Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Recovery Run

I had some company on my post-race recovery run. There was a touch of spring madness in the air. It was all very enjoyable.

spectators lined the route

the trees were in bloom

there were monuments

along the trail

wide views

and runners acting the goat

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Jauerling Mountain Race

This event is the first race of the year in the 30th Austrian mountain running IÖBLC/ÖLV Series. We were given a Press & Sport Information handout listing 45 races taking place between the beginning of April and the end of October.

The temperature on the top was 4C according to 'those in the know'. It was not much warmer down below in the cool breeze. As you can see, I put everything on for my pre-race warm-up.

After 10 minutes of jogging around I found that I was uncomfortably warm and shortly before the start I changed into a pair of long shorts, and a running vest over a long-sleeved t-shirt. I packed the jacket into the back pocket of the shorts and wore it for the jog back down the hill.

My preferred shoes, the New Balance RX Terrain, proved ideal for the course, which is mainly a steep rough track littered with leaves, small rocks and twigs, interspersed with two short road sections, and then followed by a lovely soft forest trail to finish on.

The threatened rain held off for the duration of the race and I was pleased to break the hour, albeit by 1 second!

choosing the right shoes for the job

trees in blossom on the lower slopes

2nd place trophy for the over 60's

with race organizer Walter Zugriegel

Jauerling Berglauf, Spitz, NÖ.
7th April 2012, 8.5km/780m

1. A Redl (M40), Loosdorf ASK, 36:48
2. A Früwirth (2M40), Horn ULC, 40:09
3. A Kainz, Gmünd LT, 40:32
18. H Karbt (M60), Birngruber LT, 47:19
47. G Williams (2M60), Clayton H, 59:59
57. K Silewinaz (3M60), Loosdorf ASK 65:31

68 Finishers

Monday, 2 April 2012

A run for Micah True

Like so many runners around the world I went out on Sunday and ran a trail for Micah True, a man I never knew.

My chosen trail was 33 kms in length and it was mostly new territory for me.

I had, as it happened, already planned to recce this section of trail as part of the middle section of a much longer route I'm aiming to run over later in the year.

Learning of the death of Micah True shortly before starting, I dedicated yesterday's run to his spirit and memory.

The contents of the rucksack included my rations: an egg, an orange, and a bottle of water; plus the camera, reading glasses and map.

There were some flurries of snowflakes on the morning breezes followed by periods sunshine and as the day warmed up I was able to dispense with my gloves and lightweight running jacket.

Nearly 5 hours after setting off I strolled into a bar to enjoy a beer; and there I thought deeply about my raison d'etre and man's desire to run close to nature that Caballo Blanco or White Horse as Micah True is known, has rekindled in so many of us.

Micah True needed no Olympic stadium filled with hype and artificiality. He was aware of the real eternal spirit and meaning of running, of its essential connection to nature. Its simplicity. The act of putting one foot in front of the other in natural surroundings and enjoying the experience.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Micah True found dead

The legendary trail runner Micah True the organizer of the Copper Canyons Ultra Marathon and the 'hero' of the best-selling book Born to Run has been found dead. He failed to return from his last training run in the New Mexico canyons. A full scale search, involving many rescue agencies and volunteers was quickly underway. The body was subsequently found in the rugged terrain. The cause of death is not yet known.

True, also known as Caballo Blanco, had set out on his last run wearing shorts, t-shirt, running shoes and carrying a bottle of water; but without his dog which hadn't fully recovered from the previous day's run. I am deeply saddened but I console myself that Micah True, who named himself for the Old Testament prophet Micah, died doing what he loved to do best and that is running and enjoying the natural world and the trails. To his memory I dedicate this picture I took on the Ardudwy Trail in Wales.