Saturday, December 31, 2011

Torres del Paine is on fire.



Wildfires are fucking up Torres del Paine. Almost certainly caused by tourists. Even more pathetic and frustrating has been the Chilean government's response. 25 fire fighters?




Thursday, December 29, 2011

I've got a fever...


...and the only cure is more vertical?

I was downloading music (legally, of course) and suddenly started fantasizing while watching the graph of the connection speed...I don't think this case is curable, Doc.


"Tanto Calor" Week Ending 12/25/11


Monday 12/19/11 - off.

Tues- 1:00:00 stationary bike, 45:00 weights. First bike workout in years? Normally, this would have been my day for a flat, road run during my lunch break...however, summer has fully reared its flaming head and it's literally shoe-melting hot during the midday when I have time to run. So, I'm opting to suffer a little less in the shade, on the stationary bike. I have no idea what I'm doing on the bike, except that I know I want to make these one-hour sessions really hurt. I went with 8 x 2 min "on" with recovery. Is that a close to a typical bike workout? I dunno. But it hurt.

Wed - off

Thursday - AM: 10 miles, 1800 ft. of climbing. 2:00:00 "lo normal" standard route.
PM: 7 miles, 1000 ft. "Las Torres" 1:00:00 ...because I run to the cell phone towers.

Friday - 7 miles, 1000 ft. Torres. 1:00:00

Saturday - 17.5 miles, 4,800 ft. 5:30:00. Tricahue. Arrived at the Refugio Tricahue last night for Christmas with Quim and Chelsea. Best night of sleep I've had in memory. Cool temps, totally silent. Started this run with the refugio's owner's dog, Bacán. The dog ended up staying with us the whole day. Turns out he likes that sort of thing as much as we do. We did get pretty lost 2 or 3 times, but the trails were good and it didn't bother me in the least to retrace our steps a bit. Great place to stay. The founder/operator of the Refugio del Tricahue, Dimitri, is a 30 year old belgian guy who cycled all over the world until he decided to build a handful of nice cabins in the mountains of Chile. Definitely an interesting lifestyle, I think I might be jealous.

Sunday - 5:00:00 bike. With Monday off, I didn't feel any pressure to run again and instead opted to borrow Dimitri's bicycle and set out with Quim and Chelsea on a trip around Lago Colbún. It was ungodly hot, the road consisted of piles of large stones arranged in the rough outline of a road...and I was on something like a touring/cyclo-cross bike. And then the chain snapped...4 times. While I didn't mind the refresher on my bike mechanic skills, I was certainly losing my patience with that hunk of shit bike. Luckily, we had a pit stop for beer and I jumped in the lake and cooled off. A few good climbs on this route, but nothing too crazy.

42 miles, 9.5 hours. 8,600 ft.
6:00:00 on the bike. 2800 ft.

15.5 hours in total for the week (not including weights).

There's a run/bike event coming up in march that I think i'd like to do. There's also a mountain bike two-stage race in a february. It's pretty long, so that appeals to me. I'm going to try to get on the bicycle once or twice a week, just to see how it goes.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Music is really nice.

I'm headed up to the mountains today to spend the Christmas weekend running, eating and sleeping at a cabin kinda place. No internet, so I gotta get my fix in now as well as wish everyone a happy whatever-you-believe-in holiday! I hope everyone eats/drinks too much and lays some serious love on their family and friends.

Now, down to business:

Two of my good friends have posted their "year-end" lists of their favorite music, despite what I'm sure was deep, personal skepticism about the whole business of musical year-end lists.

Thankfully, they both put those doubts aside and shared some really good music, most of which I either haven't heard or did not spend much time listening to...but now am really enjoying anew.

I know that most people don't spend a huge chunk of their free time searching for new music, but if you're anything like me...then you do...so, here ya go:

Eric's list

Andy's list

I will second Eric's pick for Bill Callahan's album. I haven't ever listened to an album that made me feel so proud of my nationality in way that's not simple or cheap. Also, Tinariwen is really great running music.

While we're at it...here's a quick list of music that I like to listen to while running, broken down by genres for easy reference:



Hard-ass music for feeling "super-amped" when I'm "fuckin' ready to kill it" (a.k.a. jog at less than 7:00/mile)





Rap and/or R n' B:





Gentle, trippy music:





Pulsing, electronic music for those transcendental, connecting-to-the-universie, mind-fuck sort of runs (hopefully, everyone knows what I'm talking about and I'm not just crazy):


Sunday, December 18, 2011

"2 Heads > 1 Head" Backed up, ending 12/18/11.



Week ending 12/11/12

Bad bad week. Started off well enough, but then I went to Santiago to help crew a bicycle race. Had every intention of running in the high-high mountains there, but it turned out there was no more transportation out of the city to the mountains during the summer. Only during ski season.

Absolutely I could have invented some alternative routes, but maaan...running in Santiago is a bitch and a half. It's very very smoggy and disgusting with tons of stopping and waiting at street lights. There are some good hills right down town, but the idea of killing myself running up them (and then in turn killing myself with the horrible hacking cough that lasts for days after running in the city) did not sound appealing. I opted to get staggering, screaming drunk for two days straight. It was worth it.

I ran 29 miles/4.5 hours. tues=12 miler, 6 easy, 6 sub-7:00/mile. wed=7 miles/1,000ft. thurs=10 miles, 1800 ft. Friday=90 minutes of weights.


Week ending 12/18/11

Better week. I always feel stronger after fucking around for the weekend.

75 miles, 14:30:00. elevation: i'm rounding up to 10,000ft even. the sunday run was a weird one with lots of garmin-stumping forest.

Monday: virgen, 8 miles. PR 1 hour flat. 600 ft.

Tuesday: 6 miles in curicó. flat. 90F+. it was so hot that my feet felt burnt after the run. i cut the work out short in lieu of spending more time in the gym lifting weights. It was definitely worth it.

wed: 7 miles to las torres. 1,000 ft. 1:05:00

thurs: 10 around the cerros. 1800ft. 2:00:00

friday: AM, torres. 1000ft. 1:05:00. PM, cerros. 1800ft. 1:45:00

saturday: 11, cerros. 2200ft. 2:00:00. very hard run with Quim. we were both feeling unusually rested and strong. Luckily, not at the same during the run. He pulled me up the first climb and then I led for the longer descent and climb. The final ascent we raced each other. I felt pretty shitty but was secretly pleased to see that he, too, was super thrashed at the summit. Getting better.

Sun: 16.5 miles. 3:50:00. 3000ft. This was, perhaps, the gnarliest run I have had in ages. For whatever reason, I decided to head out with the hydration pack during the hottest part of the day (90F+) and intentionally low on calories (which I've been carefully adding to my running weeks). This was a successful run on two fronts: 1) i did find some new trails along a previously unexplored ridge line. 2) If my goal was a "bonk" run...I succeeded in spades, as I bonked massively and had very dramatic run back home. However, this was also a really weird run. The unbelievable heat and intensity of the sun truly did a number on my psychology. Towards the end of the route, during the last legit climb, I was listening to music and very deep into the Cave of Hurting when the song suddenly started breathing super loud and monster-like.

I whipped off my headphones, turned and saw a stray dog basically dying under a bush next to me. The dog looked me straight in the eyes while panting so hard that it appeared to have spasms. I didn't have any water left at this point and, frankly, was unsure if the dog was going to come at me (which the stray dogs here are wont to do). For more seconds than I would have preferred, we stared at each other while vultures circled around above us (not kidding). The whole thing really bummed me out for the rest of the run and I'm sure I'll have some decent nightmares about the sound of the dog's panting. If you've ever wondered what would happen if people in the U.S. stopped spaying/neutering their dogs, just come on down to either central or south america and bask in the terrible reality of roaming dog packs that infest every city. pigeons might move out of your way, but 10 hungry dogs don't.

I don't know why I felt compelled to post the previous rant concerning ultrarunning. It's really sort of stupid. I'll keep running whatever distance I want, whenever I want, regardless. I still am struggling to understand how, in a world filled with limitless hobbies, there are people who want to spend their time expounding matter-of-factly on the desires/motivations of people that they don't know. That wasn't interesting when little girls and boys used to talk about stuff like that in grade school and it isn't interesting now. Quit it. Go watch football or baseball and yell at the TV. It cares a lot. That's my last word on the subject, I hope.



Friday, December 16, 2011

I hope this post gets buried quick.

I have no business nor much interest in typing anything about anything other than running and drinking, but...

In the 1 year I have been following ultramarathon running, I have been pretty weirded-out by this progressive trend toward ESPN style "sportiness" regarding the commenters on ultra running blogs. I used to skateboard when I was young...actually, I skateboarded for over 10 years and was really good at it. One of the most important things to me about skateboarding was that the people who talked about it, worked in it and had their lives invested in it ACTUALLY RODE THEIR SKATEBOARDS.

Very consciously, this was something I liked about ultrarunning. If you really are dedicated to and love something, you can laugh about it and not get all stern-faced and lame about it. Geoff Roes, Dakota Jones, Bryon at iRunFar, Lucho, JT, Jesse from MI, etc. all elucidate my point: Make sure you love DOING something more than you love TALKING about doing something.

If what you really want to do is talk stupid shit about a sport, please go back to watching and not playing any of the following: basketball, baseball, american football or football. These are well-established zones for totally uninteresting bullshit. Feel free to proceed. Please, stop slinging your boring commentary all over a sport that does not want or warrant it. Maybe, all the bored "i'm training for my first ultra" house-husbands of the internet will realize: Hey, maybe the thing that all of your running heros (read: man-crushes) know that you don't is that running in the mountains/trails/etc. is insanely more fun than reading about someone's sport-commentary regarding running in the mountains/trails/etc. (yeah yeah, with this post I'm a potential hypocrite here).

Over 200 comments for money in ultramarathons? I read maybe 10 and then went for a run and then went to do interesting things. Incredible, right? Yep, there's a shitload of life out there just waiting for anyone to scoop it up, free of charge. Best deal in town. I mean, what is going on in these people's lives that they are angered by something as totally reasonable as paying someone for being superb at their chosen profession? No, man. I don't get my dick sucked as often as I'd like (sometimes), but that doesn't mean I vent my frustrations on niche-sport message boards. Get a fucking life. Hey, while you're at it, make it running and not the Internet.

Yep, I guess my irritation in this blog post indicates I am a little behind schedule on a nice (consequence-free) dick sucking. I hope that's never untrue.

Conclusion: I like reading running blogs. They give me inspiration in my own running and are frequently funny and well written. This garbage, keyboard-diarrhea on iRunFar and other blogs is as boring as hell. At least make it barrel-scraping funny like the stuff on LetsRun. I mean, c'mon.



Thursday, December 15, 2011

Wanna come over to my missile silo?





http://www.coldwarmissilesilo.com/silo.htm



Check out the photos of the silo after the remodeled-home part ends and the REAL silo begins. Whoa. If you're tired of external distractions messing up your trail running program...this might be in the cards for you. Also, a great place to compose anti-government manifestos and work on your homemade bomb-making skills...all while enjoying an espresso, gazing over the Adirondack's.








Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Head in Vice.

I ran to the cell towers and back this morning before work. I woke up feeling rested and good. I took one tiny sip of coffee and immediately began seeing the familiar creeping lightning-bolt lines that cloud my vision before the onset of a migraine.

I calmly looked out over the city, as my left eye pretty much fully blocked itself out and knew I had about 5 minutes before my head felt like it was being crushed in a vice.

I laced up my shoes and headed out. By the time I reached the cell phone towers: MY MIGRAINE WAS COMPLETELY GONE!

hahaha, kidding. I'm kidding. It hurt so bad that I vomited on the way back. I ate a handful of ibuprofen, got on the bus to go to work and now here I sit, completely spent and feeling like garbage with 7 more classes to teach before I can go home and lay down in the dark and wait for this day to end.

But...I'm still happy I went running.

Runner's World better publish this bullshit.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Oh no. Quotes.

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

- Marianne Williamson - but often attributed to Nelson Mandela



To have such respect for your own body makes it possible to do the same for others.
-Haruki Murakami, whose book on running is so boring that it will make you cry.


Hot Christmas fucking sucks. Hot New Year's is fucking awesome, though.
-Emma, succinctly describing the Chilean holiday season.


Me cago en la concha de tu puta madre.
-Quim, combing a spanish insult with a chilean insult to make something even more disgusting.




Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Descabezado


I spend a bit of every day thinking about Volcán Descabezado, lately. All of my running right now is focused towards the one-day 80+K push to its summit, sometime in January.



Monday, December 5, 2011

"Heedlessly Headless" Weekender 12/4/11



Mon - 8 miles to the Virgen and back. 1:10:00. 600ft.

Tues- 10 miles around campus. 3 x 1 mile. 6:40, 6:25, 6:20. 1:15:00 weights after.

Wed- 7 miles to Torres. 1:00:00. 1000ft.

Thurs- 14 miles. torres, virgen, horse pasture in reverse, virgen again, then down the road back home. 2:30:00. 2200ft.

Fri- 9 miles. 1500ft. 1:30:00

Sat- 10 miles. 1800ft. 2:00:00

Sun- Siete Tazas. 22 miles. 7:00:00. 5,000 ft.

80 miles. 16.5 hours. 12,100 ft.


this was a pretty good week. i came home from a 14 hour workday on monday and still went for a night run. that was good, mentally. i did not do the 6 x 30 sec uphill intervals this week, but i did lift legs on tuesday. the long run on sunday was only so-so, as evident by the long hours and modest distance/elevation. went to Parque Ingles for the first time, not knowing what it was like. the views are good, but it's mostly a very long and flat trail that wraps gently around the mountains in the park. Quim and I opted to climb the first big hill we came to, which featured 1800ft. of ascent in about 1.2 miles...so, over 25% grade for that one. it was slow going, sand and scree, with some actual climbing over short rock faces. we ran along the ridge for a little bit, looking for a good route down. we ended up getting pretty screwed, with some very sketchy and unsafe scrambling along the edge of some sharp drop-offs before finally finding a way to get back down. we attempted to find another route to the top of Comillo del Diablo, but as time began running short, we opted to head back. Mentally, i felt sort of shitty all day. i think that without clear objectives (like the different sites in Vilches Alto), i end up feeling like the run has no form or direction.

took some good photos of a side of Descabezado that I haven't seen before. the top looks mostly snow free at this point, but everyone says the winds are so strong right now that climbing it is pretty slow going. in order to manage the one-day trip from Vilches Alto to the volcano's peak, i still think it's best to wait until mid-January when the winds are low and the odds are good of doing the trip A.F.A.P.

slowly getting stronger on my climbing, slowly dropping some weight and getting ready for whatever fun stuff I can think up for summer vacation from work (January and February, haha! Gotta love the inverted seasons here. I still can't believe it's almost Christmas and the days are just getting hotter and hotter. constant sun and 80's everyday.)


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Weekender 11/27/11



46 miles, 8 hours

mon - 0

tues - 8 (4 out, easy. 4 back, harder, 6:50's) weights, lower. core.

wed - 7 to the cell towers. 1:10:00

thurs - 13 around tree nursery. weights, upper. core.

fri - 10, added 6 x 30sec hill intervals after a 2 mile w/u

sat - went to Punta de Lobos beach to celebrate a belated thanksgiving. got drunk, tried surfing. nice time.

sun - 8 along the beach in Pichilemu, came back on the roads. last mile at 6:40 with considerable rolling hills.


The previous two weeks were hopefully the start of a consistent change to my weekly running. That said, this week's omission of the long run was both unplanned and very welcome. I felt tired all week, but happy in that I still forced myself to suffer through the slightly faster tuesday run and the always delightful hill repeats.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

"Trench Footloose and Fancy Freak" Weekly 11/20/11



66 miles. 13:40:00. 10,800 ft.

Hahahaha! Check THAT out! Yeah, sure it could be the westcoast "W" ...but in this case it isn't. It's definitely the Wu "W." doubtless.

It's also a sign from God that I need to run the W circuit in Torres del Paine and reset the FKT for that route. Quim and I ran this 30 mile route today in anticipation of summiting Volcan Descabezado and returning all in one day. It should be about 80K roundtrip and, according to several local guides and the manager of the park office, has never been done. by anyone. ever. which is super fucking rad, as far as I'm concerned.

Mon- "I brush my teats!" the students tell me. I respond: "nipple clamps would be more fun, I think"

Tues- 6 widdle piddly miles. 6 x 400m all in the high 80:00's. (those are minutes). 50 minutes. then, i lifted some weights. and by "weights" i mean tits. and by "lift" i mean caressed. and by "some" i mean "my." ...yeah, that was a bit stupid, but the set up was worth it. it was. ZERO feet of climbing.

wed- mothers, don't let your sons grow up to be huasos.

thurs- 10 miles 2:10:00. felt horrible. 1,500 ft.

friday- 12 miles 2:20:00. felt better. watched the huasos wrangle a herd of horses. mothers, maybe possibly consider letting your sons grow up to be huasos. 2,000 ft.

sat- 8 miles 90:00 (those are seconds). the night before, i went out with friends and two of Talca's imported basketball professionals. you gotta understand, for one: there are no black people in talca and hardly no black people in chile. for two: these guys are like 7 ft. tall and gigantic. it was really funny seeing them next to my friend Maria who is maybe 5ft tall in heels. we had a nice time and i danced too hard again (by dance i absolutely mean "drink"). anyway, this run was pretty horrible and hungover. please understand, i'm not making excuses for a lousy performance or complaining. hangovers of any stripe do not bother me in the least anymore. HOWEVER, and very frankly, i would like this to be less of a reoccurring theme on my blog. 500 ft.

sun- 30 miles. 6:50:00. Vilches Alto. Got hailed on. But no sweat, my pet, 'cause then I got my beer on ...AAAND i got my horrifying pork/fried egss/french fries/onions ON! 6800 ft.


Man, the meat puppets were a pretty goddamn good band. I mean, they still might be...but...you know. fuck that.

Lucho's podcasts are the best thing on the internet right now:
...If you yearn to feel the burn: http://www.enduranceplanet.com/tag/ultrarunning/


Monday, November 14, 2011

"Bust Yer Hump and Do the Rump" Weekly 11/13/11

Tres Cuernos on the right.

Quim standing on the edge of the supposed ancient UFO landing, El Enladrillado.

"Bajamos al río?" he asks...no, we should not fucking bajamos to the río.

Could we have a liter of Chile's blandest, please? a 2011, perhaps? An excellent year.




I've been consciously trying to change my running week lately. The new job is helping. A lot more days off than is typical, but the mileage is coming up and I still hit 14 hours of running in just 4 runs. I really liked how this felt. My plan is to continue to run fewer days per week, but run longer on those days that I do get out and, of course, continue to try to improve my ascending strength and my descending skill (hopefully). That is all.

Mon- off. taught from 8:30am to 8:00pm.

Tues- 1:15:00 - 10 miles, w/u and tempo. lifted weights afterwards.

Wed- off. taught all day.

Thurs- 4:00:00 hours, 18 miles. summited large cerro that i had attempted last week. tricky route through the farms and quite a bit of crawling under barbed wire, but i got there. the view was excellent.

Fri- off. Mid day drunk turned into all day drunk. Sneaky little bugger.

Sat- 2:45:00 - 14 miles. explored some different routes around the horse hills.

Sun- 6:00:00 - 25 miles. went to the mountains with Quim for a good long run. I ate about 400 calories all day, but drank about 4.5 liters of water. ended the run feeling surprisingly good. Post-run snack= Empanada de Pino (filling is meat, onions, olives and hard-boiled egg) and beer. Then, back in Talca we went for the ol' plate of fries/porkchops/onions/fried eggs "lomo a lo pobre"...and more beer. I was powerful thirsty after the fries, but luckily, I still had some beer in the fridge at home.

67 miles. 14:00:00

Tell'em how it was Bill...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Lexicologically Bemused

Who says "lexicologically bemused?" Me, I guess. I'm sort of an asshole like that.

Questions that I have:

Double track trail: Is this specifically a trail wide enough for two people to run side by side, thus enjoying their own, respective "track?" Or is it so-named because these trails are also paths for off road vehicles, which produce a distinctive double-track from their two sets of tires? If it's the latter, then why do some people use BOTH the term "double-track trail" and "jeep road" to describe a route?

Single-track: Ok, this I get. No problem.

Fell-running: As I understand it, this is a specific sport...but what if I wanted to describe the running that I do here in Chile? There aren't any trails to speak of in a lot of areas, a runner just picks a line as he goes. Should I call this fell running? Like, "I was following a trail but then I lost it so I fell-ran the rest of the way to the bottom of the mountain." Or should I use a more general term, like "mountain running?"

What I'm getting at is... I'd really really like to call this "no-track" or "zero-track" terrain.

Ex: "After running to the summit of the Torres hill, I followed a horse trail along the ride until I descended through an area of no-track before reaching the jeep road that leads to the vineyards." ...it isn't like "trail-breaking" because that term connotes something too forceful. There isn't any need to break trail or bushwack if you're passing through no-track, it's grass/bushes/rocks/dirt whatever...entirely runnable but just without a direct path of any sort towards anything.

I'm very tired right now and this is what a language-obsessed nerd thinks about while he's waiting for his lady friend to arrive so they can go get drunk at 4:30pm.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Nostalgia for Long Paved Out n' Backs?

What the hell? I have just enough time in my teaching schedule to get out for a run, but the only thing around campus are flat, straight roads. Straight up Michigan, all over again. So, I did 5 miles out at 7:30/mile and came back at 6:30/mile.

You know what? I actually kinda liked it. Sick, sick, sick.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

"'Free Tequila' is an Oxymoron" Weekender 11/6

Something about our friend on the left there makes me feel funny in my running shorts.

Yep, that's the ol' trail there on the right. This is scary upon descent, but...you know, fun.

Horses are pretty rad. Horse skeletons are radder. My least favorite vegetable is the raddish.


No long run would complete without coming across something weird. Mannequin arm, you'll do just fine.


A shot looking back towards the mellow side of the cell tower climb. Talca's just over the ridge. In the distance, you can see those crazy old Andes doin' their thing: namely, being awesome and huge.



On Friday night, a spirited young man approached my lady friend and I at the bar with just one simple question: "Who wants tequila shots? My treat!" ...after some initial skepticism, we capitulated (4 times) and I wound up dancing reggaeton so hard my right hip hurt the next morning...or maybe it hurt, I'm not sure because I woke up still completely hammered. That sort of hard and fast drinking often ends up being a smart investment in your future: you can't have a hangover if you're still drunk. FACT.

47 miles in 4 runs this week. I didn't really "get after it" in any sense, but with the halloween party on monday, the mammoth hangover on tuesday AND starting a real job...I feel pretty satisfied with everything. the runs were all 2 hours + with lots of climbing. Thursday i did the 6 x 30 sec uphill intervals, a workout i am planning on keeping for the next several weeks.

Today, I tried to find a route to a distant hilltop that I'd been eyeing for a few weeks, but gave up after running in circles through farms and nurseries without getting any closer to the base. it was 80F and i ran out of water, so decided i'd try again next week. still, it was a good 3.5 hour run and I was still able to put down a sub-7 mile on the way home on pavement.

Quim and Gabby keep throwing around the idea of running a road marathon in december or january...I have access to the university track, so i'm considering actually running around it a few times just so i can play with my watch a lot and hate my life.

Hope all is well with you and yours.

Love,
Pat.

p.s

Just checked the NYC marathon results. Has anything in the world gotten bitch-slapped harder this year than the marathon distance? Goddamn!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Gosh Darn Documentaries.

i know this has to do with running, but i don't feel like explaining how exactly:

i just started working in full again this past week. in the time leading up to it, i've been "working from home" and watching an insane amount of documentaries (my previous life as a laborer will never allow me to believe that working from home is actual work).

anyway, here are netflix picks...which you've probably already seen:

- everest. beyond the limit. at least the first two seasons. don't bother with the 3rd.

-everest. the wildest dream

-Touching the Void, which i watched twice even though it physically hurt me.
(obviously there's a theme going here)

-180 south. this is an obvious pick at this point because it includes both mountain climbing and Chile. a little eye-rolling, but it's shot really well and you'll be jealous of Jeff Johnson's life.

-Pulling John, about arm wrestling. it's awesome.

-bigger, strong, faster: about PDA's in sports. OUTSTANDING. draws and makes connections between sports, movies, drugs and the american dream. really good.

non-netflix picks.

-**if you go to vice.com, you can find Vice's amazing documentaries. They are the best and they're free and they're quick. the one about Liberia will absolutely destroy your whole world. if you've ever done drugs, the Swansea Love Story is very difficult to watch and the Krokodil Tears is pretty fucking horrifying. i put asterisks in front to indicate that all of vice's doc's are awesome and free. if you've ever been a skateboarder, they got you covered too. the north korea edition of "vice guide to travel" is also pretty mind-blowing. the vodka one is good too. they're all ok. dig in.

-All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace. This is a wild one. Highly recommended. You can find is streaming via some google searching. "topdocumentaryfilms.com" has it if i remember correctly.

Old Stand-bys (both are on netflix i believe):

-Man On Wire. This is my favorite documentary of all time.

-Deep Water. round-the-world sailing doc. this is my second favorite. it's my #1 pick, but only when i'm feeling kind of dark. very applicable to ultrarunning i think.

also, Beer Wars will make you not want to drink InBev stuff (not that you did anyway). King of Kong everyone has already seen, but it's still pretty good. The pinball doc isn't bad. If anything, it's just a nice reminder of when I was a kid.

Eric, if you happen to read this, please add some more that I haven't seen. Thanks!




All of these will somehow be applicable to running. Enjoy.


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

"Ho humb" Weekender 10/30



5o miles. twisted the ankle monday morning, heard a nice celery-snap "crunch!" and thought "jesus mother of god you fucking asshole what did you just do to your poor ankle?!?!" ...it was just a wee sprain and everything is gravy after just being super thoughtful to it and taking it for dinner, backrubs, white wine, etc. good long run in the andes on sunday. post-run meal was chorillana, the mother of hangover of foods...plate of fries topped with sausage, pork, grilled onions and two fried eggs. fuck you, heart! try to beat your way out of THAT!


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Cannon.


2 hours in the cerros with 2500ft of climbing with the first White Stripes album on repeat. i only occasionally listen to music while i run and, today, the experience was really fucking good.

i took the Asked Ultrarunner's advice and started off the first climb with 6 X 30 sec intervals on the steepest stuff i got. after i reviewed the contents of my breakfast, i proceeded through the horse pasture hills until they became vineyards, coming across the best horse skeleton i've found yet. i need to get a camera to take with me next time.

on the way home, I played just the above song on repeat. i passed a construction site while a guy was swinging a comically huge sledgehammer into a steel pylon. the combination of horribly overdriven guitars and metal on metal brutality made my eyes water and it was awesome. i lost a couple minutes here while i collected my fillings off the sidewalk.

time for beer and chicken.

Monday, October 24, 2011

"My Chinese Rug" Weekender 10/23/11


Monday- off. saw planet of the apes in spanish. had a nightmare about talking gorillas.

tues- over las torres, to end of horse pasture ridge. this has become the new daily standard. 9 miles round trip w/ maybe 1200 ft. of climbing (same for descent) depending on the route. typically this takes 90 minutes at the slowest and about 1:15 at the fastest. sometimes i choose to take a very unorthodox route to the towers, which yields a much slower time (and many many more thorn holes in my arms and

wed- same, with Quim who seems all bounced-back.

thurs- off. the blisters on my feet are giving me some hell.

friday- off. same.

saturday- 9 miles.

sun- 12 miles.

The issue this week were the blisters left over from the 80K. This is the first time in years that I've had blisters, so I suppose I should be grateful. I had forgotten how to deal with them well and opted to A) wait a couple days for the tissue to chill the fuck out and B) make small incisions at the top of each to let them dry up. So far, so good. They were caused by a combination of the very steep and persistent downhill running/shoe-skiing from the race and the steady degradation of my running form as I got tired. Moving along.

39 miles.

If evil's how they're livin', hell's whatcha give'em.

-Pat.

Monday, October 17, 2011

TNF Ultramaratón de Los Andes





14.5 hours of running, 50th place out of 66 finishers.

Well, this was an interesting time. I ran this race with my friend Quim, which was a last minute decision that ended up paying off in ways that I did not anticipate (despite death-marching the last 10 miles). I also lost my fancy camera, which was a bummer...but whatever, man, fuck it.

I want to remember a couple of things, so I may just start jotting things down before I forget them...

I met Ellie Greenwood before the race (although I didn't realize it, I just saw a Canadian flag on her pack and felt like chatting in English). I see that she has a pretty thorough race report up already, if you want a better idea of the course than what I am about to provide. I will say, though, that the route is incredibly fun and features some beautiful running (and hiking).

Overall, the course features two climbs at the beginning, a long descent and then a concerted climb from about mile 23 to 30. That said, there is essentially no flat running at any point in this race and about 12,500 ft of gain (with the same amount in loss).

Quim had been training hard in the cerros of Talca for at least as long as I have and, coming from a life of focused futbol training, is in better shape than I am. His previous long-run experience has been a marathon in the Canaries and a 100K in Andorra. Both were mountain slogs that he did with friends and with a pretty relaxed approached, as in the 100k took them 27 hours or so. This race he wanted to "run" more. As in, try to push the pace and achieve the best possible time for the course. Fair enough.

The race started at 4:00am, which had been changed a few weeks earlier from the originally scheduled time of 2:00am. Excellent.

We jigged around in the dark slowly (too slowly, considering the horrible blare of Bon Jovi at the start), heading towards the first climb. After a bit of hiking, we hit the summit and got a great view of Santiago lit up at night. Like a poorly chosen piece of barroom ass, cities are only beautiful at night...

Luckily, by the time the sun came up we were facing away from the city center and towards the looming range of the Andes. We were both feeling pretty excellent, laughing and running the flats and downhills hard. The sun was up, it was dry, not too hot and there was not a cloud in the sky. Gorgeous. After a cup of hot soup, we started the longest decent of the day and I had the single most enjoyable stretch of running I have ever had. There was no trail at this point to speak of, just course markings tied to the branches of trees and the occasional lonely course marshal to point the way.

The climbing began around 23 miles or so and sucked pretty hard. It just kept coming, with very little opportunity to stretch out and run very much. We reached the half-way point at almost exactly 6 hours, which was fine with me. Here, I think, is where Quim started digging himself into a hole. He pushed the uphill pace hiking, which I think was fine, but then he also would break into a little jog every time the terrain flattened out, even if this was just a few feet. Honestly, I think he would have been better off just holding steady with either hiking or running, as those little bursts of running are just needlessly tiring. The day was wearing on, getting warmer and I noticed that he always had a little water left in his single bottle each time we came to an aid station. I, however, was guzzling water like a champ as I was already pretty familiar with how little I sweat in such a dry climate. Quim also didn't eat very much. He felt like the gels caused him to have a sugar crash and, as such, only ate nuts and fruit at the stops. I had been taking in at least 300 calories/hour for the first 3-5 hours and then switched to just gatorade as the day wore on. I should have said something earlier, in hindsight, but who the hell am I to tell him what to do? Dude comes from Girona, has hiked and run in the Pyrenees and is generally fitter than I am...anyway...

The final nail in his coffin hammered itself in when the race organizers had placed a "2K to next aid station" sign waaaay too early and, because we were fucking thirsty, we picked it up a little in an effort to get there. It turned out to be more like 5K with more climbing before we got there and Quim was feeling rough. Still, I was surprised at how quickly things started going downhill for him. After the next climb, he wasn't in the mood to run the downhill anymore and when we got to a flat section, he didn't want to jog that either. I didn't feel amazing or anything, but I still was in the mood to run (I was shooting for a sub-12 hour finish). It was rapidly evident that Quim was starting to stagger a bit and on one occasion when I asked him if he wanted a gel, he looked around like "Huh?" and seemed unsure of who had spoken to him. Fuck. Several times he encouraged me to run on ahead, but it just wasn't that kind of day. We had had a really good time running together up until then and ditching him just didn't seem like epicly bro sort of thing to do. Plus, I've never had the option to run an ultra with someone I know, so that also seemed like sort of a waste. I'm sure I'll have ample opportunities in the future to go back to training and racing alone.

Anywho, the last 10 miles were a fucking drag to end all drags. Mentally, I felt pretty upbeat. Very resolved to help Quim walk in this race and keep him from really going down the drain. I cajoled him into eating a little bit, drinking more water and told him stories about stupid things I've done when I was drunk (lucky for him we only had 4 hours of walking...as I was just getting warmed up when we finished). He seemed pretty vacant and spent, but I give him a lot of credit for never once considering out loud that he might quit. In fact, he complained very little. Righteous.

Yeah, so 14.5 hours after starting, we jogged in the last 100m of the race.


Gabbo, Stephanie and Emma were waiting at the finish line and helped get Quim some water and some food. I was in a remarkably good mood and felt more or less completely fine. I had several blisters, which for me is odd. One of them had gone ahead and exploded in my shoe, which was gnarly looking. While Quim was recovering a little, I went and said "hi" to Tim Twietmeyer, Ellie and Ian Sharman. Each remarked that the course had been very hard. Word up.

I feel pretty confident that I would have run under 12 hours for this race had I run alone, but I'm much happier with how things actually panned out, honestly. I learned a lot watching someone bite the dust like that and it was very rewarding to give a fellow runner a hand when they aren't having a great day on the trails. Honestly, if I wanted to simply "execute" a coldly calculated and predictable race, I wouldn't be running ultramarathons in the first place. The idea, for me, is to have something of an adventure. Experience something previously unknown. By my definition, adventure always includes equal doses of happy and shitty. If that sounds unappealing, I would recommend a sofa. Seriously, sofas are awesome. I'm sitting on one right now. It feels amazing...but it's not an adventure. Whoa...

On the way home, while waiting for a cab, Quim started vomiting up the water and spaghetti. He looked like a cadaver. We got him back to the apartment, gave him some water and he went to sleep instantly. I woke him up a couple hours later to eat some food, which stayed down and he seemed to be doing slightly better.

I ate a metric shitload of food (because the English shitload doesn't exist here) and drank beer until I was falling asleep sitting up.

I am writing this on Tuesday after just having returned from my first run post-race. I feel the best I've ever felt after an ultra and am really really excited about running more in the upcoming months. I really want to spend more time in the cerros around Talca, doing some much longer stuff than what I've been doing so far. In the back of mind, I'm still thinking very hard about running the "W" down in Torres del Paine. Peter Bakwin has an FKT up for the route, which has been describe as anywhere between 80K to 120K, depending on the exact route. There's also a 70K race in January that I'm thinking of doing...but honestly, the Torres del Paine Circuit sounds so much cooler than paying people a lot of money for cutting up my oranges...

Huge congratulations go out to GZ, who finished his first 100 miler in under 24 hours. Cred.


68 miles on the week.








Thursday, October 13, 2011

Santiago Is Just All Right With Me.

Ha! Back in Santiago to hang around for a day or so before the TNF Ultramaratón de Los Andes. Soakin' in that world-famous smog. Plus, the students are marching (again) today and i'm watching tear gas roll across the street a few blocks away. A lung-full of tear gas right at the starting line? Now THAT's an ultramarathon.

I have no idea how I'll do, honestly. I feel pretty good, I think? Honestly, I feel very strong but I also feel very bloated. It's that time of the month again.

and by that I mean...knock-down, drag-out drunkenness 5 times a week.

After this weekend, it's back to the cleaners for Señor Hígado (liver).

GOOD LUCK! to this guy on his 100-mile debut.

Monday, October 10, 2011

"Screaming into Opened Mouths" Weekender 10/9/11


50 miles on the week.

On monday, the start of my specially designed period of super scientific physical body-sculpting, i was running.

Running with legs filled with chicken hearts.

I was as tired as an unloved chicken heart and it showed. Dutifully. Pitifully. I ran up the cerro as always.

Lo and beerhold, there appeared a man running up the cerro also. past the trees and the easy no-big-deal part and then he started the hard, pretty-big-deal part and i thought "whattt the hell?"

Right here in lil' old talca, there's a guy from girona spain who is also an "ultra" runner and who will be competing next saturday at 4 a.m. in the Peter North's Facial Ultra Marriagethon of the Andy's.


On thursday Joaquim and I met up to run in the hill pastures beyond the regular trails. It was a day filled with ducking under barbed wire, jumping rivers, bushwacking, searching for routes. At one point, a storm moved in and soaked the air with thick fog and mist. It was impossible to tell if I was 10 feet from the valley or 1,000,000...which was really good. total loss of perspective. Another time, we started descending along an animal path and found ourselves in the midst of a herd of mountain goats, which we had obviously spooked. For a minute or so, we bombed down the trail out of control amidst 20 or 30 goats all doing the same. It was pretty fucking righteous.

Yeah, the race is next week, which should be nice.

Gabbo lives in Santiago and came down to Talca to visit. We cooked a lot and drank a lot of beer and wine. It was nice.



Give'em hell, ya'll. It's what they deserve.
Love,
pat.

Monday, October 3, 2011

"Brawl in Mid-Air" Week Ending 8/2/11





That is such a good damn song.

Really enjoyable week of running.

¡¡¡¡ "La Media Maratón por el Medio Ambiente" POST-RACE REPORT!!!!!

Right after I came across the finish line, I met up with my friend Kake and went to her house to eat, watch TV and then eat again. We shared a one liter bottle of Heineken, which went down pretty well. Nothing crazy, maybe equivalent to one and a half standard 12-oz bottles...so yeah, the afternoon was off to a slow, maybe overly cautious start.

Got home around 10pm and had 6 cans of Paceña in the fridge. The first one disappeared in no time. I briefly considered that the pace might have been a little hot, but I felt pretty relaxed and it was easy to convince myself that I could keep it up. I might have felt a little pressure given the late start and perhaps I was trying to hurry to gain some lost ground. Hit beer #2 in sub-10:00. I wasn't sure where I was at regarding my salt intake, but I didn't want to waste any time making popcorn, so I powered through beer #3 with just a carrot. It was right around this point that I got a little sidetracked responding to emails and watching videos about ancient Egypt. At the start of beer #4, I started feeling a little sluggish. I won't lie, I had a flicker of doubt at this point in the post-race, but I dug deep and reminded myself of my training. "Stick with plan, dude. Have faith." ...which I took to mean that I wanted to listen to "Faith" by George Michael. This definitely revived my spirits and beer #5 was open and ready in no time. Wrapped up an especially witty (no, hilarious!) email to an old friend and was busy reviewing a wikipedia entry on performance-artist Marina Abromovic's "Rhythm 0" piece, when I suddenly realized..."Duder, this has been an awesome day and you are now fully god-damned ready for bed. Go claim your prize."

7th place overall in 1:24:12. Half-marathon PR.


80 miles on the week. Best week of running that I've had in ages.

Whether you're resting, racing, riding or just running around in circles, I hope everyone is out there giving the whole world some hell.

Remember: Nobody, nobody, nobody can pull off the same shit as you and still come out all right.


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Saturday=Offurday.


Freedom. No one around today. I went to the mountains yesterday and ran for 4 hours and, boy, do the bottoms of my feet look like the top of an overcooked pizza. Delicious.

So, I opted not to run. No. That isn't wholly true. I opted to do NOTHING. I did exactly zero in terms of anything even remotely productive.

Freedom. I had a dream. That one day. I would rise up and think:

"Why did I rise up? Maybe I should sit back down and eat some pizza."

I'll see you all in hell.

Love,
Pat.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Two times to the Antennae.


Good run today. I ran to the cell towers, then back down, then back up again. It hurt, but more important was the mental unpleasantness (read: pleasantness) of finally getting back to the bottom, out of breath and sore...and then turning around to do it all over again.

10 miles, roundtrip. Half-marathon on Sunday.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"Piedras Locas" - Week Ending 9/25/11




First Chilean summit, "Piedras Blancas" in Vilches. Not very high, but we didn't have a lot of time. I'll be back next weekend as the local half-marathon ends in the town nearby. That should be a really great day: race a half-marathon, straight to 4,000ft vertical of hiking.

Good mileage/hours this week, especially given the no-alcohol policy which left me feeling uninspired and groggy (uh oh!). Don't worry, though. I still drank on Friday and Saturday.

Debating whether to bother continuing the no alcohol thing. I'd rather just try to reduce the volume than eliminate. I mean, I'm a drinker. No two ways about it. For me: I'm either in or out...and right now, I still want in.

63 miles w/ 4.5 hours of hiking on Sunday. No animal products, either. My poop looks awesome. Reading WAY too much about different philosophies/science surrounding diet. Maybe next week I'll try the lean meat/fruits&veggies approach and see how that feels. Or maybe I'll just opt for the increasingly popular Drunk Diet. Only time will tell.

The North Face Ultramaratón de Los Andes is in two weeks. Very excited. It looks like Ian Sharman is thinking about coming down to win it (maybe while wearing a "huaso" costume?).


Absolutely phenomenal weekend of racing. I almost felt like a sports fan, what with all the reading and watching of the running and whatnot and the so-forth.

Give'em hell,
-Pat.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Whoaaaa.....




I've gone three days without alcohol. In addition, I've also put myself on a vegan diet. Not because I care about killing animals. I don't. Kill'em all. Fuck animals.

No, I did it because I've been absolutely horrible to my body for a long time and I guess I think that maybe possibly this diet is going to help heal it up a little bit or something.

I've done my research and was prepared to feel a little off for a while, so I'm not super shocked by how challenging running has been the last two days. Still, though, I've enjoyed the trips up the cerro, even if they aren't quite as fast and I spend more of my time hiking. I found one route up that is like a ladder made of tree roots.

I'll be interested to see if this lethargy goes away in a few more days. Supposedly, it will. If not...well, there's always beer and pizza.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"Hypnotizing Chickens" week ender 9/18/11

Them's bug-killin' teeth fer shur.

On top of the cerro (where Talca's virgin statue stands). Part of the Dieciocho celebrations (like 4th of july but 4 days long). Kite flying is the big drunken BBQ activity. You can see'em up derr.

The second steep climb of my favorite run. that last little section is strictly a walk. it's steep enough that, upon descent, i can drag my hand on the ground behind me.

The running week was rudely interrupted by a two-day bicycle trip. about 3.5 hours of riding each day. 40 miles running.


I've been purposefully brain washing myself with documentaries about the Western Diet and all the horrors of health that it accompanies. As such, I finally felt something click in my brain over the weekend and I've begun a campaign to detoxify my body. Nothing extreme, but for the next week or so I'm going stop drinking 6+ beers every night/1.5 bottles of wine/half-bottle of whisky. Crazy...I know. But yeah I'm a bit of a health nut.

I laughed so hard after typing that last part I almost spilled my cocaine.


Thank you to all who continue to keep a steady training blog. It really beats the hell out of reading comments about DNFing/money in races/etc.

Everyone should run more and type on the internet less. Uh, duh.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

"What's Louie my killer?" - weeks ending 9/11




Oh thank god. It must be all these fucking trips up hills to see statues of the virgin mary because running is finally getting awesome again (it's like tagging 14'ers in the rockies or something, but with less mourning mothers. I assume.).

I've finally hit a solid week of training for the first time in a month. It was really getting me down, frankly. What I've learned is this: I DON'T regret the extremely reduced mileage and intensity that I put forth over the past 5 weeks. What I DO regret is my attitude regarding that lower-output. I let it become something negative, but I needed that rest. My body needed it. However, I didn't permit my mind to rest, also. I could have seriously enjoyed the extra time I had, but instead I felt guilty and lazy and shitty. ...For no reason now that I can possibly fathom.
IN SHORT: lesson learned. Don't be an asshole.

As if I'll ever learn that particular lesson...

I found some actual trails through the woods near where I live. It's been so nice being able to get out of the city and feel isolated in the forest...especially when the views of the Andes are incredible and there are horses roaming around in herds. The last 800m of the climb is un-runnable. Just hiking. So, that's cool and very different for me.

Racing:

I entered the Talca Army's 10K race yesterday and placed 3rd overall, in 36:33. I was surprised that A) I ran it much faster than I would have guessed given my training and B) that a very so-so time was enough for 3rd place. Endurance sports are a fairly new past time in Chile, I'm told. There was one older guy who ran it in about 31:00. We're gonna meet up for a run on Monday.

Things I like about racing in Chile (thus far):

-No crowds watching, so no cowbells. In fact, no one has any idea what the fuck you're doing. Which, at first, flipped me out, but then...it really brings your race into focus. You're there to beat people, not to show off your orange shorts. Queen.

-The Chilean warm up consists of either dancing to reggaeton or jogging socially in a tight circle. It's even better than it sounds.

-The prizes for the young kids and the masters runners were boxes of meat. Straight up.

-Chilean-style racing consists of running with serious Heart. 100m pace right off the gun.

-After announcing our names as we stood on the podium, the Chilean Army marching band launched into the national anthem. Dudes with giant machine guns stood guard. Awesome.

Three weeks until the half-marathon, supposedly. The weekend after is a 4K (yeah). Then, the weekend after that is The North Face Ultramaraton de Los Andes 80K.


I hope everyone is well! I still obsessively read every single one of everyone's posts and reports. It may be a bad habit, but it's better than doing drugs and/or talking about TV shows.

45 miles, the week before last. 64 miles this week.

Friday, September 2, 2011

belated update. bear-baited upbeat.



"Everyone's allowed a past they don't care to mention." - Bill Callahan.

have i been neglecting my late night drunken reflection posts? what the hell? what sort of runner AM I??!!!

i'm no kind of runner. i'm just kind of a runner. rind of a summer. blind to a bummer.

i am growing increasingly strong. i am also growing an increasingly strong stink of booze surrounding my person.

it's no big deal. but it may be, hard to admit, a pig seal. so that would be then. flopping around.



chile is still really nice. lovely place. it is exactly like slamming on the brakes of your life.

but you have to wonder: was i destined to smash on the throttle? or was i unknowingly hurtling towards a cliff?

which really matters in this particular brain-buster. which really does.

you witch!

love,
5 weeks till TNFUMLA 2011


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

"En toma" Week Ending 8/21




40 miles on the dot this week. not great, but running is certainly different when you have hills to climb. because i live in the downtown of a city now, i also don't have to drive anywhere and i love it. so, despite not running as much as i'd like, my legs and feet have needed some time to adjust to walking for 3-4 hours every day.

of note: i ran 11:54 for 2 miles. downhill, of course...but definitely a different feeling going that fast for a little while. not usual for me, at all.

the bottom photo was taken from my apartment on the 18th floor (in a country where tremors are a weekly occurrence, another story). currently, the student population of chile is still on strike, protesting the high cost and low-quality of it's university education system relative to the rest of south america. as i'm sure i've mentioned before: this makes my position as an english professor sort of unstable right now and i may not have an income for another few weeks. which sucks. but it's also been nice for getting around the city, sleeping and drinking a lot of cheap, amazing chilean wine.

some big racing went down in both the midwest and the west-west... eagerly awaiting the race reports.

hope all is well out there in real-lives of the blog-world.



Monday, August 15, 2011

"La Virgen" Week Ending 8/14





Well, after 27 hours of travel, 2 layovers, a frozen nap in an outdoor bus terminal at 3am and shit loads of airplane beer...I have arrived in Talca, Chile.

I moved into an apartment with a friend. Currently, I await the end of a student strike so I can start clockin' them dollars. Make that plata.

In the meantime, I went to the coast and I've been running up and down a lil' hill here. There's a statue de La Virgen at the top, so it makes the 2 mile climb and the ensuing suffering all that much more symbolic and fun. It's time to start training in earnest again, as the santiago 80k is in october and I can't think of any reason to make it hurt worse than I'm sure it already will.

I hope everyone is doing well. If you want to come run in patagonia, come on down and visit. Mi departamento es su departamento.


30 ish miles this week? maybe? i lost a lot of time packing and flying.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Nostalgia Wax On


Read this!

http://madamdonut.blogspot.com/2011/07/baby-we-were-born-to-run.html


This is a blog post from my friend Lora, who ran the Great Lakes Relay with me. Even though we were to be teammates, I only met her the morning of the event.

She put up a great piece of writing about the relay and about running in general that has me clutching my beer extra tightly and staring up into the night sky extra meaningfully.

Highly recommended.

With just about one day left in the U.S. and a lot of crazy shit going...I feel compelled to say:

I love you. Yes, you.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Registered.





http://www.ultramaratondelosandes.cl/


...and thus, my life has direction and meaning once again. not to mention, Aerosmith.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

"Orbiting the planet. Way out" Week Ending Whenever.



Ok, fine. Things have been admittedly especially unfocused lately. Here's a breakdown of my life for the past few weeks, leading right up to when I move south in a week:

8:30am-12:00pm - teach.
12-6 or 7pm- bike shop.
7-10pm - bartend.

10pm-??? - beer.


It's been very unpleasant. I have a newfound appreciation for just how little sleep a body needs to continue moving through the motions of life. As exhaustion sets in, my life soundtrack has become a weird, buzzing hum that sits just below consciousness, occasionally setting my teeth into a fit of grinding. Great times. I did this on purpose because I know I'll need the money in Chile, but I'm beginning to wonder if the extra money is worth arriving in a new country/new job looking like a drowning victim.


Smelling only marginally better.


46 miles on the week. All quality workouts, except for the weekend when I jogged through a field of poison ivy and stinging nettles with an old friend and then followed that up with a sand dunes run with a dude who grew up down the street from me and i hadn't seen in a decade. we were both weaving-drunk when we set out on the run and we ended it sober. so that must have been a good one?


i truly hope everyone is feeling good. the summer has flown by. holy shit.

I am very pleased to discover that Dave has recovered well and is back to destroying worlds and I am very unsurprised to discover that Lucho is fucking tough.

Kill on.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

It's gonna rain: Week ending 7/17 + 7/24







It's Gonna Rain Part 1 - Steve Reich from Lost Highway on Vimeo.

Well! That was one hell of a two weeks.

Week 1: 69 miles.

Yeah, 69. You know whatimsayin. Hell yeah, bro.

This week is significant. Great Lakes Relay. Crossing the northern half of the Lower Peninsula in three days. 270 miles. 9.5 team members. Something like 4 cases of Oberon consumed.



It was an amazing weekend. Freel. Ashley said, upon bursting out of the woods: "That was the fastest I've run since high school track." My brother (a non-runner) said: "I ate dem. I ate those muthafuckahz like food. I was a shark. I said to dem: YOU FOOD!" Anya ran her 'brain-bake' leg of the course despite not having to. She said she just wanted to run 3 miles up and down sand dunes. In 95F weather. No tree cover. At the end of a 15 hour day. Yeah, girl.

Mentally, this weekend was huge. I mean, I didn't run more than I have in any one given moment, BUT that did not mean I was also prepared for this particular running feat. It was fucking tough, man. "Car #1, you'll have runners for Legs 4, 6 and 8. Be at the end of leg 3 for the hand off. Car #2, you get 2,3 and 7. Do have laminates of the directions for your runners? Car #3..." etc. etc. It was a shit load of logistics. And it was hard.

The course was gorgeous. Having been a Michigan resident for 5 years and having visited my family here in the South East corner...I had really no idea what this state is all about. Now, I get it. I won't make fun of those Pure Michigan radio ads anymore. This state is beautiful and I regret that I won't be able to see more of it in the immediate future because...


I'm moving to Chile in three weeks. I'll be teaching some English in Talca. This has been in the works for the entire year, but now it's official. I have a plane ticket and everything. So, that's that. No more pancake Midwest. Instead, I'll have seemingly-infinite stretches of decidedly not-pancake-flat patagonian mountains. Yeah. I've had this as my computer backdrop since december as a focus point:



I need to be sure to not take my good health for granted. I bitch about that shit too much to suddenly become hypocritical. If you can: Get out and do it.

It's going to be an intense couple of months here coming up. It's been an intense couple of months going down right now. When it rains, it pours...which is titties...assuming you're thirsty.

I love everyone. Kill'em all.