Friday, July 19, 2013

The Wonderland Trail - Preface

I am hitting the road tomorrow morning to make my way, once again, to Mount Rainier.  However, unlike last year when we scaled it, I will be attempting to run its circumference on the Wonderland Trail, a 93-mile long trail that circumnavigates the mountain.  Josh Fuller and I will be running ~50K each day for three days.  Horsecow has had to pull out due to injury, but has agreed to come hang out regardless.  We will be crewed by the lovely and amazing Elizabeth and Cassie, who are being total team players while their respective partner and husband pursue another foray of questionable sanity.  Thank you so much in advance!

We'll run Tuesday through Thursday of next week.  The first day will start at Longmire and end 32-33 miles and 6000-7000k of climbing later at Mowich Lake.  Wednesday is our short day, a measly marathon from Mowich to White River.  Thursday we leave White River and hopefully finish back at Longmire, 34 miles later.  This is a stout undertaking, but one I believe we can handle.  We are not pursuing any FKTs, so we have all day, each day, to get things done.

I had to drop out of Alec's 6-hour race early on Saturday because my legs, particularly the right leg, and my back all rebelled around mile 15.  It was an odd feeling to go from seemingly fine to walking in the matter of a few steps.  My calves are just now starting to loosen up, and only after a) not running a step this week, b) near constant stretching, and c) hammering them with self-massage.  I woke up Tuesday morning with a lower back so tight I could barely get out of bed.  It felt like it did back in December when I was sidelined for a month.  However, things seem to be coming around, and as long as I am diligent about stopping frequently to stretch while I'm on the road the next two days, I hope a day of relaxing in the park on Monday will allow me to be ready to run Tuesday.

And if it sucks, or something happens, we (or I) stop.  Not a big deal.

I'm excited for this.  I've been thinking about it for a year.  And I think this kicking it at Mount Rainier the last week of July thing may have to become a yearly tradition.

Below is my current favorite song (plus another one that is also fantastic) from my current favorite band.  I cannot stop listening.  The Sweetest Curse has a series of riffs that, in my opinion, are some of the best I have ever heard.  And I am and always have been all about the riff.  I grew up on Hetfield, what can I say?

Monday, July 1, 2013

End of June...On To Some Miles

I took the week after Bighorn easy mostly due to being too sore to run.  I did get a nice trail run in on my birthday and Elizabeth and I hiked a portion of Rock Creek trail.

Yeah, so I'm 30 now.  I have to remember that when I register for races in the future.

I also don't have to compete against 22-year old guys who are straight out of college anymore.  Sweet.  Except that when it comes to trail races where the folks in the 30-40 age group are the ones kicking all the butt.  

Last week was a good training week and a great way to finish the month out strong.  I'm going to try to ramp up some miles in the next two or three weeks before taking off for Rainier and the Wonderland Trail.  I won't get to 90mpw, but I can get to 70+ and call it good.  And then hope I can do back-to-back-to-back ultras.  I'll have fantastic company so I'm not too worried.

Mon. June 24 - 5M in :36.  Post work run in the prairie.  My allergies were kicking my butt and running wasn't a lot of fun.  Tried a new medication that seems to be working like a charm.  Fenceline loop.  

Tues. June 25 - 7.5M in :58.  Tuesday Night Trails.  The mountain bike series races are going and we had to deal with congested trails.  Therefore, we are officially moving trails to Wednesday evenings.  We started from Summit trail head, went out Summit, down Haunted Forest, up Super Secret, out Summit loop and Browns, and in on Headquarters.  Mosquitoes are also now officially out en masse.  And they are thirsty.

Wed. June 26 - 9M in 1:09. Morning run.  Trying to avoid the midday-afternoon heat.  House to prairie, fenceline, Owl Canyon, home.  A little sluggish the first half, then pretty relaxed the second half.

Thurs. June 27 - 8M in :56.  I stole a track workout from Deininger.  House to track, form drills, then 4x(2x200m/200m rec, 400m/400m rec).  Splits were 41, 38, 76, 38, 38, 76, 38, 37, 76, 39, 37, 74.  Something always feels pretty good about running a little faster on the track.

Fri. June 28 - 5.5M in :39.  Greenbelt south loop.  Quick morning run.  Shorter to recover from track workout/set myself up for some weekend mileage.

Sat. June 29 - 10.5M in 1:28.  Morning run with Jefe and Patrick.  Big Headquarters loop.  Got a later start (8 a.m.) and we were quite warm by the end.  Not a bad run.  My back and hips are a little sore, but I figured that would happen when I jumped up the mileage this week.  Have to stay diligent about stretching/core work.

Sun. June 30 - 19M in 2:35.  I was going to do 2xSilent Trails loop, but I was tired after the first loop, so I went out on a shorter Headquarters-Browns-Summit loop.  I ran the first loop with my pack so I can start getting used to running with it again before I go to Rainier.  Cooler morning, wheels just fell of a little at the end.

Week's Totals: 64.5M (8:21)

January: 107 (15:29)
February: 132 (18:29)
March: 170 (21:25)
April: 158 (21:26)
May: 195 (26:42)
June: 222 (35:13)
2013: 981 (138:45)

Gear: Asics Speedstar 6 (120M), Saucony Peregrine 2 (272M), Asics GT-2000 G-TX (294M)