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World class mind in an average man's body

The headline above tells the struggle of master competitor in all walks of life.  Whether it's trail running, riding my Felt, banging off rocks on my Gary Fisher 29er, or attempting to write music that moves the masses, I'm an average dude with big time brain waves.

It feels good to be fit. But there's always more, a bigger workout, another mountain to climb.  Of course all of those aspirations have to be filtered through pulled muscles in my back, an arthritic hand and tinging in my knee I can't quite figure out.

My mind says graceful elk bounding in the woods.  Reality instead sites a lumbering ox trudging over the horizon.

But let's remember that we're outliers who need to strive for the next rung on the ladder.  Endurance sport isn't for the timid and many will opt to head for the golf course.  That's OK, it's another perspective on life.  But in our case, we want to push the envelope just a bit further, feel the pain just a bit longer, get a little bit stronger...hey, I think there's lyrics here for a new tune!

UPDATE:  Received an email from Susan Donnelly, who is currently in France with Rob Apple.  This dynamic duo made the trip to compete in the Tour du Mont Blanc (®.html).  Bad news is that only three hours into the event, the race was canceled due to drizzle!  No more details to date, but stay tuned; there were 2300 competitors on the course and the decision to cancel must have been ugly.  Unless you're taking direct lightning strikes to the top of your head, there's no real reason to stop an ultra competition.  Susan authors a very complete blog so we'll give you all the info as it becomes available!


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Scott Jurek ate vegan, won ultras...then got divorced

(Disclaimer:  I am a Brooks-supported athlete; as part of that relationship, I was provided a complimentary copy of "Eat & Run")

I was recently on a few flights making my way home to Wisconsin and en route was able to plow through Scott Jurek's new book "Eat & Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness."

It's a fast, enjoyable read. I've been around the ultra scene for a long time and have known some of the greats, i.e. ultra champ Eric Clifton. So it's always interesting to see how the world looks from another icon's point of view.

My thoughts in no particular order:

1) I've been vegetarian/borderline vegan for 12 years and have always been concerned with protein intake.  Jurek advocates for the protein he naturally induces through his plant-based diet.  Maybe that is enough. Maybe it's not necessary to bang down 100+ grams of protein supplement every day. Good info and good advice.

2) I'm buying on big time to Scot…

Nothing to see here, folks

It's been a long time since I've been active on my blog. To be honest, I got tired of putting in the work, creating content, with so little feedback or response. Time to divert to other things...such as my new fiction book, coming out soon. Part horror story, part steamy romance. You'll definitely want a copy.

There's another reason I haven't been posting. My endurance spirit is broken.

Some medical issues, some sadness is loss of speed. I don't have much range left in my pulse rate and I have put on a blob of weight.

I "ran" my 10 mile loop this 2:18. Is that ugly, or what? An overall fatigue follows the run. I remember a few years ago, I'd bang it out in straight 9's for a 1:30 - and at that time had a long section of medium effort trail included, too.

It's the new normal. It's age appropriate. I'll be 59 in two weeks. Let's get real.

Rode my mountain bike Sunday after church. Don't know what I hit but I went…


You have to look closely (click and enlarge photo if needed), but when you do, check out the 5th metacarpal (bone furthest from thumb).

The diagonal break is symbolic of what happens when your mountain bike handlebars snap around 360 degrees, and those bars catch your hand against the bike frame during the rotation.

Well there you have it. I got up after my ride over the bars and knew something was wrong, but didn't want to admit it. Rode about three miles back to the car, then went a week with some ice and heat. Thought it was good, until I smacked the same bone on the bars during a road ride the following weekend.

Time to stop the charades and get to urgent care.

For the past three weeks, I have been in a formed splint that kept the pinkie and ring fingers immobilized in a hooked formation. Don't want those tendons to move across the bone. As the doc stated, it's a "forgiving" break, but nonetheless you don't want to give the bone any excuse to shift; that…