Sunday, October 31, 2010
Final Mountain Masochist Preparation
Writing this with 6 days until the 2010 Mountain Masochist Trail Run. (Hope I didn't break some blogger rules/etiquette by swiping one of Beth's photos to finally put a pic with my blog.... let me know if I broke any rules) All the work is done and I will just do some easy light running this week and maybe a couple of complete rest days. I feel okay about my training but not super pleased with the last month or so. I didn't do much during the week days over the last month but continued to get some good long runs on weekends. I'll try to focus on the positive and know that I'm ready to run long for many hours. My long runs were good... over the last 12 weeks or so I've done 9 runs of 24 miles or longer (two 30+ milers, two 28 milers, 26.5 miler, two 25 milers, 24 miler, 23 miler on the MMTR trail, and the two weekends that I didn't go super long I did back to back 20's and back to back 21's.)
Last weekend I decided late in the week to head up to Lynchburg and join a bunch of other MMTR runners in a training run on the second half of the course. It was a perfect cool morning but warmed up nicely. So good to see some familiar faces, meet the famous David Horton and make some new friends. I didn't know much about the course so I stuck with some folks that I knew and a few that had run the course before. Lot's of slow uphills on Forest Service type roads. The uphill running was intimidating but I know I'll do fine climbing slow and steady. The "Loop" was just as advertised (thanks Rick).... nice single track that started gentle but had more climbing and some good technical downhill. My group got ahead of me on the downhills but I usually was able to catch back up on the uphills. After the loop had some trail that was difficult to follow but I should be able to find my way next week. Parts of the trail were so covered with leaves and so minimal of a trail that I felt like I was just running through the woods following blue blazes on the trees with no real trail. One super steep hill late is VERY steep and will be difficult just hiking up without resting on race day. The last several miles were generally downhill but I'm sure my quads will be trashed by then so that may be difficult as well.
It was a great day to be running in the mountains. I somehow got hooked into driving to the starting point (I'm sure everyone would have rather had their car at the finish) but with the beautiful weather and great friends it was nice sitting in the sun and enjoying the post run chatter. A few folks got "lost" but all made it back with a smile. Finally a driver offered to drive folks back to pick up cars. A bunch of us jumped up and hopped in his car... didn't get to say a proper goodbye but I was ready to get on the road. We had 7 hairy, smelly guys piled into a small Toyota... thank goodness for open windows! I had an uneventful ride home and was able to interrupt my music listening to tune in the LSU game on Sirius. Got home in the 2nd quarter and there was pasta boiling on the stove and I had enough energy to chop up an onion, tofu, mushrooms, green pepper, steam some bok choy and mix it all up with the pasta and ate bunches all afternoon.
I did learn a a valuable lesson about the MMTR course. As I joked with the post run crowd, I'll have to have a big lead on Beth if I intend to beat her to the finish line. She's a heck of a downhill runner! I'm a bit worried about possible bad weather next week but we shall see. Maybe that will take my mind off the difficult course.
Below is a brief summary of the last two weeks of training: (301 miles for October)
Rest Day (travel to Dallas for work meetings)
AM Easy paced 8 mile run
AM Steady 7 mile run early AM
PM Quick 4 miles on the treadmill after being in a classroom all day
Rest Day/Travel Day
PM after getting home at 1am, did an easy afternoon 6 mile run
AM Steady paced 14.7 miles in 2:02. 36 degree morning, but no wind. Felt great and real good to run with Chuck again after a few weeks.
AM Nice morning... 7 miles in 60 minutes. Legs feel good.
Total 46.5 miles
AM 6 miles of easy flat running. Legs tired.
AM Repeat of Mondays 6 miles.
PM A lot of quick brisk walking
PM Steady 7 mile run in Ewood.
AM Easy 7 miles on a cool morning
AM 10 miles of steady running with Tom in the neighborhood.
AM 23 miles on MMTR course!
Easy 11 mile run on the mostly flat Greenway
Total 70 miles