Sunday, January 02, 2011

Planning My 2011 Season's that glorious time of year to pick out anchor races for 2011! Few things lift my spirits as much as this annual ritual (see '06, '07, '08, '10). As I've said many times before, a full calendar of endurance events is proof to me that I'm choosing to live IN the world instead of ON it.

I usually pick out a few favorites, find some new challenges, add a couple of championship races, then fill in the rest with as much as I can get away with. Put enough "fear" on the schedule and I will be plenty motivated to train in the early AM! This year has the additional challenge of baby #2 arriving sometime in March, so I'll be sticking close to home for much of the year.

Here's where you can find me in 2011:

Crystal Springs 50k, Woodside, CA, 1/8 - This one is in my backyard (same course as the Woodside 50k), and is a good way to kick off the year. If you want to give it a shot, there are now six Woodside/Crystal Springs 50k's throughout the year. Very cool!

USATF Cross Country Natl Champs, San Diego, CA, 2/6 - Cross Country?!? Yup, I've never done it and have always wanted to try toeing the line with 200+ others for an 8k romp across the fields. Might as well rook it at the national championships and watch the experts do it right. Time to test those comfort zones!

Steep Ravine 50k, Stinson Beach, 2/12 - Let's see...a new course on the Mt. Tam/Dipsea Trail that pitches you up the Steep Ravine four times? Hell, yes! Must try this one. If only for the time-lapse photos of my face and quads breaking down.

Napa Valley Marathon, Napa, CA 3/6 - My fitness levels indicate I should be able to go sub-2:40 in the right circumstances. Here's a flat-ish course that I know, and a good opportunity to put it on the line. I will get in lots of speed training and taper down for this one.

24 Hrs of Labor (crew), Palo Alto, CA, 3/13'ish - Is there any endurance event crazier than birthing a child? If you've ever had the humbling honor of witnessing what it takes, you will instantly feel like 100-milers are no contest. I get to be crew on this one (thank god). I'm sure Mom is hoping for a sub-24 hour finish on this one too. ;-)

Presidio 10m, San Francisco, CA, 4/17 - Expecting a baby in March means no Way Too Cool, American River, Miwok or other favorites this year. But the Presidio 10-miler looks like a fun and hilly course put on by The Guardsmen, and happens to also be the RRCA 10-mile Championship. I'll race this one, then jump on a plane that afternoon to:

Boston Marathon, Boston, MA, 4/18 - Heading back to Boston for #7 in my streak, joining Kik Armstrong and her entourage of Texas Flowers. I'm curious to see how the mix of runners will change now that the event is filling up in a single day. Props to Daba (aka, Grandma) for covering for me.

Bay to Breakers, San Francisco, CA, 5/15 - The 100th anniversary of this nakedfest is going to be epic! I'm trying to locate a running rickshaw to tote the kiddies - if you know of a place to get one, do let me know. Video cam for sure. Only question left - is this the year to don the nut-tsak?

Escape from Alcatraz, San Francisco, CA, 6/5 - For whatever reason, putting a triathlon on the schedule keeps me cross-training in the pool and on the bike all year long, which in turn allows me to increase my running load by 10-15%. I got a lottery slot to Alcatraz this year, and a nice x-mas gift took care of the ridiculous $400 entry fee. Time to dust off the wetsuit and take the plunge!

Dirty Half, Bend, OR, 6/12 - I have some unfinished business here, after a bike crash took me out of peak form in time for the 2010 USATF Half Marathon Championships. But it was SO fun to attend, with 1,000+ runners, beer brewed just for the event, bluegrass bands, etc. It's easy to head back! It's also a good tune up race for what comes next. If you like this race, sign up fast this year for it will fill for sure.

Masters Track and Field World Championships, Sacramento, CA, 7/17 - The Masters Track and Field World Championships are in Sacramento this year, which presents a great opportunity to don the stars and stripes in an international field. The marathon event caps off a week of track events, although I don't have the sub-2:30 chops required to be competitive here. But if a world class event comes to your state, you need to represent!

Mt. Shasta Century, Mt. Shasta, CA, 8/7 - My crew of Death Riders will be heading up to Shasta to tackle this 130-mile monster. Looks like a lot of great climbing and epic views.

Wasatch 100m, Layton, UT, 9/9 - No schedule is complete without a 100-miler, and this year I'm going to head up to Utah for the Wasatch 100. I've always loved seeing the pictures from this race, and the altitude and terrain are well outside of my comfort zone. Perfect! Should the Wasatch Committee not select me to run, I can always return to the Flagline 50k for the USATF 50k Championships.

NYC Marathon, New York, NY, 11/6 - This one has been on the list for a while now - time to kick down and run the 5 boroughs. I hadn't realized that a sub-2:50 marathon time gets you a guaranteed entry...nice! Let's do it.

There are others I hope to add, schedule permitting. I usually schedule a dozen races, and end up doing 20 or so. Pacific Coast Trail Runs have added a whole series of Lake Tahoe races, and I'm eager to get more info about them. It sure would be cool to do Bighorn 100 or the new Black Hills 100 in June, the Headlands 100 in July, or head back to the Skyline to the Sea or Big Basin 50k's. But we will have to see how the newly extended family is doing first. So many races and so little time! We are blessed to have so many opportunities.

Let me know if you guys are going to be at any of these - let's have some adventures!

- SD


  1. Looks like an incredible year you have planned! Congratulations on the imminent arrival of your second child.

  2. I will see you at Woodside/Crystal Springs next week. Good schedule!

  3. Mr. Goldentrails! Looking forward to seeing you there.

    FYI, those interested in Tahoe Rim Trail races better get on it...the registration just opened, and there are less than 120 of the 450 slots open. Get on it!!!

  4. I admire the variety in your schedule! I too am going to mix trail/road and varying distances, but no cycling.

  5. Phillip Hamilton1/03/2011 10:04:00 AM

    Scott: The Napa Valley Marathon interests me, and I've been looking for someone to talk to about it. I know your email is on here somewhere, I simply can't find it. If I could ping you about it, that'd be great.

  6. I'm at scottdunlap [at]

  7. We'll be at B2B again this year too--and expecting our first child around 3/28 as well, so we'll be way back in Corral D with all the other walker chuckleheads as I'll be wearing him. I'm going as a Sleep-deprived First Time Mom. :)

    And we actually live just north of Mt. Shasta as well, but won't be doing the Century.

    Happy new year, may it be a happy and healthy one for all of you!

  8. It is confirmed: I will be at the aid station by your house. Role reversal from last year (PCTR race you volunteered and I ran).

    Looking forward to it!

  9. Scott:
    I, too, hoped to employ a rickshaw from the Bay to the Beach on 5/15...but have you heard the rumor that no objects with wheels will be allowed?

    Naked running, yes. Naked running with shopping carts, no. Only in SF!


    P.S.: See you at Alcatraz. Can you say "brrr"?


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