Written by: Ron Deems
I have been running the Salmon Run almost every year since 2004 and normally participate in the 10k race. I think of myself as a slightly serious runner in the respect that I consider running more than just a hobby, more of like a passion, something I really look forward to doing. Over the years I have spent my training time preparing for various ½ marathons and have found the 10k races to be great for testing my fitness level for both speed and endurance. Keeping in mind that the 10k pace is not the same as my ½ marathon pace but with good fitness I can usually push the limits of my ability for the seemingly shorter distance. The timing of the Salmon run has always fit right into my training schedule to allow me to see if my training between March and May has been effective and to allow me time to adjust before the summer races arrive. I have also noticed that with the timing of the Pole Pedal Paddle race the Salmon run fits into most of the local PPP racers as a last hard run before the big race, especially among the elite PPP individual and pairs racers. This has added an additional level of competition to the race then you see in the typical local races, which is really exciting to me, as I find these athletes amazing! I have also become friends with a few of these athletes and have found listening to their training schedules and advice to be not only awe inspiring but quite amazing as most are not professional athletes but train as hard as you would imagine a professional.
Naturally we all have different goals, even different from year to year. This past winter I have had several injuries that have kept my mileage down from a typical 35 - 50 miles per week down to 9 -15. So training for a ½ marathon in June is going to be pretty much out of reach for me this year. This has been torture for me not being able to go for a 9 - 15 mile run and having to settle for a 3 - 5 mile run instead. But it is all I can do for now, so I must face it and make it work. Of course it will have an effect on what I can really attempt as far as racing. Luckily races like the Salmon run offer several distances, like the 5k, which will allow me to be able to set race goals and still get that feeling of accomplishment rather than just sitting out the season because I can not fully prepare for the ½ marathon. The 5k is also great for runners that are just getting started as you can run in several throughout the season and see improvements from race to race.
With the recovery of my injury I have been slowly increasing my mileage and working in some speed work. In theory I want to build up the mileage so I can easily run the race distance but at a faster pace than a typical run without getting re-injured or feel like I over did it.
Ron Deems, 57, has been running since his senior year in high school. Mostly a casual runner for many years until a friend challenged him to run in the second annual Dirty Half marathon in Bend. From that point on he was hooked on having competitions as part of his running schedule. His favorite day of the week is Tuesday because that is the Tuesday Performance Group night with Max King!