"There's only one hard and fast rule in running: sometimes you have to run one hard and fast."








Sunday, August 23, 2009

That's All, Folks!

I was hoping to have the blog limp through the next two months and wrap it up at the end of the season, but my season's over early, so this is the end! I'm not doing ultras, not racing until next year (probably 5-6 races of 10K to 1/2-marathon), not doing much on trails, so there's not much point in continuing this particular blog. Hope you enjoyed reading it - and sorry to the guy who just became follower #13. I may add an index to the most popular or informative posts and may do a little editing, but nothing else unless there's some major surprise life has in store.

Added Aug. 25: There's a possibility that I'll start another running blog with a different focus or maybe go back to this one but have it be about whatever running I happen to be doing.

One last running story:


After I pulled out of the Lean Horse 100 (24.5 miles, extreme dehydration, though I drank 1 gallon of fluid in 5 hours), Jen Pierce told her little daughter Zoe that my race was over. Zoe said, "Good race, Steve!" and handed me a shiny piece of white quartz. That meant a lot more to me than if I had received another finisher's belt buckle. I wanted to do something special with her present, so I climbed Harney Peak and tossed her rock onto the roof of the lookout tower at the top. Zoe's rock is now the highest point in South Dakota.


That, in a nutshell, is what I do.



41 comments:

phillip said...

Sorry, Steve; you forgot to ask permission to quit, so therefore this action is disallowed.

Note to self: remember to take electrolytes w/water.

brothergrub said...

i miss this blog already. really.

Matthew Patten said...

quit your whinning.

Rest & Recover.

Don't do anything for the next 3 weeks, and you will be in great shape for a 36-38 power hike.

Part of this sport is accepting bad days.

Learn from them, or don't. But accept them and move on.

Just Deal.

I will give you one of my 4 remaining trippels if you start Superior

nwgdc said...

I second Phillip's ruling on the matter. Glad that's taken care of.

Sorry to hear about the rough day. I really hope you stick around!

Mitch R. said...

Sounds like "damage control" time after a bad day when the mind has yet to recover.

Take two asprins, two beers, and relax for a couple of days. If I may quote Danny Ripka "You're not thinking right" at this time

Don't worry. all will come right at Superior 100.

Beth said...

I'm a little stubborn, so I will keep checking back and hope that you change your mind and write more in this place. I hope to see you out on the trail some day and thank you in person for sharing your thoughts with me.

Jean said...

Steve, I am sorry to hear about your rough race at Lean Horse. As others have noted, I too hope that you will stick around in the blogosphere. I have thoroughly enjoyed and learned a lot from your writings.

Recover well, and I hope to see you posting here again. All the best to you!

Londell said...

This blog will be missed. I would have been #14 had I known how? More people read this than you think and hope you reconsider. At least if you do not run, volunteer and use your sharp wit to describe that experience?

So reconsider my friend. That means quitting, not to reconsider me as a friend!

Chippewa said...

Steve: Despite the fact that you did not finish Lean Horse, look back and reflect on how much you accomplished. You did some amazing things. You should be proud. You have high expectations,so you are bummed right now. Competitive runners get that now and again. 100milers are always a learning experience it seems. I have found that getting as fit as possible is ideal, but all the preparation in the world sometimes is not enough for a race of that magnitude. There are lots of variables. I dropped out at mile 40 after walking for 3-4 miles. Although this was just a long training run at easy pace, i was still bummed. I've learned though that it's just part of the game. When you compete at a high level you take more risks. You learn by doing and hopefully with each experience bank the knowledge that will make you better for the next one. I'm sure I had the same issue as you. I was not able to absorb fluids after mile 25. It hit me instantly too. From great to horrible. This has only happened to me once before 2 years ago at Voyageur when it was hot. Anyways, rest and recover. You have race a ton this year. I'm proud of your accomplishments. With some rest and food you'll begin to itch again for the run again.

when i gave Akos a bandana at mile 63 he was a hurting unit. He hobbled off to continue the death march. it was a tough day for a 100.

Kel said...

Yeah, the weather was a doozy, wasn't it? I literally passed out at Pringle from the heat and dehydration and had to drop there too. My legs feel fine today, but my abs are sore from all of the vomiting.

I don't think you'll be able to stay retired from trail running though. You'll miss the rest of us too much - your ultra family in particular.

And there's no way you can end this blog without a prairie dog story or two ;)

wildknits said...

Steve,
while I found your blog while looking around for trail running stuff I keep reading for other reasons. I like what you have to say - about all kinds of things. Makes me think.

It has been nice seeing you at various races over the past year.

Sounds like Lean Horse was a B**** of a race. You have had an amazing season, run some stuff I can only imagine running. Accomplished stuff I can't even dream of doing.

I am with everyone else: rest, relax, recuperate. Make decisions later.

Will miss your presence in the blogosphere if you pull the plug!

johnmaas said...

Steve,
Please don't stop running.
Please don't stop this blog.
Lean Horse dealt you a tough blow. Take the time you need to recover your body and spirit.
John

Helen said...

Great photo from Harney Peak - such pretty views from that spot I wish I'd had the time to climb it again this trip.

I don't know what the rest of your post was about I couldn't follow it.

But I sure am looking forward to MORE POSTS!

Recover well.

SteveQ said...

Guys, Lean Horse wasn't a tough race or a bad race. I just didn't want to do it very much. I had enough energy left to go mountain climbing the rest of the day and then drive 11 hours.

I'm not going to stop running and I will be on the trails from time to time. And maybe I'll start up another running blog, but with a different focus.

I wasn't good at what I tried to do and I didn't enjoy it much. I do love running with all you loonies, though.

phillip said...

Your previous post noted,insightfully:

"Ultras do sometimes seem to be a parade of eccentrics." Well,Bruce Willis says to the patrolman on the ground in DIE HARD,"Welcome to the party, pal."

Of course ultras need volunteers and your brand of entertainment would certainly liven up the quietest of stations. Just think of all of the female runners who might need aid . . . .

Carl Gammon said...

Steve, I am selfish. I don't care if you're not enjoying it. What I care about is having you on the trails and at the races with us.

Andrew said...

Your blog is the number one entry point to my blog. I will too, selfishly recommend, no, require you to continue blogging - and trail running. JK would want it that way. Besides, what would happen with all that pent up stuff in your head. You would explode or something. It would be cool to see but the blog would be better. Pull a Favre and come back, everyone likes that stuff. Hell you could pack the dome if you did it right.

Scott said...

In all of this time I waste reading running blogs and stories, I have to say that's the most genuine story I've read. Well done.

Runningdoctor said...

This sucks. It's like if the New York Times didn't feel like making newspapers anymore. I have checked your blog daily reflexively, only to find a growing number of sad comments.

I would love an invite to the privat blog.

Julie B said...

Keep on running, keep on blogging. You just wanted a zillion comments. Kidding. Really. Sorry about your bad day but if they were all good days there would be nothing to learn from.

Matthew Patten said...

Does this mean we will have the long awaited "Fear Factor Aid Station" at Superior this year?

SteveQ said...

Matt, I'm signed up to volunteer at Superior, so expect plenty of whiskey and cigarettes at the sawbill aid station.

sea legs girl said...

Come, come now, Steve. We love reading your blog so much. And not just for the race reports. Even if you're not racing for a while, you always find interesting topics to post about.

Plus, it seems like you enjoy blogging. Heck, you also seem to enjoy responding to all of the comments here. Well, you're a great writer and if you really do enjoy having this blog as much as it seems like you do, I hope you reconsider :).

If not, I have to thank you for all of the enjoyable things I've learned and people I have gotten to know through this blog.

Steve said...

Can't say I didn't see this one coming. You've been grumpy all season long. Maybe you'll get over it. If not, at least you still enjoy running and we'll get to read about your new direction. Best of luck in whatever you decide to do. You gotta do what makes ya happy, right?

Too bad you aren't running Superior now. There won't be a Steve G. vs. Steve Q. battle. Oh well, I might take you up on that whiskey at Sawbill though.

RichardC said...

Whiskey at Sawbill? Sweet!

Mitch R. said...

Isn't Steve over his bad mood yet? I need an endurance sport fix until the Arrowhead Ultra forum springs back to life.

SteveQ said...

Steve and Mitch: the "bad mood" has been clinical depression for a while and became serious of late. It's a normal thing for me when down to hole up and retire from the world, but I know that that's not going to help things - and that has me thinking I should keep blogging, just to keep in touch. But does anyone really want to hear one depressing post after another?

"Went for a run. It sucked."
"Went for a run. It sucked."
"Didn't run. It sucked."

Helen said...

We do.

keith said...

Why start a new blog? Just keep this one going...You'll recover.

Heat sucks and I hate running in it. It messes with my mind and that's saying something because there isn't much in my head to mess with. You're a super genius - ergo, more to mess with = bad time to make decisions about pulling plugs...

wildknits said...

Ah - clinical depression. Hell of an overlay to daily functioning!

Sounds like you know what you need to do - staying in touch with folks, not isolating, running what feels good....

Your plans for Superior sound like a blast! Will give me things to think about on the ferry ride to Isle Royale(vs how much I "love" traversing 4 foot waves in a steel boat with no horizon line). The real reason I can't be at Superior this year for any of the races.

Bill S said...

Steve,We spoke via email recently regarding my new quest into Ultra running. I hope to hear more from you in the future and I was honored that you replied to my requests for information. I didn't choose to ask you questions because there was no one else to ask. There is an abundance of others I can talk to. Rather, I chose to consult with you for very specific reasons...
When referred to your blog by Helen L., your experience, candor and "runners voice" immmediately encouraged me and challenged my own thought process as a new runner. Don't quit, be true to yourself...and by all means...count me as one of your followers.

Zach said...

Steve,

Zoe unknowingly visited her rock on Wednesday before we took off. It was a moment of extreme pride when both of my kids made the 6 mile round trip and summited Harney with very little complaining (promise of being stuffed silly with smores helped). Nonetheless, both their trip and the view were inspiring. It was even more impressive when you consider that climbing back down all the rocks of the last mile entailed frequent half body height jumps for Xander.

I was going to selfishly say "if you're not going to run, does that mean you're free to pace at Superior? :)" but I'm glad you'll be there either way.

Also, FWIW, Jen read somewhere that Harney peak is not only the highest point in SD, but the highest point East of the Rockies and West of the Pyrenees in Europe, so the rock covers a much greater area than SD :)

Do what makes you happy, stick with your blog (it's not titled run ultra, race ultra, repeat after all). Obviously people find it entertaining, whether you feel it's depressing or not.

nwgdc said...

Regarding your thoughts of whether people want to read the "Went running. It sucked." posts, I'll be honest...HONEST...and say I've never found your blog a 'downer.' I've found your interpretation of running to be factual, analytical, and absolutely interesting. I've gone over your hill posts several times in an effort to figure out why I stink at them.
It's not often one lives up to the cyber personality that is created in a blog, but running with you at Chippewa was an absolute blast, and I sure hope to have the opportunity again.

Matthew Patten said...

Consider the alternative posts

"Went sucking, it runned"

Helen said...

How about a poll to ask how many comments it will take before you post again?

Matt - you need get out more.

SteveQ said...

Helen, I'd feel really stupid if my retirement from blogging lasted less than a week. Then again, I'm not feeling particularly bright anyway, what with my new running plans.

Hmmm. Does that sound like the beginning of a blog post?!

RBR said...

Filling in for G and first. GQH will be proud. However, you will lose points for no trannie references.

So you took the little girl's present and pitched it on a roof? Sheesh, big meanie, did she cry? ;)

I hope you are feeling better. Go read my epic failure at IM CdA it will make you feel like the rock star you are.

Mitch R. said...

Please excuse me, but you have had your cooling off period. Now, please put your head back on and run Superior 100. If you don't, think of all that training time that you have wasted.

Don't think that I don't walk my talk. I have a 24 hour time trial next weekend in the Quad Cities and a 500 mile time trial end of September in Dallas. Then, it is back getting ready for the AHU.

wildknits said...

Steve - teaser of a comment... "does that sound like the beginning of a blog post?" Guess I will need to check back for more than updates on the comments ;->

Anonymous said...

I don't know if you purchased any new running gear as of late, but if you did and you're serious about quitting, can I have it?

I agree with RGR about pitching the present that a sweet little girl gave you.

Quit the BS! Your too intense to quit.

Ted

SteveQ said...

Ted, I left about $300 worth of lights, hydration equip. and clothes at Lean Horse. Burned my bridges.

Why is everyone having trouble seeing that this wasn't a snap decision after one bad day?