Monday, December 24, 2007

Looking Back on 2007

2007 was an exciting year. My first year doing ultramarathons. I had a lot of trepidation going in as I wasn't sure that I was really a long endurance athlete. To my surprise some of my best races were the longer ultras (50 milers). By the end of the year I felt like I really understood how to race an ultra well. I started regularly finishing in the top ten, generally in the top few masters (old guys). More importantly I was enjoying the races start to finish and feeling strong throughout.

I did 42 races last year (down from my usual 50 or so per year). Twenty of those were marathon and longer. Of the thirteen ultras I ran, three were 50 milers. Some highlights of the year were:

Favorite course: any Golden Gate Headlands race (GGH Marathon, Muir Beach, Rodeo Beach).
Toughest course: White River 50M (and my second favorite)
Best performance any distance: Mount Diablo 8K (overall win and masters record)
Best ultra distance performance: North Face Endurance 50K, Bellevue, WA (seventh overall, second master)
50M PR: JFK 50M (7:57)
50K PR: Mt. Si Ultra (4:24)
marathon PR: Las Vegas Marathon (3:10:56)

My big lessons learned (old saws to any experienced ultrarunners but which I had to learn the hard way myself) were:

- don't try to run when injured - just skip the race (this was a hard one for me)
- run less, cross-train more (cycling whenever possible)
- avoid road marathons, especially when big ultras are coming up
- acclimate for ultras at elevation, or better yet, just stay at sea level!
- go at a moderate pace for the first half hour
- eat something small (potatoes, pretzels, chips) at all the early aids
- don't stop or sit ever

Finally I want to thank the fair Rebecca for all her support crewing my races. I couldn't have done it without her. Judy Ranzer, my travel agent, figured out all of our flight and hotel logistics, just from a list of my races. She displayed endless patience in the face of constant schedule adjustments.


Blogger Mark Tanaka (Ultrailnakaman) said...

pretty impressive list. cool that you like the longer stuff. hope 2008 treats you well.

3:52 PM  
Blogger Adam Blum said...

Thanks Mark. Any tips for the Kettle Moraine 100? Would be great to run with you someday (I can probably manage a mile or two at your speed) and get the lowdown on that run from you.

4:15 PM  

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