August 31, 2012

UTMB Race Updates

Hanging w/ fellow blogger Jukka (paleo-runner) before UTMB/CCC
According to the UTMB website, they will be sending updates on runners via Twitter. I've added the link to Twitter here to the right which should provide updates on my progress throughout the race. I say should in italics because I'm in France and nothing can be taken for granted. Click on Join the Conversation or Wcooperjr1 to link to the Twitter site. 

It's going to be a cold one and they are recommending four layers of clothing. Have you ever worn, let alone run, in four layers of clothing? Jukka (above) is from Finland and says this really isn't a run. It's more of a hiking adventure, particularly with these conditions. My strategy? Keep moving...forward that is. 



August 28, 2012

UTMB Weather Warning

Within an hour of arriving at Chamonix I received this text message from the UTMB website:

"Attention! Weather forecast: rain, snow at 2000m, wind, cold. Temperatures dropping to -5 C (9 degrees below freezing). Have winter clothing."

This is going to be an adventure! 

August 22, 2012

London. Paris. Look Out On a Summers Day.

By the time I reach Chamonix I'll have logged at least 100 miles walking through the cities of London and Paris. Really. So much in so little. Two cities I could live in. Shouldn't everything be on the table?

Colors changing hue....


Next? The Alps. 10...9...8...7...

August 11, 2012

Clouds Moving

Today I ran my last long run before UTMB. It was hot. At first I didn't think much of it, but around mile 21 I could feel the heat sucking the energy out of me. I think it was around 95 degrees in the canyons. Humid too. Throw 4,000 feet of climbing in with this 27 mile run and I was near my limit.

What kind of a run is it when you find yourself bent over, dehydrated, hyper-ventilating and unable to get your heart rate down? One of my favorites. Ok, while most people (including the rest of my family) were enjoying the hot and humid conditions in Southern California at the beach or in a pool, I was panting like a dog unable to find his bowl.  

But when I looked up from my trail stupor I was amazed at what I saw. This incredible thundercloud was enveloping the sky above me! The ocean air was raming into the hot desert air somewhere above San Gorgonio Mountain. It was moving in my direction, slowly. Every time I looked up at this floating behemoth it changed its shaped slightly. And got a little closer, and bigger.

The elements. They are always there. Despite their occasional nasty moods, I love to run in them. 

August 6, 2012

Questions About the Olympics

I know, this is supposed to be a blog just about running. Ok, I digress. I’m going to take a major detour here. Please bear with me.

What is the latest Olympic medal count? Should we care? After all, doesn’t China have a billion more people than the US? Try 1.033 billion more. Hell, what’s a billion people when you are looking for a few good divers, or gymnasts, or swimmers? 

But I looked into this imbalance a little more. What I found is this “imbalance” is just the tip of the iceberg. Lurking in the shadow of this Olympic phenom is a culture that takes children from families and disregards children’s precious right to be children. Unfortunately their kids don’t get to cry uncle. Maybe they just cry.

Don’t get me wrong here. China is a great country. It has a rich history and culture. My perception of its culture is that it places sacrifice over self. For a people, this can bring amazing accomplishments. But for a person, particularly little persons, it can have devastating consequences.

Just saying.....