With 2010 officially over, I logged into Garmin's Connect site to check out my stats from the past year. Since I consistently wear a GPS-enabled watch (I prefer the Forerunner 3010xt), my pace, distance, elevation gain/loss and speed were recorded over a year's worth of outings.
This is what my stats revealed:
So, over the course of 12 months, I tracked 164 "activities", meaning runs, walks, hikes and a few cycling outings. This includes 10 competitions, with distances ranging from 5k road races to 50 mile ultramarathons. Despite an ankle injury that kept me sidelined for a little over a month last spring, I was still able to put in a respectable average of 25 miles a week. As my stats reveal, I burned upwards of 178,000+ calories. Using the measure of 3,500 calories per pound of fat, this equates to burning 50 lbs of excess weight . Whoa!
I used to think that I wasn't built for running. This past year taught me how wrong I was. Everyone is capable of enjoying running, hiking or walking. You just need put on some comfortable clothing, lace on some quality shoes and put one foot in front of the next.
Best (and Worst) of 2010
Biggest Failure: Lost Lake 50K (May 8th)
My first ultramarathon (an ultra is any race beyond the 26.2 miles) and only third competition ever, Lost Lake 50k (really a 33 mile course) was a tough trail race. I started off strong, but 14 miles into the race I rolled my right ankle while descending the root-bound trail, I re-injuring an old soccer injury. For the next 19 miles I hobbled up and down Chuckanut Mountain and made my way to the finish with the painfully slow time of 8:06 (that's eight hours)! While failing to place well in the rankings, I still had an amazing experience. Lost Lake got me hooked on racing and on trail ultras.
Longest Run: Carkeek 12-Hour Endurance Race - 51 miles (Oct. 30th)
This was my first attempt at a time-based event. Over the course of 11 hours I ran a 1.9 mile loop in Carkeek Park 26 times in pouring rain. With each loop of the rock and soil trail you gained and lost almost 400 feet of elevation. By the time I was done, I had racked up 8,800 feet of climbing along. This was my toughest day mentally. With my spirits low, I ended up quitting an hour short of the 6pm cutoff.
Fastest Mile: West Seattle Track Training (Aug. 24th)
Following a training run with a group organized by West Seattle Runner, I put in a respectable 5:23 minute mile at the West Seattle High School track. A good start for my first time running on a track.
Biggest Adventure: TIED! Ragnar Relay (Jul. 23-24th) & The Enchantments (Sept. 4th)
Both of these were epic experiences. Ragnar's Northwest Passage 186 mile relay was an amazing team run. Our 12-person team was divided into two groups of six. We began the relay in Blaine, WA, just short of the Canadian border and finished the race 26 1/2 hours later in Langley, WA.
An equally great experience, I joined up with two of my Ragnar teammates and my girlfriend and ran the Enchantment Lakes Wilderness Region loop trail. The 18.5 mile loop includes 5,000+ feet of elevation gain, ice, waterfalls, goats and some of the best scenery in Washington.