beer.
Did iRunFar interview you before or after the race?: No
ALL TEH RACE IMAGES
Shoeless Joe Sez!
“I contemplated how many more 6 minute miles I had in me. The answer was 9.”
Whoa that’s great! Congrats!
“Unfortunately, it was a 14 mile leg.”
Oh sorry, I suppose I should have read ahead.
“a solid effort all around.”
Don’t be so humble, Dan! “A solid effort all around” is how I describe to QFC employees my cat’s typically-unsuccessful attempts to pee in his litter box. As my 10th grade PE coach would put it, you 6 were the first losers in a 199-mile relay race!
“We swore we’ll never do it again”
I’ve lost track how many times I’ve said this about Hot Pockets and/or Hazy IPAs…
“…while chugging a tailwind and luna bar smoothie again”
It’s just us Dan, you can call it “beer.”
“Heard at an exchange, as Evan flew by shirtless at 5:10 mile pace: ‘Man, that guy is in way too good of shape. He’s making us look bad.'”
Evan used to chew on my farts during races. Now I sit in my underwear and comment on other people’s races on SRC.org while he runs 5min mile repeats in Crocs and elicits this reaction from anyone he runs by:
Member #: 1579
Race name: White River 50
When was this race? July 28th 2018
How did you place?! Who cares?
Race website: http://www.whiteriver50.com
*Your* website URL: https://www.monsterenergy.com/us/en/gaming
Last year’s race wasn’t enough of a challenge, especially with the highly crushable, high-octane, beast-unleasher (TM) of Monster Hydro. That’s why this year I put the choke slam on the Enumclaw Safeway’s pesto pasta salad pre-race. Could the relentless climbs of WR50 and butt eruption be enough to hold back the Blonde Beast (unleashed by highly crushable, high-octane Monster Hydro)?
One mile into the race and the rest of the pack was already just a speck in my rear-view mirror, which I had torn off since I don’t care about the past, I only rage forward into the future. By the first aid station, Sage Canaday’s CR split was so far behind me I’d have time to watch all-time Rob Schneider classic, The Benchwarmers, before his ghost caught up. Then, nearing the top of the summit, I reached the area devastated by last year’s fire and had to reassess my priorities. Clearly, who the ultimate competitor was had been proven at this point of the race, but there were plenty of other problems out there to crush; what would Rodney Sacks, CEO of Monster Beverage do?
While the other racers blindly ran on, not yet accepting they’d already lost to the undeniable hydrating flavors and unique energy blend of Monster Hydro, I selflessly did what I could to refertilize the fire-damaged areas around Norse Peak. And because Monster Hydro doesn’t let you quit, even though I never quit, I kept up crushing this service to nature all the way back down the mountain. The rest of the race, which was over in my mind, having won, is history, which I don’t pay attention to since I only rage forward into the future fueled by the chakra-blasting, career-boosting, near-death, best-life experience of Monster Hydro.
Rodney Sacks, CEO of Monster Energy Sez!
Young man, I don’t know who you are, but my youngest son Bllevyn from my 3rd marriage linked to me to this post and I just wanted to say that I think your exactly what were looking for here at Monster Energy . Fit blond and pony-tailed. Your right, Monster Hydro is non-carbonated and lightly sweetened with natural flavors to make it thirst quenching and easy drinking i’m excited your a fan! If your on Snapgram or Timber like my son Hammyr from my 2nd marriage, I hope your exuding that “to the future!” spirit to the masses as well Only because my eldest son Ron from my 1st marriage tells me these blogs don’t do really do anything for our social media efforts cause noone read’s them they’d rather tap on pics on there phone..speaking of phones call me Olin thanks -Rodney
Member #: 2019
Race name: Burning River 100
When was this race? 7/28/2018
How did you place?! 28 OA, 5 AG
Race website: Link
This one is a bit long, but It covers 100 miles, so…
Shortly after running my first 50k last fall, I signed up for a 50 miler as a winter getaway. Of course, I didn’t even wait to experience that before signing up for my first 100 miler: Burning River. At the time, I was still living in Cleveland and could get to any section of the course within a 40 minute drive, so I spent the winter running portions of the course in the snow.
Having about 3 months in Seattle to complete my training made me much stronger on the hills and gave me practice on more technical trails. I’m not sure how much better I am with technical trails, given how much blood I’ve left out on those trails since April…
Race day had nearly perfect weather. It rained overnight and was very humid at the start, but it was only 65 in the early hours and the high for the day was 75 with sun. I started out in road shoes as the first 11 miles were on road with fairly easy trails after that to the first drop bag at mile 21. There were 2 creek crossings in there that required going ankle-deep, so a shoe change was in order by that point anyway. I had a pacing plan for each major section and was doing pretty well. I was very close for the first 11, though I came into mile 21 10 minutes early after misreading the wrist band I had my pacing strategy noted on. I used some of that extra time for my shoe change and a bathroom break without feeling rushed.
The next 20 or so miles were pleasant, running through the woods and sharing miles with other runners when our paces aligned. It was mile 45 where things turned. I was feeling good about my hydration and calorie consumption, but I started getting nauseous and was having trouble taking water. The gels, shot blocs, and sport beans I was carrying suddenly all sounded awful. I had trained with these items up to 33 miles (and used them in my 50 miler), so I was in foreign territory without any experience with fixing tummy issues. I was still about 10 min ahead though and figured I could take it easy into mile 50 with hopes that I would feel better then.
My pacing plan had me finishing around 20 hours, 30 minutes (which was crazy ambitious for hundo #1), but I came into the 50 mile station at 9h30m, having given up my 10 min time bank. Unfortunately, I was still having trouble eating. I took about 20 minutes to slowly try different food and rest. My mind started to despair here, which was probably a mix of mental fatigue and things not going well in a way I wasn’t familiar with. Deep down, I knew I was doing great and even still had a great shot at sub-24hr, but I left the halfway point nearly in tears carrying a Ziploc baggie full of pb&j sandwiches that didn’t really sound any better to eat than gels at that point.
The next 10 miles were a combination of walking and jogging. This was especially brutal as it was a pretty flat portion of the course where even a slow run would have been 4-5 min/mi faster (I was averaging about 16:30/mi here I believe). I was still having trouble drinking and this was the least shade I would have through the middle of the day, compounding my issues. Somewhere in here I also realized that, in my funk at the halfway point, I failed to re-apply Vaseline and get some Tums to see if those might help me.
Around mile 55 the aid station was run by the Cleveland Triathlon Club and I knew some folks volunteering. Their energy was a big mental boost and, when I asked about Tums, a volunteer must have dumped half a bottle into my pb&j baggie. I would munch on those periodically for a while and the helped a little.
At the mile 60 aid station I was surprised to run into a former coworker volunteering. We had a little chat, I got some Vaseline to apply (it was too little too late), and this was the first aid station with GRILLED FREAKING CHEESE!!! This was the first real food I was able to take since mile 45 (over 4 hours ago). I managed some pickle juice as well and went on my way.
On my way to the mile 66 aid station, I got a text that my first pacer, Sean, who had planned to meet me at mile 72 had been following me online and saw I was in trouble, so he drove out to pick me up 6 miles early. The Tums had been helping a little bit, but I was still in rough shape. Knowing that I would have a pacer soon helped me run a little bit more to mile 66 and I had decided there was one last thing I hadn’t tried to help my tummy. I was going to move on to Coke and see if the cola would help.
I rolled into 66 a little bit stronger. I explained to Sean what I was going through and what I had been eating. He suggested that I may have been low on salt as the chewables I was using were much less potent than caplets. I took more salt, had some grilled cheese, ramen, and coke (the most calories in a long time!) and we headed out. It took a little while, but I started feeling much better. Not great, and I was still having trouble eating on the run, but it was the best I had felt in quite a while. We ran more than I had been and I came into mile 72 feeling stronger.
The coke and ramen had gone down best, so I went back to those options again. The grilled cheese wasn’t working for me any more, so I doubled down on what was. I also had pickle juice and green grapes. Over the next 4.5 mile section, I started to feel really strong. I don’t think I realized till later, but I believe the caffeine in the Coke gave me a huge boost. Toward the end of this section, I even ran down a relay runner. As good as I was feeling, Sean and I decided maybe I was going a little too hard with 25 miles to go.
I was a little quicker through the mile 77 aid station. Coke, ramen, pickle juice, grapes. This would pretty much be my go-to at every station from here on out. It was also time to trade in my sunglasses and cap for my headlamp. I also tossed a light wind breaker in my pack and grabbed a Payday bar, which I had packed as a special, salty treat for later in the race.
The sun set between 77 and 82 and it got pretty chilly outside of the woods. It was pretty surprising how much heat the woods retain after sundown! I managed to eat half the Payday bar in this stretch (very slowly) which was my first time taking calories between stations in a long time (and the last, I think). I was also extra motivated to get to the next station as the captain had promised me a beer prior to the race. Chafing became a really big problem around this time.
As we rolled into the next stop, I put my wind breaker on to keep myself warm, which helped a lot and stopped in the bathroom to wedge some TP between my cheeks. It was a last-ditch effort to help the chafing, but it worked perfectly! That problem was completely solved the the rest of the run at least. At this station, I got coke, ramen, pickle juice, a cold Coors Light, and tried grilled cheese again (nope). The beer was a great moral boost going into a hilly 5 mile loop, but I also knew this would be the last really hilly section and I had trained on it a lot so I would know what to expect even when fatigued and in the dark. After some prodding from my pacer we were off.
Early in the race, there were some relatively steep downhills on road that I tried to take easy but ended up using a short choppy stride that I wasn’t used to. By mile 20, I had some discomfort in my right shin that I thought felt like shin splints. It stayed with me all day, so I tried to focus on good form without heel striking. By mile 82, it was starting to really hurt. The hilly section between 82-87 really took it’s toll and I had to be really careful on downhills for the first time. I also started to legitimately worry about serious injury. I had almost 20 miles to go and was in significant pain. I wasn’t sure how it would hold up (though I knew I was well-enough along that I could finish as long as I could walk). With my increased pace since mile 66, I had a decent shot at 23 hours, which Sean kept telling me to stop thinking about. All in all though, my attitude was really positive at this point.
The station at 87 came and went. I had my routine down now: 4 small cups of coke, ramen, pickle juice, some grapes, and go. This 5 mile section was mostly road and then one good hill in the woods. The road was easier on my shin, but just keeping my foot from dropping and dragging on the ground really hurt now. As we entered the wooded section, we heard a coyote. Sean remarked on how cool that was and then we heard another and another and another… Suddenly, up the trail ahead, we heard maybe a dozen coyotes howling… and then fighting. It sounded really vicious. Sean and I were silent for a bit and I had visions of running into some injured, pissed off coyotes on the trail. Luckily, that didn’t happen, though it was an unnerving 2 miles through that section of woods.
Back out on the road, I knew the next aid station was getting close. Now walking hurt about as much as running with the shin pain, so I picked up the pace. I was running people down that I hadn’t seen since mile 60 or before and leaving them in my tracks. At mile 92 I exchanged pacers (my younger sister, Brittany, tagged in) as well as shoes (back to more padded road shoes for the last ~10 miles). This was my only time sitting down the entire race. I did my nutrition routine and we took off. I definitely wasn’t getting the hydration and calories I needed, but I figured I could make it to the end. I needed to average 12/mi to finish under 23 and we headed down the path at a 10/mi pace out of the aid station.
I still had nausea, but the shin pain was getting REALLY bad. A wrong step here or there would result in me crying out in pain and stopping in my tracks. It was even worse trying to get started again after a short break. I was having to crouch down and bounce a little to stretch out my hips, knees, and ankles and then start running as soon as possible to avoid tightening up. I decided at this point that I wouldn’t be able to run for about 8 weeks, so I might as well make the most of this race. I also wanted it to be over as soon as possible. We hit mile 97 and had just 4.3 miles to go.
There was one more section of trail with some small hills and some stairs, but I could taste the finish line already. My watch died around this time and Brittany didn’t have her distance/time worked out to know what we needed to do to get in at 23 hours, so I was just going as hard as I could. We hit a nice, smooth downhill on a road an I had to walk. The pain was searing. I hobbled through the woods and had to use the hand rails to get down the stair cases. When the path ahead flattened out for good, I decided I needed to run the rest if at all possible. Each time I stopped to walk, getting started again hurt more and more.
We were then out on road for the last 1.5 miles. Every step hurt so bad, whether it was walking or running, so I told Brittany that I was going for the finish as fast as I could. Pretty soon she couldn’t keep up and continued to cheer me on from behind. That last mile and a half felt like a sub-8 pace. I was passing other runners on my way in and, when I saw the finish, I was in a dead sprint, crossing the line at 22:50:02.
I was exhausted. I congratulated a few runners that crossed behind me and then sunk into a chair. A volunteer brought me my buckle and Brittany grabbed me a ginger ale. I’m not sure how long I sat there; maybe 20 minutes before I started to get cold and decided to head over to the hotel. I got a hot bath, drank some water, ate a little something, and tried to sleep. I was way too uncomfortable to sleep. My hips ached and my shin burned, so I tossed and turned for about 4 hours. I decided to get up and grab some breakfast before heading back to the finish for the last hour before the cutoff. It was great to see 3 runners beat the cutoff in the last 30 minutes and the runner that came in 15 minutes after clearly wasn’t worried about the official time, she had covered 101.3 miles under her own power and the joy in her accomplishment was clear.
It’s been a week now and I can’t believe how well I’ve recovered! A physical therapist friend took a look at my shin later on Sunday and suggested that I probably just had a strain of the tibialis anterior (a much less serious injury than shin splints), which has proven true as it feels almost 100% 8 days later. I ran 5 miles on Tuesday (which was too much) and then 5 more on Thursday (still too much but manageable). After 2 more days off I ran 20 on the Sunday following my race and felt really strong. I’m excited that I’ll be able to do some more racing this summer and fall!
Did iRunFar interview you before or after the race?: No
Shoeless Joe Sez!
“This one is a bit long…”
“At this station, I got coke, ramen, pickle juice, a cold Coors Light, and tried grilled cheese again”
AKA what you’d get from me for dinner if you dated me between 1998 – 2009.
“and stopped in the bathroom to wedge some TP between my cheeks. It was a last-ditch effort to help the chafing, but it worked perfectly!”
“4 small cups of coke, ramen, pickle juice, some grapes”
My Friend Derek would marry a mason jar of pickle juice if it were socially acceptable, and I don’t think he’s ever talked about pickles as much as you have here.
“A physical therapist friend took a look at my shin later on Sunday and suggested that I probably just had a strain of the tibialis anterior.”
Well yeah, I coulda told you that!
All joking aside, congrats Adam! Despite what the wise souls at LetsRun may type out during their refractory period, running 100 miles will never not be an insane accomplishment that you’ll be able to take with you forever (just not to work; no one at your work will *ever* sincerely care). Though after reading that, I’ve never wanted to run a 100 miler any less than I do right now.
Also, welcome to Seattle! I have a feeling you’ll like the trail running out here.
Member #: 1578
Race name: White River 50
When was this race? July 28th 2018
How did you place?! I made it in before the 14hour cut-off!
Race website: whiteriver50.com
This race started at 6am, meaning I woke up at 4:30 am to drive down to the starting line. Already sleep deprived, but excited for the adventure, I started out strong and optimistic, but smart enough not to push too hard at the start. The first stretch is rolling hills for ~5 miles until the very steep ascent for the next several miles. I ran/hiked by fellow SRC memebers Ellen Lavoie and Jack Rosenfeld (Jack was racing uphill in sandals?!) and saw Uli at an aid station ~10 miles in. The climb continues with breathtaking views along the way. My spirits were still high even as the sun started to peak out and speed racers like SRC runners Keith, Olin, Amon and Martin were breezing past the opposite direction. Their descents looked dicey, especially over loose rock and near steep drop offs. But boy was that decent a treat. Given this day’s total elevation gain of 8,700ft, my technique was to run the flats, manageable downhills and rolling hills, while hiking the steep uphills. I rolled into the Buck Creek Aid Station (mile 27.2) with the joy of running my a hill decent I mostly hiked up and seeing friends. The service was incredible! 3 different SRC volunteers asked what I needed and got right to it! I swapped out my socks, sat down for a bit, then eventually was told to carry on with my race- now or never. The next stretch felt bad. I needed a restroom and ended up using Mother Nature for that. I had minimal desire to run the flats for a bit. The temperature was rising and This part was more exposed than before- just as Herb Sitz told me. I made a push to the next aid station, comforted by the many other miserable runners I met along the trail. From this aid station to the next -Sun Top Mountain (~37.2 miles) I enjoyed the rolling hills, flats, descents, and meeting a new SRC member- Daisy. I saw Aaron and Glen out taking pictures and the view before Sun Top was incredible! Sun Top Mountain was great- Kat treated me with different savory food options (too kind), Andy was out of snow cones (I’ll hunt him down for one later), Ian tainted me by drinking a beer, Brian had great jams to liven the spirits, and there were full bathroom facilities- a great place to explore how bad my chafing situation was! The next 6 mile gravel stretch sucked. By the time I got to the last aid station- Skookum Flats, I was almost in tears from pure misery (chafing, foot pain, knee pain, back pain, boredom). When asked how I was doing, my response was; “I feel terrible”. Aid station folks assured me I had 6.6miles to go and only ~300m once I hit the gravel road. I started walking the flats, then got bored and kicked it up. The hills are rolling and I ran every descent, flat and gentle hill from then on. Once at the road I pushed it out of pure enthusiasm to be done. Then I was! I was handed a finisher’s glass of ice cold water, I waddled over to a chair, learned my time was under the 14 hour cut off, but after my 12 hour goal- 13:22:01 hours. Food tasted great, sitting felt great, a beer was great, my ability to walk like my normal self felt permanently broken. But hey, I just ran my first 50 miles in one go!
Shoeless Joe Sez!
“and saw Uli at an aid station ~10 miles in.”
#wellactually, it’s about 18.33 kilometres</uli>
“just as Herb Sitz told me”
Herb Sitz gave you advice, huh?! He advised me I would have more success with this feature and maybe get more Pie and 5K finisher reports if I posted these as they came in rather than monthly. Right after he said that (at an FLB Monday group run), my credit card was declined.
“Andy was out of snow cones”
“…and only ~300m once I hit the gravel road.”
#wellactually, it’s about 702 metres</uli>
High five, Katelen! May there be many more 50 milers and 100 milers and race report submissions in your future!