Wednesday, April 9, 2008

McNaughton - Ready, Set... GO!


Wow.. it came up fast and the time has come. But before we get into the McNaughton Stuff (Feelings, race plan, etc.) I have some house keeping to do.

March Totals - 2008:
Miles Run: 215.23
# of Runs: 19
Avg Miles: 11.33
2008 Total Miles: 643.55

Compared to this time last year (2007): I have run 90.19 Miles MORE 2008 than at this point of 2007.

Month Starting Weight (3/1): 152 Lbs
Month Ending Weight (3/31): 149 Lbs.
Weight Change: -3

NEW SPONSORS!
I am privileged and honored to announce my new sponsors for this year. But before I do, I want to bid a fond farewell to one of my favorite sponsors. The kind folks at Crawford Notch General Store and Campground (The Powell Family) have sold their campground and decided to move on. Sarah and I considered these kind people like family and always will. Unfortunately, as they leave and new owners move in; I am sad to have to let the campground go as a sponsor. Thanks for EVERYTHING!

However, for every passing one must turn over a new leaf. I am pleased to have such a strong list of sponsors for the 2008 Running Season. Special thanks to Nuun, Peak Adventures and Nathan Human Propulsion Laboratories for their continued support and I'd like them to join me in welcoming my newest sponsors.

Long Trail Breweries: The folks at Long Trail make some quality brew! My personal favorites include Blackberry Wheat, Double Bag and the Hibernator! I've been drinking Long Trail at the finish line of the races I participate in for a few years now and it is THE perfect way to end every race. Come on, its EVERY male runners dream to be sponsored by their favorite micro-beer!

Darn Tough Socks: These socks are made in the USA in Northfield, VT. I will be getting rid of the Smartwool and throwing on Darn Toughs, Merino Wool socks. Custom count, shrink treated Merino wool enhances the comfort and durability that outdoor enthusiasts have come to expect from this fiber. Also their Coolmax® socks because wool is not for everyone. We use an exclusive Coolmax® blend to create a sock with exceptional softness, durability and superior moisture management. I've been training in the socks over the last minute training sessions before McNaughton and these socks are PREMO!

Brooks Running: A leading running company that designs and markets a line of high-performance men's and women's running shoes, apparel and accessories in more than 40 countries worldwide. Designed to elevate the running experience, Brooks' advanced stability, cushioning and motion control gear is recognized as the product of choice among runners of all levels. Brooks has what is called the Inspire Daily Team/Program. I have been lucky enough to land a spot on their team. The team has three tiers; Blue is the highest, White is the lowest (and the one most folks are invited on) and Red is in the middle. I am honored to be a member of the red team.

All of these sponsors logos and links to their websites can be found on the right side of the blog. Please scroll around, pay these folks a visit and buy some American Made products from the best!
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And now what you've all been waiting for... This weekend is the McNaughton Park 150, 100 and 50 Mile Endurance Runs!
Held in Pekin, IL; I'd like to wish the many runners god speed and good luck in this years even no matter what distance it is that you are running. McNaughton is a unique race in that the weather can play a HUGE part of how the race plays out. Last year, we saw just how much a little bit of rain can change the course! This years weather looks to be identical to last years. 30's for lows at Night, 40s and 50s for highs during the day. Scattered showers and cloudy skies making for TONS of mud, shivering runners and a whole lotta' hell!

I want to say thanks to a few folks who have helped me prepare over the last few months. Sarah.. WOW. Words cannot express the gratitude I have for you in putting up with my training schedule AND flying out to Pekin with me to be a part of this amazing journey. Some runners lose sight of the amount of crap our significant others put up with; many the feelings of feeling like a third wheel. So.. thank you Sarah, as I always do for your patience and amazing love. I want to thank my Coach Karl Meltzer who has done a lot from afar to help me prepare for this adventure as well as my upcoming adventure at MMT and the VT100. Karl is truly one of the best and his winning ways goes far beyond what his legs can do. He has a winning heart as well. Thanks goes out to Paul Kearney and Jeff Waldron who continue to encourage me through their own running endeavors. These men are inspiring themselves! Gotta thank the rest of Team Sherpa Ultra-Running.. these guys put it all on the line in the name of their favorite charities, please find a way to support their causes.

My biggest thank you goes out to Nate Sanel. Nate not only runs his own business, but finds the time to run with me once a week. We run in the afternoon, early mornings or even all night. Whatever it takes, Nate continues to inspire, motivate and encourage me to achieve my dreams regardless of what others say or think. If there was ever a role model or idol team mate, he is the man. Thanks Nate, I love ya.

I'm trained... probably over-trained.. and am ready to go. Am I nervous? NO. I know what to expect. I've been to McNaughton before. I've been there in the rain and snow before. I know how many river crossings there are, I know how many loops I have to do. I know EXACTLY what to expect. There are no surprises and it is what it is. My mission is to cover 150... ONE HUNDRED FIFTY MILES on foot in 48 hours or less. Rain, snow, mud... nothing can stop me. I have made a decision long ago that I finish this race at all costs. It is not a matter of if I can or can't. I KNOW that I can... the question is if I will or I won't. I chose what to take on, I chose to tame the beast, I chose to run, walk and crawl through mud and water to reach the goal.. the finish line.

My race plan is simple. Goals 1.) Finish. 2.) Under 48 Hours 3.) Under 40 Hours
How: Run, Walk, Crawl.. whatever. Keep moving forward, one foot in front of the other. I mean really people.. how the hell else do you go 150 miles? How else do you plan for it? it is what it is! LETS DO IT!

So.. thats it. We're heading for Pekin and the next time I write on this blog (Sunday/Monday) you will have some kind of confirmation of my survival. You can follow the race online by visiting HERE. Also, if you haven't all ready, please consider making a donation to the Lance Armstrong Foundation. On the right of this blog is a thermometer with a "Click Here To Donate" below it. This race is the first one in honor of the memory of my grandfather who passed away in 2006 after his battle with Cancer. Whether it is in his name or the name of some other loved one you lost to Cancer, please consider donating. Thanks.

HAPPY TRAILS!
SJ