Cursed Realm of the Faceless Ghost

Beat Beethoven 5K

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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
Total Distance
Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 69.80Brooks Launch Miles: 130.10New Balance MT100 Miles: 18.10Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 28.80Road Bike Miles: 52.50Adidas Kanadia TR Miles: 14.10Barefoot Miles: 4.00
Weight: 161.25
Total Distance

AM: This cold I have seems to be a slow, mellow one. It's not intense enough to put me out of commission, but it does make things uncomfortable. I've moved from the sore throat to congestion, so I felt worse on my run this morning than I have for the last couple of days. Still, the legs seem to hold up well enough.

I miss running on the trails during the week. On the other hand, I do seem to be running my road runs a lot faster these days. I wonder if there's any connection. I just hope I don't slow down too much in the mountains.



PM: We're behind in a couple of classes, which means less homework, which means time to run this evening. I ran up to the top of the Y, but I wasn't feeling so hot. I was slow, and I even had to walk a small portion. I made it from the parking lot to the top in 16:07, almost 90 seconds slower than last time.

Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 8.50Brooks Launch Miles: 7.00
Weight: 160.80
Total Distance

AM: I finished studying earlier than usual last night and I thought I'd have a chance to catch up on my sleep. But I ended up needing two Sudafed and two Benadryl to get my nose to stop running, and that stuff makes me restless. I tossed and turned all night and woke up feeling pretty drained this morning. Four miles, nice and easy, no watch.


PM: Catherine and I wen t for a short, easy run together. As we were leaving our house, some girl came up to us and said, "Can I ask you guys a favor?" I asked her what and she said "Is either of you 21?" Ah, the joys of living next door to the state liquor store.

Brooks Launch Miles: 6.20
Weight: 159.00
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Total Distance

AM: I planned to run up the Y again, but I felt awful and retreated about halfway from the top. I'll blame this cold for now.


New Balance MT100 Miles: 5.50
Weight: 160.40
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Total Distance

I went out for a longish road run today. Maybe it was the heat, maybe it was my cold, or maybe it was both, but I just wasn't feeling it. My stomach was not up to the task, and a as a result I didn't eat or drink anything and I lost five pounds in less than two hours. Which is not to say I ran poorly--I just felt like crap and didn't go as far as I had hoped to.


Brooks Launch Miles: 15.00
Weight: 159.80
Total Distance

Jun and I ran up Timpanogos at about 3:00 this morning. I'm sure Jun will write plenty about the run, so I'm going to outsource the full report to him. I'll just say it mostly went well, other than a rough patch coming off the top when my frozen fingers caused a wave of nausea and I was sure I was going to puke. It's very, very cold and windy up there in the dark.

Best exchange of the day:

Some kid at the summit: "We're going to wait up here to watch the sunrise."

Jun: "Dude, that sucks."


Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 13.80
Weight: 163.80
Total Distance

AM: Two and from the Towne Centre, plus three laps around it. I ran the last two laps at an average pace of 6:03.



PM: I went to Gold's Gym with Catherine after school. One of the Transformers movies was playing in the Cardio Cinema, so Catherine only stayed for a mile before retreating to the normal treadmills. I didn't have any headphones, so I stayed and watched the movie. Lots of stuff blew up and there may or may not have been a plot. Awful, awful movie . . .

Anyways, my plan was to run 5 easy miles, but then I wanted to run faster so I bumped the pace up to 6:00/mile. I was going to run one at 6:00, one at 5:30 and one at 6:00, but it turns out the Cardio Cinema treadmills are old (the good stuff is in the main gym) and they don't go past 6:00. So, I ran a 5K at 6:00/mile and then cooled down for a bit.

After the gym Catherine and I took my sister to Zupas for dinner. I dropped the tray with our food and spilled soup all over the register, cuz that's how I roll. 

Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 5.20Brooks Launch Miles: 5.00
Weight: 161.60
Total Distance

I won't have time for a second run tonight, so I went out for a longer run this morning. Basically, it was the Slate Canyon loop, except I ran an extension that took me down into Springville for a total of 10.6 miles.


Brooks Launch Miles: 10.60
Weight: 162.00
Total Distance

AM: Nice and easy, 2.8 miles, no watch.

PM: Cardio Cinema with Catherine. The movie was better than last time, and it turns out that some of the treadmills do go faster than 6:00/mile. I was going to run five miles, but since I like whole numbers for the day I decided to stay on for 5.2. I picked the pace up for two of the miles, and the rest was pretty mellow. 

Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 2.80Brooks Launch Miles: 5.20
Weight: 162.00
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Total Distance

There's a lull in my workload, so I got an early start and ran Timpanogos again this morning. (Catherine and I might race tomorrow, and there's no better praparation for a road 5K than a long, slow run up a mountain the day before.) Other than a dropped glove that required a bit of backtracking, the run up was uneventful. There were very few people on the trail, and I ran all the way to the cirque. From there I started mixing some hiking with the running, and it was mostly a crawl from the saddle to the summit. It was bitterly cold at the summit, but there was no wind and I was wearing thick gloves so it was much more tolerable than on Monday. Plus, summit was dusted with snow and engulfed in fog, and I had it to myself. Very cool.

I stopped at the summit long enough to send a text to Catherine and then it was back to running. Descending to the saddle was much easier with the sun out, but I was still slow. I stopped after a couple of miles to check my fluid levels and tighten my shoes, but once I untied my shoes I had a lot of trouble relacing them with my forzen fingers. That annoyed me, but then I ran past about 7 goats right next to the trail, and that cheered me up.

Descending today was much nicer than on Monday, partly because I could see and partly because there were fewer people coming up, and most of them passed me without incident. Except for some idiot about two miles from the trailhead who was hauling his bawling baby in a Chariot jog stroller or bike trailer of some sort. I'm not sure what he was thinking, and I would have been screaming, too, if I were his kid.

1:45:47 up

1:02:39 down

2:48:27 total 

Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 14.00
Weight: 161.00
Race: Beat Beethoven 5K (3 Miles) 00:16:26, Place overall: 1
Total Distance

Not my favorite race.

Catherine and I decided to run a 5K today because my PR is just a little outdated. We had to choose between Spanish Fork and the Beat Beethoven 5K in Pleasant Grove. In the morning we decided on Spanish Fork, which was a little cheaper and a little closer and had a little prize money on the line. But at the last second I changed my mind and we went to Pleasant Grove (small races can be fun; plus it was a library benefit, and Catherine and I like libraries). Bad decision.

The course wasn't marked at all and there was no traffic control, and I and the guy I was racing at the front missed a key turn (it turns out we were supposed to run through the red light and across the busy street with no traffic control--go figure). As a result, we ended up running 3.03 miles, according to my Garmin (everyone else ran the full 5K). Which means I don't get a new 5K PR. And that's especially annoying, because given my pace I would have met my goal of sub-17, especially if we hadn't had to slow down and look both ways before running through traffic, but now I have to run another 5K sometime.

At first I wanted my money back, because the way I saw it I paid for a 5K and the race directors didn't deliver. I mean, I think the most basic requirement for a race is that the course be marked. In the end, I just asked them not to post my name and time in the results, because I didn't want anyone to think I ran a 16:26 5K when I didn't. They said they wouldn't, but they went ahead and posted my name and time anyways.

On the plus side, I'm happy with how I ran. I felt pretty bad before the race (my legs were heavy and slow from the day before), so the fact that I was able to run as fast as I did makes me think I may have a 16:30 in me--maybe not now, but soon. Or maybe not.

Also, Catherine set a new PR for herself, so the morning wasn't a waste.

In the afternoon I went riding with the law school cycling club. In the evening I went with Catherine to run at the gym, but after two very easy miles I was cooked, so that was it.

Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 4.20Brooks Launch Miles: 2.00Road Bike Miles: 52.50
Weight: 160.60
Total Distance

AM: I ran to the Provo High track to do some loosely structured speedwork. Basically, my plan was to run eight 400s at a fast but relaxed pace. The first lane was full of water, so I ran in the third, which means each repeat was a little longer than 400, though I'm not sure how much. Somehow I ran only seven, which makes me wonder if I miscounted or if I accidentally stopped my watch instead of starting a new lap at some point. The former seems more likely, although I'm puzzled, because I was sure I ran eight--six strong, plus two much slower.

77, 78, 76, 76, 75, 75, 81



Brooks Launch Miles: 6.70
Weight: 161.00
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Total Distance

AM: I just noticed that the sample course name in the instructions on this page is the Slate Canyon Loop, which is what I call the route I run most mornings. Weird.

Anyways, I ran the Slate Canyon Loop this morning. I was on the road by 5:00, and it was nice out, but I was feeling a little more tired and sluggish than usual. I just took it easy and finished the run without any problems.

Jun mentioned a Slate Canyon trail at the Kat'cina Mosa, so I should clarify that my Slate Canyon is not nearly as cool. It's just a road that loops past the juvenile court and gains 200 feet or so in about two miles.



PM: Cardio Cinema with Catherine. This time, Mission Impossible 3 was playing. It turns out it's pretty interesting. We showed up after it started and left before it finished, so I guess we'll have to add it to our Netflix queue.

Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 6.30Brooks Launch Miles: 6.50
Weight: 160.00
Total Distance

AM: I was feeling a little tired this morning, but things got better as the run progressed. I ran an improvised loop and wound up with 6.5 miles.



PM: An easy 4.5 miles at the Cardio Cinema with Catherine. Big Fish was on tonight. It's a good movie, but not really the kind you want to be watching on a treadmill.


Brooks Launch Miles: 11.00
Weight: 160.00
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Total Distance

AM: Up late studying and up early to run means I got about four hours of sleep last night. And now I'm sleepy. I was going to run down to the Towne Centre for a few laps around the mall, but there was a train at the crossing so I headed out past the cemetery then up past Seven Peaks and Kiwanis Park before swinging through campus on my way home. 5.8 miles.


PM: An extra 5.5 easy miles at the Cardio Cinema. Princess Bride was playing tonight. Funny movie.

Brooks Launch Miles: 11.30
Weight: 160.80
Total Distance

I was going to take it easy today, and I ended up with no time for a run. Catherine and I did hike up Rock Canyon with my siblings and our dogs, though. We went as far as the third bridge, then we turned around and went to J Dawgs for dinner. Good times.

Weight: 161.00
Total Distance

All summer I wanted to run up Timp, but never got a chance. I finally made it last week, and now I can't seem to stop. This morning I ran it with Jared, also known as the SLC Samurai, and the Dorais brothers, Andy and Jason. Both of the Dorais brothers are real runners and ran the 800 at BYU. It also turns out that Andy is one of the two runners I ran into on King's Peak last month. Jared is an LDS guy with a family. He's also Asian, as his alias suggests. I'll let you decide how relevant any of this is later on.

We arrived at the trailhead a little before six, and the place was packed. So packed that we couldn't find a place to park. We drove around for a while looking for a spot before we finally just got creative and invented one.

(Right as we ran past the shack at the start of the trail I saw a green light coming down the trail toward me. "Crockett?" I said. "Crockett," he said. And that's the end of that little story. I hope you found it as interesting as I did.)

Anyways, our little group split up pretty quickly, with Jason and I at the front and Andy and Jared somewhere else. There were plenty of people on the trail, but not nearly as many as I would have expected based on the number of cars in the parking lot. That is, until the saddle, where we ran past what looked like at least 50 people milling around.

Jason and I kept the pace conversational, but we were pretty quick, running the whole way until one or two switchbacks above the cirque, and running a lot of the way after that. Jared, who had been tailgunning the whole way, surprised us by showing up a minute or two later. Somehow he had managed to cut nearly three-quarters of a mile off the trail between the cirque and the summit. As a friend of ours once observed, "If you think like the Samurai, the 'trail' is simply the route between where you are and where you want to go."

We hung around at the summit for a few minutes to regroup, and then we started the descent. The guys I was running with are backcountry skiers, which must explain why they're so good at running technical terrain. We absolutely bombed the descent (at least, according to my perception), and I think we covered the sketchy half mile between the summit and the saddle at least three minutes faster than I've ever done it. No near-death experiences for me, fortunately, although Andy missed a step just below the saddle and almost took a tumble down a talus field.

As the descent continued, we settled back into the same groups we had on the way up. Except Jared was the last out, because he took a "shortcut" that turned out to be a wrong cut and wound up somewhere other than where he wanted to be. That's why he's a samurai and not a ninja.

And now for the Exchange of the Day:

White Guy in Flat Brim Hat: "Ni hao."

Jared: "F*%k you."

1:39:39 up

56:52 down

2:36:31 round trip (not including the time we stopped at the summit)

2:46:36 elapsed time



Adidas Kanadia TR Miles: 14.10
Weight: 0.00
Total Distance

AM: I'm sticking with the early run plan, even though most days I'd rather stay in bed. I feel like I can squeeze so much more into a day when my run is over by 6:00. Today I ran up Y Mountain for the first time in a couple of weeks. My legs were a little heavy as I started, but they had warmed up nicely by the time I reached the trailhead. Still, I was pretty slow up to the Y today--15:52, and that doesn't include the time I stopped the clock for an unscheduled nature break about halfway up. That's about a minute slower than my fastest time, and my fastest time didn't feel particularly fast. I guess I'd better do this more so my legs don't forget how to go up mountains.

The descent was painfully slow. It was still well before sunrise, so all I had to light the way was a little headlamp. The problem is that there are little irrigation gutters cut across the trail at irregular intervals all the way down, and the headlamp allows for very little depth perception, so the gutters are almost impossible to see. I picked my way down in 10:08, but it only takes a little more than seven minutes in the daylight.

By the time I hit the bottom I was afraid I wouldn't be home in time to see Catherine off, so I decided to finish with a tempo run. I averaged a 6:05 pace and finished the last 3.15 miles in 19:12, arriving home just in time to drive Catherine to the bus stop. Of course, the bus driver decided he wasn't actually going to stop at the stop, so I got to chase him down and make sure Catherine got on at the next stop. Very exciting.



PM: Four more easy miles at the Cardio Cinema. 2012 was on tonight. I didn't pay much much attention, and I don't think I missed much, either.


Brooks Launch Miles: 12.40
Weight: 162.80
Total Distance

AM: I ran an easy three laps around the Towne Centre, 5.2 miles total.



PM: Another five miles at the gym. Catherine and I timed our workout to coincide with the series premier of Running Wilde. It's not that it wasn't funny, but it's no Arrested Development. I don't think I'll watch the next episode. Of course that's what I said about Community last year. Speaking of which, guess what's on on Thursday . . .

Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 5.00Brooks Launch Miles: 5.20
Weight: 161.60
Total Distance

I ran up Y Mountain again, slower than last time (17:05). There was a walk break in there, too. I think a little rest today and tomorrow will do me good.

It's easy to feel slow and out of shape on Y Mountain. I have to keep reminding myself how steep it is.


Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 8.40
Weight: 162.40
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Total Distance

AM: Went for an easy 3 mile run to help me wake up. My Launches are now past 500 miles.



PM: Five easy miles at the gym. We misread the schedule and missed the Community season premier, but at least we caught The Office.

Brooks Launch Miles: 8.00
Weight: 161.80
Total Distance

While looking for good trail runs closer to home, I came across this route and decided to try it as a loop from our apartment. It was a beautiful run, especially once I got past the Y and into Slide Canyon (if you're anything like me, you had no idea it had a name). The singletrack winds up and down through the trees in the Canyon, and with the leaves changing color it's really something to see. The trail tops out in a meadow near the top of the mountain and then descends down mostly rock-strewn doubletrack through Slate Canyon. It's good to know there's such a nice trail near our house. Even better, tt seems like there are several more trails back there. Of course, my busy schedule and the fact that the weather is about to change means I won't have much time to explore this year.

Unfortunately, I didn't feel great today. My lungs felt shallow, and by the time I reached the Y I had a pounding headache. Naturally, there was a lot more hiking and a lot less running than I would have liked. I think I likely felt as I did because I'm a little behind on my sleep and my eating, but after reviewing my GPS report it's possible that I felt bad because the trail is actually a lot steeper than it looked when I was on it.


New Balance MT100 Miles: 12.60
Weight: 0.00
Total Distance

I wound up with a longer run than expected this morning.

After yesterday's run, I was feeling good about the possibilities around here. I almost went out to run the same course this morning, but I decided I owed it to myself to explore some new routes. I had just about decided to run from South Fork to Windy Ridge, but then I decided to try a point to point from Vivian Park to Provo. Catherine dropped me off at the park, and my plan was to follow the Squaw 50 course to Rock Canyon Campground, from where I'd descend to the mouth of Rock Canyon and then follow the roads to Gold's Gym, hopefully just in time to meet Catherine as she finished her run. Based on the Squaw 50 course description, I was planning on 11-12 miles tops (although in retrospect, my calculations may have been wrong from the start).

Naturally, I got lost, and I got lost soon. I'm not sure where I went wrong, but it must have been somewhere between miles 2 and 3. From the BST I was supposed to begin climbing a series of trails that would criss-cross the Squaw Peak road and pass through Hope Campground on the way to the Squaw Peak summit. Instead, I ran the BST all the way around the front of the mountain before running up the downhill MTB runs to the lookout and then following the dirt road to Rock Canyon Campground. I ended up reaching Hope somewhere between 7.5 and 8 miles (instead of 5.5 on course) and Rock Canyon at a little over 13 (instead of 10.8 on course). Plus, I missed a lot of singletrack, because once I was off course I didn't want to risk getting lost.

By the time I reached the mouth of Rock Canyon, I was pretty beat. Fortunately, my sister's house was less than a mile away (and almost entirely downhill), so I went there and called Catherine for a bailout. She picked me up and we went to J Dawgs. Sweet.

My Garmin ended up with 17.4 miles in 2:27:32. I accidentally stopped my Garmin for a bit when I first picked up the BST, but I don't think I missed any more than half a mile, if even that.

It's amazing how big and beautiful the mountains behind Provo are, and I plan to spend more time back there. I'd like to get to know the entire Squaw 50 course, but after today I think I may need to find someone who's run it before to guide me.

Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 17.40
Weight: 0.00
Total Distance

I ran up to Slate Canyon, then took the BST over to the Y trailhead. From there I ran down past the law library on my way through campus and back home. My legs are still a little tired from Friday and Saturday, but the weather was nice and it was good to be out. Plus, there were lots of falling stars today.


Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 7.70
Weight: 160.80
Total Distance

Another run on the BST, which isn't nearly as interesting down here as it is up in the Avenues. This morning I ran up past the stadium and the temple to Rock Canyon, and from there I took the trail down to Slate Canyon. I forgot to bring a headlamp, so I was running by braille on the trail. It was probably a good thing, because it forced me to keep the pace relaxed.


PM: Four easy miles at Cardio Cinema. I think the movie tonight was called The Rundown. Some sort of martial-arty adventure in which the rock runs around the Brazilian jungle looking for el Gato do Diabo, which I believe is Portuguese for el Gato del Diablo.

Brooks Launch Miles: 14.00
Weight: 162.60
Total Distance

AM: Catherine woke up early and we went to the gym together. The movie at Cardio Cinema was Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium. Seriously? I mean, there's nothing wrong with family movies, but they're not exactly the best choice for treadmill viewing, so I watched TV instead. I ended up watching Angel (which I believe is a Buffy spinoff, but never having seen either I can't say for sure). It was good enough, but it was puzzling at first because I assumed I was watching Law and Order and all the talk of supernatural blind assassins and ancient prophecies and such confused me.

As for the run--three 1-mile repeats, kicking up the pace for the last half, plus a 75-second quarter mile at the end. Although miles and hills are probably enough for me right now, some sort of speedwork every couple of weeks isn't a bad idea. I guess today was the day.

Mile 1: 5:52-5:42

Mile 2: 5:42-5:30

Mile 3: 5:42-5:27

Recovery was a little slower than 9:00 per mile. The 0.3 on the end is because I like whole numbers for my weekly mileage totals.



PM: Last Friday was the first time in a long time that I wore my NB 100s, and the rocky descent nearly killed my feet. Back in may, it took about 25 miles for the rocks to start causing problems. Two things I did differently back then: 1) I actually wore the 100s a couple of times per week, and 2) I a couple of short barefoot runs on the grass each week. I don't do much of either anymore.

Because I like wearing my light shoes, especially in races, I decided should still be doing both. So this afternoon I got out and ran four miles barefoot around a soccer field. It felt nice.


Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 5.30Barefoot Miles: 4.00
Weight: 0.00
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Total Distance

Taking it easy today--four miles on the treadmill, followed by a soak in the hot tub.


Brooks Launch Miles: 4.00
Weight: 161.60
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Total Distance
Brooks Cascadia 4 Miles: 69.80Brooks Launch Miles: 130.10New Balance MT100 Miles: 18.10Nike Lunarlite Racer Miles: 28.80Road Bike Miles: 52.50Adidas Kanadia TR Miles: 14.10Barefoot Miles: 4.00
Weight: 161.25
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