Tag Archive | "shannon mcginn"

Extreme Racer Nerdy Winners Steve Hughes and Diane Bolton

Steve Hughes Wins 2012 ‘Extreme Racer of the Year’ (Complete Final Standings)

Steve Hughes (RIF #194) won Run It Fast’s Inaugural ‘Extreme Racer of the Year‘ contest with a whooping 2,742.4 points. The Arkansas native ran an amazing 82 marathons, fifteen 50K’s, and four other races consisting of 129 miles for a grand total of 2,742.4 race miles in 2012.

Second place (first female) went to Diane Bolton (RIF #159) with 1,961.91 points.

Joshua Holmes (RIF #1) finished in third with 1,652.1 points.  He was followed by John Kent Leighton (RIF #190) and Carol Goslin (RIF #218) rounded out the top five.

Runners in the ‘Extreme Racer’ standings are given 1 point for each mile of racing they complete. For example a marathon is worth 26.2 points, half marathon 13.1 points, 50K 31.0 points, etc.

The competitive contest is open to members of Run It Fast – The Club. You can read more about joining HERE. The club is open to runners of all levels.

2012 Extreme Racer Final Standings

Top Ten Overall
1.   Steve Hughes – 2,742.4  (RIF #194)
2.   Diane Bolton – 1,961.91  (RIF #159)
3.   Joshua Holmes – 1,652.1  (RIF #1)
4.   John Kent Leighton – 1,648.88  (RIF #190)
5.   Carol Goslin – 1,188.3  (RIF #218)
6.   Hideki Kinoshita – 1,153.8  (RIF #88)
7.   Steven Lee – 1,044.4  (RIF #92)
8.   Elaine Bickel Green – 915.4  (RIF #217)
9.   Shannon McGinn – 820.79  (RIF #46)
10.   Michelle Walker – 801.5  (RIF #124)

Men’s Leaderboard
1.   Steve Hughes – 2,742.4  (RIF #194)
2.   Joshua Holmes – 1,652.1  (RIF #1)
3.   John Kent Leighton – 1,648.88  (RIF #190)
4.   Hideki Kinoshita – 1,153.8  (RIF #88)
5.   Steven Lee – 1,044.4  (RIF #92)
6.   Scott Stader – 665.9  (RIF #40)
7.   Danny Staggs – 510.3  (RIF #186)
8.   Alvin Lee – 499.5  (RIF #30)
9.   Nicholas Norfolk – 429  (RIF #116)
10.   Jason Howard – 379.9  (RIF #150)
11.   David Wingard – 365.4  (RIF #101)
12.   Mark Watson – 329.6  (RIF #173)
13.   Daniel Escue – 320.45  (RIF #187)
14.   Rick Thiounn – 299.9  (RIF #111)
15.   Rick Jarvis – 296.8  (RIF #18)
16.   Wade Anderson – 236.8  (RIF #22)
17.   Chris Estes – 226.2  (RIF #151)
18.   Dennis Arriaga – 215.56  (RIF #140)
19.   David Donald – 203.96  (RIF #54)
20.   Anthony Ohrey – 201.1  (RIF #27)
21.   Rodrigo Jiménez – 195.43  (RIF #203)
22.   Perry Ligon – 193  (RIF #146)
23.   Jonathan Bobbitt – 180.6  (RIF #3)
24.   David Pharr – 178.2  (RIF #185)
25.   Robin Robbins – 167.9  (RIF #33)
26.   Greg Smith – 144.4  (RIF #168)
27.   Kevin Leathers – 143  (RIF #12)
28.   Trent Rosenbloom – 141.6  (RIF #57)
29.   Steven Reagan – 139.82  (RIF #157)
30.   Nathan Bass – 135.4  (RIF #174)
31.   Chris Haynes – 135.3  (RIF #223)
32.   Winston Trice – 126.4  (RIF #29)
33.   Josh Liggett – 119.62  (RIF #147)
34.   Nathan Judd – 118.6  (RIF #166)
35.   Mark Sikkila – 113.4  (RIF #108)
36.   Kevin Ronayne – 106.3  (RIF #11)
37.   James Krenis – 83.6  (RIF #67)
38.   Naresh Kumar – 83.4  (RIF #2)
39.   Stephen Griffin – 82.7  (RIF #48)
40.   John Hudson – 79.6  (RIF #63)
41.   Brian Wooldridge – 77.9  (RIF #141)
42.   Victor Fleitas – 71.12  (RIF #21)
43.   Scott Lochridge – 65.5  (RIF #32)
44.   Stewart Crouch – 64.8  (RIF #89)
45.   JD Leman – 39.3  (RIF #139)
46.   Scott Gatlin – 29.3  (RIF #80)
47.   Scott Gorski – 25.5  (RIF #107)
48.   Chris Nelson – 19.3  (RIF #135)
49.   Patrick Johnson – 10  (RIF #87)

Women’s Leaderboard
1.   Diane Bolton – 1,961.91  (RIF #159)
2.   Carol Goslin – 1,188.3  (RIF #218)
3.   Elaine Bickel Green – 915.4  (RIF #217)
4.   Shannon McGinn – 820.79  (RIF #46)
5.   Michelle Walker – 801.5  (RIF #124)
6.   Heather Shoemaker – 730.9  (RIF #44)
7.   Nadia Ruiz Gonzales – 690.6  (RIF #69)
8.   Lisa Gonzales – 562.6  (RIF #5)
9.   Laura Raeder – 517.3  (RIF #20)
10.  Mikki Trujillo – 514.1  (RIF #13)
11.   Shannon Burke – 502.03  (RIF #171)
12.   Emily Conley – 426.4  (RIF #24)
13.   Robin Mancinelli – 413.8  (RIF #134)
14.   Alicia Eno – 405.7  (RIF #126)
15.   Michelle Mitchell – 365.7  (RIF #133)
16.   Leigh Marsh – 332.7  (RIF #192)
17.   Marlene Deem – 281.2  (RIF #189)
18.   Jennifer Whitley – 184.9  (RIF #160)
19.   Amber Goetz-Bouchard – 166.75  (RIF #15)
20.   Marj Mitchell – 148.4  (RIF #4)
21.   Donna Pittman – 147.2  (RIF #181)
22.   Christy Bowers – 143.9  (RIF #60)
23.   Daniela Obregon – 135.69  (RIF #49)
24.   Nicole Knutson – 104.8  (RIF #47)
25.   Lisa Edwards – 58  (RIF #122)
26.   Natalie Torres – 42.4  (RIF #72)
27.   Meredith Yox – 40.2  (RIF #128)
28.   Debra Jacildo – 17.39  (RIF #98)

Big thank you to all of the Run It Fast members that took part in the Extreme Racer program in 2012. You should have received a Thank You card in the mail along with a couple of Run It Fast temporary tattoos.

Top 10 overall finishers will be receiving a certificate to honor their accomplishment. Top 3 overall finishers will be receiving gift certificates to Running Warehouse.

We are already collecting data from January for the 2013 Extreme Racer standings. You can view that info or RIF members can enter their data HERE.

Posted in Extreme Racer, THE CLUBComments (1)

Race Report: The Art of Racing 50k in the Rain.

Location: 50k Nationals. Caumsett Park, Long Island.  March 6, 2011

So who’s up for some repeats?  10 x  5k?  In the rain?  I am!

2010 Recap:   My 2010 had been plagued with negativity.  My health was a mystery.  Hives attacked at random from February on.  I felt weak all the time.  I failed a Pulmonary Function Test (what?!) and needed a Nebulizer.   My thyroid was erroneously blamed.  I was possibly anemic.  Specialists started pointing fingers at each other.  I was allergic to “something”.  After 250 needles, I was declared allergic to myself.  I was given antihistamines, three inhalers, steroids, and some “emergency” pills.  I have huge zip-lock bag full of medications that served mostly to make be bloated, fat, tired, and anxious.  Eventually I just got better.

During all that, my training took a back seat.  When the hives calmed down, I jumped back in where I left off and I ended up with fibromas (marble-sized lumps of painful scar tissue) on my plantar fascias.  I had a hard time walking.  I got the fibromas removed with cortisone.  I felt so good I ran over 65 miles in 12 hours during a 24 hour race and strained my undertrained ACL.  I spent most of 2010 running less, gaining weight, and just feeling cruddy.

The first of my very many DNF’s of 2010 happened at Caumsett 50k.  I finished 2009 by crushing my PRs in every distance from 5k through 24 hours.  By February 2010, I was cruising through 24 mile runs on my treadmill during blizzards and racing marathons all around 3:25 or less as training.  I felt ready for a great Caumsett, until the week before when I ended up in the ER covered in hives.

Heavily medicated, I still arrived.  I started fast and felt horrible.  By loop 2, I ditched my arm warmers and saw the red welts surfacing.  By loop 3, my abdomen was itchy and I found them on my stomach.  By loop 4 I called it a day.  In about 150 races since my cancer treatment, I had only DNF’d once (at my first ultra in a snow storm).  This was #2 and it unfortunately set the tone for the rest of that disappointing year.

2011: I started 2011 with a “come back plan” that involved returning to my roots.  I started again with low mileage and weekly short races.  I was found driving up the highway by a small dog sitting roadside in the cold sleeting rain.  I named him Enzo (like Enzo Ferrari, like Enzo the dog from The Art of Racing in the Rain) and as it turns out he loves running fast and far.   He got me out the door when the weather was miserable.  He pushed (er… pulled) our pace.  My mileage finally made it back up to 80 miles per week and then hovered around 60.  My fastest long effort was only a 1:41 half marathon at the end of January (7 minutes off my best).

Looking at those numbers, I was not ready for a great 50k so I ran a slow 20 miles the day before.  Two nights before that I had a dream I ran a 4:33.  I decided that would be my goal.

The Race: My friend Ray came up to run.  We decided to spend some time together since I missed racing with him at the end of 2010.   Ray has had faith in me, most often when I have the least in myself.  Having him around always brings out my best.

A rainy road 50k with water stops twice per loops is pretty easy to pack for:  8 Endurolytes, a few gels, a pack of shot bloks, a 20 oz bottle of Gatorade and some dry clothes.  I took 4 Endurolytes and drank the Gatorade on the ride to the race.   At 8:25 am, I put one (1) Roctane pomegranate gel in one pocket and the 4 Endurolytes in the other.  I ate one pack of black cherry bloks and walked off to the start.

Oh no, Ray is not there!  I feel a pang of disappointment as the gun is fired.  But as the crowd lurches forward, Ray makes his fashionably late entrance and off we go!   First split 8:14.

I pass up the AS on the first loop and then wonder if I should have grabbed something.  On the back stretch of loop 2, I grab a few ounces of Gatorade. I am very comfortable and wonder when I should take that gel.

Loop 1: 25:45
Loop 2: 25:36
Loop 3: 25:15

Halfway through loop 4, I feel a surge of confidence. I’ve made it further than I did last year and I feel GREAT!  One more loop and we start the countdown!   I look at my legs and I think, “Ok. You are strong. We can do this!”  I stop looking at splits.  As long as I am happy I will finish.

At the end of loop 4, I take that gel.  I decide to take the 4 Endurolytes too. Why wait?  I feel good.  Nothing hurts.  I’m still grabbing about  6 oz of Gatorade total per loop.  My legs are steady.   I feel strong.  Then they run out of Gatorade on the back half during my 7th loop.

Loop 4: 25:47
Loop 5: 25:29 (2:07:52 – first 25k)
Loop 6: 24:55
Loop 7: 25:27

Since I missed  those crucial 3 oz of blue Gatorade on the back stretch, I grab another gel at the start of  loop 8.  It takes me two full laps to sip that down.

As I approach the end of loop 9, I first start to feel a little wobbly.  I can feel my form weakening just a bit and I catch my self grunting a little.  I laugh out loud as I feel like a Mac truck barreling down a highway making a bunch of noise.

With so little consumed, I know I am running off momentum and awe that I am really almost done.  I see that one mile mark, smile and think “I will see you next year!”   I pass the 2 mile mark and reflect on how I am glad to be done with that hilly mile and realize there is just 1 mile left!  “I got this!  Caumsett Park, I have beaten you this year.”

There is no one to catch and I am not being chased.  It is a relaxing finish.  My legs are heavy and I could cruise in but I don’t and instead give once last push as I see that finish.  I almost fall over from a head rush once I finally allow myself to stop running for the first time in 4 hours and 15 minutes.

Loop 8:  25:52
Loop 9:  26:03
Loop10:  25:30 (2:07:48 – 2nd 25k)

Caumsett volunteers print you a receipt within minutes of your finish.  It contains your lap splits, final time, pace, place, etc…  I show my friend Mike who immediately says, “Oh Wow, look at how even you were! And your last 5k was faster than you first!”  I look at the pace and see that it is 8:14 per mile.  I remember Ray calling out our Mile 1 split as 8:14 and I knew immediately that he had something to do with this!  I suspect that he was out there with me just to help me find my rhythm and beat this demon.  I see Ray after and show him my receipt.  Like the human calculator that he is, he quickly adds up my splits and declares “You negative split this!”   Holy crap, I just negative split a 50k!  Sure by only 5 seconds, but it counts.  I tell Ray how much I needed this to be a good race and why.  He tells me that he knew..

for 50k (negative split by 5 seconds)
27th place OA
8th Female OA

What a great day for Racing a 50k in the Rain!

Caumsett Park, I can’t wait to see you next year!

Thank you so much for reading.

Posted in Ultra MarathonComments (1)

Race Report: Hinson Lake 24 Hour

Hinson Lake took place just one week after the NC24, the National 24 Hour Championship.   Boy do I wish there was just a little more time between these too events.  It seems that most people prepared to run substantial mileage would have chosen to do so at Nationals.   Therefore, seeing any impressive performances at Hinson would really be a wonderful surprise.

Tom Gabell is the RD of Hinson. The course is a 1.52 loop around a lake with one well-stocked aid station at the start finish area.  This year there were over 200 participants, making this race (what I was told by my friend Ray,who is likely the most reliable source on all thinks ultrarunning) the largest 24 hour event in the country.

It is obvious that Tom and his wife put on this race because they love the sport.  For a $24 fee he provides everything that a race costing 3-4 times that amount would provide, except chip timing.  As for timing, Tom recruited his family and they tracked us by tallying up our laps on a board.  The same person is your lap counter all day and with each crossing of the start/finish, you are greeted with a “I got you Shannon (or No. 7), that was lap #___ for you”.  I like this system 100 times better than chip timing.  Not only do you begin every lap knowing just what you have done, you also get your own personal cheerleader.  🙂  The volunteers were so fantastic that at one point, I changed my clothes, forget to pin on my bib, and STILL my countered called me out by name to tell me lap number.  Chip timing has nothing on the old school way.

As for my race, I am still recovering from the 75 mile run I completed last week.  I had low expectations, but that will not stop me from showing up.  I was hoping the soft clay surface would be forgiving on my knee.  I stopped last week when I felt pain building in my ACL.  There was just not enough time for my ACL to fully recover and I felt it early in the run.

This course is quietly sneaky in that it is much more challenging than it sounds.  Although generally flat on a non-technical trail with some short boardwalk bridges, the course seems like it would be rather fast.  However, there was one incline of significant length that was comprised of deep sand and some other shorter sand traps along the way.  In the addition to the sand, the temperatures, reaching as high as 96-97 as per some reports, added to the challenge of the day.

The unstable footing of the deeper sand immediately aggravated my ACL.  By laps 2, I began to experiment with some taping.  I did find that the tape helped enough to get me through half a loop, but increased pain would occur on the way in.  I would RICE for a few minutes, start to feel better, readjust the tape and then try another loop.  Eventually, it became painful to bend my knee at all and I figured that was enough messing around.  I believe I logged about 25 miles.  At that point I reverted to my original plan and purpose for going to Hinson, to crew for Jim.  It was great to see him reach the 100k mark in what turned out to be a tougher than expected race.

In consideration of the sandy trail and the 90 degree temperatures, Mike Morton’s performance is mind-boggling. Steady and strong, he strided along appearing quite focused all day.  Early on many people were not sure who he was and just what he thought he was doing putting about 15 laps on the second place guy in the first 12 hours of the race.  I tend to not get too excited about leaders since the 24 hour is about survival (and as I personally know, a great 12 hour run does not often make for a great 24 race).

However, as Mike approached his 66th lap, it was truly exciting to see him complete over 100 miles at just under13:15.  I feel lucky to have been present to witness such an amazing preformance!  The only question left was whether he could keep on going for the 40 more miles more he would need to make one of the three remaining spots on Team USA!

Mike was clearly in this for the duration and eventually went on to log about 154 miles!   This would have been good enough for 2nd place and an auto-entry into Worlds had he been present at NC24.   I would even guess that had he raced last week, in much cooler temperatures and on a flatter and faster surface, he would have logged well over 154 and the race between Serge (last weeks winner at 156) and Mike would have been incredibly fantastic to watch (since Serge was slow and steady and Mike faded hard in his last 4 hours).

As for me, Hinson is keeper and I look forward  to returning next year.

Thanks for reading,


Posted in Race Reports, Ultra MarathonComments (3)

Shannon McGinn – North Coast 24 Hour

Race Report: The North Coast 24 Hour Endurance Run

On September 18, I ran the North Coast 24 Hour Endurance Run.  This race was the National Championship, which means the top 3 men and women who run at least the national standard (135 miles for men and 120 miles for women) earn the right to compete on Team USA in the World Championship.  Dan Horvath, the RD, did a great job putting on a fantastic race under what I assume was a tremendous amount of pressure.  Thank you Dan!

The race was held on a 0.9 mile asphalt loop in Edgewater Park in Cleveland, Ohio.  To most people, and even some runners, the idea of running all day on a short loop seems incredibly inhumane.  However, I find the short, flat, traffic free path ideal for a 24 hour.  I appreciate that it permits access to aid more often than needed.  The flat, fast course has tremendous record setting potential.  The short loop also makes for an extremely spectator friendly event, allowing even those participating the chance to watch the excitement as it unfolds.


It was not until mid-July, that I discovered my foot pain, which had shut me down at almost every ultra in 2010, was from an actual treatable condition.  I had two plantar fibromas; two marble sized masses of scar tissue on my plantar fascias.  These little lumps made walking uncomfortable and running ultimately painful.  About 2.5 weeks ago, I finally had the fibromas injected with cortisone.  A few days later, I was suddenly able to move without the foot pain I had been living with for most of 2010.

Unfortunately, two weeks of pain free running would do little to make up for my lack of higher mileage training.  Intellectually, I understood that I was insufficiently trained for a great 24 hour run.  However, I tend to believe that anything is possible.  Accordingly, I devised my pace plan for 120 miles.  My goal for this race was NOT to run as far as I could in 24 hours.  Rather, I wanted to run as far as I could on pace for 120 miles in order to collect data about my pain, fatigue, hydration, and fueling.


Crews at races on short loops are seem unnecessary unless you are trying to set some type of record, even if it’s a personal record.  I enjoy the company and my crew consisted of Sidney and two wonderful friends, Tony and Jim.  They put up with a lot from me, like me yelling stuff at them each lap.  (“I need my shirt, mashed potatoes, two Endurolytes and a bottle of water on the next lap!”)  At one point, I overheard a guy say, “Wow, she’s demanding!”  I am sure I am while racing.  After all, it’s a race and if I am going to have a crew, I am going to tell them what I need.  Crewing is hard work and I can’t thank Sid, Jim and Tony enough for helping me have a great race!


When it comes to pacing, everyone has their own plan.  I can’t resist my urge to run just a little too fast for a few loops before I settle down into my pattern.  The fast loops help me burn off some nervous energy, get a lay of the land and decide where I want to walk.  It may not be wise or efficient, but it is what I do for now.

After a few laps of running too fast, I started to focus hard on slowing down.  It is incredibly ironic how I fight to slow down while knowing at some point it will become too hard to run fast enough.  I planned for 6 loops per hour for the first 12 hours and then a fade.  Several hours in, I had already banked about 30 minutes.  It was getting hot and I was feeling dizzy, so I decided to cash in on some of that time.  I took a seat to eat, drink, and assess my needs.  Once I stopped moving, I discovered just how dehydrated I was.  In one swig, I drank a 16 oz bottle of water and then whatever Sid, Jim and Tony handed me.  I believe there was some iced-tea, OJ, a gel, and two Endurolytes.

Suddenly, among the gels, bottles, and candy all spread out on my little table, I noticed the pop tart.  I am sure Sid was eating this before I came though, however it looked good so I took half with me and walked about a 15 minute loop since I was just too full to run.

That break was the best thing I could have done for myself.  Once I started to run again, my pace had gotten back down to the low 9’s per loop.  It was at that moment, a new plan was born: Five loops at 9 then one loop to eat, drink, and walk it off with a pop-tart.  If I kept that pace, my walk breaks would tap into my banked time and by 12 hours I should be just even with my pace plan.

This pattern kept me extremely happy.  In fact I found myself smiling the entire time.  After 8 hours, I could see people starting to suffer.  Still, I was feeling like I was flying on a combination of a pop-tart sugar rush and a runner’s high.  At 9 hours in, I hit my 50 mile split.   At 10:54, I saw that I surpassed the 60 mile mark.  I already did much better than I expected I would do.


It was at about 10 hours in that I started to feel an odd twisting sensation in my right knee.  The twisting was causing pain which led me to plant my foot in an unusual way.   By 11 hours in, pain was shooting up to my lower back.  After12 hours, I stopped to fix a blister and my crew urged me to see the medical staff.

The medical guys were amazing.  My stinging blister was repaired with some diaper rash cream.  My back pain was stretched out of me completely.  I eventually met Dr. Lovy, who stretched me out, assessed my situation and determined that I was exhibiting signs of low potassium.   He suspected that the low potassium was creating the weakened knee, so I was given some potassium, a pep talk, and then some test were done on my knee.  Unfortunately, it was found that my ACL was overstretched due to a combination of low potassium and pressure from the small loop we ran only in clockwise turns.

After a few slow loops, the doctor gave me an insert to adjust my gait.  A few more loops with the insert and it was too late.  By this point, any pressure from walking or running created sharp relentless growing knee pain.  After spending so much time with the medical staff, I knew I had to run 4 loops per hour to reach 100 miles.  I was walking just slower than that pace and still had pain.  The pain was slowly increasing with each step.  So I stopped at just under 75 miles.


In the morning, as I watched the last of the survivors incredibly pushing themselves into the World Championships and personal bests, I became inspired.  I saw there was about 15 minutes left of the clock.  I decided go out for just one more lap to see how much damage I did to my knee.  I tried to run a little and it was still quite painful.  This confirmed that stopping was a good decision.


In these races, there is nothing better than being on course at the sound of the horn.  It is as if the entire park collectively breathes a huge sigh of relief as all the little blocks of wood are dropped to the pavement marking the final place each runner stopped.  The tortured grimaces that were worn by those fighting for every last step twist into painful smiles. Runners, no longer in competition, turn to give out sweaty hugs and pats on the back to each other.  Everyone then hobbles like zombies to some chair somewhere in order to feel the sweet reward of finally removing their shoes.

At breakfast, only minutes past the horn, runners reminisce about the race, which now seems like it started forever ago.  Just when you think people are going to swear off racing forever, conversations turn to “So what’s next for you?”…“Oh, you’re racing that one too!”… “See you next weekend!”

For me, I plan to meet many of those I raced with last weekend at The Hinson Lakes 24 Hour this weekend.  Depending on the knee, I may run a few laps or try to beat 75 miles.  If I can’t run, then I will crew for Jim who will get to repay me with his own ultra demands, most likely for Nuun tablets, his homemade ice bandana, and possibly bacon.

Results from the NC24 can be found here: http://www.northcoast24.org/

Congratulations to all those who made team USA!

[photo by James Plant]

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