Dirt 4 Life

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Road to 100 Mile Race – Part 2

It’s been just over 2 weeks and it only took a week to put the 100 mile race back on the table for 2014. It seems a little crazy to think we will run 160kms in under 36 hours or at least that is the time cut-ff. If we can finish in sub -30 hours we receive a finishers jacket! There are 2 races that are in consideration first one is in Louisiana on December 6th called the Cajun Coyote and the 2nd one is just outside of Sacramento November 8th called the Rio Del Lago.

The Cajun Coyote sounds like a cool race to do and Louisana would be a great place to go visit. This race is a 20 mile loop and you have to complete 5 laps and the elevation profile is pretty calm. The Rio Del Lago is on trails in the Sierra Nevada Foothills which offers some amazing scenery but also includes more elevation. Either way we will have to start training again soon. Follow us on our journey to our 100 mile run. Next training run is the High Rim trail from Vernon to Kelowna BC – 50km point to point.

Here’s a video of the Rio Del Lago race.
Fast Tube by Casper

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Posted 4 months, 3 weeks ago at 4:13 pm.

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Road to 100 miler or not? – Part 1

Sun Mountain 5o mile (80km) race – May 18th, 2014

Sun Mountain has always been a place we wanted to explore for many years and now was a great opportunity to go for a long run…… Training for this run was tough with nagging injures for January and February and then it seemed like the snow would never melt finally in March we were able to nail down a training program. It was not as long as recommended

but Grace says “I’d rather go into a race undertrained than injured the mental game will have to do the rest” The orignal training program was 18 weeks long that was supposed to start Jan 13th, well March 10th the training started to come together and went strong for about 8 weeks. The longest run completed was 34km which didn’t really seem long enough to finish a 80km race but it’s what we had time for without ramping up our milege to quickly and seeing more injuries. It would have been great to get 40-45km completed before the race.

This was our first 50 mile race although we did complete the Canadian Death Race last year at 125km it seemed like that was a long time ago. These are all stepping stones to see what’s next. A 100 mile race was something on the agenda for 2014 but we will see what happens.

The Sun Mountain race was great although a hot day which was unexpected and not really planned for… Phil and Grace made the same hydration mistake  - at the 3rd aid station where our crew was waiting for us neither of us took 2 handhelds not realizing until we ran out of water at 37km and the next aid station was at 42km. That 5km was tough on a hot day with an empty bottle. Reaching the aid station and drinking as much as possible it was a good choice this time to take 2 handhelds and add some more salt pills to the elood we were taking in. Grace was suffering with shin pain and quads cramping and Phil was feeling the dehydration. The next part of the run offered a little more shade and some downhill running which was super appreciated! Phil was about 25 minutes ahead of Grace. Along the course Grace was thinking why can’t we just run shorter distances and not take on these crazy painful races?

Reaching Homesteader aid station at about 52km into the race hydration was key and getting some food of any form into us was super important. It was about 6.5hrs into the run and it was still a bright shiny day. The watches we used only have about 8 hours of life it was time to switch out the watch and start all over again. After climbing up to the top of Sun Mountain sickness set it nausea for Phil and cramping for Grace but we knew we just had to make ourselves run because if you run then you get to the finish that much sooner :)

Coming upon the last aid station it wasn’t where we had expected it but it was still a blessing that it was a few kilometres closer. It was great to hydrate and overcome the nausea and get going to the finish. Our crew hiked in all of our stuff a ways to make sure had everything we might need. The last stretch to the finish – UGG! one more climb to go!! The Patterson

Climb which is an out and back where Phil and Grace finally met up on the trail Phil was headed down and Grace still climbing. It was pure beauty on top of the mountain overlooking Patterson Lake. Coming down off the mountain running along the road it was great as people were leaving the race they all cheered and waved as they past. Hearing the finish line nearby was so exciting we just had to push it to the end. Phil finished at 10:25:20 and Grace close behind at 10:34:13. Phil’s goal is to not let Grace catch him and Grace’s goal is to catch Phil not sure what will happen if Grace ever catches???

“50 miler done! 100 miler is off the table” – Grace says to Gary Robbins as he mentions the next training plan.

Our crew of Deanna Stout, Lindsey Austin and Jesse Winkiewicz really saved the day for us seeing them at all the aid stations helped us out HUGE!!

The day before on the Saturday May 17th Deanna Stout took on the 25km and she crushed it! We had the opportunity to crew for her on her first 25km trail run. She was cruising pretty good when we saw her at 8km and then at the aid station at 14km and again at 21km. She was always smiling and having fun even when she crossed the finish line. Deanna stuck to her training plan and finished strong at 2:36:58!

A solid performance by everyone and we hope to be back to Sun Mountain Soon!! Is the 100 miler going to happen if it does it will be in Nov or Dec of 2014 – Our goals for this summer is the run the High Rim Trail – Vernon to Kelowna 50km and to run the West Coast Trail – 80km in 1 Day!

Phil and Grace Hiom from Dirty Feet Trail Run Series in BC, Canada. Racers designing trail races! www.dirtyfeet.ca

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Posted 5 months, 1 week ago at 5:58 pm.

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The North Face Hyper-Track Guide

My newest shoe and the shoe I used for the first 1/2 of my first 40 mile ultra trail race. The North Face Hyper-Track Guide took me 2 runs to get used to, which is a long time for me, I usually love shoes right out the box. My first run in these shoes felt heavy and unresponsive however I took them for another spin 1 week later and fell in love. The shoes feel light and fast under my feet now. They are very responsive and have a large toe box allowing for your toes to have some space and movement over longer runs. I have used the shoes now for a couple of months as one of my 3 pairs of go to shoes. I have used them for long runs over 20km and shorter runs of 5km and like them for both, they have enough cushioning for the longer runs yet feel light and fast enough to blast out a 5km run. If you are looking for new shoes I would definitely give these guys a try they may just become your new favorite shoe!!

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Posted 1 year, 5 months ago at 9:33 am.

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Fun Ride In Bend, OR

Riding in Bend, Oregon!

Arriving into Bend it was a great day we checked out some running stores and many bike stores and then headed to Phil’s trail to rip it up. The trails were smooth rolling single track and some flying fast downhill. It was great. That night we found a campground and they had a yurt available which was awesome as it was pretty cold that night for camping. Next post will be about the 40 mile trail race and some great pics from the race!!

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Posted 1 year, 6 months ago at 4:59 pm.

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Trip to Oregon!

Trip to Oregon – a quest for 40 miles of trail running……

Heading to Oregon we met up with our friends Lindsey and Jesse from Kelowna and travelled down together. Crossing the border near Osoyoos was an interesting start stopping at a gas station on the other side of the border to eat some food and what do you think was beside our car? A hand gun…..yup just sitting there looking like it fell out of our car which it didn’t so what do we do?? Take some pictures and then we leave. Continuing our way to Bend the wind was unreal especially around Soap Lake…. It was insane. As we were following Lindsey and Jesse and all of a sudden the bikes on their roof rack float into the air. Oh My God there bike race has broken off!! Thankfully the bikes didn’t come off and the back half of the rack stayed in tack – Aaaaaak!! Quick thinking we put the bikes in our Element and our gear in their car and crisis averted. We camped in Yakima maybe they sell bike racks? It was a beautiful drive down to Bend with great weather – next post will be riding in Bend!

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Posted 1 year, 6 months ago at 8:09 pm.

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Runners Glove

My latest running glove and now my go to glove for most things. This glove is very simple in its design there is no velcro to get caught up on your other technical apparel. This glove is recommended as a 3 season glove, I would have to agree but the 3 seasons I think are different for the Okanagan area than for what everybody else is thinking. These gloves will be great for winter running as long as you have either warm hands or some handwarms snuck into the the back of the glove. The backs of the gloves are made out of  TNF™ Apex ClimateBlock soft shell fabric  to help protect your hands from the elements while you get the miles in. The mesh palm helps to cool off your hands allowing you to shed some of that extra heat you may be generating. I however find they will be too warm for summer running and personally have not found a reason for a summer glove as of yet.  I also really love the electronic friendly finger tips allowing you to easily use whatever gadget you may need to use mine is my is the Bevel on my Garmin Watch. If you are looking for a good running glove check out the Runners Glove from The North Face either online at www.thenorthface.com or at your local Wild Mountain Store.

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Posted 1 year, 8 months ago at 10:20 am.

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Run, Walk, Hobble whatever it takes

The last day of the West Highland Way in Scotland this will complete the 5 day run across the Scottish Highlands about  163kms. Well done to the team it was a great accomplishment. Day 5 we awoke to yet another sunny beautiful day and we said we would be stoked with one day of great weather but 5 … can’t believe it! Leaving Kinlochleven we had a steep climb offering great views of the loch and blue sky.. We met and passed a lot of other hikers today all excited to be completing the way today. Arriving at the end of the trail at Fort William was a bit anti-climatic with 5km of paved road to finish was mentally wearing. We reached the end and beat our luggage to the hotel, fancy that. The actual finish of the trail has been moved to downtown Fort William eventhough we passed a sign that said the end. After an awesome shower we walked downtown to check out the end of the WHW. The next day it was raining….another great adventure and scored 5 great days for running in the Highlands of Scotland.

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Posted 2 years ago at 1:29 pm.

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Day 4 Run some moor!!

Thinking it was going to be a long tough day from the elevation profile we headed out a little earlier then the past few days. Frost was on the ground and the mud was nicely frozen. Bagging our first 1000ft in 40 minutes cruising to the Rannoch Moor aka mountain pass with no shelter or trees. Heading towards the Kingshouse Hotel where are lunch stop would the trail was great nice path. The deer were super loud it sounded like they were screaming all thru the hills….we only saw a few. The sun was out on the blue sky day it was amazing couldn’t believe it was October in Scotland with nice weather!! Now onto the Devil’s Staircase after lunch climbing up some steeper pitches with a fun zig zag trail reaching the cairns at the top of the pass. Getting ready for the steep descent into Kinlochleven where we would spend the night. The last of the trail was more of a big rock gravel road and seemed like it took forever. Passing the hydro dam that used to power an Alcan plant that closed in 2000 – the redirected the town to be an outdoor mecca including an Ice Factor – indoor ice climbing! Looking forward to tomorrow a steep climb out and no towns for 24km until we reach Fort William.

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Posted 2 years ago at 12:25 am.

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Sheep Creeps and Waterfalls

As we left the haunted Drover’s Inn in the morning it was very cool…the sun was hidden behind the hills but soon it rose above and it warmed up the air to a beautiful fall day! The trail started out with a rocky road with lots of waterfalls along the way – Phil was in heaven but also means he needs to play catch up. Along the there were lots of sheep in the hills and one farm of cows. Trail footing was quite easier today with moderate climbs. We found lunch today in Tyndrum at 20km and it was the best fish in chips so far probably the best we will have in Scotland. The restaurant was called Real Food Café. Now on to Bridge of Orchy another 11km to go – we arrived at about 3pm which was quite early but gave us lots of time to recover and get ready for tomorrow. It feels like we are on the amazing race when we reach a town and read the directions to the hotel but no one is there to say you are the first team to arrive!! Looking forward to tomorrow’s awesome views up on Rannoch Moor (one of Britain’s largest wild places)…the first climb is 1000 ft, second climb is 900 ft descend 650ft  – steep climb to 1000 ft and finally a 1800 ft descent to Kinlochleven!

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Posted 2 years ago at 10:55 pm.

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The “Hard Way”

The day started off cold and clear on the south shores of Loch Lomond. The trail stayed low following closely by the shoreline with small but rocky and rooty sections of trail leading away from the Loch. As we continued along we passed the site of Ben Lomond one of the first Munros we have seen. We started up a gravel path away from civilization heading towards Inversnaid. Our plan was to head down onto the low path beside the loc to allow us to see Rob Roys Prison however the trail was closed due to blown down trees from many winter storms leaving the trail impassable until sometime in 2013. This left us on a hard packed trail then turning into more rooty, rocky trail similar to the West Coast Trail. Many ups and many downs made it a hard and wearing day reaching exhaustion and Inveraran around 5:30pm where we would stay the night. Legs are tired, days are longer than stated 2 days now at or over 35km….some chaffing and other issues are starting to arise – things you learn from day after day running. Looking forward to tomorrow as we hit day 3 of 5. Food menu’s are pretty limited either fish and chips, cheese burger & chips or ham and cheese toastie – looks like we will be fueled by fish and chips!

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Posted 2 years ago at 12:05 pm.

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