Weekly Totals: Distance: 32.69 mi. (52.69 mi) Time: 5:48:27 Vertical: 6343 ft.
*(Includes last Sunday's Run)
Vertical: 0 ft.
Today my legs felt heavy, but relaxed. I anticipated going swimming, but opted to lay low and stretch. I'm not feeling as bad as I thought I may, after the 20 miler on Sunday. I'm a bit confused as to why it was so tough from mile 17 to 20. The only thing I can think of is that after I stopped for the bathroom break at mile 15 I did pick up the pace, and maybe it was too much too soon. Who knows? It could've been not enough food in me the night before.
Vertical: 50 ft.(?)
There are some days when all is going well and you still don't make it to the trail. I got in my car after work, started her up, and realized that I didn't have my headlamp. A quick glance to the heavens revealed the moon wasn't out, or anywhere in sight, so it left me contemplating what to do: run on the trail in dark, on the road, or not at all. Then it hit me, "you're over analyzing." It's so easy to get caught up in running technological advances, today, Garmin, Headlamps, Moisture Wicking Everything, Ipod's, etc., that we make these rash decisions that unless all of our stars (technology) are aligned we can't enjoy the run, let alone go on it. This entirely defeats the purpose of running. So, tonight's run I wore a cotton t-shirt, no watch, and NB Minimus (Trail). I ran on the road, to the track, around the track (4 miles worth) and back to the car. All at an, "I feel comfortable pace." It was liberating. And, no, my feet didn't fall apart because I wasn't wearing cushioned shoes, no, my upper torso was not chaffed because I didn't wear a moisture wicking shirt, and, yes, the run was still valid even though I can't Garmin, or even chronograph-ically, back it up. Getting back to the basics always brings me back to reality.
I feel great today, but the weekly mileage has been purposefully reduced to begin the 'peak' for the upcoming 50k. Today, I let myself enjoy some rock climbing, but didn't push it too hard. I'm so excited about hill repeats, tomorrow. It has been forever since I've really had a workout focus on the best strengthening workout in running.
Distance: 4.51 mi.
Vertical: 529 ft.
I'm not sure where I left yesterday's motivation, or where I got this ill feeling from, but I wanted nothing to do with running today, when I woke up. And it was a crazy trip from my house to, eventually, Collins Hill Park. I set out today with a sick feeling, and fatigue because I didn't sleep at all last night. I drove to the Suwanee Greenway where I knew from previous bike rides there was a substantial hill that would be great for the planned workout: 1.5 mile Warm-up, 5 X 2:00 w/ 3:00 Rest Hill Repeats, 1.5 mile Cool-down. When I arrived at the first destination I ran straight to the bathroom, took some time, and then right back to the front seat of my car. I was set to just go home from the sickness (maybe food 'poison'. Poison is a bit strong of a description), and not to mention my utter disappoint in the actual grade and size of this hill. My imagination can run wild sometimes, or I'm so used to mountains the hills around Gwinnett just aren't satisfactory anymore. What a diva, I can be. I started my car, drove to the stop sign and instead of heading home I headed to Collins Hill Park. I realized that it wasn't the size of the hill that was discouraging it was the surface. I'm done with the road. I got to the park, warmed up, ran my workout, and skipped the cool-down. The repeats felt amazing, exhausting, but amazing.
An off day, today. My glutes are sore from the hills, plus the planned 22 miler in the mountains, this weekend, is on the radar. I can't wait.
Distance: 6.18 mi.
Vertical: 548 ft.
The amazing weather tempted me past my breaking point and right after work I took to the trail for a great run. 6 miles has not felt this good in 6 weeks. And my pace was faster than normal on the trail. Probably should have slowed down in prep for tomorrow's long run, but oh well.
Distance: 16.00 mi.
Vertical: 5,246 ft. (nearly a mile)
Wow, it has been some time since I've been to the mountains, and damn did I miss it. I planned on a nice 22 miles today, but a turned ankle at 15.45 mi. lead me to, intelligently, opt-out at 16 miles. If the terrain had not been so demanding on the downhills I more than likely would have continued, but once an ankle is turned it's more susceptible to a serious injury. Either way, the vertical gain at Blood Mountain is something I salivate for in my every day life. The burning quads, the dry mouth, the endless uphill is a dream come true. It was great to see a lot of hikers on the trail, especially when they see someone running up a hill the can barely walk up. I feel almost celebrity when random people start encouraging my masochist efforts, sans the celebrity drama of course, but I do like solitude and a busy trail doesn't offer that. Of course, the weather was perfect so a busy trail should be predictable. Here's a great vertical map of Sunday's slightly short 22 miler (ha):