Showing posts from 2017

An Ode to Icebug Running Shoes

This is the world's shortest product review. These are workhorses.  They are never clean Icebugs. Are. Excellent. No fiddling with YakTraxs or Microspikes.  These badboys have tiny metal spikes built right in.  They've got a variety of drops (I use a 4mm version), and you can run on a frozen lake in them.  I've been keeping my weekly average at almost 100 miles with using these. I live in the Canadian rockies. It gets cold at night, then warm in the day. I run at 5am, on ice.  every morning. I love these shoes. If you are tired of the endless conversation over 'how do I run in the winter', try a pair of these.  Buy them on sale in the spring.  Put them in a closet, and break them out next winter.  These babies are work horses.  The link to the US store is here Those little metal spikes are the cat's pajama Crush your goals. Find me on; twitter @CanGhostRunner Strava 'Canadian Ghost Runner Istagram 'CanadianGhostRunn

#50shadesofTreadmill Ultra Plan

A while back, I wrote a training plan for a basic 100 mile week,  a few thousand of you have read it, and I've received some requests for an 'updated/what the heck am I running this winter' plan.  So here it is.  I'll break it down into what I am doing, and throw in a slightly less insane version.  My plan last year helped me shave almost 5 hours off of my goal 108K trail run, and hit the podium.  I'll link to it here. So after a busy year of trail races, and my body being amply depleted, I took 3 days off of running while I moved to Sparwood, BC (yup, a whole three days, I'm a hedonist).  My October plan is about getting back to basics.  My runs will be a little more intense, no walking, and lots more slow running.  It's kind of like track work. One last point in this.  I love my treadmill.  Like really love my treadmill.  (check out the hashtag #50shadesoftreadmill, its all me! hahaha).  I digress. I do enjoy the control of my runs though. I on

To Fernie and Beyond

Welcome back to the end of the internet.  I hope your bathroom time is treating you well!  I am planning on making this more of a weekly thing now that I have internet again (thanks Shaw....). When we last left our protagonist (that's me) he was leaving a job after 15 years, moving to the mountains, and headed to Edmonton for the Iron Horse Ultra.  Catch up here . I may write about that at a later date, but that date is not today.  Suffice to say it didn't go well. Which brings me to today.  We now live 'Fernie Adjacent' in a town called Sparwood.  We bought a modular a cash, so we wouldn't have the constraints of a large mortgage, and could enjoy going to the mountains on our days off.  We have made good use of our time. Harshan and Pru I have been fortunate enough to bump in to more trail saints than I care to count in my trail running career.  In Fernie so far, that has been the intrepid Harshan and Pru Ramadass.  In 11 days, th

Tapering with the Devil

Hello, and welcome back to the end of the internet.  This post is about my end of year taper going into a 100mile race, while in the process of moving. First, I want to say that tapering is different for everyone.  What works for me, may not work for you.  A few stats about me.  I'm 34 years old, 6'2, and range between 150-160lbs.  I have a resting heart rate of 40.  I'll be doing a write up on my slightly more advanced 100 mile run plan, but my very first post,was on my first run plan if any of your are interested here .  In training, I aim to run 100miles a week or more.  My body is used to performing in pain, and tapering feels unnatural. Now, lets get to it. Two weeks out.  This is the last meaningful training week before a race.  For this one, two weeks out, I ran a 10 mile, then a 28 mile (Berg Lake, its the previous post), then an 8 mile (viking ridge).  The week was about 105miles (ending the Sunday 13 days out).  This week just ended, was not ideal, and h

Berg Lake, Viking Ridge, and Damn Staples!

Tom, Myself, Shayne at Berg Lake The following is a faithful retelling of events that occurred on September 15-17, 2017. Friday, September 15 11:00am-   The plan was for Shayne to pick us up at 11:00am Friday morning, pack up the bikes, and promptly head out of town.  We were headed to Jasper, Alberta, to run 'Skyline', which I am told is around 50ish km and 6000ft of gain.  We were all stoked.  11am came and went.  No Shayne Midday- Facebook Message from Shayne.  He is stuck at Staples, trying to get business cards printed.  He thinks he's got it figured, so he picks me up, then Tom.  We drive back to Staples to get the cards. 1:00pm- Back to Staples.  Shayne goes in to collect the business cards, Tom and I run over to Tim Hortons to pick up coffees.  We get the coffees.  Shayne is still at Staples. 2:00pm- Did you know they sell backpacks and Vitamin Water at Staples?  Who knew?  Shayne has finally finished up with Staples, only to get the world's w

The Blackspur Marathons #50shadesoftrailrunning

Myself and brother, both finished the 108k Views from the top of Leg 1 DISCLAIMER: If you have not seen the documentary 'The Barkley Marathons', you will not get most of this humor.  So please, open Netflix, watch the movie, and then read this. Some of you know the infamous Brian (or Laz as he should be named) Gallant.  He's the guy that created the now hellish Sinister 7 course with it's 18% finish rate.  He is the mastermind behind the Blackspur 108K Mountain Ultra, and if you need one race to make your season a success, it should be this one. I arrived on the Friday early for check-in.  I won't be surprised if the price of registration next year is a license plate, and a pair of socks.  Did I mention this course is insane (or required someone insane to come up with it)? I made sure to pick up my Blackspur coffee mug at the same time as my race bag, then did I quick drive down the mountain to Purcell Outdoors to pick up a few other necessities (P

Ghost Runner, the EC, and the Quest to beat Kris

Welcome to my run blog, where I write my random and off-colour thoughts on running and races.  The EC is not my usual audience, so if you'd like to know more about me, feel free to scroll through the bowels of the internet (and my blog), and check it out, it won't be wasted time on the toilet. I have a deep love of the EC.  It was my first trail race many years ago, up the old mount Roman.  Much has changed (Much hasn't...looking at you Kris Swanson).  The biggest change, is the size.  It started with 50ish poor souls running in the woods for no apparent reason, and has grown to 1000 not to bright individuals running in the mountains for no apparent reason.  Also, the t-shirts.  They used to be a plain....t-shirt.  Cotton.  Durable.  Now, I feel like I'm in an early 90's rap music video, or all the colours had a civil war, and they all won. You could see this race from space. One thing hasn't changed.  This race is most people's 'goal' race.  The

The Ballad of the Ever Sexy Ghost Runner at Death Race

Fresh outta the box Where to start this one off?  Bear with me, this is a doozy. The Death Race and I have a complicated relationship.  It's been a white whale for me, but since I got serious about running, and got off my combination Window/Fatkins diet I hadn't tried this bad boy.  Which brings me to a happy hour on July 5th (or whatever the last day of registration was).  I'd run 4 ultras this year, and was headed to Sinister 7 in a week.  My season was full. I had 9 total booked for this year!  But after a few beers....why not make it 10?  That number sounds better right? So here we are. Pulling into Grande Cache on the Friday after work, you can see the signs in building, and billboards.  They read something like 'You are an idiot, this is stupid, who does this?'.  My first stop is the classy sky hy lounge.  If alcohol got me into this mess, it can get me out right? The rest of Friday is pretty uninteresting, unless you find the personal grooming habit

Sinister 7 Recrap

The Dude Abides Welcome back.  If you're reading this, you remembered to bring your phone to the bathroom,  good on you! The Following is my solo experience of about 58miles of the Sinister 7.  Trigger warning:  The following may disturb you. So.....those of you that have read my amazingly written recaps (*cough *cough) know I've had a good year this year.  Put down some good ultras, had a blast in training, and have just been loving on life.  I put a lot of training into running this one race (seriously folks 100-120 miles a week all bloody winter!!!). So, how does one deal with a DNF, or just a crappy day (if you know what I mean *winky face emoji).  This is the tale..... The year was 2017, It was a warm July morning, Trump was in the Whitehouse, Oil was 40 bucks a barrel, and a rather shaggy looking runner, was donning his camo bucket hat and proudly affixing his bib # (#1 of all numbers, thanks for the cursed # Brian, lol)for what promised to be a great/hot as hel


Sunrise at the staging area It's a cold Thursday morning in late June.  Rain had been pouring down for the last 24 hours, but has decided to briefly let up for the occasion.  It's 2:30am.  It's summer Solstice (or the day after as the trail Sage Shayne would remind us, but close enough).  A group of us have decided to attempt a sunrise trail run in the valley a few minutes from town.  The group is mostly the usual trail suspects of a running group. Shayne- The trail sage who knows every ATV path in the area, and has named every goat/mountain bike path up every hill and valley (He's named this route the 'Beatton Beat Down' after the valley we are in). Tom- The guy who stops running mid stride to take pictures, and whose idea of  'walking his dogs' include a vertical mile of gain.  He also designs these insane runs/adventures our group embarks on. Joel- The only one of us that looks like a runner.  The guy who is good company to run with, and i