I did almost 40 miles this week. Well, 37.5 But hey who is counting!?!?
The good thing about me is that I have some staying power for the distance. Probably why I have gotten the USATF Long-Distance Masters award.
Yesterday, I think we had 11 to start our Newport group. Here we are at the entrance to Fort Adams before the Folk Festival sign. An appropriate greeting, “Welcome and Woo Hoo!”
Again, I am the supremely color-coordinated one. Someone noted, Robin always matches and my “ego” blurted out, yep, I do! I take great pride in my running outfits.
Well, mile after mile, we kept losing some folks so that around mile ten or so, there were just four from our original pace group. A large contingent broke off into another pace group earlier on.
And, Ron, at the age of 65 looks better than all of us at that point. Although his hat is off centered – he says that is to the sweat can roll off to one side. I suppose I don’t look so bad either. My hair is blowing in the wind like a movie star or something… or something.
At about mile twelve, it was down to 2. Yes, 2 – Ron and I to finish off our 14. Our two remaining fellows had some technical difficulties that they had to attend to. They made it in short order though.
Some days this happens. One group pairs off with another, and then another two pair off, and then before you know it…you are still standing or your not.
We all got to try the new donut shop in Newport. I admit I didn’t have a donut and the Nitro coffee was a tad overrated. After defending my place in line, I needed to crush some shopping at Run Newport. Why I needed another water bottle is beyond me, especially when I drink diet orange. And, another headband????? Who knows.
I did ok for 14 miles. My only pain is the ache in my glutes. Quite literally a pain in the ass. When I run a marathon, I keep some Advil or other ibuprofen with me. Studies have actually shown that this can decrease marathon performance so I only take it when the glutes are screaming. But when I do, I pop the suckers in. Once I do that, I can pretty much get the rest of the miles in.
Today, I headed to the Blue Hills for a two-hour trail run. My Sunday runs need to start being on trails so that I can get my ankle strength up and adjusted to the terrain for my 50K. I did roll my bad ankle again today and hopped to a rock in pain but it seems to be OK now.
As part of this workout, I did 20 x 1 minute all out up a hill with 1-minute recovery. Boy, was I glad when that was all over. The aim of this workout was quick leg turnover up the hill.
Needless to say, I didn’t look so pretty today as I did yesterday. Trail running is a LOT more difficult than road running. A lot more intensive on the demands it places on the body. And the dirt, rocks, bugs, you name it. Did I say more demanding on the body!?!?
I did use this an opportunity to test out my new “Scott Jurek” Ultimate Direction Ultra Vest. For those of you who don’t know who Scott Jurek is, there is no need, just know that I have fantasies about him. Really last year he ran the Appalachian Trail beating the last standing record. He did it in 46 days.
While a bit of overkill for today, I need to start using it to get accustomed to it and for the weight, it adds. Thanks, Paul. Nice Christmas present. It makes me feel a little tiny teeny bit like Jurek.
I am not so sure why I continue to make my own routes but here is one I planned out meticulously. Always I get off course so easily. Perhaps, I just need to break down and pay the $2.50 for the actual Blue Hills trail map that has all the trails outlined. However, you think I would know this by heart now. It is not my first Blue Hills Rodeo.
After a few miles in, I made it to my favorite spot, a little “kettle” pond that apparently was so low it didn’t make it in the photo. I was aiming to get it in the background. All you can see is the teeny tiny bank to the right of my head. Nonetheless, it still felt like an oasis for taking a quiet reflective rest and for a lunch of gummy chews.
Well, I am looking officially trail like here. My sweatband needed to become a headband. And, so there you have it.
And, when I got back to the parking lot, what did I spy… A JEEP with a Vermont50 sticker. This is the exact same race that I am training for. I took that at a sign from the universe that “I got this…”
A few pre-races on the docket now.
August 26 – 1/2 marathon – Black Bear Half at Waterville Valley, New Hampshire.
September 9 – Charles River Marathon. I am not one for inaugural races. I like the kinks worked out of them but at least this starts near Harvard so I will be smart about it.
I would really like to do the 25K Around Cape Ann since I have done it a number of years but that is September 4 and would not allow enough time for rest before the marathon.
So the weeks are flying by and training is upping. I think very soon I will be nearing 50 miles per week.