Monday, July 28, 2014

G.I. Joe Summer Pier 2 Pier Run. Can this Beach Hobo win it again?

Twice a year there is a race between the Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach piers on the sand. For some dumb reason I have only run it once.
Going into last years event I had the course record. Hell they even put me on the flyer.  Beat the best time get $100.  I guess some kid smoked my time by about a minute running at about a 16 min 5km pace for 3.5 miles through  a bunch of soft sand.  Pretty unbelievable and pretty awesome if the time is legit?
It was  a nice morning I got a primo parking spot and was ready to go at about 6:30 a.m.
(race started at 7:30)
Can this Beach hobo do it again?

Nobody has run more miles between these piers than me! But I train like desert tortoise.  My calf was jacked up from a hill climb race two weeks before at Western States and I had a broken toe at the Hermosa Beach Ironman running around in the mosh pit.

Out of the 12 races I have ever ran on the beach that only involved running I have won 9 of them.
(all barefoot)
 The entry was $45 kind of steep just to run between the piers.  The website said they were giving out "Village Runner" gift certificates to 1st and 2nd finishers (My favorite running store that I am too poor to shop at)

 I actually called the Village runner to see the value of the prize.
(what an Arrogant Bastard)
I couldn't afford to lose I needed to win if this race were to be a sound investment
Nothing like a little Zumba to get loosened up.  I was too cool to participate. Instead I watched and giggled.
Time to Race.

The race starts at the Hermosa pier. I planned on going out as fast as could.  Hopefully I would be in 1st place when I made the turn around at the M.B. pier where I could gauge my lead.  I didn't think I could break the course record and din't even wear a watch, hoping to let my body dictate my speed rather than the clock.

As planned I took the lead early going out at around a 5min mile pace. About 1 mile into my run my left calf totally seized up. "Ouch" I wanted to quit but I only had 2.5 miles to go.  I slowed down a bit knowing there was now no chance of a course record.
From now on I shall loosen up with some Zumba before every race!

I found a pace that was slower but still fast that I could maintain without a tremendous amount of pain.
Running with a tailwind I got to the Manhattan Beach pier still in the lead but only by about 100 yards in front of some yoked out coast guard dude

Time to run back into a stiff head win.   If I could maintain the same speed I was figured I would win.   When I passed Longfellow Ave  site of the Hermosa Beach Ironman, I was running with a bit of trepidation because I did somthing I never do?
I looked over my shoulder, DUN DUN DUH!
My lead had grown "Phew"
As I ran I noticed a bunch of shovels abandoned from the day before which I would pick up later.  I relaxed my pace and coasted in in first place with a red plastic rake in hand about a minute in front of the next finisher.
First place chick.
After finishing I went for a little jog cheering on the other runners as collected those shovels I was talking about.
Posing with race director G.I Joe he's good dude and an even better dancer.  You should see him do the twist.
(notice the calf sleeve I put on post race, I wore it the rest of the day.)
The race had a ton of sponsors, at the post race brunch which once again I couldn't afford to eat at (not vegan friendly anyways) they were having a raffle.  Last time I won a $100+ Boogie Board.
Time to see if I could turn a profit on the event?

Lets start a tally:

The joy of winning Hmm
Value: $5
In the raffle I won a pair of girly shoes that cost $40 retail.  Later that day I gave them to my sister Value: $15 
As they were packing things up they had a bunch of left over samples of deodorant, sunscreen and body wash. I got about 50 random bottles.  I don't wear deodorant (gave samples to nephews) I spend about $3 a year on shampoo and body wash and I only wear sunscreen when I run naked  (usually at the Bare Burro)
Value: $5
30 packs of trail mix and stuff.  If I were at the $.99 I would purchase these at 3 for $1
Value: $10
As the winner I won a cool dog tag and I got race shirt that I don't need but it's a nice shirt.
Value: $5
1st place $50 gift certificate.  
 Value: $25
Investment: Entry Fee $45 
Return: $65
Profit: $25

Revenue from advertising on this Blog post
Probably in the Gazillions of $$$

Thank you G. I. Joe Charles and all the volunteers for putting on a fun event.  

Bonus post race Pics
 with Juvenile humor
 After the race I limped around a bit till I found this volleyball tournament to spectate.
(I am totally in the wrong sport)
 Dicks?  Looks more like butt's to me
Ha Ha!

 The End

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

2014 Hermosa Beach Ironman, Run a mile, Paddle a mile, Chug a six pack

Time to strap on you stars and stripes bikini, blow off you hand with an m-80, drink a six pack of beer and puke on your friends.
Time to celebrate our independence!
Time for the
Hermosa Beach Ironman

In the early 1990s, owners of the Ironman trade name attempted to serve a cease and desist letter to organizers of the Hermosa Beach 4th of July Ironman. They failed because they couldn’t find the organizers.- Easy Reader
40th Anniversary 
Run a Mile Paddle a Mile Drink a six pack.
(way easier than a Beer Half marathon right?)

I have a good history with this event but never an official 1st place finish.
Each year the field gets bigger but even without a tattoo that says "South Bay" I remain a serious threat to win.
Each passing year that means I've had one more day of training paddling on my surf turd (an 8 foot water logged brown foam surfboard I found on the side of my dads house a decade ago)  I now been been on a surfboard exactly 6 times in 6 years always n July 4th
My opinion about training for this event has not wavered.
"If you have to train you don't deserve to win."
(I'm pretty freaking stubborn)
The event is held at Longfellow avenue   Between 200-300 a year I start my run here it's also where I swim in the ocean to cool off. You would think this give me a home field advantage
I still feel like Bruce Banner  
drifting along
-Que in sad lonely music-
How depressing
(shamelessly trying to score sympathy points)
 Before the race I found this shovel and gave it to some kid.
(Shamelessly trying to score Karma points)

Time to go find my judge.
The event was supposed to start in less than 10 minutes at 8:00 a.m.  There were over 500 competitors.  Each judge was responsible for 10 or so runners and were instructed to hold a balloon with their number on it.
I wasn't sure if I was I was in the elite group or not.  My friend Annie Seawright  the perennial favorite in the woman's division.  Had signed me up. I knew I was in her group I couldn't find my judge but I found Annie. It turns out I was in the elite group after all.

Our Judge was Annie's friend and with about 2 minutes till the Star Spangled Banner was sung we found her. "Phew"
She wasn't holding her balloon up because she said she didn't have to.  How stupid is that? If I hadn't found Annie I would have been screwed!
As the National Anthem began we the crowd began to congregate near the water.
"Home of the Brave!"
 We were off at quite a fast pace.  It's only a mile run there's a bunch of testosterone going around and we were doing about a 5min mile for the first few 100 yards.
If your trying to win the event it's good to stay near the front but being first in the run actually hurts your chances more than in helps.  If you read my post from last year  one of the keys to winning is strategic shortcuts. You want to place your surfboard as far North as possible so that you don't have to paddle or run as far.

If your the first one back people are gonna see and then try to enter the water farther North.  There Is an art to cheating in this event.

Out of the 500 or so competitors I was about the 15th to get to my surfturd.  I took a good angle down to the water and started paddling North in fairly shallow water with only about 5 or so people  in front of me.

 God's gift to paddling I am not!  I was trying harder than most and was making decent progress but was out of my league against dudes that do this everyday for fun.

I kept my eyes out for past winners I was happy with my effort but by the halfway point I was past by all three that beat me last year. This meant they would probably have a a 2 to 3 minute lead by the time I got to my beers
Natural Light my favorite, Yeah Right!
Time to Chug
You would rather look at this than me anyway.
By the time I got to my beers the leader was finishing his sixth beer.  I had a goal of sub three minutes. I knew I had lost again.  My beers went down easier than ever without trying I finished my six pack in two 2:43 
(fastest time in my group)
But that was only good enough for 4th place.

My finishing time was 20 minutes flat.  It was a fast year and I was proud of my efforts.  A few years a ago 22 minutes could win this event but not anymore.
(Most people finish between 30 and 40 minutes.)
About a minute after i finished my sixth beer I grabbed my camera and a 7th beer
I didn't care that I lost.  I had six pack in my belly.
time to have some fun
She did great in the doggie paddle but was Disqualified after puking.
Speaking of puking.
Is was pretty tame year

Winner of the woman's race was?
Maybe next year?
Maybe in the first Ironman 40 years ago?
Congrats to Annie Seawright Again on her 12th win!
I heard she won her won her first one when she was 8 years old?

Time for a mosh pit

 No lines at the bathroom.

Each year the event is held a little earlier and the Police try to hurry things up. It's actually pretty cool that they have let this event exist for 40 YEARS!  While I was dicking around  in the water they hurriedly crowned the winner.
(I didn't really care who won!)
I was informed by multiple time champion Chris Brown. That for the first time iin the last decade at least they gave the outright win to someone not from elite Group.
In years past I have whined because this was not allowed.
The Easy Reader reports that the winner (a Competitive paddler and swimmer) took 4:37 to drink his beers and finished in a Ironman world record setting
  3:39 faster than second place and almost 6 minutes faster than last years winning time.
That leaves 10 mins and 1 second to run a mile and paddle a mile.
Sounds a little bit suspect to me
But it's about time the elite group got screwed over for once.
Time for some Pennywise
Happy 4th of July
By 10 A.M. the event was over the cans were cleaned up and I had drank over 8 beers. While some went off to go party, some back to sleep, and some to puke.

I took off on a 10 mile soft sand run because that's what I do.
 then I partied .

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

2014 Born to Run Shenaniganza!

Born to Run, Live to Party
A bunch of Mas Loco's  from all over the world congregate at my house for some Stone ale and Guacamole

Under a scorching sun with babes cheering him on.
and wins this sweet buckle
At 10 A.M. Weirdo's started running around with Bows and Arrows
"Count Me In"
I missed every target and had to run the maximum amount of penalty laps, I think I finished in last place.
In case you missed it on Sportscenter
Tom Norwood the events coordinator  became California's first Running archery champion.

Side note Of Love:
(that's what I'll call my memoirs) 
Before I go on about the rest of the days festivities I wanna take a moment to point somthing out.
Out of the 200 or so people I love or care most about in the world I think at least 100 of them were here.  Now if you are reading this at home and you were there I'm totally talking about you.  If you weren't there you probably are one of the other 100.

The official list I scribbled on some golden plates and buried it in my back yard for religious zealots to find in the future. Who knows someday people might worship you as some sort of space angel?
I humbly would like to thank this dumb ass for bringing us all together

Time for some ball racing.
  The was the first time Born to Run had teams in the Rarajipari and our captain had come all the way from the Copper Canyons.
5 of 6 we raced for 10 laps about 3 miles.
It was a lot of fun 
and my Luna sandal Clad team took 1st place
2nd place I think their shoes slowed them down.
Time for the individual races
Congrats to Tyler on the win!

Did somebody say Beer mile
 After the beer mile it was time to go to bed, after all we had an Ultra Marathon to run in the morning
Yeah Right it was Time for Metalachi
Metalachi didn't want anyone around while they did their sound check.
(probably to avoid being subpoenaed)
Anyway a scavenger hunt was con-cocked (My Idea) offering prizes from Patogonia.  First we had to run, then we were supposed to spin 100 times.
"Have you ever spun 100 times?"
Most of us were pretty buzzed from the beer mile after 10 I was so dizzy it was probably the most ridiculous moment for me of the whole weekend spinning with friends for no good reason I was loving it.
(I wish I had a Picture)
After I finished 30 spins they said we could run up the side of a hill and go find some prizes
(I wanted to spin more)
Before we started Jenn Shelton a Patogonia sponsored athlete told me we were gonna have to tell her a limerick when we got to the top of the hill.
With a name like"Sweeney" Limericks are easy.
I had a good one planned out but unfortunately that idea got scrapped.
I won no prizes but I had fun.
Now it was time for Metalachi
Ultra marathoners!
As the show got crazier
 So did the spectators
Human sacrifices were made.
Fireball was being passed around by the gallon
Eventually things got a little too weird
Time for Bed.


Race morning, do I have to?
I was the two time defending champ
"But Mom!"
Last year I had about 17 drinks the day before so maybe I had a chance

In the weeks leading up to the event things were looking up I had set a new P.R. on a 50km trail run 3:36 on an easier course but at a much higher elevation, I had run a decent race at the Boston Marathon and come off a win at the Bare Burro. My crappy ass left achilles was getting better.

This year the field was as strong as it has ever been with about 300  competitors in the 50km alone. I figured it would take a sub 3:30 to win.  If everything went perfect I thought I could pull that off but the cards were heavily stacked against me by own doing.
I hadhoped to run the first 10 miles in just over an hour.
  I went out fast for all of  about a mile.  I had nothing.  I realized the only food I had had the past few day was some hummus from Trader Joes (that I later found out was recalled) and about 20 ounces of guacamole paired with 1,000's of of ounces of beer and fireball  it was not the recipe for success on this occasion
I finished my first 10 miles 20 mins slower than I wanted, the next 10 miles I was 40 mins slower and the last 10 were 60 mins slower, totaling over two hours longer than last year.  On the plus side a lot of people had fun kicking my ass and I plenty of time to chat with people I don't normally get to run with.  I was a little disappointed but I had a good time at that's really what this event is all about.

Nick Coury became the 2nd person in 2 years to win both the Beer Mile and the 50km.
Miguel Lara of CHampion of the Copper Canyons
won the 100km

Started dancing
And din't stop until long after the sun went down
A pinata got assaulted
Grandmas in bikinis got tattoos on their asses.
(it's really a picture of Luis you can tell by the smooth legs but I blurred the face to protect his anonymity)
 People were having fun
  I was just looking for someone to hug
some better than others
Life is Good!
The Marshmallow Man  played on
You done good Luis

Bonus day
Bubble Wiffleball
(a born to run tradition)
Followed by everybody's favorite game.

I could write a lot more about the weekend and I wish I could have included all my friends that were at the event in this blog post but i'm sick of typing and the beach is calling my name.

Abrupt ending
Best event Ever.
Thank you to everyone that was there
I love you guys!