Cursed Realm of the Faceless Ghost

Fubfalo Run 50K

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Member Since:

Apr 07, 2010



Goal Type:


Running Accomplishments:

5K - 17:11 (Cougar Run)

10K - 34:35 (Deseret News)

15K - 57:33 (Utah Running Club)

1/2 - 1:22:26 (Mountain View Trail)

50K - 4:22:31 (Sapper Joe)

Short-Term Running Goals:

Sub-2:45 at Saint George Marathon

Win the Antelope Island half marathon

Long-Term Running Goals:

I'd like to run the Angeles Crest 100 at some point. And I'd still like to go sub-4 at a trail 50k. Other than that, I'm open to suggestions.


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I was a competitive cyclist for years. In 2009, after racing in the Tour of Utah, I decided I had plateaued as a cyclist--I could continue to improve, but I wouldn't break through to a new level. So, I started looking for a new challenge.

I thought that challenge would be mountain biking, but I'm a terrible bike handler. I married Catherine in January 2010 and a couple of weeks later I entered the SLTC Winter Training Series with her. A couple of weeks after that I decided I'd like to run ultras, so I signed up for a couple of 50Ks to get started.

Those first races came and went, with varying results. I was looking forward to running more and possibly pushing into the longer distances, but I injured my knee in June 2010 and I've never been consistently healthy since.

I started law school in August 2010, which meant less time for training. In June 2011, Baby Elliott was born, which meant even less time for training. But she's worth it. 

Baby Nora joined us in October 2013, with the same effect on training as Elliott (who, incidentally, is no longer a baby). 

I (finally) finished school in April 2014 and now I'm an evil corporate lawyer in Salt Lake. I have no illusions that I'll ever get back into the shape that I once was, but I'm perfectly at peace with that. I still have many goals to accomplish and many years in which to do it. 

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 0.00
Race: Fubfalo Run 50K (32 Miles) 04:45:12, Place overall: 11, Place in age division: 4
Total Distance

Note to self--faking it for 50K is no fun at all.

Here's an important principle: you can't get any more out of a taper than you put into the training preceding it. So although my legs felt pretty great this morning after a week of taking it easy (or easier than usual), I knew that I was in for a long, rough day. But to keep a positive outlook, things did go much better than I probably had a right to expect.

Going into the race, I knew that the goals I had set last year--sub 4:00 being chief among them--were completely out the window. When I set them I didn't know I would be in law school and I didn't know I would spend so much time dealing with knee injuries (I did have an idea that a baby would be on the way). So, I went into the race with a much more modest set of goals: 1) finish, 2) sub 5:00, 3) beat last years time (4:32:37). And really, two out of three isn't bad.

Catherine had volunteered to help out at the race, so we made it to the island at 7:00. While Catherine tried to find out what they needed her to do (not much, as it turned out), I went to sign in and pin my number on. We ran into Lily at the start tent, since she was also volunteering. I hate to think how early she must have had to get up to get there from Spanish Fark.

When the race started, I got busy ignoring everyone around me. I knew that my only way to survive out there was to completely ignore the other runners and focus on running my own race with out getting drawn into any sort of competition. (I mean, it's not like we're racing out there, right?) As I said I would do yesterday, I had loaded my ipod with law school material, so as everyone else chatted and settled into their pace, I was busy reviewing the differences between civil law and criminal law. I soon found myself in no man's land, just behind a rapidly disappearing group of about six very fast runners and out ahead of just about everyone else besides two guys who would end up yo-yoing with me for most of the first lap.

The first lap went surprisingly well. I kept the effort steady, running all the hills with no problem at all, and I was back at the start in just under two hours, faster than I was last year. Unfortunately, I also knew that the second lap was going to be a completely different animal. I think my longest run of the year before today was about 16 miles, so every step after the turnaround took me deeper into uncharted waters. I held together on the first climb, passing a runner who had caught up to me at the turnaround and left while I was eating, talking to Catherine, and stalling in general, but after a couple of miles my legs were trashed. And by trashed I mean destroyed.

I walked the hill into the aid station, and I as I was hobbling down the hill away from it the runner I had passed passed me, and so began the rest of my race. Hobbling down hills, walking up them, and shuffling across the flats. A runner with a serious Geoff Roes lookalike thing caught me at the top of Elephant Head (I think he was Bryon Powell, the irunfar guy), and as I was hobbling down a hill after my second pass through the aid station, I got chicked by a woman who was absolutely bombing the thing. (I'm pretty sure she would have beat me last year, too.) By my count, that made me the tenth place 50K runner.

The rest of the run was a death march. I walked a bit, but I was able to keep running most of the time, which was an improvement over last year (when, although I blew up later, I blew up harder). By the time I had gotten to the last mile and a half, I had had enough of Professor Dressler's crim law lectures, so when he finished with unintentional manslaughter and moved on to forcible rape I yanked the ear buds out and called it quits. At least the rest of the run was educational.

As I descended that stupid, miserable last hill to the finish line, I just focused on getting to the end so I could sit down and temporarily retire from running forever (you know, until I forget all the pain a few days later). But as I came into the final half mile or so, I looked back and saw another 50K runner less than 10 feet behind me. Seriously? I mean, seriously, we have to race now? After nearly 32 miles and a pretty thorough butt-kicking, I had no desire to put forth any kind of effort. But I also knew that if I let him pass me I wouldn't be able to salvage the day by saying I had finished in the top 10 (although I still need to confirm that on the official results). So I decided to at least make him work for it. I hit the afterburners, he didn't respond (I don't think he even knew I was a 50K runner), and I sailed across the line at about 6:00 per mile. It makes me think that maybe I wasn't as physically trashed as I had thought, and that maybe my problem was largely mental. Lesson learned.

(Here I am. And there he is in the white shirt.)

Anyways, based on last year's run at Sapper Joe, I know I'm capable of running this course much faster, but I haven't put in the miles. With that in mind, though, I think I acquitted myself nicely. I only hope my knee can forgive me.

Update: The unofficial results are on the website. It looks like I was actually 11th overall and 4th in my age group (and there were some very fast people in my age group). Also, it looks like they think I'm 25. Also also, the chick who chicked me was North Face runner Nikki Kimball (

Adidas Adizero XT Miles: 32.00
Weight: 167.00
From jun on Sat, Mar 26, 2011 at 20:55:14 from

I think you did quite well, all things considered. Way to stick it out. I know just how you feel. Like, exactly.

From Dragonvulture on Sat, Mar 26, 2011 at 21:48:24 from

I figured you would be out there around my time, but since we only meet the once, wasn't sure I would recognize you. I heard people say your name a couple of times, but wasn't sure who they were referring to or if it was you. But thanks to the pic, I'm like, yep, saw him a bunch. The guy behind you, I was with him with like 1.5 to go when the side ache started, and just had a hard time pushing through it. Great race, in particular with the kind of miles you have been putting in. Stupid injuries.

From Jon on Sat, Mar 26, 2011 at 22:30:12 from

Sounds like you used your race time well, though you're lucky the lectures didn't put you to sleep! I enjoyed your write up. And like you said- 2 of 3 ain't bad. Congrats.

From Scott Wesemann on Sat, Mar 26, 2011 at 22:38:25 from

Wow, that is a fantastic time considering all of your knee issues this ear. I knew you would still be fast and that is probably why I never saw you out there. Congrats on a great race.

From JulieC on Sat, Mar 26, 2011 at 23:28:52 from

yes amazing time and I agree the second lap was death march....Where did all the first lap energy go? Way to go!!

From Kelli on Sun, Mar 27, 2011 at 15:42:50 from

AMAZING race, for real. After reading that, and feeling every bit of your pain for you, that is an incredible time. I am most impressed with your listening material, seriously would have put me to sleep or driven me bonkers!

From Oreo on Sun, Mar 27, 2011 at 16:22:38 from

Great race! That's a smokin time. That 2nd loop is insane..

From crockett on Sun, Mar 27, 2011 at 18:05:17 from

I don't know how you guys can run that fast for so long. My speed was gone when I hit the switch backs for the first time.

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