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Showing posts from 2018

April Results

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The end of April saw lots of events and races for Thelen Coaching athletes!

Jen returned to the Rattler Trail Run in North Carolina, where she raced the 10k event again. She had a great race, with a PR of over nine minutes on the challenging trails of San Lee Park in Sanford, NC. Last year at this time, we'd just started working together and the 10k was a hard event for her. This year, even with a greatly reduced training load to allow for the extensive studying required for the Physical Therapy OCS exam, she had a great time and felt strong the entire way. And she placed second among the women for the 10K!

In Colorado Springs, Merideth took on her longest trail race to date, the Cheyenne Mountain Trail Race 25k. It's held in Cheyenne Mountain State Park, on a rolling, challenging
course. There's more climbing then it appears on first inspection, with three major climbs and plenty more short, punchy hills. Add in the unexpected technical challenges and it's a harder r…

Iditarod Trail Invitational - Conclusions

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This is athlete Dennis Staley's report from his trip to Alaska for the Iditarod Trail Invitational 130 Fat Bike Race. I've broken the report up in to 4 parts for easier reading.

2018 Iditarod Trail Invitational: A Race Report by Dennis Staley WARNING: This report is long-winded, contains typos, and is likely to be quite uninteresting to anyone other than my Mom. And even she might get bored Dénouement: Winter Lake to Anchorage Upon reaching the finish line I checked my Garmin InReach Satellite Messenger, to find a message from Tracy Thelen, my MTB coach, congratulating me for finishing and informing me that I was the first 130 mile racer to reach Winter Lake Lodge. That was a pretty sweet message to receive, and in all my eloquence all I could come up with for a response was “holy shit." The racer accommodations at Winter Lake Lodge consisted of a crowded, wall-tent with a small woodstove as the sleeping space, with a makeshift port-a-potty behind it. I stashed my bike near t…

Iditarod Trail Invitational Part 3 - To the Finish

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This is athlete Dennis Staley's report from his trip to Alaska for the Iditarod Trail Invitational 130 Fat Bike Race. I've broken the report up in to 4 parts for easier reading.

Skwentna Roadhouse A few hours later I saw the sign indicating the turn off the river for the second checkpoint. Expecting the roadhouse to be situated just off of the river, I was a bit perplexed to have several minutes of riding through the trees on a snowmobile trail. Fortunately, the trail was well-packed and fun, and the break from the monotony of the river was a nice change of pace. Finally, I rolled up to Skwentna, mile 85.2 (mile 90 in the race materials), around 11:30 AM.
The Skwentna Roadhouse offered a warm fire, ample seating, and some expensive but delicious spaghetti. A mere $25 got me a big plate of carbs and protein, which I polished off quickly. The same cast of characters occupied the checkpoint: Jill and Kim were eating and drying clothing by the fire. Pam arrived shortly after me, an…

Iditarod Trail Invitational Part 2 - Yentna to Skwentna

This is athlete Dennis Staley's report from his trip to Alaska for the Iditarod Trail Invitational 130 Fat Bike Race. I've broken the report up in to 4 parts for easier reading.

Yentna Station Entering Yentna Station was a bit of a temperature shock, as fire was roaring in the woodstove at the entryway. There was a place near the fire to warm boots and clotheslines above to dry clothing. I ordered a grilled cheese, chicken noodle soup, and coca-cola (the only time I ever drink soda is on 50+ mile rides…) for a grand total of $14, and left a $6 tip. After ordering, I chatted with Pam. She conveyed her intention to continue riding though the night until reaching the “Trail Angel,” King Bear Lodge at mile ~77 before stopping for a nap. I briefly considered doing the same, but was concerned they would close up shop for the night and I'd be forced to bivy after a long day. Instead of chancing it, I decided to be safe and sleep at Yentna. Plus, I was plenty tired and helpless to …

Iditarod Trail Invitational Part 1 - Start to Yentna Station

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This is athlete Dennis Staley's report from his trip to Alaska for the Iditarod Trail Invitational 130 Fat Bike Race. I've broken the report up in to 4 parts for easier reading.

2018 Iditarod Trail Invitational: A Race Report by Dennis Staley Prologue: At the starting line Five minutes before the gun went off, something strange happened. I realized that I was stress-free and calm. Just 30 minutes ago, I was sitting in the Knik Bar forcing down a hamburger, and hardly able to hold a conversation because of pre-race nerves and fear of the unknown, as well as the anticipation of the suffering to be endured for an unknown period of time. Normally I’m a nervous wreck before a race, unsure if I’ll even be able to start pedaling. The thought of steering my bike through the inevitable chaos of the opening-minutes terrifies me. Before the start of the Leadville 100 in both 2015 and 2016, and Vapor Trail in 2017, my heart rate monitor was reading in the mid-130s. That is my racing HR for …