Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Pinhoti 100 Mile Run

Starting this Saturday at 6 a.m., I'll begin the slow arduous 100 mile journey from Heflin to Sylacauga, Alabama on the Pinhoti Trail.  I won't be alone.  Two hundred and thirty other runners will start and only about 50 % will make it to the finish under the 30 hour time limit.  My wonderful wife will be with me from the start as my crew (she has no idea what she is getting into) for most of the day, and my dad is coming to take over for the nighttime portion of the journey (he definitely has no idea what he is getting into).  Unfortunately, the weather is predicted to be unseasonably hot and reach almost 80 degrees.   That will make the hydration and nutrition even more important.  I am most worried about my ability to eat enough calories to keep myself going without causing too much in the way of stomach issues.  At least we won't have to worry about getting to cold at night.

My first goal is to finish under the 30 cutoff.  My second goal is under 24 hours.  My plan is to start slow, trying not to blow up so that I'll still be running for the last half of the race.  For anybody who is even remotely interested you can track my progress here.  I am bib number 29.  My experience with the site is that it usually runs about 1 hour behind and sometimes seems not to be working at all, but keep checking back as it usually catches up after everybody starts spacing out later in the race.  Kelli is planning on posting pictures and live updates on my twitter page until she heads off to bed.

Additionally,  I wanted to give a shout to my brother, Jonathan, who just finished his first marathon.  Read all about it here.  Anybody interested in watching a cool video from the 50k race in Chattanooga 4 weeks ago watch this.  That is my foot stepping on the acorns at about 3:30 into the video.  Be careful if you watch the video as it will make you want to go run in the woods.

Thanks again to my wonderful wife for supporting me in all the crazy adventures.  

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Chattanooga Weekend & Stump Jump 50k

We headed to Chattanooga several weekends ago for Drew's 50k race. He did this race last year for the first time. This year the girls went with us, and they were VERY excited about going to "Chattanoona" as Sally Sharp said all week leading up to the trip and even after we got there. Before we got on the other side of Columbus, this is what was happening in the car:

SS was sound asleep...

Avi was sound asleep (very unusual for her)...

and Drew was sound asleep (extremely normal for him)!

The girls also watched some movies. SS was covering her eyes during a part in Beauty & the Beast :). Avi was telling her when to cover her eyes and when to open them! It was pretty cute.

We made a quick stop at Children's Hospital in Birmingham (where Austin was) on our way to drop off some books we collected at Avi's birthday party. A friend who was one of Austin's nurses on the renal floor at Children's got us in touch with Lori Currie, the Child Life Specialist over the Solid Organ Transplant Unit Playroom. She graciously accepted our books for the transplant patients who have the opportunity to visit the playroom for a little bit of playtime while recovering from receiving a transplant. We had fun seeing the new hospital facility. The new NICU was pretty amazing...VERY different than when we were there!

The girls LOVED the hotel room. Who doesn't love to bounce on a bed that's not your own, right? They thought it was pretty great. 

On Saturday morning, Drew ran his race. From Drew: The StumpJump 50k touts itself as the largest and toughest 50k in the southeast.  I came into this race looking for some revenge.  Last year I injured my knee and was unable to run for 5 months after this race.  The weather was supposed to be really good for the race, but a 10% chance of rain turned into a steady downpour about 40 minutes before the race started.  The rain made the course very wet, muddy and the rocks were very slick.  Out of 600 registered entrants only 410 finished.  The race went well  for the most part, and I only suffered a bit from miles 15-18 where I just ran out of energy. However, I managed to finish really strong.  I was hoping to finish under 5:00 hours but ended up finishing at 5:08:10.  The race was a blast, not too hot and it was a great to have Kelli and the girls waiting at the finish line. Avi got to run the home stretch (click link for a great picture) with me and was really excited.  There was one tired boy after 31 miles of wet slick Chattanooga rock.  Overall I had a great weekend with Kelli and the girls.

Now that the 50k is over, I have only 3 weeks to get ready for the BIG ONE.  On November 3rd,  I will be running the Pinhoti 100.  I have never run over 40 miles but for some reason, running 100 miles sounds like a lot of fun.  The race starts about 20 miles north of Oxford, AL and and ends in Sylacauga, AL.  It is almost all on the single track Pinhoti Trail through the Talledega National Forrest. There is a 30 hour time limit and usually fewer than 50% of the 200 or so entrants finish the race. I finished my last long 6 hour training run today, and now there are only about 20 left days for rest, recovery, and taper before the big day.
Sally Sharp fell asleep in my arms as we waited for Drew at the finish line, and Avi insisted on taking a picture of us. Even though my back was killing me from holding her for an hour while she slept, I won't complain because I don't get to hold her while she sleeps anymore...she's not a baby anymore :). 

We visited the Chattanooga Aquarium, and the girls enjoyed seeing all the "fishes" as Sally Sharp called them. 

Avi sacked out RIGHT before we finished the aquarium. I had to wake her up, which was not an easy task, once supper arrived at the table. She was a tired girl!

We made the trip back home on Sunday. We had a fun time!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Country Pumpkins!

In October, on the day of fall break at CLC and SA, we spent the morning at Country Pumpkins, the fun pumpkin patch in Caledonia, MS.

Before we left for the pumpkin patch, the girls were snuggled up sweet on the couch watching a carton.

The corn boxes were Sally Sharp's favorite by far! She LOVED playing in the corn.

The hay maze wasn't bad either :)

The tire swings were definitely Avi's favorite. She loved being pushed on them.

Our friend Diwas and his mom Karyn (my friend) went to the pumpkin patch with us!

Last year they wouldn't play in the cotton, but this year, they had a lot of fun throwing the cotton around!

The infamous "eyes." If you ever wondered why I say she makes me laugh...

My pumpkins and gourds I got at the pumpkin patch to decorate our front porch...I love them!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Uncle Cory's Birthday!

We celebrated Uncle Cory's birthday (Oct. 1) with dinner at Nana's house. Avi insisted that Cory wear the Turkey hat, and everyone thought it was quite hilarious...except for Cory I'm sure!

Cory's favorite cake is strawberry. Laura Leigh and Walt helped him blow out his candles!

Brothers. They are nice to each other most of the time!

Chocolate was the choice of my girls...nothing unusual about that!