Month: September 2006

What’s the likelihood?

Last night, as I was watching the Ortiz/Shamrock fight at the cigar lounge I frequent, a gentleman sat down next to me and asked what I was smoking.  I told him it was a Romeo y Julieta Petit Corona (Habana, of course), and I asked him what his cigar was.  He said it was his first one, and a Diamond Crown that Jaime recommended.  Found out also that it was a requirement to become a sommelier, which is what he was preparing for.  Anyway, after a brief conversation, we both realized that we were ultra-runners, but not just ultra-runners, but 100-milers — his last race was AC 2004, and he is also a regular participant of various local races, and acquaintances of other runners I knew in the area.

What are the chances of meeting someone like that at a cigar lounge of all places?

What’s the likelihood?

Last night, as I was watching the Ortiz/Shamrock fight at the cigar lounge I frequent, a gentleman sat down next to me and asked what I was smoking.  I told him it was a Romeo y Julieta Petit Corona (Habana, of course), and I asked him what his cigar was.  He said it was his first one, and a Diamond Crown that Jaime recommended.  Found out also that it was a requirement to become a sommelier, which is what he was preparing for.  Anyway, after a brief conversation, we both realized that we were ultra-runners, but not just ultra-runners, but 100-milers — his last race was AC 2004, and he is also a regular participant of various local races, and acquaintances of other runners I knew in the area.

What are the chances of meeting someone like that at a cigar lounge of all places?

Baldy Taper

That’s it — no more training!  Between now and AC, I’ll be doing very little running.  Saturday, I went up Mt Wilson Trail to Manzanita Ridge, then down to Chantry — lots of climbing for about 16 miles or so.  I saw Francisco and his friend coming up Wintercreek as I was heading down.  I only had two water bottles, and was tapped out by the time I reached the bench, so ended up getting water out of the stream at Hoegees.  The run back home on asphalt wasn’t fun either — probably ended up with at least 5 miles of road running.

Labor Day Monday, I got talked into doing the Mt Baldy Run to the Top — 8 miles from the parking lot to the peak, about 4000′ of elevation gain.  I had done this twice before — 2000 and 2001, and told myself that I’d never do it again.  It’s a hard race — hardly anything that’s flat or downhill, so you never get an opportunity to rest.  This is also not one that a lot of ultra runners do, but strangely enough, there were quite a few this year — Michelle, Guillermo, Angel, Diana, JR, etc.

I finished in about 1:40 — my fastest time.  I probably could’ve shaved off a few more minutes had I not run on Saturday, and also if I wanted to really race.  The weather was gorgeous at the top, unlike the last times I had been up there — usually, it’s cold and windy, but this year, it was perfect.  It was nice to hang around at the finish for a change before going back down, which was always difficult to do having to share narrow single track trails with runners still going up.