Posted by: runwithgarrison | February 23, 2013

Great Aloha Run & Chabot Trail Run 50k

Aloha Everyone,

It has been a few weeks since I last posted so here is the skinny—-Week ending 2/10 I was only able to put in 18 miles. I needed to take some time off to fight off a sore throat and I needed the rest. Week ending 2/17 I ran 57 miles and each week the only “workouts” were a run each week up Tantalus form home. Those also served as my long runs of 15 miles. Not exactly what I planned for when i laid out the training plan…

On President’s Day, I ran the Great Aloha Run here in Honolulu. It was very windy and it was also the first time I participated it the 8.15 mile event. This is the biggest race on island that is not the Honolulu Marathon. The race was won by Tyler McCandless–One of my former athletes. Tyler flew in from Boulder for the race and it was awesome to catch up with him! He is fit and I am looking forward to some big results from him in 2013 and beyond. Heading into the race, I figured a great race for me would look like a top 25 placing at about 47 minutes. I did not quite meet that goal but I am still very happy with my 35th place. I ran 48:46 (5:59 pace) and placed 2nd in my age group. I ran steady but gave it up in the last mile of the race. I need to continue to work on my competitiveness at the end of some of my races.

Onto today—The Lake Chabot Trail 50k. This was a fun and well organized event that featured 13.1, 30k, and 50k races all starting at the same time along roughly the same trails. I was very happy that the race organizers provided different color bib numbers for each of the events–allowing us to all know exactly whom we were actually racing against.  Before the start, I ran into another one of my former athletes–Pat Reaves. Pat was running the 30k and he wound up placing 3rd in 1:53. He is fit and those guys were flying! I also saw La Sportiva’s Mark Tanaka at the start line and I knew that if I could stay close to or in front of him all day, I would be having a really good race. Mark and I raced each other at the Mt Diablo 50k last April and he dumped me in the last third of the race. Time to see how much I have improved in 10 months. I settled into a nice pace early, running pretty consistent 7:40-7:50 pace. I felt decent on the climbs and I probably ran the descents a little too fast. I ran a little recon run on the 10k “orange” loop on Thursday so I knew exactly how hard the toughest climbs of the day would feel. Boy I am glad I did! I felt much more confident along the way today.

Since there were 3 races running on the same trail at the same time, I did not exactly know what place I was in for the first 18 miles. I was guessing top 3-5 but I ran most of the first 13 alone. Around the 13 mile mark, I was joined by Dan Rhodes and we spent the next 9 miles together. Great guy to run with, we pushed each other just enough–time well spent. We came thru the 18.6 and found out that we were running in 2nd and 3rd. I was pretty stoked since my goal was to try and finish in the top 5 and run under 4:30. On our way to the next aid station, Dan let up on the gas a little and I ran ahead, running thru the Two Rocks aid station and up, up, and away on the climbs. I was so focused on the climb out of Two Rocks that I missed a left turn–totally my fault. The course was well marked and it was our 2nd time on the trail during the race. By the time I made it back onto the course, I was about 200-300 meters behind Dan. He said he could not see me up the climb so I am guessing that my mishap cost me a bit over a quarter mile–oh well. I hit a bit of a rough patch after that from about 25-28 miles. My body was just starting to hurt and I was struggling to hold any kind of pace. As I came into the final aid station, I looked back and I saw a very happy guy just rolling up the trail. His presence got me out of the aid station much faster than I planned. He looked so relaxed, I knew it was only a matter of time until he ran by. Sure enough, less than a mile later he, Rob Houghton, just rolled on by. He looked like he just started–Great Run Rob! After Rob passed, I settled in and knew I now had to fight for 4th place. Mark was still back there and I knew there were other strong runners that were closing in. I adjusted my focus and started calculating my possible finish time. I figured out that I still had a shot to run under 4:20—Point of reference, Zeke and I ran 4:52/4:50 out here along a similar course (slightly more climbing) last August at the Skyline 50k. Heading into today, that 4:50 was my trail 50k PR.

By the time I could finally see the Marina and Boat House, my Garmin said 4:15 and I knew I would beat the 4:20 mark. I looked over my shoulder and there was nobody bearing down on me–thank goodness! I rolled in to the finish in 4th place with a time of 4:17:59. Wow that hurt a bit but I am totally happy with the effort. Dan just held off Rob for 2nd and they ran 4:13. They were both stronger than I was today so I don’t think the wrong turn on my part had any true effect on the results.

Once I returned to Team Garrison Norcal HQ, We cooked up a steak sandwich, chilled on the couch, and then ate some pesto and garlic bread. Big Mahalos to Dan and his family for putting me up!!! It is now almost 8pm and time for bed—Another 50k to race tomorrow! I’m heading over to Pacifica to run the Montara 50k. Today’s race featured about 4200 feet of climbing while tomorrow’s looks to be around 6700 feet on more technically challenging terrain. I’m not expecting a PR out there tomorrow. I’m just curious to see how my body feels after the run I put on the board today. I have never run back-back ultra races like this before so it should be interesting. It is nice to have a great race like today under my belt so there is no pressure at all for tomorrow.

I will update everyone tomorrow after the fun!

Pauline’s training is pretty much on track. She had a few runs this week that were faster than she has run since she started training for the marathon and she has a 16 miler scheduled for the weekend. I am so proud of her and the dedication she is showing along this journey!

Stats for the run today–finish time 4:17:59, 8:21 pace, 4192 calories. 26.2 split–3:35:05

Have a great weekend!!




  1. Pauline,

    So proud of you, keep up the hard work going! I know you have a great mentor by youre side!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: