Houston Fit Adventure Racing Newsletter Put some ADVENTURE in your life!
March 2011

Our favorite few months are here - welcome, spring! The sweltering sun is shining (but not roasting us), the days are longer (MORE TRAIL TIME!), and our target race is right around the corner. It's a great time to be an adventure racer!

In This Issue
  • Save the Dates
  • Our Mighty Target Race: The Mighty San Gabriel!
  • Confessions of a Race Director
  • The Nutrition Mission
  • Three Days in the Desert
  • Sponsor Spotlight
  • Road Runner Wrap-Up
  • Cheering Section
  • Breaking the HFAR Ice
  • Contribute to the Houston Fit AR Newsletter!

  • Our Mighty Target Race: The Mighty San Gabriel!

    The race we've been diligently paddling, sprinting, and mashing pedals for — Too Cool's Mighty San Gabriel at Lake Georgetown on April 16 — is right around the corner! Whether you're planning on doing the six-hour sprint course or the 12-hour adventure course, there's a race for everyone!

    But how dare we forget about the post-race festivities. Your Houston Fit AR teammates will be camping out at Lake Georgetown for the weekend (before and after the race), so don't forget to bring the fun with you, too! Camping fees are already included in your race registration for both Friday and Saturday nights. You just need a tent and a sleeping bag.

    On Friday night, we'll get some rest and calm some of those last-minute racing jitters. But Saturday after the race, we'll have a cook-out, a bonfire, beers, and plenty of post-race stories! You won't want to miss it.

    This is a family-friendly weekend, so bring your significant other, your kiddos, your pets, and other friends. And mark your calendar — the weekend of April 16 is going to be a blast!

    Confessions of a Race Director

    Exclusive Interview: Texas Adventure Racing Race Director & Novice Navigation Coach
    By Fayza Elmostehi & Wade Woehrmann

    HFAR: Why'd you decide to take over Texas Adventure Racing?
    Wade: Since my first Huntsville Jail Break race (now Huntsville Hammer) four or five years ago, I came to love the sport. As a land planner, artist, and racer, I can't think of anything more exciting than laying out a course. Thinking about designing a course to give everyone — novices and vets — a fun, challenging, memorable race makes me tick. Good friends Jim & Michele Willis had a passion for making a race worth running, and I'm very glad to step up to the challenge they offered me.

    HFAR: What is one of the most challenging things about planning your first big adventure race?
    Wade: Paperwork! Insurance coverage, forestry permits, Port-O-Can delivery ... what I have really enjoyed is helping those new to the sport, and speaking to groups to promote the sport in general.

    HFAR: How much time does it take to plan out and execute an adventure race for a race director?
    Wade: For the Quest, I've now spent now a month-and-a-half's worth of weekends riding the area — I wanted to find and map out a new and challenging course. And, of course, an untold number of late nights and weeks of back-end website work, registration, t-shirt ordering, etc.

    HFAR: How do you handle unexpected situations during an adventure race, like disputes between teams, strange injuries, lost racers, etc.?
    Wade: I hope to avoid such things. Otherwise, let cool heads prevail.

    HFAR: Will you give us the coordinates to the paddle leg checkpoints in advance?
    Wade: Yes, but in advance of what? You will not know until you need to!
    HFAR: Well, we tried.

    HFAR: Any final words before the race this weekend?
    Wade: I have to give a big thanks to Jim and Michele for their help in passing the baton. Jim has been good about offering and advice to make sure things go well. TAR also has a great resource in the volunteers that have and are signing up. Tim Helm and Pam Rea have explored Double Lake with me, have been a great sounding board for ideas, and will be there on game day. Thank all the volunteers if you have a great time on race day!

    The Nutrition Mission

    Troubleshooting Your Nutrition
    By Steve Mertz, Novice Biking Assistant Coach

    You've been training and working out, and you've noticed that something isn't quite right.

    You get injured or sick easily, or you feel tired and fatigued all the time - but you don't understand why.

    The problem could be as simple as changing your eating habits. We'll explore some common problems that pop up while training or racing, and what could be the cause of them.

    Three Days in the Desert

    The 2011 Chihuahuan Desert Dirt Fest
    By Gabe Haarsma, HFAR Organizer & Veteran Assistant Biking Coach

    Even though it's technically not a race - it used to be a mountain bike race a few years ago - the Chihuahuan Desert Dirt Fest is still worth a ride report.

    Lajitas is a small resort town sandwiched between Big Bend National Park and Big Bend Ranch State Park. It's a bit of a drive getting out there, but the trip is worthwhile.

    Both parks, and the Lajitas-Terlingua area in between, are beautiful, rugged, remote desert land. It's a whole different country out there.

    Sponsor Spotlight

    We're pleased to announce our brand new title sponsor - Bike Barn!

    Bike Barn is Houston's largest bike shop, carrying all your favorite bike brands - Trek to Specialized to Gary Fisher. We're excited that they've decided to join us in our quest to show Houston that adventure racing is the very best sport around!

    So what does that mean for HFAR members? Lots of great stuff! All HFAR members will receive a discount of 10% at any Bike Barn location. The 10% discount excludes bikes, service and sale items. Members will be entered in the Bike Barn database, so discounts will be applied at checkout. Also, when you refer a friend to HFAR, you'll be eligible for Bike Barn gift certificates!

    Stay tuned for more member perks. And visit our new sponsor at any of their six retail locations!

    Road Runner Wrap-Up

    The 2011 Texas Independence Relay
    By Ken Navarro

    I had a chance this year to compete for the first time in the Texas Independence Relay (TIR) with the CITYCENTRE Running Club. It's a long-distance running race for teams of 8-12 people.

    Each team starts out in Gonzales, Texas. The team captain takes the baton and heads out of town at the best pace he or she can manage. The rest of the team piles into a van (or two), and drives on ahead to the first exchange point. Once there, everyone hops out to cheer the captain on upon arrival.

    From there, each runner takes a turn running a section of the route. The race continues all day and all night, until eventually the baton has been passed a total of 40 times at set exchange points along the way to the San Jacinto Monument in LaPorte, Texas.

    Cheering Section

    Gabe H.
    Vanessa R. - First & only female to complete Big Bend State Park EPIC ride (59 miles) in single day

    24 HOURS IN OLD PUEBLO MTB RACE (Feb. 19-20)
    Cynthia W. - 7th female duo

    Justin A. & Bing K.

    Marathon: Judy J. - 1st female, 11th overall
    Half-Marathon: Ken N. - 32nd male, 41st overall

    NAV TEXAS (Feb. 26)
    Helena F., Gabe H. - 1st coed, 1st overall
    Bing K. - 1st solo, 2nd overall
    Brian G., Ken N.

    TMBRA MTB — WARDA (Feb. 26)
    Kristi D. - 5th place Pro Women
    Tracy J. - 3rd Cat 1 Women 30-39
    Kelley S. - 11th Cat 2 Men 35-39
    Cody T. - 11th Cat 2 Men 19-29
    Kevin B. - 4th place Cat 2 Men 30-34
    Fayza E. - 2nd Cat 3 Women 30-39
    Brandon J. - 39th Cat 3 Men 30-39

    Ashley M., Cody T. - 2nd overall
    Helena F., Gabe H., Scott S. - 3rd overall
    Clay P.

    Ken N., Judy J. - 15th coed out of 75

    (March 12)
    Fayza E. - 3th solo women's recreational kayak-short out of 22
    Helena F., Gabe H. - 5th unlimited out of 88
    Vanessa R., Wade W. - 12th unlimited out of 88
    Scott S., Cynthia W. - 13th unlimited out of 88
    Raymund C., Melissa C. - 14th unlimited out of 88
    Lan P. - 32nd unlimited out of 88
    John L.

    Tracy J. - 4th, Cat 1 Women 30-39
    John M. - 4th, Cat 1 Men 30-39

    John M.
    Kelley S.

    WARRIOR DASH (March 19-20)
    Ashley M. - 2nd place in age group
    James J.
    Mark M.
    Sabrina S.

    Daniel M.

    Kevin B. - 5th place Cat 2 Men 30-34
    Tracy J.

    Daniel M. - 2nd in age group
    Scott S.


    Breaking the HFAR Ice

    Get to Know Your Teammates!
    By Fayza Elmostehi & Daniel Murphy, Novice Assistant Running Coach

    HFAR: How long have you been an adventure racer?
    Daniel: I joined the club in the spring of 2009.

    HFAR: Why did you decide to do adventure racing?
    Daniel: I love doing all kinds of outdoor activities, and I'd always thought adventure racing sounded like fun — but had never actually tried it. Then I met my wife Sara (who was a member of the club) and joined up. She had pretty much stopped racing at that point, but she liked dropping me off at "adventure racing day care," where I could go play with the other kids and come home all tired out.

    HFAR: What's your favorite of the three core disciplines (run, bike, paddle) and why?
    Daniel: I am definitely a runner. I think my love of running comes out of the simplicity of it and partially out of laziness. Running is something that humans were designed to do. You don't need gear to do it and it is just You against Yourself. I can come home and run, no matter what time of day it is. I don't have to worry about weather and trails being closed. I don't have to load gear up and drive anywhere. And after a long run, I don't feel nearly as guilty for spending the rest of the day on the couch eating junk food!

    HFAR: What secret weapon could you never do a race without?
    Daniel: I don't think I have any secret weapons, but I do have a friend who swears that if you sing the song "Girls" by the Beastie Boys when you are tired and worn down, it will give you super powers. I would say that my favorite piece of gear is my Ay Up light, though. It is crazy bright and great for any night time activities.

    HFAR: If you were a superhero, which would you be and why?
    Daniel: Batman. I actually WAS Batman for a brief moment the other night, when I was running under the Waugh St. bridge right as all the bats were coming out. It was pretty awesome — and a little bit scary.

    Contribute to the Houston Fit AR Newsletter!

    If you've got something to say, then, by all means - SAY IT! Email Social Director Fayza with your articles, photos, race reports, or story ideas, and we'll include them in a future issue.

    Save the Dates


    • April 2: HFAR Club Race - Lake Bryan
    • April 7: HFAR Social #2 - Petrol Station
    • April 16: Too Cool Mighty San Gabriel AR - Lake Georgetown (TARGET RACE!)


    • March 26: Texas Quest AR - Double Lake
    • April 2: Too Cool Scavenger Hunt Trail Run - Pace Bend
    • April 3: TMBRA/GHORBA Big Ring Challenge MTB - Double Lake
    • April 9-10: Terra Firma Bluebonnet Adventure Fest - Reveille Peak Ranch
    • April 9: GHORBA Short Track Stampede MTB - Cypresswood
    • April 16: Too Cool Mighty San Gabriel AR - Lake Georgetown (TARGET RACE!)
    • April 17: TMBRA MTB - Pace Bend
    • April 23: GHORBA Short Track Stampede MTB - Flintridge


    • March 19: Fred E.
    • March 22: Bing K.
    • March 26: Jeff H.
    • March 31: Eric W.
    • April 7: Melissa C.
    • April 23: Kirk N.


    • April 1: April Fool's Day
    • April 15: Tax Day
    • April 22: Earth Day
    • April 24: Easter

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