2008 ended up to be a very busy year in many respects yet slow in others. Life as usual was busy but work was slow which is probably why I was able to get in some extra miles. In the running world, I was very pleased with my year. I can't even remember all the races but logged in over 4200 miles. I set many new PRs for myself and hit a new age category in June, 50 years old! And for my birthday I celebrated by running 50 miles that day except for the last mile which I saved for a night run on trails in the buff. I had a lot of fun races this year. Some of the highlights:
Finger Lakes 50 Mile in July. Ran my first 50 miler in under 7 hours while chasing Leigh Schmitt. Came in 2nd overall, just a few minutes behind Leigh and set a new master's record and age group record.
Vermont 100 Mile in July. Had a fun race running with Andy Jones-Wilkins, Glen Redpath, Kevin Sullivan and Joe Kulak. Warm and humid as usual with some lightning and downpours to add to the fun. Joe Carrara was again my pacer, kicking my butt along the way. Thanks Joe! Overall came in 3rd behind Andy and Kevin and set a new age group record.
Wasatch Front 100 Mile in September. Now this was fun! Unbelievable views and trails. Nothing like this in the East. Met some new friends and saw some old ones. I wasn't sure what to expect running with the big dogs out West but overall it went well. I ran the first 5o miles with Andy Jones-Wilkins, Geoff Roes and Larry O'Neil. Dehydrated myself a bit mid-race and fell back some but drank and ate to get back. Great aid stations and course. Ran through the night by myself with a dim headlamp. Not too good on the steep backside of Brighton but still had a blast. Overall came in third, not far behind Andy again. Geoff had an awesome race winning in 20 hours. I set a new age group record. Not bad for some Easterner.
Vermont 50 Mile in Septemeber. Ran with a bunch of friends again and met some new faces. Leigh Schmitt, Todd Walker, Joe Carrara, Justin Keeney, Sherpa John, Todd Archembault and others. Poured the night before but stopped for the race which helped keep the mud down. Had a good race and with only three weeks away from finishing at Wasatch. Chased Leigh again throughout the race. Snuck up on him at one point which I think made him go harder. Overall was pleased. Ran my best VT 50 and got in under 7 hours and finished 2nd overall and again just a few minutes behind Leigh.
Boston Marathon in April. This was just a training run but posted my best marathon time ever with a 2:43. I had to run this again after a horrible race in 2004 or so when the temps were in the 80's with full sunshine and I fried and bonked.
Vermont City Marathon in May. Always a fun race but again a training run. Posted my fasted VCM time yet with a 2:47. Thanks Zeke!
Some other races were the Northern Nipmuck Trail Race and the Nipmuck Marathon and others. Ended the year on a good note. Decided at the last minute to run a 5K race on New Years Eve day, the Shelburne Field House Athletic Club End of the Year Race. I don't usually run 5K road races but the weather was looking like it could be a challenge. Cold and windy with temps in the single digits and snowing. With a snow covered course, I put on my Mizuno Ascend Trail shoes for extra grip. Right from the start there were a couple of youngsters going out fast. I stayed right behind but by a half mile or so it felt like a casual Sunday run so I took off and never looked back. I won this race by a minute. Not bad for some old guy and a good way to end the year.
So that's it, my recap of 2008. And thanks to Mizuno for the great gear and running shoes.