Monday, March 1, 2010

ConocoPhillips Rodeo Run 10K Round-Up

HARRA Members had a strong showing at the 2010 ConocoPhillips Rodeo Run 10K this past Saturday (Feb. 27) in Downtown Houston, as Sean Wade (KW) and Mary Davies (TOR) were the Overall Male and Female winners, respectively running 31:28 and 35:33, while Rudy Rocha (BARC) claimed the Masters title in 34:20.

Adam Davis (HH) claimed second overall and won the Male 25-29 age group with his 32:03 performance, while clubmate Luis Armenteros placed third overall in 32:24 to win the Male 35-39 age group. Another Houston Harrier, Joe Flores, captured the Male 50-54 age group with his stellar, 34:52 run. TTC's Ben Harvie won the Male 60-64 with his 41:38, while Don Brenner (BCRR) laid waste to the Male 65-69 age group in 46:58. Ino Cantu won the Male 75 and Older crown with his 48:43.

On the female side, Alice Keelin (TTC) won the Female 60-64 age group in 50:36, while Julie Rutledge (HS) won the Female 55-59 group in 47:42. With Davies capturing the overall title, the Female 25-29 age group went to Adrienne Langelier (TWRC) in 38:56.

Monday, February 15, 2010

HARRA Interview with Donna Sterns

Donna Sterns (center) has been a fixture in HARRA and the Houston running community for as long as one can remember. Owner of lifetime PRs of 17:39 (5K), 35:41 (10K), 1:17:12 (Half Marathon), and 2:38:51 (Marathon), Donna is a two-time USA Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier (1984 & 1988) and has continued her amazing longevity as a Masters (40-49) and Veteran (50-59) runner.

As a Masters, Donna has compiled best times of 18:00 (5K), 38:21 (10K), and 2:52:39 (Marathon). Her best Marathon as a Veteran was her 3:23:33 performance from the 2009 Chevron Houston Marathon.

HARRA News recently caught up, literally, with the great Donna Sterns after her 2010 Chevron Houston Marathon performance...

HN: Donna, can you please give us some insight into training in Houston in the 80's and 90's and the group dynamics of that time period? What has changed, for better or for worse?
In 1979 I started training with Jim McLatchie and the Houston Harriers. In a few years we had a group of 25 - 30 totally dedicated distance running athletes that met at Houston Baptist University on Monday and Wednesday nights for track workouts and Saturday mornings for long runs. On the track we were separated into groups of 4 - 5 runners that could run close to the same times. Jim would have our workout in his "black book" that he brought to the track. Lots of Mondays we would run 6 x 1 mile or 12 x 800 with a 200 jog between. On Wednesdays we might have a mile breakdown of Mile, 3/4, 1/2, 1/4 with 1/4 jog between. We always ran hard on the track, holding nothing back; my heart rate was over 200 bpm. Our long runs were 18 - 30 miles. During marathon training I did 2-a-days by running 4 miles in the morning Mon - Fri and 6 -12 miles during the evening (including our track days) with a 20 plus mile run on Saturday and an 18 on Sunday. I always built up from 70 miles per week in the off season to 100 - 120 miles peaking before a marathon.

We had a group of 4 - 8 women that consistently ran together and pushed each other to the limit. One of my best friends, Debbi Briggs and I trained together several times a week for 15 years. Sometimes we would divide up the weekend races so we could both win. In 1984, Jim coached 8 of us to the Womens' First Olympic Marathon Trials in Olympia, Washington. Many of us PRed that day It was an awesome experience and McLatchie's training really paid off. Five of us returned to the 1988 USA Marathon Trials in Pittsburg.

Now there are lots of training groups around Houston, but not many focused on winning and running fast times to qualify for the Marathon Trials. Many of the runners today are new to the sport and run for the social atmosphere and general fitness rather than the competition. I think improving your fitness and developing a healthy lifestyle are very important so I welcome all these new runners. I still believe that there are some top athletes that could make it to the next level if they did more work and set higher goals. In the 80's, women ran 17 minutes routinely in 5Ks and 35 minutes in 10Ks and 2:40's marathons; you don't see those times locally any more.

HN: What are some of your best experiences in running?
DS: It's the people! Most of my best friends are runners. We share so much together. No one knows you better than your running buddies. Even if you don't live near each other anymore or get to run together very much, the bond is always there.

I was fortunate to travel on Nike's team to Bermuda, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, Japan and also competed in many major marathons: Boston, New York, Marine Corps, Grandmas, Las Vegas, L.A., Rio de Janerio (with my good friend, Kathy Molitor) and of course all the local Texas and Louisiana marathons. Each race offered great experiences with people and the environment.

HN: Any favorite races, most memorable races?
DS: My most memorable race is the 1984 Women's Olympic Marathon Trials. I had an achilles injury 3 months before the race and after healing I only had 12 weeks to pull it all together. I had also lost both my parents a few years before and they knew this was a huge goal race of mine. I had run 8 other marathons between 2:43 - 2:46 all while trying to break the 2:40 barrier. During the race, I ran the perfect pace I had planned, running negative splits for 2:39.11. The last 8 miles I was running scared and running amazed! One leg cramp and you could be out. I thought of my parents, my hard training and I was thankful that God had allowed me this opportunity to be fit and successful with this goal. During the last mile when I knew I would break 2:40, tears ran down my face and when I crossed the line a friend of mine called my name and I pumped my fist in the air and said "I did it!" I remember it like it was yesterday. The local newspaper caught my reaction on camera and put it in the paper the next day. They sent me a photo so I'll always remember this exciting moment.

HN: You used to train for the Olympic Trials, what keeps you motivated these days? Why train so hard?
DS: I run to eat! It's all about Blue Bell Ice cream! Really, I enjoy being fit. I have a Masters in Education focused on Exercise Physiology so I have always had an interest in being healthy. I also work in the industry, selling Brooks Sports footwear and apparel, Moving Comfort sport bras and apparel, Thorlo socks, Spenco insoles and Zensah leg sleeves so I'm literally covered top to bottom in running gear so it makes sense to keep up with training. If I'm showing product at a race I still need to get my workout in so I might as while run. But if you toe the line, be prepared to get beat if you haven't done the work! That keeps me motivated to keep training!

HN: You keep an amazing figure, any diet tips for HARRA?
DS: Run more! I don't eat any special foods. I follow the Sea Food Diet, see food, eat it!

HN: Your whole family is actively involved in running, how did that unfold?
DS: My husband, Darrell and I met at an All Comers Meet at Rice and then later at the water fountain at Memorial Park. We knew a lot of the same runners so it didn't take long for us to become a permanent couple at the races. My kids started in the baby jogger, graduated to 1Ks then ran middle school and high school track. My daughter, Kristen is a senior and had knee problems early in high school, but she now runs 4-5 miles several days a week for fitness. My son, Jordan, is a high school freshman and ran varsity cross country, earned his letter jacket, and starts track this season.

HN: Anything you would have done differently?
DS: No. Running actually changed my life. I met my husband, Darrell running, switched careers because of running and my closest friends are runners. It defines part of every day.

HN: Anything else you would like to share with HARRA?
DS: Running distance races and marathons has always been easier for me than shorter races. I can mentally focus for a long time and have confidence in having a good finish. I visualize the race course and see myself doing well. I use a lot of positive affirmations and prayer to keep me focused and relaxed. I enjoy cheering on others as it also motivates me. I try to stay in the "now" and the finish takes care of itself.

HARRA News would like to thank Donna Sterns and her wonderful insight and candid thoughts, and we wish her well in the upcoming HARRA Spring Series! Go get 'em, Donna!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Buffalo Wallow Cross Country 6K

Great performances were turned in at the 2010 Buffalo Wallow 6K, the kick-off event for the 2010 HARRA Spring Series.

First of all, the 2010 version of the Buffalo Wallow debuted a very exciting Team aspect of the race, as three men and two women comprised the teams. Winning the first ever Team Open title was the Bay Area Running Club, led by the 1-2 punch of Virginia Jones (27th in 24:22.2) and John Hedengren (2nd in 19:49.2). The team was rounded out by Blake Culp (6th in 21:22.7), Alan Hedengren (11th in 21:33.9), and Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger (62nd in 27:24.4). Host Houston Harriers captured the Masters Team title in dominating fashion.

In the Open Men's race, Luis Armenteros led wire-to-wire in another stellar performance at the event, just missing his best time on the course (19:26.3 from 2008) and missing the event record of 19:21.4 by Gabriel Rodriguez in 2009. Runner-up and previous winner of this event, John Hedengren (former All-American at BYU), turned in his best time at this race with his 19:49.2 clocking to lead former Aggie JP MacHemehl in third with a strong 20:04.2 performance.

The Open Female's race turned in an event-record performance, with Virginia Jones romping to a 24:22.2 run, leading second-place finisher Jennifer Dean to the third fastest all-time in 24:29.2.

The Men's Masters title went to none other than Gerardo Mora, as he kept up his impressive HARRA race streak, winning the race in 21:58.0, narrowly missing his 2009 time (21:56.4). Runner-up was the tremendously impressive performance by 50-year old, Joe Flores, as he ran brilliantly with a 22:02.9. Thomas King mimicked Mora's race strategy and narrowly missed his 2009 time (22:06.0) by one-second (22:05.0).

The Female Master's title went to the most dominant harrier in recent years, Helen Grant, as she stormed to a 26:23.9 winning performance.

Full race results can be found here.

Female Open
24:22.2, Virginia Jones (2010)
24:25.4, Brittany Wells (2009)
24:29.2, Jennifer Dean (2010)
24:37.9, Jennifer Brown (2009)
25:01.0, Alexandra Gajewski (2005)
25:02.8, Caroline Burum (2005)
25:17.4, Sabra Harvey (2009)
25:19.6, Liz Pinches (2008)
25:30.0, Helen Grant (2009)
25:31.7, Helen Grant (2008)

Male Open
19:21.4, Gabriel Rodriguez (2009)
19:26.3, Luis Armenteros (2008)
19:29.7, Luis Armenteros (2010)
19:49.2, John Hedengren (2010)
19:55.0, Colin Carroll (2009)
19:56.2, Colin Carroll (2008)
19:58.2, John Hedengren (2009)
20:03.1, Ramiro Alvarado (2008)
20:04.2, JP MacHemehl (2010)
20:08.8, John Hedengren (2006)

Female Masters
25:17.4, Sabra Harvey (2009)
25:30.0, Helen Grant (2009)
25:31.7, Helen Grant (2008)
25:33.9, Helen Grant (2006)
25:37.2, Christie Lammers (2006)
25:43.2, Helen Grant (2005)
26:03.7, Sheila Carmody (2009)
26:05.2, Helen Grant (2007)
26:07.2, Anne Ekern (2009)
26:23.9, Helen Grant (2010)

Male Masters
21:07.0, Wilmer Bustillos (2009)
21:44.6, Terry Garrett (2006)
21:56.4, Gerardo Mora (2009)
21:58.0, Gerardo Mora (2010)
22:02.9, Joe Flores (2010)

22:05.0, Thomas King (2009)
22:06.0, Thomas King (2010)
22:07.0, Steven King (2008)
22:09.3, Christopher Bittinger (2009)
22:12.2, Gerado Mora (2008)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Buffalo Wallow Cross Country 6K


** Just added, the Team Competition Sign-Up form with instructions

The 1st race of the HARRA 2010 Spring Series
Saturday, February 6, 2010 Houston, Texas
Sponsored by the Houston Harriers
Race Timing by Run Wild, Parking Courtesy of AIG

Run the BUFFALO WALLOW in Buffalo Bayou Park on Allen Parkway at Montrose. 3 loops of a 2km course between the Wortham Fountain and Taft Street. The course is identical to previous Buffalo Wallow 6k courses.

Races and Start Time
• 8:00 a.m. - Masters Men & Women (40 years old and older)
• 9:00 a.m. - Open Men & Women

Entry Fee
• $16 prior to race-day or $5 for those 19 years of age and under
• $1 discount for HARRA members registering prior to race day
• $20 for all race day registrations

Monday, January 18, 2010

HARRA Marathon Performances (2004-2010)

It's race week for the final race of the 2009 HARRA Fall Series, the 2010 Chevron Houston Marathon! Below is a recap of the top performances in the Houston Marathon since 2004 by HARRA Members in their respective divisions -

Men Under 40
2004 - Sean Wade, KW, 2:22:26
2005 - Gabriel Rodriguez, BARC, 2:31:18
2006 - Drew Prisner, ALRC, 2:32:42
2007 - Matt McCurdy, ALRC, 2:32:19
2008 - Brett Riley, HS, 2:32:55
2009 - Colin Carrol, 2:30:26
2010 - Joe Oviedo, TOR, 2:42:09

Women Under 40
2004 - Caroline Burum, ALRC, 3:07:11
2005 - Caroline Burum, ALRC, 2:58:09
2006 - Melissa Henderson, ALRC, 3:05:05
2007 - Debbie Rudisill, BARC, 3:01:01
2008 - Peggy Yetman, HS, 2:52:18
2009 - Adrienne Langelier, TWRC, 3:05:24
2010 - Marnie Staehly, HS, 3:05:47

Men 40-49
2004 - Joe Flores, HH, 2:39:54
2005 - Joe Flores, HH, 2:35:03
2006 - Bernie Weber, TTC, 2:46:20
2007 - Sean Wade, KW, 2:20:29
2008 - Gerardo Mora, HMSA, 2:44:27
2009 - Wilmer Bustillos, TOR, 2:32:36
2010 - Sean Wade, KW, 2:33:24

Women 40-49
2004 - Suzy Seeley, BCRR, 3:21:09
2005 - Suzanne Day, HH, 3:11:26
2006 - Christie Lammers, TTC, 2:59:52
2007 - Susan Walters, TOR, 3:07:30
2008 - Caroline Chamness, HS, 3:10:01
2009 - Caroline Burum, ALRC, 3:07:05
2010 - Susan Walters, TOR, 2:59:37

Men 50-59
2005 - Ted Traynor, HS, 2:56:02
2006 - Steve Brammer, TOR, 2:58:42
2007 - Ted Traynor, HS, 3:00:34
2008 - Richard Fredrich, TTC, 2:54:18
2009 - Keith Wilhelm, 2:56:24
2010 - Richard Peoples, ALRC, 2:55:42

Women 50-59
2005 - Karen Bowler, HS, 3:27:24
2006 - Carole Uttecht, ALRC, 3:28:43
2007 - Donna Sterns, HH, 3:28:33
2008 - Carole Uttecht, ALRC, 3:26:30
2009 - Donna Sterns, HH, 3:23:33
2010 - Christie Lammers, 3:17:07

Men 60+
2009 - Ben Harvie, TTC, 3:05:29
2010 - Kenneth Ruane, 3:22:29

Women 60+
2009 - Sally Sims, KW, 4:56:41
2010 - Geri Wood, HH, 3:50:15

Saturday, January 16, 2010

HARRA at Chevron Houston Marathon Expo

Please visit our BOOTH at the Chevron Houston Marathon Expo and HARRA Volunteers can pick up their HARRA Mesh Caps, which look great! Good luck to all...

Friday, January 8, 2010

HARRA Inspiration: The Andy Sullman Story

As the Chevron Houston Marathon approaches, and Mother Nature attempts to thwart your training plans with wicked freezing weather, please consider the challenges faced by The Woodlands Running Club Member, Andy Sullman.

Below is a great article capturing the story of Andy Sullman, as the 19-year old runner suffers from cerebral palsy, but has transformed his life through running. Andy recently completed the Texas Marathon on January 1, 2010, in a time of 4:13:46, a huge personal best. Previously, he had run 4:24:06 at the 2009 Rock 'n' Roll San Antonio Marathon and a 4:55:59 at the 2009 Chevron Houston Marathon. At the start of this decade, Andy has dropped his marathon personal best by over 40-minutes in less than 18 months!

Andy will be chasing a sub-4:00:00 Marathon at the 2010 Chevron Houston Marathon, and has a charity entry into the 2010 Boston Marathon. Anyone interested in supporting Andy's goal to compete in the 2010 Boston Marathon, please visit his fundraising page at Team Eye & Ear.