Friday, May 29, 2009

Western States 100 - Week 2

“Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in inequity, but rejoices in truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Corinthians: 13:4-7

Sorry for the late posting this week but time has gotten the better of me. Twenty nine days until the Western States 100. I had another good week of training and was able to get in 62 miles including a great 25 miler on the Appalachian Trail. The Lord continues to fuel the machine and hold the body together.

I started out the week with a gym session of weightlifting and 5 miles on the Precor Crossramp. For the cross ramp I ran a double hill set and got the resistance up to level 13. Tuesday through Friday I was able to get 4 commute runs accomplished for a total of 32 miles along the Custis and WO&D trail. These runs were all AM run commutes from the East Falls Church Metro Station to the Pentagon. I ran two Fartlek runs, a Tempo, and an easy run on Friday. All 4 of the runs were run at a sub 8 minute mile pace.

Saturday, I was able to get out early on the Appalachian Trail for about 25 miles. I started at the Manassas Gap Trailhead and ran through Sky Meadows State Park up to the Ashby Gap Trailhead. This was a great training run with about 4500’ of elevation gain and loss; it also offered some long stretches of downhill running. The highlight of the run was a very large black bear encounter about an hour and a half in to the run. As with most of my bear sightings this bear was more scared than I was, however in his attempt to get away he ran parallel to the trail for about a hundred yards and refused to turn in to the woods. Finally, he decided that my following him was too much, so he darted across the trail in front of me and down a steep hill. This allowed me to get by, needless to say my pace accelerated for the next half mile or so. The rest of the run was uneventful, compared to that.

The run through Sky Meadows was awesome, what a beautiful view up on the ridgeline. The day did start to turn hot and very humid. I was hoping to make this a 30 mile run but by the time I got back to the car I was out of water (I carried a 72oz Camelback and 20oz handheld) and all I had to refill with was warm Gatorade. So that combination helped me talk myself out of another 5 mile stretch. The trailhead parking lot was at the edge of a nice mountain stream that I sat in for about 5 minutes at the end of the run and it did wonders for my legs. The run took 4 hours and 45 minutes and gave me some great training on the hills and hopefully started to work on my heat acclimatization.

On Sunday I had planned to put in 10 miles at the Bull Run Battlefield but was pleasantly surprised when my wife asked if I would walk with her that morning. So we ended up walking at the Battlefield early Sunday morning and she was able to get what I call “the deer experience”. Starting from the old stone bridge parking lot it’s about a mile to a very large meadow. If you can get to the meadow early enough it is full of deer eating breakfast, we were lucky enough to get there early. She has heard me talk about the deer at Bull Run often and I usually count how many I see during my runs out there but for this day I was just content to share this experience with her and didn’t bother with a count.

I am well into week 3 training but won’t ruin the write up, which I hope to have posted in a more timely fashion. The WS100 is closing in and I feel stronger than I did last year. I think that the training over the next couple of weeks is going to set me up for a good taper and leave me in a good fitness position. Run Strong!

God Bless and Semper Fi,

Training for 11-17 May: Weekly Mi (62), May Mi (206.6), 2009 Mi (977.0)
Mon: 5.5 mi- Crossramp and Upper Body Lift
Tues: 8 mi- (Fartlek) AM Run Commute WO&D Trail, AB
Wed: 8 mi- (Tempo) AM Run Commute WO&D Trail, AB
Thurs: 8 mi- (Fartlek) AM Run Commute WO&D Trail, AB
Fri: 8 mi- (Fartlek) AM Run Commute WO&D Trail, AB
Sat: 25 mi- Appalachian Trail
Sun: Walk at Bull Run Battlefield

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