Thursday, June 25, 2015

Western States 100 miles - June 23-24 2015 - PR of 2 hours and 20 mins

26:21 hours was the new PR. It was a tough race yet again but he improved his time from 28:43 from 2014 - an improvement of 2 hours and 20 minutes! Like always, I dropped Shavi at Tahoe the night before the race. He stayed in the hotel and was ready dark and early. The first picture of him at Escarpment (around mile 3 which is tough uphill) was sent by a friend.

Sandeep and his family came on the day to stay with us. Sandeep and Rahul helped me with crewing Shavi. We first went to Duncan Canyon's at mile 24.4. The parking was not too bad even though it was quite limited. It was surely dusty out there. We saw him at around 10.25am. Carrying his favorite wooden chair and bags filled with his stuff, we walked closer to the aid station and waited for him. Shavi cleaned his feet as it was getting quite warm there. After Shavi left, I ran after him to give him his sunglasses and while running down the hill there, I tripped and fell. Ugh. Thankfully Sandeep was there who took the sunglasses from me and ran after him to deliver it to him and he succeeded!

Picture at Robinson Flat (mile 30.3) sent by Keith who was out there crewing him before pacing him.

After Duncan, we had some time to kill as we reached the next aid station Dusty Corners (mile 38) pretty quick..I took a short nap in the car. Benefit of not driving by myself but it worked out better that way as I had not slept much last night and the next night was also going to be sleepless. The parking at Dusty was a bit farther. We had to walk a little bit but not too bad. We saw Shavi there. He looked good.

Next, I went to Michigan Bluff while Anu and Charles brought Waaris over to Foresthill where I also joined after seeing him at Michigan Bluff. Waaris was quite little and it was hard to manage his nap times on the way but we both survived. Michigan Bluff is little bit of a strenous walk as parking is limited. Carrying a 2-year old with his chair and bag to the shuttle from parking would not have been an easy thing. So, I had gone by myself. Sandeep and family also came at Foresthill aid station. It was like a party!

Keith and Kuni were pacing him this time. Kuni picked him up at Foresthill when we saw him around 8-9pm.

Next, since I knew that Waaris was being taken care of by Charles and Anu, I decided to go to Green Gate aid station which was quite a walk but I had Dasie (Kuni's wife) with me. The drive to Green Gate wasnt easy either and neither was the parking situation but Dasie was an expert. Keith was also with us as it was the time to pick Kuni and drop Keith. Shavi was surprised to see me as I was not planning to go to Green Gate. Cell signal is limited at Green Gate and it was pitch dark. Headlamps were needed there along with mosquito repellant. Alicia (Keith's wife) tried to go at all aid stations that she could. Kuni, Dasie and I came back from there after picking Kuni and dropping Keith. Next I came home and then went home to pick Waaris, Anu and Charles for the finish line. We ran him in at the Finish line tracks at Auburn High School.

What a great journey! Sleepless nights to commitment to endurance - this race tests the runners and his family for this all and more. Well Done, Shavi on your 2nd WS.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Kaiser Women's 5K - June 7, 2015 - PR with 27 mins 46 secs

I did my customary race Women's Fitness Festival again this year. Last time I did, I was 6 months pregnant in 2013. This time was great, especially not knowing that I PR'ed by 9 seconds. I completed the race in 27 mins 46 seconds. This is a women's only race in Downtown, starting and ending at the Capitol.

It is recommended to stand in the front at the start line, unlike what I did. I thought standing at the back would be better but with so many runners and walkers, it got very tough to cross them and run at my regular pace for the initial 0.5 miles at least. The aid stations are at a good distance, course is nice but has lot of turns. There are some shaded areas and some sunny ones. I recommend wearing a running hat. This is a fun race and I will do it again, especially for the post-race party!!

Western State training runs - labor day weekend special!

These training runs are done every day for 3 days on the labor day weekend. They have to be registered beforehand as they fill out pretty fast. It is 30miles on the first day and 20miles on the second and 20 miles on the third day. Shavi and other runners who are training for 100-mile runs generally like doing 50 miles for on the first day and 20 miles on the second day.

Shavi did much better on these training runs than last year. On his first day, when he was doing 50-miles, he was caught in bad thunderstorm and lightning but was glad to be safe out there in the canyons. These training runs are done on the Western States 100 trail and information on these races is provided on the Western States homepage ( The shuttles and transportation for these training runs is covered in the registration fee.

Silver State 50K - May 16, 2015

Shavi decided to do the Silver State 50K at the last minute. This race is in Reno, Nevada. Shavi drove there early morning and got back late at night. It is another hard race with half marathon and 50mi race distances as well. Shavi liked the aid stations and the course. He finished in 7 hours and 11 minutes. He recommends this race.

Gold Rush 50K - May 9, 2015

Gold Rush 50K reduced their distance to 50K only this year from 100K. Their 100Ks have been brutal in the past two years with very less people finishing. Guess, that is why they decided to do 50Ks only. They had shuttles starting from Karen's bakery in Folsom to the start line which is more than an hour's drive. The race started 30 mins late and there was only one porta potty at the start line (weird). Thankfully, their aid stations were ok.
For the post-run party, they gave away coupon for free food at Fat Rabbit, Folsom who took forever to get the food to the runners. Took them to get Shavi's simple order of a burger almost 2 hours and it was not even worth the wait at all!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Fair Oaks Sun Run - May 3, 2015

It was a fun 5mi run for me in Fair oaks. This race goes through residential areas and then on the American River trails. It has a few hills - they could be brutal for some. For me, they were ok. This race is held every year during the local Fair oaks Chicken Festival. They have a fun kids run in the beginning of the race. We plan to take our little one for this free 1/2 race next year. The after-race party was great as well and we enjoyed meeting people. I finished the race in 50mins and 13 seconds. Highly recommended.

Canyons Endurance run 100k - May 2, 2015

Then came running in the tough canyons. Shavi did Canyons Endurance Run 100K (the longest he went in his training for his 100-mile race in June end). Shavi completed the 100 kms in 16 hours and 40 minutes. It was brutal but he did it. This was the first year of this race and the race directors did a great job with aid stations and marking the course. Shavi got back home really late but it was totally worth his training. Highly recommended if you are training for a tough race ahead or if you want to torture yourself!:)
Also, this year, they introduced live webcast with which we could track the runners. It made it a little easier for me to track Shavi but later on once he was done, we realized that it was not accurate, especially closer to the finish. Infact, it was quite off. It could be inconvenient for some runners since the tracking device is a big watch tied to a strap which the runners wear on their wrist. Shavi mentioned that it was not bothering him much except when he would think about it:)

Miners Revenge 26.2 - April 25, 2015

Next weekend of running 50 miles, Shavi ran 26.2 miles. Miners Revenge is a tough course - not an easy one but he did great. The race director did great on marking the trails and on the aid stations. This is a race in Cool, CA which Shavi recomemnds.

Moklumme 50 miles - April 18, 2015

Couple of weeks after running 50 miles, Shavi did another 50-miles at Moklumme for the second time. Shavi had enjoyed the race last year. It is a bit of drive to get there (around 1.5 hours) but the course is great (and tough) and the aid stations are ok. The race started a bit late as the race director got there late!! They have a half marathon and 50K race as well and the course for both do not seem to be easy.

AR 50 - April 4, 2015

Shavi ran AR50 yet again. Perfect time for running 50 miles when you are training for a 100-mile race. The aid stations were good as always but the only issue was the start. Runners had to get into a state park for the start line which was to close one hour before the race start. Basically, runners had to get inside by 5am which was a torture. What do you really do for that long? Sleep in the car maybe! I only went to see him at mile 26 (Beals point). Lot of people out there at Beals point. Parking is easy and getting inside the state park costs $12 unless you have a poppy pass. Then I went to the finish line. Shavi had to drive to San Francisco aiport to pick a friend after being up since 3.30am and running 50 miles in the hot weather. He did good on the run and finished in 9 hours and 27 mins.