Speedgoat 50k 2013

Speedgoat 50k

The Wasatch Mountains are breathtaking; in more ways than one. There is one point in the course, around mile 23 where you basically climb right up a dirt wall on your way to Mt Baldy, it was awesome! Climbing the wall I stopped to catch my breath and almost went tumbling backwards, all I could do was keep pushing despite my burning legs and lugs. These Mountains were so much fun, the more I run mountains the more I want to find more, good thing that’s what I’m off to do.


Photo: Matt Trappe

The speed of the top men and women was amazing, I tried to stick with them boyz for a bit in the morning, but felt pretty blah for most the day. My legs were flat and not efficient on any climbs and the altitude was a huge sock to the gut. I’m looking forward to running this one again in the next years and having a solid effort.  Overall it was a great run with good people and some strong UTMB training as I prepare for our trip to Europe in just a few shorts weeks. I’m feeling good post-race thanks to Natura Health Products and ready to have some intense training sessions in the weeks ahead.

Sucking wind way too early in the race, I dropped from 5th to around 20th in the first 8.5 miles on our way to Hidden Peak. I was hoping to have a better push to the top, but after my legs and ego battled it out for a bit I came to the conclusion to let it rest and give the ego a proper bashing. It’s hard mentally to win a race a month ago and then in your next race, find yourself not in the mix. It’s just what I needed, a little humility to remember why I run and race and enjoy the moment no matter the circumstances.

Down climb

Photo: Matt Trappe

Reaching Hidden Peak, I had the pleasure of seeing my wife and many friends cheering me on. Also my amazing family, who rode the gondola up to cheer had drove all the way from Wisconsin to come see the race, crew and spend the next week with us as we’re still in Salt Lake for Outdoor Retail. I’ll be hanging out at the Injinji booth talking socks and doing a demo for The North Face on their new program called Mountain Athletics which is a plethora of intense exercises designed specifically for mountain running or other programs for your specific mountain endeavors.

Realizing it wasn’t my day, racing wise; I remained content in my beautiful surroundings and continued on. Karl zigged and zagged us all over the place. To be honest, I never really knew where I was on the course. One moment we would be running up a service road and next thing I knew the blue flags would lead on through the wilderness on a scavenger hunt to the next aid. It made for a fun day and I left with somewhat a better understanding of this part of the Wasatch Mountain range.


Photo: Matt Trappe

After the initial climb we went free falling down to Larry’s hole where he’s stuck for the better part of the year. 😉  It was some good quad pounding before we hit the wild section of loose rock to the half-way point. I was feeling pretty smooth on this techy section until I got a little too confident and went flopping over my feet and into the rocks. I tucked and rolled pretty well with only a few scraps and was back on my way a little more conscious of each step.

My bread and butter is climbing, but not this past Saturday and definitely not a race when the half-point is 15.5 miles; my legs weren’t even oiled up yet till around 20 miles. I ran 30 miles up to Mt Ashland the prior Monday and felt much smoother, Saturday’s race altitude was crippling to me and even if I wanted to run faster my lungs wouldn’t let me breathe. Looks like I need to do more running at altitude, which means getting up to higher mountains; I’m thinking with our new vagabond lifestyle, the family and I will be checking out some high places.

The 2nd time through Larry’s Hole I was ready for some running/hiking! I started catching more and more people on and after the “dirt wall” and was finally getting into a groove.  I caught up to another fast runner right before the Tunnel Aid Station (mile23.5) and we bombed down the next section eventually crossing back over and to our final climb of the day.

It was another good grunt up to Hidden Peak for the last time. By now I had saw much of the area, with my breath taken away by 11k peaks and valleys of unending blue, purple and yellow wild flowers. It was a glorious day on the mountain and I’m happy to have completed such a burly 50k.

Tim Olson. Photo. Derrick lytle

Photo: Derrick Lytle

With 5 miles to go, I caught a few more and busted loose down the valley to the finish. I was hitting 5ish minute miles and impressed with my quads taking the pounding in stride.  Luke Nelson was just down the way a bit; I kept getting closer and then my shoe came untied. I laced up quick with a double not and just a mile down it came untied again, I laughed as I tried to find a mellower grade to stop and re-tie once more.

I caught up too Luke, looked behind to see if anyone was close and decided to enjoy the next little section with him as we buzzed a few switch backs and brought the race to a close together as we crossed under the Speedgoat arches. Karl high-fived us and we joined the others who had been patiently waiting to congratulate us. It was a fantastic day, just another day of running and living the good life.


Photo: Matt Trappe

After Outdoor Retailer our travels will take us onward. We’ll be heading to Europe for my first time seeing the Alps and Dolomites. I’ll spend some time with my wife running the UTMB course and enjoying the holiday as we discover new cultures and new friends. I can’t wait to see those mountains!


Products used before and after race

The North Face


Smith Optics


Pre-race Breakfast

Race food


Tim Olson n Krista Photo. Derrick Lytle

Photo: Derrick Lytle

Top. Photo, Derrick Lytle

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21 Responses to Speedgoat 50k 2013

  1. trailrunner45 says:

    Re shoes coming untied. Years ago I got, and have used ever since, the little slide thingys like you see on backpacks, bags etc. I get a pkg of 4-6 at REI for a couple bucks. Squeeze the spring, slip both laces through the hole, tie a knot in each lace, cut off the excess lace and no more untied shoes. Great for snugging or loosening as you need. Jim Archer

  2. Olga King says:

    Are those North Face shoes you’re wearing? Did they make something new that you like?
    Congrats on a great day! The wild flowers are awesome. This course is so inticing…

  3. Butch Hall says:

    Thanks Tim. The race reports are great for those of us who can’t afford to follow along in a helicopter and see for our-self. 🙂

  4. Brian Cravens says:

    Great race report, Tim. Can’t wait to read more about your time in Europe, UTMB, and the new adventures you and your family are on. You’re a fantastic ambassador, not just for running but for life. Keep it going.
    Brian from Texas

  5. Cthurley says:

    Massive respect for Tim racing outside his strengths…the longer stuff! He represents everything that is good about the sport.

  6. Mark says:

    Shoes look to be PI Trail N1 still. Maybe TNF is working on something new for Timmy! Congrat’s on another great race, and best of luck at UTMB and enjoy the nomadic lifestyle! I wish I could do the same!

  7. I was just talking to a runner (who knows of you) the other day and she was telling me about this race. First thought I had was “hmmm, I wonder how he’ll do with that altitude…”. Miss your face in Ashland already, but glad you’re out of the smoke – you wouldn’t be running if you were here…

  8. Bob Loomis says:

    Good Job Timothy! NIce work! See you in a week!

  9. thebaldenglishteacher says:

    If you settled down in Salt Lake, you could run in those (and lots of other) mountains every day! It’s a pretty sweet place to call home. Just sayin…

    Good luck at UTMB!

  10. Glad to see some of my shots on here 🙂

  11. So glad you got to experience Speedgoat! The course is definitely humbling regardless of the runner’s level. Enjoy your upcoming travels. 🙂

  12. Thanks for the recap! Great visuals, makes me wanna try it even though its way outta my league!

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