Training November 26th – December 2nd

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday November 26th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 73 push-ups,  21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday November 27th –  24 Miles in LSD in 5:08:21.  3 sets of 30 squats

Monday November 28th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 7 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday November 29th  –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 74 push-ups.

Wednesday November 30th – 12 Miles in 2:39:22.  3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday December 1st  – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of  7 chin-ups.

Friday December 2nd – Date Night with my Wife!

My legs are back. Felt like my old self this week. My recovery is working. More of the same next week.

fitness-quote-18

November 2016 Mileage

NOVEMBER 25 DAYS 196.8 MILES

October 19 Days 229.6 MIles
September 25 Days 229.6 Miles
August 23 Days 241.6 Miles
July 26 Days 248.8 Miles
June 25 Days 260.0 Miles
May 26 Days 261.7 Miles
April 23 Days 231.1 Miles
March 26 Days 235.4 Miles
February 24 Days 220.2 Miles
January 26 Days 283.9 Miles

Total 2016 268 Days 2638.7 Miles

Training November 19th – 25th

This week 50.4 Miles

Saturday November 19th –  Day off visiting my Oldest Son and his Wife

Sunday November 20th –  24 Miles in LSD in 5:09:46. 3 sets of 30 squats

Monday November 21st – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 7 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday November 22nd  –  Unscheduled day off.

Wednesday November 24th – 12 Miles in 2:29:38.  3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday November 25th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of  8 chin-ups.

Friday November 26th – 4.8 Miles, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

I have my annual November sinus infection this week. I have let the infection effect my workouts. I could just push on. Work Hard through it. It is six long months till my race in The Netherlands. I think I will just maintain my fitness for now. Start the hard training after my back 2 back marathons.  Use the New Years double for training. Kick it into high gear in 2017.

e43276421c169791f9a1805f0ddc3421

Training November 12th – 18th

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday November 12th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 73 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday November 13th –  20 Miles LSD in 4:12:30. 3 sets of 30 squats

Monday November 14th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 6 chin-ups.

Tuesday November 15th  –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 73 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday November 16th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:42:10. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday November 17th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 7 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday November 18th – Date night with my wife.

I skipped my heavy bag workout Monday. When I put my left glove on there was a yellow jacket wasp in the glove. Proof that the biggest in the fight is not automatically the winner. Speaking of biggest. I plan to race The Netherlands the lightest I can. Rather than wait and drop weight a couple of months before, I will start now. My goal is ten pounds lighter.  A great workout week. Working on speed. It is coming back.

58c18a5b3f341012e30739dc63ba64f0

Training November 5th – 11th

This week 30.4 Miles

Saturday November 5th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 65 push-ups. 15 minutes of Planks.

Sunday November 6th –  8 Miles in 1:40:17. 3 sets of 20 squats

Monday November 7th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 5 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday November 8th  –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 65 push-ups. 15 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday November 9th – 8 Miles LSD in 1:44:09. 3 sets of 20 squats

Thursday November 10th – Unscheduled day off.

Friday November 11th – 4.8 Date night with my Wife!

I have felt good this week. Nothing hurt. Still no pop in my legs. It will come back.  Jump back into my 50+ mile training next week. Back up to full sets on my strength training. I have survived my very ambitious 2016 Centurion goals. Now to work toward 2017. Excited.

when-you-walk-with-purpose

Training October 29th – November 4th

This week 14.4 Miles

Saturday October 29th – Day Off

Sunday October 30th – Day Off

Monday October 31st – Day Off

Tuesday November 1st  –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 65 push-ups. 15 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday November 2nd – 4.8 Miles, 3 sets of 20 squats

Thursday November 3rd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 5 chin-ups.

Friday November 4th – Date night with my Wife!

I push mowed my half acre lawn Saturday. I had some discomfort in my left knee. So I took a few more days off from training. I have no reason to risk an injury. My next Centurion Qualifier is in seven months. I can use my back2back marathons in 8 weeks as training. I don’t have to race them.  Just a nice slow recovery. Keeping my eye on the BIG goal.

extreme-embrace-the-extreme-experience

My Goal

Wow I find myself once again this year setting a Goal. I have had a BIG year. My goal now is to continue on with my journey to join every world Centurion club. Only two are left. Next up is The Netherlands. There are no American members of the Continental European Centurion Club. The race is the first weekend of June in Weert, Netherlands. I have wanted to race in the Netherlands for a long time. I just could not make a race there fit my calendar. I have never raced a Centurion Qualifier without at least two Dutch racers in the race. The Dutch are very good even paced Racewalkers. I am excited. However the race is seven months away. Back to using Marathons and a 50K for training. Kick off with Back2Back Marathons New Years eve and Day. Then I plan to race for a big personal best at the Cowtown 50K in February. A local Marathon in March. Then my Big Goal Race in The Netherlands.

The quest to Walk 100 miles in 24 Hours in The Netherlands!

Going to be Fun!

continental

October 2016 mileage

OCTOBER 19 DAYS 229.6 MILES

September 25 Days 229.6 Miles
August 23 Days 241.6 Miles
July 26 Days 248.8 Miles
June 25 Days 260.0 Miles
May 26 Days 261.7 Miles
April 23 Days 231.1 Miles
March 26 Days 235.4 Miles
February 24 Days 220.2 Miles
January 26 Days 283.9 Miles

Total 2016 243 Days 2441.9 Miles

Training October 22nd – 28th

This week 100.0 Miles

Saturday October 22nd – Start of the African Centurion. Robben Island, South Africa

Sunday October 23rd – Finished 100 Miles 22 Hours 36 minutes 03 seconds

Monday October 24th – Recovery Day

Tuesday October 25th –  Travel Day (A LOOOOONG Travel Day.)

Wednesday October 26th –  Recovery From Travel Day

Thursday October 27th – I am in a pattern. Recovery Day

Friday October 28th – Date Night with my Wife!

WOW! What a Race. Hardest Centurion Race I have done. Word of advise. Don’t plan Centurion races 11 weeks apart. I really felt my race in England during the last third of my African race. These races are tough on your body. You can feel recovered. You can feel rested. Deep down it takes me longer to be FULLY recovered. But hey. I was not going to quit. I have had tough races before. The scenery in Africa made the pain more bearable.

Back to easy walks and strength training next week. Nice slow recovery.  I have back2back Marathons in 9 weeks to train for. New Years Eve and Day.

14859679_10154690312104851_6079984488876440692_o  Robben Island, South Africa. Looking toward Cape Town. These shells were along the road on both sides. The insides were a metallic silver. Photo by Michel Evans.

img_0064  Sunday Morning. Photo by Anthony Long.

img_0063  Penguins. Yes that is correct. Walking with Penguins in South Africa. Who knew?  A Centurion race with million dollar scenic views. Photo by Liz Ingram.

 

The Inaugural African Centurion Qualifier

The Inaugural African Centurion Qualifier on Robben Island, South Africa. October 22nd and 23rd. Not long after I joined the Centurion Brotherhood I heard this rumor. “Africa is going to have a Centurion Race”. I had my fingers crossed it was true and that the race fit my calendar. The rumor became reality and it did fit my calendar. I was so excited to race an inaugural Centurion Race.

When I first started walking January 2013 I joined a walking support site. One Member on that site was from South Africa. Dave Ingram. Dave has walked the Famous Comrades Ultra six times. Dave is a speed and endurance walker mix. When I started it was his training and finish times I tried to match. Dave also entered the African Centurion. Now I had a chance to meet Dave and walk a race with him. We were not alone. I was not surprised to see Sandra Brown had signed up. Success in Africa would give Sandra SEVEN World Centurion Badges. The only person in the world with seven. The elite field of Centurion walkers did not stop there. Triple Centurion’s  John Kilmartin, Frans Leijtens and Antoine Hunting. Double Centurion’s Robbie Callister, Pete Miller and Janette Morgan. Centurion’s Nour Addine Ayyoub, Suzannah Corkill, Richard Gerrard, James Quirk, Philip Vermeulen, Marco Bloemerts, Remy van den Brand, Vinny Lynch, Kersten Mosig, Werner Alberts and Chris Cale.  19 Centurion’s and 31 elite walkers seeking their first Centurion Badge. A large field of 49 racers. Looking at that list it is not hard to figure out what was about to happen. There was going to be a race for African Centurion C1. A walking race like I had never seen before. Racers walking my best ever Marathon pace for 100 miles. As for me I didn’t care what number I ended up with. I just wanted to finish.

The race setting was Robben Island. Since the end of the 17th century, Robben Island has been used for the isolation of mainly political prisoners. From 1961, Robben Island was used by the South African government as a prison for political prisoners. The  former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela was imprisoned there for 18 of the 27 years he served behind bars before the fall of apartheid. To date, three of the former inmates of Robben Island have gone on to become President of South Africa. Nelson Mandela, Kgalema Motlanthe and current President Jacob Zuma. It is quite likely that the gravel we walked on was hand crushed by these men.  Now, Robben Island is a World Heritage Site and museum.

On Saturday morning we caught the ferry over to Robben Island from Cape Town. The wind howled most of the race. The waves were so big a bunch of racers were Turning green. Not the start to a long walking weekend you would want. Being the first time for the African Centurion all of us had many questions about what to expect. Most were answered after two laps. The view of the Atlantic Ocean looking toward Cape Town for 24 hours was not going to get old. When a race organizer tells you there is one small hill on the race course. Check to see how much mountain goat the director has in his family tree. Don’t trust his judgement. Bananas and potatoes are good race foods for endurance events. They are not the only good foods for endurance events. I might not ever eat another potato. The sun down here on Robben island will burn the darkest of skin. It can be the hottest place on earth and the coldest place. You will experience both in this race. Sometimes on the same lap.

When it got dark Saturday night the race changed. The 7km loop around the island spread everyone out. Most of the night you felt like the only person on the island. The only person in the world. There are a few movies that I watch every chance I get. One of those is Gladiator with Russell Crowe. Gladiator was on the plane’s movie list from Amsterdam to Cape Town. I watched it for over the one hundredth time. Two times in the movie the director depicts  Crowe as floating between earth and heaven. Both with an equal pull on him. For the whole overnight on Robben island I had the Atlantic Ocean on my right. The high winds were crashing large waves from Antartica against the rocks and old ship wrecks. On the rocks were penguins. Along the road were bleached clam shells that shined bright silver in my headlamp like a pirates treasure. Across the water stood Table mountain. The only clouds were in a circle around the top of the giant. Cape Town’s orange city lights went half way up the mountain. It looked like a lava flow coming down the side. Above to the right in the night sky was the Southern Cross. It was shining like new money. To my left was the islands light house. Sending out its beam of light all night. Just when you thought it could not get better, up rose a large half moon.  All night I walked in this beauty. I felt suspended between earth and heaven. I felt so exposed. So vulnerable. I could look into every corner of my soul. I could remember every detail of my life all the way back to my own beginning . It was a peace and euphoria like no other.

Then unfortunately or maybe fortunately the sun began to rise. As the sun climbed I fell back down to earth. I had some problems. My left knee was shot. I have had this problem before. It is from leaning. I was listing to the left. That put pressure on my knee. As my body gives in to fatigue during a one hundred mile race my core breaks down. Looking back now I realize doing two international Centurion races in 11 weeks was not a good idea. I was sure the second toe on my right foot would need amputating. My right butt check also was hurting. Amputation not an option. I had some extra time in the bank from earlier in the race. The way I was feeling I was going to need it. I managed to catch my friends Dave, John and Frans. I can’t start as fast as they do. Rather , I steadily plod along. I would be out of the race if I started as fast as they do. There was no visible clock at the race. I had to race by feel. The advantage of all the Centurion pace work I do. I knew what lap I was on but not the time I walked the lap. This caused me to push more than usual. I had one recurring thought. I did not want to have to do this again. Every Centurion I have done the finish is very special. I have never wanted to finish more than I did at this race. I loved the race. Yes as with any new race they have some bugs to fix. I promise you the 19 new African Centurion’s EARNED their numbers this weekend. Sandra Brown got her 7th Centurion badge. My friend Dave Ingram, well of course he got his Centurion. He lives for this kind of challenge.

I became African Centurion number 11. Finish time 22 hours 36 minutes 3 seconds. The most beautiful hardest race I have ever done.

africa11

 

Love this African Centurion Badge.

image

Adding up the Miles.

africa Photo by Vicus van der Merwe.

 

Training October 15th – 21st

This week 23.2 Miles

Saturday October 15th – 4.8 Miles

Sunday October 16th – 8 Miles in 1:43:22.

Monday October 17th – 4 miles

Tuesday October 18th –  4 Miles

Wednesday October 19th –  Travel Day to Cape Town South Africa

Thursday October 20th – Arrive in Cape Town 11pm

Friday October 21st – 2.4 miles to get my legs working again.

I plan each race well in advance. Several months in advance. Train week after week always looking ahead toward the big race day. I daydream about the race. Daydream about the trip. Think about the event for months. Now I find myself in South Africa. Just hours before the start. I can’t help but wonder, How did this race sneak up on me? What a beautiful country. Ocean, Mountains everyone helpful and friendly. This race will be like living in a dream. I am not nervous. Hard to describe how I feel. I just know how I am about to push my body and mind to accomplish my goal. Amazing what one can do when we set extreme goals.

robben-island-pic Robben Island looking toward Cape Town and Table Mountain.

Training October 8th – 14th

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday October 8th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday October 9th – 20 Miles in 4:08:48. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday October 10th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups.

Taper Starts

Tuesday October 11th –  4.8 Miles

Wednesday October 12th –  4.8 Miles

Thursday October 13th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:33:18.

Friday October 14th – Date night with my Wife!

I am enjoying my taper. I feel every bit as good as I did before my British Centurion Qualifier. I count this as a good omen a week before my African Centurion race.  I am looking forward to everything about my trip next week except the 28 hour flight.

6601908f4b8adf114583ee623b3599a5

Training October 1st – 7th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday October 1st – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday October 2nd – 24 Miles LSD in 5:07:48. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday October 3rd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday October 4th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday October 5th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:36:38. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday October 6th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday October 7th – Date night with my Wife!

What a great week of workouts. Felt good to add my strength training back in. A slow decrease in mileage then my Taper. I am officially ready for Africa.

66c8d04b85017d64b13f545d011d5164

September 2016 Mileage

SEPTEMBER 25 Days 229.6 Miles

August 23 Days 241.6 Miles
July 26 Days 248.8 Miles
June 25 Days 260.0 Miles
May 26 Days 261.7 Miles
April 23 Days 231.1 Miles
March 26 Days 235.4 Miles
February 24 Days 220.2 Miles
January 26 Days 283.9 Miles

Total 2016 224 Days 2207.5 Miles

Training September 24th – 30th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday September 24th –  4.8 Miles on the treadmill,

Sunday September 25th – 24 Miles on the treadmill in 5:20:00.

Monday September 26th – Travel Day home from Vegas.

Tuesday September 27th –  4.8 Miles

Wednesday September 28th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:34:33. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday September 29th – 4.8 Miles

Friday September 30th – 4.8 Miles

Busy this week. Between travel and my Grandson’s Baseball games. I had to skip my strength training.  Skipping the walking was never an option. Regular workouts next week and then a slow taper.

aaeaaqaaaaaaaajraaaajdc2mdbhzwiwlwqwzmytngm1nc1injk3lteyzddjzgvhztjhyq

Training September 17th – 23rd

This week 59.2 Miles

Saturday September 17th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday September 18th –  28 Miles LSD in 6:09:54. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday September 19th – 4.8 Miles.

Tuesday September 20th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday September 21st – 12 Miles LSD in 2:41:47. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday September 22nd – Grandson’s Baseball Game

Friday September 23rd –  4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag before a long weekend in Vegas with my Wife for our 24th wedding anniversary.

My legs felt tired this week. Also my knees are starting to hurt. For me that means time for a new pair of shoes. Four weeks to the African Centurion Qualifier. A little R&R and great food in Vegas then just nice easy Centurion pace work. The goal is to arrive in Africa with rested legs.

11356841_594396544035123_721123391_n

Training September 10th – 16th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday September 10th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday September 11th – 24 Miles in 4:53:22, 3 sets of 30 squats

Monday September 12th – 4.8 Miles

Tuesday September 13th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups.

Wednesday September 14th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:41:12. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday September 15th – Family Dinner.

Friday September 16th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Still adding up the mileage. Legs feel great. Took advantage of a cool Sunday morning. My fastest walk since the A2A Marathon in March. More of the same next week. Going to throw in a 28 miler this Sunday.

638195

Training September 3rd – 9th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday September 3rd – 24 Miles LSD in 5:05:35. 3 sets of 30 squats, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday September 4th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups

Monday September 5th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday September 6th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 71 push-ups. 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday September 7th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:38:33.  3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday September 8th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday September 9th – Date night with my Wife!

I got my Mojo back. A Great week of Training. More of the same for four and a half weeks. Then start my Taper.  Wow these Centurion Races come around in a hurry.

e4b31de938354051c6d1bcc81fe93b1a

Training August 27th – September 2nd

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday August 27th – 4 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Sunday August 28th –  20 Miles LSD in 4:19:56. Did not feel the love today.  3 sets of 30 squats

Monday August 29th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups.

Tuesday August 30th-  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups.

Wednesday August 31st – 12 Miles LSD in 2:41:18. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday September 1st – 4.8 Miles.

Friday September 2nd – Date night with my Wife!

Tough walk on Sunday. I don’t know why. Some days you just don’t feel the love. If You want to be a Centurion this is good training. During a 100 mile race there will be times you will not feel the love. We still train when it is not fun. We get through it. We gut it out. We finish. In a race you will have some rough patches. You don’t stop. You gut it out. You Finish. You will need that kind of mental training if you intend to become a Centurion. I also skipped some strength workouts. I always have a spell like this between recovery and preparation for my next race. I call it a reset. There, I am now reset. Seven weeks to Africa.

Quote

August 2016 Mileage

AUGUST 23 Days 241.6 Miles

July 26 Days 248.8 Miles
June 25 Days 260.0 Miles
May 26 Days 261.7 Miles
April 23 Days 231.1 Miles
March 26 Days 235.4 Miles
February 24 Days 220.2 Miles
January 26 Days 283.9 Miles

Total 2016 199 Days 1982.7 Miles

Training August 20th – 26th

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday August 20th – 4 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Sunday August 21st –  20 Miles LSD in 4:14.17. 3 sets of 30 squats

Monday August 22nd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 7 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday August 23rd-  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Wednesday August 24th – 8 Miles LSD in 2:33:07. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday August 25th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday August 26th – Date night with my Wife!

My walking workouts have been great. I feel like I did before the Centurion in England. I am staying patient with the recovery mileage. A repeat of workouts this next week. My strength training also didn’t miss a beat except chin-ups. There is something about chin-ups. You are hanging from the bar all vulnerable. Either you can get your chin over the bar or you cant.  It is a great exercise. I can gut out push-ups and Planks. Chin-ups , no. They keep you honest. I remember three years ago learning how to do chin-ups. I could do two kicking and straining. I worked up to four sets of ten. Now post race, four sets of seven. Tonight four sets of eight.  How does it help walking? I use my arms to drive my legs walking. Chin-ups are closer to how I hold my hands and arms walking. Does it help? I associate my Centurion Success directly with my strength workouts.

I had a big development take place the end of last week. My Friend Double Badge Centurion and Ultra walking legend Ulli Kamm is the “keeper” of the U.S. Centurion Site. Ulli passed the baton to me after His more than 20 years of Service. I am far less qualified than Ulli. I am both nervous and excited to be “keeper” of The United States Centurion Walkers.

hard-work

Training August 13th – 19th

This week 32.0 Miles

Saturday August 13th – 4 Miles

Sunday August 14th –  5.6 Miles

Monday August 15th – 4.8 Miles

Tuesday August 16th-  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Wednesday August 17th – 8 Miles LSD in 1:45:08. 3 sets of 30 squats

Thursday August 18th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 7 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday August 19th – Date night with my Wife!

Back to work this week with light recovery miles. Wow, nothing hurt, nothing sore. No high gear but I feel great. My training plan may not be for everyone but it sure works for me. No ill effects after a one hundred mile race is hard to imagine. I will be patient with my recovery. Same plan I used after my race in Australia.

857010

August 6th – 12th

This week 100 Miles

Saturday August 6th – Start of the 105th British Centurion Qualifier

Sunday August 7th –  100 miles in 22:19:37.

Monday August 8th – Day Off

Tuesday August 9th –  Day Off

Wednesday August 10th – Day Off. One L  O  N  G  travel day.

Thursday August 11th – Day Off

Friday August 12th – Date night with my Wife!

What a Great Trip and Race. Everything about this experience far exceeded my wildest dreams. Resting now. Eating a bunch of food I have had to pass on for weeks. I ended up with one blister on each heel. A sore left knee. Start back walking on Saturday. Strength training starts on Tuesday. A nice slow recovery. Then just enough miles to maintain my Fitness level. I will not be doing any hard training this cycle. No back2backs. My goal is to step onto the African Continent with rested, fit legs in 10 weeks.

Capture

 

My Next Next Big Goal

I did it. I Achieved my Big Goal of Becoming a British Centurion. The oldest Centurion Club in the world. Now it is time to set my Next Next Big Goal.  The Inaugural African Centurion on Robben Island, South Africa, October 22nd.  The opportunity of a lifetime to have a New Centurion Qualifier Start up while I am in peak Centurion condition. The moment this race became a reality it has consumed my thoughts.

The quest to Walk 100 miles in 24 Hours in Africa!

Going to be Fun!

Capture

International Centurion Races

Take a race as demanding as a Centurion. Add in long travel. Change of time zones. Sleep deprivation. New foods. POW you have transformed a tough race into an even tougher race. Below are a few tips that have helped me with International Centurion Races.

Plan every detail in advance: The day of your trip is not the time to find out you booked the wrong night at the hotel. Plan everything in advance. Go over your plan again and again. Check your passport. Visa. Required vaccinations. Make sure you packed everything you need for the race. Warm gear. Wet Gear. An extra change of everything.  Do not risk missing the Race you trained so hard for because you overlooked something.  Plan well = race well = SUCCESS.

Plan extra time: Leave early for the airport. Arrive early for the train. Get to the race early. Plan extra time for everything. Avoid all stress on your trip. Avoid all stress on race day. Get worked up when they pin that Centurion Badge on your shirt. The rest of the time, Calm Cool Collected.

Fly First Class: This might not be possible. First class is expensive. All the little extras make it worth the price. A more comfortable seat. Possibly even a bed. Priority boarding. Use of the express lane at airport screening. Priority baggage handling. Use of the airport lounge during layovers. Save up your money. These little extras are worth the price.

Drink lots of water: One of the perks of flying first class is they have a bottle of water waiting at your seat. Drink it. They will bring another. Drink all you can during your travel. I get so worked up during travel I forget to drink. Staying hydrated during travel will help you during your Centurion race.

Don’t change your diet: I love to eat. Travel brings new foods. New times of the day to eat. Take advantage of every new food and every meal you can After the race”. Before the race do NOT change your diet. Nothing makes a Centurion race more uncomfortable than digestive distress. It is not worth it. Enjoy your race then eat you own weight in food after and on the way back home.

Take Airborne: Airborne® products contain a combination of key immune supporting vitamins and minerals plus a proprietary blend of natural herbs. Most likely you will not be alone on your flights. You will be sharing the air with several hundred people for as long as 14 hours. Some of them will be sick. Boost your odds of staying well with a boost of vitamins and minerals. Take as often as recommended on the package.

Sleep Sleep Sleep: Sleep as much as you can when ever you can. Have your seat on the plane turned into a bed. Sleep. When you get to your room. sleep. A 24 hour race is still a 24 hour race overseas. Stock up on your sleep.

International races are expensive. Failure is not an option: This is a mindset. International travel is very expensive. Flights, hotels, transportation, tours, food. Almost double if you travel with your spouse or a supporter.  Failure can NOT be an option. You are going to do your Centurion race. You are going to be successful. Nothing is going to stop you. You will not quit.

Enjoy your International Centurion Race. Just because you have decided to make the race harder. Does not mean you can’t still enjoy the experience. Race hard. Become an International Centurion.

105th British Centurion Qualifier

The Redcar Blast in Redcar, England. August 6 – 7th. The One hundred fifth year of British Centurion Qualifiers. That is Centurion Qualifiers at this club since 1911.  I have never seen anything like it. A 24 hour walking race with the atmosphere of a carnival. It looked like all of Northeast England came out to support the racers. Thanks to a Brilliant team of organizers and officials. An absolute joy to be a part of such an event.  A lot of pressure on me. No one has seen an American walk 100 miles in 24 hours in Great Britain since 1965. U.S. Centurion John Kelly is the only American member of the British Centurion Club.  One thing that made this race extra special for me was it was walkers only. Oh what a field of walkers it was. Six badge Centurion Sandra Brown. Four Badge Centurion Richard Brown. Three badge Centurions Frans Leijtens, Frank van der Gulik and Richard McChesney. Double badge Centurions John Bellwood, Jack Bertrums, Kevin Marshall, Alf Short, Martin Fisher. Centurions Sarah Lightman, Suzanne Beardsmore, Albert Bos, Jannie Bos, Richard Kok, Jimmy Millard, Ap van Gelderen, Gino Masto, Edmund Schillabeer. 20 Centurions in the 24 hour race. Plus 11 racers with the aspirations to become Centurions. I have been in their shoes. Never underestimate the ability of someone with a goal set that high.

In the shorter races there were 10 Centurions. Four Badge Centurion Susan Clements. Double Badge Centurions Karen Lawrie, Tony Mackintosh, Richard Cole, Christopher Flint . Centurions Mark Stephen Byrne, Daniel King, David Jones,  Luc Van de Velde, Herwin Weststrate.

The Race Officials included 9 Centurions. Eric Horwill, Kathy Crilley, Pam Ficken, Colin Bradley, John Payn, John Eddershaw, Sean Pender, Michael Hague and Pauline Wilson. I also met triple Centurion Gerrit de Jong and Double badge Centurion Bob Watt. After the race started I saw Centurion Tony Hill and Double badge Centurion Jayne Farquhar in support of her husband. 43 of the biggest names in World Centurion races. That many elite walkers at one race will either fire you up or paralyze you with fear. It fired me up!

The setting was the Redcar Esplanade. 2 miles back and forth along the seaside Promanade. An almost pancake flat concrete sidewalk course. The weather was very pleasantly cool. For an Okie to spend the first week of August with temperatures between 62 and 72 is like going straight to heaven without the judgement. Overnight and Sunday morning I thought I was back in Oklahoma. The wind gusted over 30 mph. There were times the wind stopped me dead in my tracks. Twice my hat blew off and I could not run it down because I would get disqualified for running. Both times supporters chased it down for me. A large food table. Separate Drink tables I like that set up. Grab a drink and finish it. Then grab a bite later. You don’t have to try and eat and drink at the same time. Lots of great supporters handing you cups, sponges. The food table always ready and loaded. This kind of support saves the racers time.

I trained hard all summer for this race. My goal, A British Centurion Badge. I also wanted to have an easier 100 mile race than my last three. Improve my finish time. Despite the Carnival Atmosphere and the cool weather I changed my race strategy for this race. I set a 13:30 minute per mile pace. That is a pace slower than I train. A pace slower than I started my last three one hundred mile races.  A pace I felt like I could hold for 100 miles. In all of my other Centurion qualifiers I started faster and later slowed. This race I started slower and tried to hold the pace to the finish. Make the race feel easier. And I would have a PR finish for me.  This pace made figuring the splits in my head easy. 27 minutes per lap. 54 minutes every 4 miles. 2 hours and 15 minutes every 10 miles. Figuring time splits gives your head something to do during the race. Later in the race figuring splits is hard to do. You have to really concentrate. It takes your mind off what is hurting. I like to keep my mind busy. What am I going to eat next round consumes a lot of my thoughts also. The best thing about an out and back race is You see everyone every lap. It is amazing what you can learn about someone just by Racing with them. I think this is what bonds the Centurion Brotherhood together so tightly. We race together. We suffer together. We fight the wind together. We Celebrate together. We all stepped on the same cracks in the sidewalk. We all felt the sun. We breathed the same air. We Shared the same food and drinks. We are One. We are Centurions! I felt so good in this race for a long time. I loved the set up and the elite company I was in. Just a comfortable race for Me. Very early Sunday morning the wind changed the race. A mile with the wind. A mile against. That mile against was a bear. At that point I started to feel the race. Once again the Centurion’s, racers, supporters and fans pulled all of us along. A BIG shout out to my sweet wife Brenda. Brenda stayed from Saturday afternoon, all night and then to the end of the race. She stood on the hard concrete. Was pounded by the wind and sand. Cold. Waited on my every need and want. A tired racer during a tough endurance event is not always a joy to be around. Thank You Bren. Love You Bunches. After the New Zealand Centurion Qualifier in October 2017 You can pick the vacation spots. I got my PR. Finished sixth overall. 100 miles in 22:19:37. My third Centurion badge. Half way to my ultimate goal of all six World Centurion Badges.

What a Great event. Thanks again to Redcar and the brilliant team of organizers and officials that made this race possible. 10 Racers crossed the One Hundred Mile line. Congratulations to Centurion’s Frank van der Gulik, Sandra Brown, Kevin Marshall and Martin Fisher who Added another 100 miler to their Britsh Centurion totals. Congratulations to Jimmy Millard and Gino Masto who added The British Centurion badge to their Collections.

Welcome New members to the Centurion Brotherhood. Colin Vesty, Kim Reed and John Borgars. I am so glad I got to watch you race on your big day.  My new Centurion Brothers and Sister. I guess I am an old softy. Just watching you finish made me tear up. Thinking about the flood of emotions you go through in a Centurion race all coming together at the finish. That is the kind of Brotherhood a Centurion embodies.

Yep. All that work for this beautiful Badge and Number. None of us knows what the future holds. British Centurion badge number 1169 will always belong to Rob Robertson

 

image

image

redcar

Post Race. Thanking everyone for a Great race with Great Support. Thank You Sue Clements for the Photo.

14117796_10205232838259168_1943416529175863170_n

Split times.

UK Splits

 

 

Training July 30th – August 5th

This week 24.8 Miles

Saturday July 30th – 4.8 Miles

Sunday July 31st –  8 Miles LSD in 1:45:45.

Monday August 1st – 4 Miles

Tuesday August 2nd –  4 Miles

Wednesday August 3rd – 4 Miles early before catching my flight to Great Britian.

Thursday August 4th – Day off touring Beautiful Edinburgh, Scotland

Friday August 5th – Date night with my Wife in Redcar, England.

All that training……. All that time…….. All that healthy food…….All those steps……..All those Miles…….. All those shoes……. All that travel………. It all comes down to this moment in Time.   Let’s Do This!  

Going to be fun!

zkn_determination_quotes

July 2016 Mileage

JULY 26 Days 248.8 Miles

June 25 Days 260.0 Miles
May 26 Days 261.7 Miles
April 23 Days 231.1 Miles
March 26 Days 235.4 Miles
February 24 Days 220.2 Miles
January 26 Days 283.9 Miles

Total 2016 176 Days 1741.1 Miles

Training July 23rd – 29th

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday July 23rd – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Sunday July 24th –  20 Miles LSD in 4:19:04. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday July 25th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups.

TAPER TIME!

Tuesday July 26th –  4.8 Miles.

Wednesday July 27th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:34:57.

Thursday July 28th – 4.8 miles

Friday July 29th – Date night with my Wife!

Enjoying my taper.  Vroom! Vroom! Fueled up. Tires aired up. Engine fine tuned. Ready to race.

zetY85z

Training July 16th – 22nd

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday July 16th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Sunday July 17th –  24 Miles LSD in  5:05:29. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday July 18th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday July 19th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups,  21 minutes of planks.

Wednesday July 20th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:36:05. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday July 21st – 4.8 Miles.

Friday July 22nd – Date night with my Wife!

Eighteen, Seventeen, Sixteen, Fifteen……….. counting down the days till the 105th British Centurion Qualifier. Wont be long now. I am So ready. Since Australia in April This has been the longest, hardest training session I have done. Is it going to pay off? It has to pay off twice actually. My plan was to train for both the British and African Centurions this summer. After the British I will focus on recovery and then fitness maintenance. No back2back’s during that eleven weeks. Two races out of this summer’s training.

c83a5d7858496249de618281bc2815a0

Training July 9th – 15th

This week 74.4 Miles

Saturday July 9th – 24 Miles LSD in 5:10:59.

Sunday July 10th –  24 Miles in 4:57:42. Very pleased with today’s walk on tired legs.

Monday July 11th – 4.8 Miles.

Tuesday July 12th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Wednesday July 13th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:35:45. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday July 14th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday July 15th – Date night with my Wife!

There are moments during a training cycle when you get a glimmer of hope. I had one of those moments this last week. My 24 mile walk on Saturday was harder than it should have been. I am going to blame the heat. I started at 6am and the temperature was already 80 degrees. I was dreading Sundays 24 miles. Sunday was easy. A great pace that felt easy to hold. It is easy to second guess your training. Am I doing too much? Too little? Then you have days like Sunday that let you know, Everything is going to be alright. A slow decrease in mileage the next two weeks. The hard work is done. Now to let my legs recover for the BIG race. Strict diet to reach my racing weight. I need to drop 6 pounds in three weeks. Booooo!

work-motivation

Training July 2nd – 8th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday July 2nd – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Sunday July 3rd –  24 Miles 4:56:22. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday July 4th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday July 5th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups.

Wednesday July 6th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:35:05, 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday July 7th – 4.8 Miles, 21 minutes of Planks.

Friday July 8th – Date night with my Wife!

My legs are feeling good and strong. Looking forward to my Back2back this weekend. My last big workout before The British Centurion Qualifier. Four more weeks.

SUMMER

gym-fitness-exercise-poster

 

Training June 25th – July 1st

This week 50.4 Miles

Saturday June 25th – 24 Miles LSD in 5:19:19. 3 sets of 30 squats. Did not feel the love today.

Sunday June 26th –  Unscheduled day off Visiting Our Kids in Arkansas.

Monday June 27th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday June 28th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Wednesday June 29th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:35:03. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday June 30th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday July 1st – Date night with my Wife!

Just walking and dreaming this week. Adding up the miles wishing the British Centurion race was this weekend. I am so ready. Starting to look forward to my taper.

Quote

 

Training June 18th – 24th

This week 82.4 Miles

Saturday June 18th – 28 Miles LSD in 6:01:30.

Sunday June 19th – 28 Miles LSD in 6:02:14. I had to reach down deep today.

Monday June 20th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday June 21st –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Wednesday June 22nd – 12 Miles LSD in 2:38:33. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday June 23rd – 4.8 Miles

Friday June 10th – Date night with my Wife!

My biggest back 2 back weekend ever. I am not going to lie. Sunday’s walk was tough. Nothing was sore on Monday. I just fell right back into my regular training. A little over four more weeks of training and then a nice taper for the British Centurion. I am looking forward to racing another Centurion Qualifier. There are only 35 Centurion’s with three Badges. Success in Redcar, UK would put me in some rare company. Speaking of Rare Company. Sandra Brown will be racing at Redcar. She is one of two people with six Centurion Badges. Redcar will be her 175th 100 mile or longer race. Just the thought of such an achievement is mind boggling. Right now 23 have signed up for the race. 16 are Centurions. I already feel overwhelmed. To see my name on the entry list knowing I can compete in that company. I don’t know what to say.

WEEKEND

Training June 11th – 17th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday June 11th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 70 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday June 12th – 24 Miles LSD in 5:06:49. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday June 13th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups.

Tuesday June 14th –  4.8 Miles

Wednesday June 15th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:33:56.

Thursday June 16th – 4.8 Miles

Friday June 17th – Date night with my Wife!

I have had to skip several of my planned strength training workouts. My wife and I have been going to our Grandson’s baseball games. My walks have been late at night after the games. So I skip the Strength work. As long as I get one of each workout per week I am not worried about it. I feel like I can maintain my fitness with once per week strength training. The mileage is the most important. Never skip the walking.

Quote2

 

 

 

Training June 4th – 10th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday June 4th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday June 5th – 24 Miles in 4:53:52.  3 sets of 30 squats. One of those magical walks that felt like I could go forever.

Monday June 6th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday June 7th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of planks.

Wednesday June 8th – 12 Miles LSD in  2:30:12. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday June 9th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday June 10th – Date night with my Wife!

I love training in the summer. Hot weather does not bother me training. Racing, I want it cool. Hot weather training makes your body more efficient. It improves your endurance. Then the first race you do in cool weather BAM! PR time. I wonder if it will be cool in Northern England the first part of August?  Without a doubt it will be cooler than Oklahoma. Eight more weeks. Excited.

Quote1

Training May 28th – June 3rd

This week 74.4 Miles

Saturday May 28th – 24 Miles LSD in 5:10:01.

Sunday May 29th – 24 Miles LSD in 5:09:05.

Monday May 30th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday May 31st –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday June 1st – 12 Miles LSD in 2:32:10.  3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday June 2nd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday June 3rd – Date night with my Wife!

For me the greatest training for a Centurion race is the Back 2 Back weekend. The mileage each day is not so high that you need a recovery. The tired legs on day two is great training physically and mentally. Learn to Love those B2B weekends if you want to be a Centurion.

quote-Clara-Hughes-with-athletes-its-never-fully-understood-the-63755

 

Training May 21st – 27th

This week 56.1 Miles

Saturday May 21st – 5.7 miles in Enid, Oklahoma.

Sunday May 22nd – 24 Miles LSD in 5:09:43. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday May 23rd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 10 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday May 24th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday May 25th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:35:12. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday May 26th – 4.8 Miles.

Friday May 27th – Date night with my Wife!

A great solid walking week. I would like to declare myself fully recovered from my Centurion Race in Australia six weeks ago.  I have Back2Back 24 mile walks this weekend. I will hold off on that declaration till Sunday afternoon. I feel fully recovered.

quote-Emil-Zatopek-if-one-can-stick-to-the-training-37621

 

 

Training May 14th – 20th

This week 55.2 Miles

Saturday May 14th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday May 15th – 24 Miles in 4:57:34. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday May 16th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups.

Tuesday May 17th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday May 18th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:34:54. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday May 19th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday May 20th – Travel out of town for a Funeral.

I had my fastest training walk on Sunday since before the Cowtown 50K in February.  I have that spring back in my step. I have a good feeling about my race in Great Britain. I know that no hundred mile race is ever going to feel easy. However after my last two I would except an easier feeling hundred mile race.

fitness-quote

Training May 7th – 13th

This week 46.4 Miles

Saturday May 7th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday May 8th – 20 Miles LSD in 4:12:35. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday May 9th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday May 10th –  Unscheduled day off.

Wednesday May 11th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:38:38. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday May 12th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday May 6th – Date night with my Wife!

I did something I never do this week. I took an unscheduled day off. Right now I am stuck between my recovery and my next Centurion training session. I felt tired and unfocused. So I pushed the reset button. Just a simple day off and now I am ready to prepare for the British Centurion Qualifier.

How-Bad-Do-You-Want-To-Succeed

Training April 30th – May 6th

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday April 30th – 4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 68 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Sunday May 1st – 20 Miles LSD in 4:18:48. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday May 2nd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday May 3rd –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday May 4th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:34:59. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday May 5th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday May 6th – Date night with my Wife!

Slowly building my mileage back up. I have 16 weeks between my Australian Centurion qualifier and The British Centurion qualifier. I am counting the weeks it takes till I feel fully recovered. It has only been three weeks and no surprise I have not yet recovered. I am feeling stronger each week. I think 16 weeks will be more than enough time between 100 mile races. There have been many Dutch, Belgian and English racers qualify at both European qualifiers in the same year. May to August. An average of 12 weeks between races.  All this matters because I signed up this week for the Inaugural African Centurion Qualifier on October 22nd. This race is 11 weeks after my British Qualifier. Can I fully recover and race another 100 miles with 11 weeks recovery? That is what I am going to try and find out.

maxresdefault

Training April 23rd – 29th

This week 38.4 Miles

Saturday April 23rd – 4.8 Miles

Sunday April 24th – 8 Miles LSD in 1:43:06.

Monday April 25th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups. 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday April 26th –  4.8 Miles, 5 sets of 68 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday April 27th – 12 Miles LSD in 2:42:29.  3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday April 28th – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 8 chin-ups.

Friday April 29th – Date night with my Wife!

Back to my workouts this week. My legs feel great. My strength training is not as easy. Amazing to me how fast you lose fitness when you take a break. I just don’t see taking a long break from training. I have worked so hard to get to the level I am at. I can’t imagine starting all over again. I would rather stay ready than have to get ready.

f0944ee68cec48f908aea585101e5999

Training April 16th – 22nd

This week 109.5 Miles

Saturday April 16th –  Start of the Coburg 24 hour Carnival.

Sunday April 17th – Finished my Australian Centurion Qualifier. 101.57 miles in 24 hours.

Monday April 18th – Day Off Touring the Southern Coast of Australia.

Tuesday April 19th – One long Day. Left Melbourne and Arrived in Dallas 10 hours later by the clock. Trust me it was a much longer day than that.

Wednesday April 20th – 4 Easy Miles

Thursday April 21st – 4 Easy Miles

Friday April 22nd – Date night with my Wife!

Wow what a race. Worked through my stomach and sleep deprivation issues. Very pleased that I was able to gut it out. Except for those issues everything else was spot on. No Blisters. This was my first hundred miler my knees did not bother me late in the race. Other than being sore for a couple of days I have no ill effects from the race. What I take from that is my training is working.  I am fit for Centurion Races. Keep on Keeping on. Same training plan starting back this next week. Start slow and build up.  I must Train my mind to better handle all the “other problems” that can wreak your race. 15 weeks to the British Centurion Qualifier.

610686bbe5c904ab97096cc1c0f7e573

The Next Big Goal

My Big Goal of becoming An Australian Centurion was achieved. Now it is time to set my next BIG goal. I want to earn a British Centurion Badge. The British Centurion Club is the Oldest. In fact this years race in Redcar, United Kingdom is the 105th British Centurion Qualifier. An old and VERY proud Club with a lot of History. 1164 Members strong. My Goal.

The Quest to Walk 100 Miles in 24 Hours in Great Britain. 

The Redcar Blast 24 Hour Centurion Qualifier August 6th.

Going to be Fun!

1911

2016 Australian Centurion Qualifier

The Coburg 24 Hour Carnival April 16 – 17 on the Harold Stevens 400 meter track in Coburg, Victoria. A Big Thanks to the Coburg 24 Hour Organizing Committee, Coburg Harriers Athletics Club and Tim Erickson. If you want an over the top excellent Centurion event let a Centurion set the race up. Tim is Australian Centurion C13. Tim is one of the reasons I became a Centurion. He promotes race walking in Australia and around the World. The Australian Centurion website that Tim manages was about the ONLY information I could find about training for 100 mile walking races. Without Tim my journey would have been much tougher. This race was my first thought not long after my United States Centurion race success.

As usual I got to the Race Track early. I like to remove all stress on race day. Rushing around for me is stress. I would much rather arrive early, wait around and relax. I enjoy watching other racers. I was looking forward to meeting everyone. One person in particular was Double Badge Centurion John Kilmartin.  John became Australian Centurion C67 at last years event. Almost two months before my Centurion attempt in Minnesota. After His success I made contact with John. He was more than willing to offer advice and training tips.  John’s help gave me the confidence boost I needed before my U.S. Centurion Race.  John and I both share the same goal. We want every World Centurion Badge. John however is on a super charged pace than I could not ever consider. I was not disappointed. You know how when you look up to someone. Then when you meet them you thought they would be taller because of your perception of grandeur. No disappointment with John. In Real life and My perception John towers above everyone. It was great to see Triple Badge Centurions Justin and Sharon Scholz again. I would not be surprised to run into to the Scholz’s at every ultra event on earth. I also met Husband and wife Australian Centurions Terry and Karyn O’Neil.  I was pleased to meet the Double Badge Centurions from The Netherlands, Albertus van Ginkel and Sandra de Graaff.  John, Justin, Albertus , Sharon and Sandra will all five race the Continental Centurion Qualifier in The Netherlands in less than four weeks.  An insane schedule. True Elite Ultra distance athletes. I also was honored to meet Australian Centurions, Michelle Thompson, Clarrie Jack, Robyn Whyte. Long distance walkers Phil Essam, Saul Richardson, Albin Hess, Louis Commins, Blu Young, Dawn Parris, Val Chesterton, Sandra Howorth and John Timms.  A very strong field of Walkers.  I have never been in the company of so many Centurions at the same time. That in itself can be a bit overwhelming. No matter what Continent, Ultra races are like attending Big Family reunions.

The race stated at 10 am. All the walkers in lane three. Runners in lane one. This is where it pays to have a Centurion set up a Qualifier. Tim has the walkers away from the runners.  Just 388 laps in lane three plus a few steps for a total of 100 miles. After training on the rubberized track at home for two months I knew I would like that surface. The weather was perfect. Sunny and a little warm at the start. After a couple of hours it became cloudy with a nice cool wind. Over night was cold with about 20 minutes of light rain. Melbourne can have weather extremes. We were very lucky.  My plan was a nice steady 13:20 pace for the whole race. Set my gear bag under a chair and my food on top. Tim Tams every 30 minutes. I confess. The reason I train hard. The reason I do Centurion races is so I can eat candy all day and night. Australia has good sweet biscuits and lollies. Started off at pace. I was having stomach issues. I have the same diet day after day. However traveling the food is great but the little differences upsets my system. I also tend to overeat. The pace got harder to hold. Then along came some help. The Dutch racers Sandra and Bertus. They support each other, race together with a perfect pace to finish with success. I joined in right behind them. I knew if I just stuck with them I also would find Australian Centurion Success. For 80 miles in the race I did this. As I felt better I would pass them and then later join the Dutch train again. My next problem was sleep. I could not sleep on the overnight flight. I slept very little the next two nights in Melbourne. I really felt this lack of sleep during the race. Being an International Centurion race these issues turn an already Very Tough race to one even Tougher. Not something you really need.  At one point in the race we passed the big monitor that told what lap you had just finished. Bertus said, ” Look Rob you only need 100 more laps.”  In training on the track at home I would walk 105 laps. Several times during training I would do this 105 lap walk on back to back days. That second day would always be tough. Now I needed 100 laps and had already walked 288 laps. At that point I really thought I might not make it. I was hurting. I was sleepy. I was out of gas. If you want to be a Centurion for me anyway, the race is a real gut check. With about 60 laps to go I was finished. No food looked or tasted good. I had my Wife Brenda buy some Coke. This perked me up a little. With 22 laps to go I was down again. So close but I just did not feel like I could Finish. Brenda got me another coke. Tim Erickson and All the Australian Centurions, support staff, my Australian friends Kevin and Wanda who drove down from Canberra recognized my plight. Everyone was cheering me on. It was not till I got within 12 laps that I thought I could finish. I crossed the 100 mile mark at 23:13:53. Finished with 163.462K. 101.57 miles. Centurion races really are more mental than physical. I made up my mind this race would be a success ten months ago. Had a game plan for the training and the race. I stuck to the training and had to adjust my race plan. Now I am Australian Centurion C68. Got my name right under John Kilmartin’s name. Enjoyed everything about my first International Centurion Race. Tough but Enjoyable.

Our Trip to Australia was perfect. The Race. The other Athletes. All the support staff. We enjoyed touring the Yarra valley and along the coast. Beautiful Country. The people around Melbourne are a lot like the People of Oklahoma. Friendly hard working folks. People that appreciate what they work for. People that enjoy their free time. They are “Okies” that talk funny. This will not be my only trip to Australia.

image At mile 40.

image On the Dutch Train. John Kilmartin in back about to pass us again.

image Five Centurion Champions in this Photo.

Michelle Thompson Won the Women’s race. I wish everyone could see Michelle Racewalk. She has a grace and beauty to Her style that is mesmerizing. I Won the Men’s. This is the Perpetual Australian 24 hour Champions trophy. Our names will be added. On the left  Robyn Whyte a three time Australian Centurion. To the right Now Three World Badge Centurions Albertus van Ginkel and Sandra de Graaff.

Centurion68

This was very special.  The Jack Webber Trophy.  Only Presented if the performance during a 24 hour Centurion event is deemed a high enough standard. Voted on by the Australian Centurions present. I am very Honored to be have been considered for this great award. Thank You my Australian Centurion Brothers and Sisters.

ShirtBadge

I feel like I earned this Shirt and Badge. Hats off to the Australian Centurion Club. They do everything over the top. A proud Club proud of their members.

image Loaded down. Australian Centurion Badge. Coburg 24 hour medal. The Gold Medal is for fastest Male 100K. Trophy for First Place.

Thank You to Wanda Stewart for all these great photos.

 

 

Training April 9th – 15th

This week 27.2 Miles

Saturday April 9th –  4.8 miles

Sunday April 10th – 8 miles in 1:41:39.

Monday April 11th – 4 miles

Tuesday April 12th – 4 miles early before leaving for the Airport.

Wednesday April 13th – Poof this day disappeared over the Pacific Ocean.

Thursday April 14th – Arrived in Melbourne, Victoria Australia. 4 miles on the hotel treadmill.

Friday April 15th – 2.4 mile shakeout walk before Touring The Yarra Valley with my Wife!

Light walking travel week. Save up your money and fly first class. I knew the flight would be long. It felt even longer than the 14 hours we were in the air. All the perks and extra room are worth the difference in price. My legs are well rested and ready to race. Oh my I can’t believe I am in Australia.  The Centurion is here for the taking. The training has been done. Just waiting now on the alarm to go off. Let’s do this. Going to be fun!

being-nervous-is-not-something-you-should-be-ashamed-of-nervous-means-you-care-you-really-want-to-quote-1

 

Training April 2nd – 8th

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday April 2nd –  4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Sunday April 3rd – 20 miles LSD in 4:16:08. 3 sets of 30 squats. One of those magical walks that felt like I could walk forever.

Monday April 4th – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 10 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Centurion Race Taper Starts

Tuesday April 5th – 4.8 miles

Wednesday April 6th – 12 miles LSD in 2:38:41.

Thursday April 7th – 4.8 miles

Friday April 8th – Date night with my Wife!

Another easy week of Centurion pace work. I love race taper. The extra free time skipping strength training. Being able to relax knowing you have finished all the hard work. The way your legs feel all rested. My mind at peace, filled with anticipation.  Starting to get all my gear together for my big trip to Australia. I like to collect my gear together early. Almost every day I think of something I forgot. After all the hard work preparing for a Big race now is not the time to drop the ball and forget something. I am ready to Race.

Saying

Training March 26th – April 1st

This week 51.2 Miles

Saturday March 26th –  4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Sunday March 27th – 20 miles LSD in 4:26:02. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday March 28th – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 10 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday March 29th – 4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Wednesday March 30th – 12 miles LSD in 2:37:36. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday March 31st – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 10 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday April 1st – Date night with my Wife!

Over nine months ago I became United States Centurion C78. A few days after that I announced my intentions to become an Australian Centurion. I had ten months to prepare. Let me tell you that ten months has flown by. Step number two of a six step journey I have planned. My journey of five world Centurion Badges has changed to Six. Looks like Africa will host the inaugural African Centurion Qualifier on Robben Island, South Africa this October.  I will have to sacrifice my trip to New York for the U.S. Qualifier. I hate to miss any Centurion race. The chance to race an inaugural Centurion Event is too good a deal to pass up. I am getting way ahead of myself here. One BIG goal at a time. The way the time flies by I have no choice but to plan ahead. Trust me I am not overlooking Australia.

Easy week training for me this last week. Just nice Centurion Pace work. Another round of the same next week. Same mileage minus the strength training starting on Tuesday or what I affectionately call TAPER!

541ef96e57e43e4ed6a97554a33b73be

Training March 19th – 25th

This week 46.2 Miles

Saturday March 19th –  2.4 miles

Sunday March 20th – 26.2 miles at the A2A Marathon in 5:01:53.

Monday March 21st – Day Off.

Tuesday March 22nd – 4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Wednesday March 23rd – 8 miles LSD in 1:47:48. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday March 24th – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday March 25th – Date night with my Wife!

Last weekends Marathon and my legs. Without a doubt I can walk high weekly mileage. I can train hard and walk long distances both without injury. The question is do my legs fully recover? I think late February’s Cowtown 50K race left my legs tired. More tired than I thought. I resumed my hard training for three weeks. Then raced the A2A Marathon. My legs were not responsive. I have been under the impression that if I kept piling on the miles my legs would adapt. I still believe that. However I also need some recovery time. My plan was to pile on more miles before the Australian Centurion. This week I focused instead on recovery. I will do the same between now and my Centurion race. I have the fitness now for a hundred mile race. This last week and next week would not have added much more to my fitness. Just looking to maintain now, then Taper. Achieve my Goal. Race Australia with happy RESTED legs.

01

 

2016 A2A Marathon

My third year in a row to do this Point to Point Marathon in Ardmore, Oklahoma. I get to sleep in my own Bed. Easy 30 minute drive to the race. The race officials take the racers by school bus to the starting line. An eye opening 25 minute ride that gives you a chance to fathom what your feet are about to do. The last two years we pushed 20 mph headwinds. Not this year. Cool with a 15 mph tail wind. The wind is significant because 19 miles of this race is all in one direction. My goal this year, just a nice easy sub five hour marathon. Sometimes races don’t go as planned. I just didn’t have my “A” game today. Nothing is wrong. Nothing hurt. No blisters. I just could not walk as fast as I wanted, For me anyway this hilly marathon is tough. There were more marathon racers this year. The support staff is Great. Water stops are about every mile. The A2A is a great race. I just have not figured out how to race it YET. I finished with a 5:01:53. The highlight of the race was my Wife and Grandkids waiting at the finish line. The race finishes on the track in the football stadium. I was the only racer in the stadium. My grand kids were so excited. They said, ” Granddad you won the race.”

A2A1

A2A2

Training March 12th – 18th

This week 58.2 Miles

Saturday March 12th –  4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Sunday March 13th – 27 miles LSD in 5:53:55 in lane 3 on the track. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday March 14th – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 10 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday March 15th – 4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Wednesday March 16th – 12 miles LSD in 2:37:58.  3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday March 17th – 4.8 miles.

Friday March 18th – Date night with my Wife!

No taper before my A2A Marathon this Sunday. Just using the race as a supported training walk. I need the miles more than a personal best marathon. There will be time for personal records after my World Centurion Quest is over. The Forecast is about perfect for a marathon. Dry, cool and light wind.

Speaking of World Centurion Quest. I signed up for the Redcar Blast this week. The Redcar Blast is the 105th British Centurion Qualifier this August in Redcar, UK. That is my next goal. Just thinking about Australia right now. One Goal at a time Please.

Commitment-Quote

Training March 5th – 11th

This week 58.2 Miles

Saturday March 5th –  4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Sunday March 6th – 27 miles LSD in 5:50:50 in lane 3 on the track. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Monday March 7th – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Tuesday March 8th – 4.8 miles, 5 sets of 69 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks

Wednesday March 9th – 12 miles LSD in 2:34:27.  3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday March 10th – 4.8 miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday March 11th – Date night with my Wife!

I am getting excited about my Australian Centurion Race in five weeks. I have trained hard. Much harder than I did for my U.S. Centurion race. I feel great. That is not the reason for my excitement. It is getting to share the Track with other Centurions. Some of the best long distance walkers in the world. I am inspired by watching other Centurions Race.  These folks have also chewed the pavement training. They have survived the race, felt the pain, enjoyed the success.

Australia will be well represented with Australian Centurions.  Michelle Thompson holds every female walking race record in Australia up to her age. Every new age group she enters She breaks the records.  Will be fun to watch her zip past every few laps.  Clarrie Jack will be looking to add to his many walking records. He is now racing in the 70 year age group.  John Kilmartin is a double Centurion with Australian and British Centurion Badges. John has been a mentor to me in my Centurion quest. John is faster than I am. Can not wait to meet him and watch his walking form.

The Netherlands will be represented by a pair of Double Badge Centurions. Sandra de Graaff and Albertus van Ginkel. Both are Continental and British Centurions. I raced last summer with two Dutch racers. I expect to be equally awed by Sandra and Albertus.

There are several other top Australian walkers in the field. Excited. Going to be Fun!

5b43b004b7aab16187bf91a25de5bd95

 

Training February 27th – March 4th

This week 55.0 Miles

Saturday February 27th –  2.4 miles

Sunday February 28th –  31 miles at the Cowtown 50K in 5:57:17

Monday February 29th – Day off

Tuesday March 1st – 4.8 miles, 5 sets of 68 push-ups, 21 minutes of Planks.

Wednesday March 2nd – 12 Miles LSD in 2:38:36. 3 sets of 30 squats.

Thursday March 3rd – 4.8 Miles, 4 sets of 9 chin-ups, 3 rounds boxing the heavy bag.

Friday March 4th – Date night with my Wife.

With post race recovery being a good judge of fitness my training has worked for me. I took one day off and jumped back into my workouts. I feel great. Only my core and glutes were sore. Looks like I will lose both big toe nails. I have lost each one over the last two years. First time to lose both together. I will keep building mileage. Six weeks to my Australian Centurion attempt. I have a small local hilly point to point Marathon in two weeks. I have finished the A2A marathon twice. Once one second over 5 hours. Once 48 seconds under 5 hours. This year I will try for a 4:59:59 training walk finish.

sign

 

2016 Cowtown 50K

2016 Cowtown 50K in Fort Worth, Texas. Last year I was trained and ready for this race. Two days before North Texas had a major ice storm. The race was changed to a half marathon. This year I was more trained and extra ready for this 50K.  The weather this year was perfect. Not too cold at the start, 55 degrees. Not too hot at the end, 75 degrees.

I just had a peace about this race. The plan. A five hour Marathon and then just five more miles at Marathon pace. Wow. Turns out it is that “just five more miles” that makes the 50K a bear. I felt good all race. I felt like I was holding back up to about mile 23. At that point I could put the pedal down or finish easy just under Six hours. By mile 30 I knew I had made the right choice.  The last thing my Wife told me when I went out the door for the race, “Remember Your race in Australia in April.” I picked the easy finish. 5:57:17. I am very Pleased. The 50K is a very good endurance test. I will race The Cowtown 50K every February. Love everything about the Fort Worth experience. One of these years that Cowtown 50K and I are going to see who is the boss.

IMG_0357

Cowtown

434970_222153427_MediumMile 24

 

Training February 20th – 26th

This week 28.8 Miles

Taper Starts

Saturday February 20th –  4.8 miles

Sunday February 21st –  8 miles

Monday February 22nd – 4 miles

Tuesday February 23rd – 4 miles

Wednesday February 24th – 4 miles on my 53rd Birthday.

Thursday February 25th – 4 miles

Friday February 26th – Date night with my Wife!

I am so looking forward to Sunday’s 50K in Fort Worth. My legs are rested and ready to go. The forecast is 55 degrees at the start and 75 degrees when I finish just under six hours later. A little warm but not too bad. Excited.

years

I am moving back toward my Youth.  Wish I had skipped those 30 years in the middle. Those lazy heavy Years. Glad I saw the light before train.