Never Limit Where Running Can Take You - Bart Yasso

The title of this post is what running legend Bart Yasso inscribed in my copy of his book when I met him at yesterday's Ugly Mudder race in Reading.

Ironically, where running had taken me yesterday was to that very race.

I'd run the mudder in 2007 and was one of the people to run the abbreviated course in 2008.

With last year's course mistake and what I thought was a particularly bad shirt, I'd planned on not running the Mudder again this year. And then on Friday an e-mail came saying that Bart Yasso would be signing free autographs at this year's race. I sent a quick e-mail to the race director confirming there were a couple extra shirts available and decided to make the Mudder my plan.

Unlike other years, though, I wasn't even a little tapered for the race. I'd done a hard interval workout on Thursday and went out for a medium longish nine miles on Saturday. The plan called for a marathon pace-ish workout for Sunday and a good trail race can serve that purpose.

All in all, it worked out well. I met Bart and let me tell you - What a jerk!! Kidding...!!! Everyone who's ever met Bart will tell you he's a class act and he was no different with me. I didn't banter with him for more than a few moments, but I could've. He was approachable, energetic and kind. (Incidentally, I read the book when it first came out. It's a winner and you should buy it.)

On to the race... 30 minutes before race time, my blood sugar was 108. Perfect for watching TV. A bit low for seven miles up and down a mountain. I took off my pump and had 35 grams of carbs (I used Clif Blocks that the race provided. I had gel with me, but with the race 30 minutes a way, I opted for something a bit slower.)

At the starting line, I saw a guy wearing an insulin pump and introduced myself. Mike's been diabetic for 45 years (since age 3!) and we had a good conversation. Look forward to talking to him again.

I tried to go out fairly hard in the race, knowing that it's a ton of single-track. Even so, if I had to do it over again, I would've somehow put 15-20 extra people behind me before the course slowed down.

I dressed fairly thinly given the weather, though it worked out well: CWX tights, Inov-8 shoes, Inov-8 hat and Inov-8 shirt (the last two won in an Inov-8 promotion last month!), and Nike gloves. Though I was afraid I'd get cold, in the end I think I dressed perfect.

The course was faster than other years, but that being said - it's a lot of slippery leaves and five inch rocks, soooo.. it certainly wasn't ideal. Unlike 2007, though, I didn't fall (yay, Inov-8!), so there was that.

In the end, I came in 132 out of 707, 40th out of 161 in my age group, in a time of 1:06:13. All in all, a good improvement from two years ago. My blood sugar at the end was 118. Perfect. And to make things more perfect, the shirt's pretty good this year, too.

I'm mighty sore from the rocks today, but need to recover quick. The next two weeks of marathon training are fairly intense and it's over the next month or so I'll figure out how legit. my chances for a good spring marathon are.


  1. Man you had a great race!
    I felt like crap from about the 2nd mile on, but hung in there.
    Keep up the good work, and thanks for checking out my blog.


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