Tag Archives: Mark Vishnevsky

New Year’s Eve (ABW) 5K – 2016

December 31, 2016

Got back a couple of days ago from Christmas in Costa Rica with the family.  Didn’t really do any runs at all, but did walk quite a bit.

For the first time in a while, I am in Southern California for New Year’s, so I decided to walk down and visit Mark and Michelle and some other folks that are running a NYE run today.

It was a bit windy and I am not back yet to normal (though Avalon 50M looms).  My three miles are 8:45, 9:53 (1.1), and 7:36.  This is still good enough to win my age group, but I think the fast guys are not running the 5K race today.

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Spooky Dash 5K (ABW) – 2016

October 29, 2016

Decided to walk down to visit with Mark and Michelle (A Better World Running) who were putting on a 5K/10K on the beach bike path.  I tried to time it so that I arrived after the start of the races, but ended up arriving probably 10 minutes before the start of the races.  Michelle asked if I wanted to run, and since it’s been 2 weeks since Twin Peaks, I feel like I can test to see where I am at in recovery/restart.

The race is just a straight out-and-back on the Long Beach bike path, and with many of their races (especially the bigger ones), you need to go out hard, otherwise you get stuck in the pack and not able to run the pace you want.

I tried not to go out too hard, however, and managed a respectable 13:00 outbound.  Hard to tell if I am in the top group because there are people turning around who could be in the 5K or the 10K or 100 miler.

Coming back, I tried to do equally as well, though it did feel a lot harder coming back, for some reason.  Maybe because it’s the first “sprint” race since my ultra.  12:50 on the return trip for a net time of 25:50.  Not too bad.

Summer Nights 5K (3) – 2016

August 4, 2016

My right knee has been bugging me the last few weeks.  I already know that I have Runner’s Knee, and it pops a bit when I leave it bent for too long.  Mostly, it is extra sore when I am pounding it extra hard on pavement (trails or dirt feel better, mostly).

The third (and final for me (not going to Brea)) Summer Night is being held for the first time at Huntington Beach Central Park (where I have run dozens of races).  It is an interesting set-up because there is some major construction going on in an area where we would normally run, so instead of a really interesting loop, it is basically running out to the far end of the park (by the arboretum, and not by the horse and dog area that we regularly run in) and doing three loops of mostly the same thing and a lot of paved path.

I was running a bit late and ended up signing in to race at 6:27pm, with a 6:30pm start.  I basically pinned my number on AS I started the run.  There were not going to be a lot of AREC folks, but I knew Birthday Boy Mark Vishnevsky was going to be there, so I wanted to at least go by and say, “Hi.”  Instead of the 15-20 folks, there were 6 of us.  Still a lot of high schoolers, though.

I decided to run with my GPS watch, because it can tell me what my average pace per mile is AND my best pace within that mile… so if I slow down, I can see what my fastest pace is (probably when I ramp back up).

Mile 1, I cover in 7:39, and my best pace is 6:46.  I’m getting my feel for the course and also I am amidst a lot of young runners.  The one section of unfamiliar grass is VERY lumpy and I do almost trip a couple of times.

For Mile 2, I slow down a bit (walk a tad) and do 8:35 (best pace 6:29).

And for the last mile, I want to finish strong, though I don’t want to overdo it, as I have an ultramarathon on Sunday and a 6-hour drive to Oakland tomorrow.  So I do 9:15 (best pace 7:02 – probably the last 200 yards) and finish in 25:09, a little over 8:00 pace.

Mark comes in 4th overall in the race (best 5K EVER at age 36!).

Stars and Stripes 5K – 2016

July 3, 2016

Decided I would walk down to visit Mark and Michelle, because they were putting on a holiday weekend series of races.  I also wanted to try out my GPS watch that Doug Atkin had refurbished, then given to me.

It was kind of fun to see minute changes in pace as I sped up or slowed down, or came to a stop.

Mark told me that I should run to the turnaround with Michelle and then he would give me credit for a 5K race (since there were still people out there).  When Michelle stopped for a powder room break, I decided that I would (race) walk until Michelle caught up to me (which never happened).

I felt pretty good (racewalk-wise) and maintained a consistent pace the whole way.  I was probably the fastest racewalker, except that they didn’t have that category.  I finished in 36:10, which is one of my better walking 5Ks.

I helped them clean up and then walked back home to rest before tomorrow’s race.

Stars & Stripes 15K – 2012

July 4, 2012

The past several years I did the La Palma 4th of July run, but Mark Vishnevsky invited me and Inger (and Zack) to run his race instead (and gave us a comped entry!).  This is the best deal, because I could walk/jog down to the race (a couple of miles), do the race and return back the same way.

Even though my 33M race is now 3 weeks ago, the stress and strain of doing so many consecutive ultras is wearing on me a bit.  The trick is not to overdo it.

Since Mark’s courses are generally loop courses, we have the option of doing 3-5Ks OR a 5K and 10K (in whichever order).  I opted to do the 5K first and then the 10K, figuring that everyone else would do the opposite and then I wouldn’t overdo my pace.  (It makes more sense to do the 10K first, because it is less difficult psychologically to run a shorter loop the second time around – but I always take ‘the road less traveled.’)

The first 5K loop took me about 26 minutes, and then the 2nd loop (10K) took 56 minutes – and I certainly had to walk… but I didn’t have a lot of my competitors commenting on it, because they had already done the 10K loop!

I ended up finishing in 5th, about 3 minutes behind Inger.  The ironic situation here is that I was the first overall MALE finisher (perhaps the ONLY male finisher), so despite running about 13 minutes slower than my personal best at this distance, I WON the race!

Browne-Rice Kayak (1M) Run (5K) Relay – 2013

July 13, 2013

This was a previously held event called “ThomBob,” but it died out somewhat when Thom Lacie was no longer affiliated with the Runners High stores.  Or maybe because it was thought that there wasn’t a lot of interest. Well, even though I am a crap kayaker, I still enjoy doing this event.

Back in the day, the teams were required to be more evenly matched, but after a few years, I started to notice that Bob’s kids seemed to be ringers and then the handicap measure went out the window.  Though… if you really think about it, unless a team has two professional kayakers, the odds that a team will automatically win are more based on how they do on the run.

With this in mind, I decided to ask my buddy Mark, if he wasn’t putting on any races that day, because I felt like we might have half a chance to place if my running partner was a ringer.

As usual, on the kayak leg, I was the worst person in my section (the order is: person 1 kayak, person 2 run, person 1 run, person 2 kayak), but Mark ran us back into the top 3.

On my run, I was able to do a sight better than at Boeing, with 25 and change. This dropped us out of the top 10.

Finally, Mark wielded his skills on the kayak.  I thought he might have an advantage seeing as he can get leverage with average length legs.  It made me feel better that this running superhero was just average in the kayak (but he did pick up enough places to get us into 10th).

I hope this event continues, even though the name representatives are getting up there in age.

Rohring Around the Clock 12H – 2013

February 23, 2013

My friend, Jim Tello, is putting on a 12-hour event in Bonita (a few miles north of the US/Mexico border).  This is the guy who sweeps a bunch of races I have been in, therefore meaning that I run with him quite a bit.  Laura is going, too.

The official start of the race was at 6am, but we were OK with not starting right on time, because the drive was almost 2 hours, and neither of us were going to win any prizes.  However, we had some trouble getting out of Long Beach because of freeway construction – apparently, the 405/22/605 interchange is completely closed, so after a few tries, we drove 5 miles down Westminster and then got on the freeway (but it took us 30 minutes to get the 5 miles down the freeway!).  We left pretty early but only found the start by about 6:45am and started when we were ready to go.

As with most 12 hour courses, this was a 5K loop, which would be run in one direction for 3 hours, and then the opposite direction, and so on.  The course parallels a golf course for a bit, then curves around to parallel the road, and then is the shoulder on the road.  All of this is unpaved.  Then it turns onto a paved path through a grassy area, next to the steam train tracks, and then back onto a dirt trail going around a lake area, paralleling another street, and finally through the parking lot and back onto a dirt path by the library (where the “aid station” was located).

I was having side stitches from the get-go, and started out at a fairly slow pace.  The first two loops I did in 36:00 and 36:50, and the next two in 41:00 and 41:30. This led me to believe that I would be walking probably the rest of it, so when I finished my 4th loop, I decided to walk a loop and read my book, New York by Edward Rutherfurd, a historical fiction novel about New York City.

While this seems crazy, reading and walking had been my training to get ready for my 100 mile race last year, and I can read and walk at a decent pace.  By doing so, I could cover the miles and not be bored to tears.  I finished my next 3 loops in 55 minutes (some delay getting my book out), 51:30, and 61 minutes.  This put me at 35 Kilometers AND I was enjoying my book.

However, the hardness of the course was getting to my feet and so I did have to take a number of sitting breaks to relieve the pain.

Taking a load off my feet

Taking a load off my feet

This 8th loop took me an hour and 15 minutes.

In reading and walking the loops, it wasn’t 100% me being engrossed in my book.  When various runners passed by me, occasionally they would walk with me and we would have a short conversation.  I didn’t see a whole lot of Laura, but I did get to walk with “Badwater Brian,” Nickademus Hollon (who later became the 13th and youngest (at 22) to complete the Barkley “Marathon”), and John Wog (who I met at mile 40 of Blue Canyon Trail Race 50M).

I did a couple more loops in 55 and 72 minutes, and ultimately decided that I would continue to go until I finished my book (about 300 pages total reading).

I did my 11th loop in 60 minutes and finished my book midway through my 12th loop.

On the last direction change, I saw Laura and she said that as soon as I was finished, that she was finished, too.  (On the direction changes, you only changed direction when you got back to the aid station.  This creates the effect of runners passing each other in opposite directions, and having a chance to wave or say, “Hi.”)

Having stopped on my 12th loop, I was waiting for Laura to finish whichever loop she was on (she certainly had lapped me a few times).  When she came in, I said, “I’m finished!” to which she replied, “I only need a few more tenths to get 50 miles.”  So I waited for her to get in that last bit of distance.

My distance was 37.2 miles (or 60K) which tied my best (and only other) 12 hour race. Yay.  PR!

Meanwhile, a second 12-hour run was beginning, as well as some of the participants continuing in a 24-hour quest OR 100-mile try.  Mark Vishnevsky came down to attempt a 100-miler (but ended up running a 6-hour run with Michelle).  I think loops are not for him.

Our “finisher’s medal” was a wall clock saying “Rohring Around the Clock” with a Roaring Lion in the center.

We had a quiet uneventful drive back to Long Beach.

With Laura and Steve after finishing.

With Laura and Steve after finishing.