Monday, November 29, 2010

Nov 21-27, Change of plans 50K not 50 Miles

The weeks runs:

Sun, Nov 21 PM - Interpretive Center Via Westside Ascent Trail, Mixed street/trails

Time: 02:39:08
Distance: 16.34 mi
Elevation Gain: 775 ft

Ran with Barry to the top of the Interpretive Center. Probably was a mix of 60% road 40% dirt/gravel road and trail. Low 30's and snowing for most of the run. Felt pretty tight at first. Legs finally loosened up around mile 8, but I never felt fresh, which I suppose is normal for a first back to back weekend. Rolled the dice a little with my tendon by using the f-lite 195s, but they worked out great and my tendon must be healing up. I just couldn't bear the thought of running all of the road in something with a larger heel and as thick as the MT 101s. inov-8 f-lite 195s.

Mon, Nov 22 - OFF - Lap Swim 20 min.

Tue, Nov 23 PM - BSS - Pathway - BSS, Street Running

Time: 00:28:11
Distance: 3.33 mi
Elevation Gain: 10 ft

Ran a quick shake out run after work. Temps were dropping fast and was around 12 degrees when I left. Supposed to drop significantly below zero tomorrow. Felt decent considering the mileage I put in last weekend. I'm just going to run easy for the next couple of weeks and be at full strength for the NF 50K. Dropped down to the 50K yesterday and will take a shot at 50 miles next summer. Inov8 F-Lite 195s.

Wed, Nov 24 PM - BSS - Henry Home - BSS, Trail running

Time: 00:42:26
Distance: 4.48 mi
Elevation Gain: 492 ft

Ran to mom and dad's then did the beginning section of the cell site road twice. Temps were in the single digits and there was about 3 inches of snow on the ground. Felt alright once I got going...hard to get going in these temps. Inov8 F-Lite 195s.

Thurs, Nov 25 AM - 2010 Baker City Turkey Trot 5K+, Road Race

Time: 00:22:36
Distance: 3.37 mi
Elevation Gain: 20 ft

This year's Turkey Trot was a great success...tons of people came out with the temps in the single digits to run or walk this race. Felt alright, but didn't have much to give the last mile. Not unexpected considering the mileage I put in last weekend and the fact that I haven't run this fast (6:42/mile pace) since at least September on any given run and that the roads were completely iced over...I'd love to have tried Inov8's OROC 280's out in these conditions. It was good to see most of Baker's runners come out to run/support this. Inov-8 F-Lite 195s.

Fri, Nov 26 - OFF - Lap Swim 45 min (good swim session on this day).

Sat, Nov 27 PM - Water Tower, street running

Time: 00:40:18
Distance: 4.20 mi
Elevation Gain: 289 ft

Ran w/headlamp. 22 degrees and 3 in. of snow on the ground. Felt alright, but not yet fresh or fully recovered. Going to take next week real easy to be fully recovered for the 50K and then take most of December off running to give my body a chance to recharge. NB MT101s.

Totals for Nov 21-27:

7 runs (I had a few short warm up/transportation runs in there that I didn't list in the rundown)
33.72 mi
05:09:31 h:m:s
1,595 ft Elevation Gain

Well, as the title of this post shows, I decided last week to drop my race entry down to the 50K instead of 50 miles. I was initially really bummed out to do this, but had received some great feedback from ultrarunner Yassine Diboun, as well as my parents and wife that it might have been just a little too much to try to squeeze in this year. I guess I figured I could have carried a little more fitness over from my first 50K in September and the PDX Marathon in October, but it seemed that I instead struggled getting back to full health after hitting these first time milestones rather than being able to use them as base for a 50 miler. I'm now looking to make my first bid at a 50 mile race @ White River in Crystal Mountain, WA which takes place in the later part of July. By that time I'm hoping to get a large enough base under my belt that I will be able to actually race the distance rather than just survive it, as I would have been left to do should I have gone through with the 50 mile race this next weekend.

I'm starting to get excited about racing this 50K now. It is very similar to the 50K I did in September even down to the 6,500 ft of elevation gain. This course is supposedly more runable than Cle Elum with the terrain being mostly fire roads where as Cle Elum was nearly 100% rocky/rooty/muddy single track. I'm thinking this should translate to a slightly faster time than my 6:00:42 at Cle Elum, but I think with this much elevation gain, you have to be conservative initially anyway. I'm hoping for a 5:45 as I feel stronger both mentally and physically than Cle Elum, but I'm really just going to have fun and see what happens. Thanks for following my training the last month or so...I probably won't post a training update for this next week, but will post a race report when I get back. Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Nov 14-20 - 2 Weeks Out

First the rundown for the week:

Sun, Nov 12 AM - Auburn - 17th - H St - Pathway, Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:32:44
Distance: 4.38 mi
Elevation Gain: 27 ft

Ran with Jack (dog). Took the first .5 mile as a warm up then put in about 3.5 @ around 7:00-7:15/mile pace then last .3 was easy cool down. Wanted to mix up the type of running I've been doing with something a little different and was feeling a little too tired to do something longer again today. Hoping that with some shorter runs I'll be up for back to back long runs this next weekend. Ran with the Kinvaras because I thought it might be easier on my tendon in my foot. Seemed good on that front, but the arch support (although still quite minimal by most standards, I'm just used to no arch support) in these shoes irritated my left arch, also they are a little too cushioned for my liking. It's a good thing they are light because otherwise I'm not sure I'd use them at all. Not sure where their niche will be, maybe long road runs, but I wouldn't pick them again for this type of run. Saucony Kinvaras.

Mon, Nov 15 AM Lap Swim

45 min, 1.25 miles. Jumped in midway on a ladder with Bob and Paula. Did 400 (6:30), 500 (8:00), 400, 300, 200, 100 (@ 1:15). Felt good and was probably the hardest swimming set I've ever done at this point.

PM Cell Site Rd - North Overlook, Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 00:43:50
Distance: 3.99 mi
Elevation Gain: 1,172 ft

Didn't have much time today to run longer, but felt pretty good on this run even with all the vertical. Legs felt average on the climb, but felt really strong on the descent. Warmer today in the low 50's which was a nice change. Tendon was practically a non-issue today which is a great sign as I haven't really been talking any significant time off and yet it still is getting better. Right hip was a little sore I'm sure from using the Kinvara's yesterday. They are just too squishy a shoe for me I think. I'll have to use them carefully and sparingly in the future. NB MT101s.

Tues, Nov 16 Pm,
David Eccles - Indiana - 17th, Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:53:01
Distance: 5.65 mi
Elevation Gain: 181 ft

Ran with Dad and pushed Zach in the stroller. Felt alright. The road sure puts out a larger stress on the muscles, that and wearing minimalist shoes. Test ran in Dad's Terra Plana Evo's which felt really good, much better than the Kinvara's did 2 days ago. Looking to go longer and higher tomorrow if I recover well enough through the night other wise might take tomorrow as my only day off for the week. Terra Plana Evos.

Wed, Nov 17 AM, Lap Swim

30 min, .8 miles

South Interpretive Center Ridge Route, Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 00:45:48
Distance: 4.69 mi
Elevation Gain: 815 ft

Ran with Dad. 40's and very windy...probably 30-40 mph on the ridge. Was feeling pretty tired today and will probably take tomorrow off or maybe run short (under 30 min). Good little climb up to the ridge and then rollers after that. Descent was good technical practice as well. Was nice to get out. Got dark on us just as we were finishing around 4:40 pm. NB MT101s.

Thurs, Nov 18 OFF AM, Lap Swim

25 min, .68 mi

Fri, Nov 19 AM,
Vista Heights - Freeway Overlook, Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 00:32:13
Distance: 3.50 mi
Elevation Gain: 399 ft

Ran in the dark at 5:50 AM. I was hoping to start the run at 5:00 as this is the start time for the NF 50 mile, but was hard to get going. I usually don't run in the mornings so this will be a new discipline that I will try to do at least once a week. 24 degrees and dark...ran with a headlamp. NB MT101s

Sat, Nov 20 AM,
Elk Creek - Cell Site - Elkhorn Ridge - Elk Creek, Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 03:57:58
Distance: 23.00 mi
Elevation Gain: 3,639 ft

Long run today with dad. Probably a little more than I should have put in, but wanted to get in something comparable elevation gain wise to the NF 50. Pretty cold today in the mid 20's starting out and then between 25-35 degrees throughout the day. Wasn't feeling tops, but managed to get in the distance at a fairly decent pace of 10:20/mile. Legs are a little sore and tired, but I'm going to try and get out tomorrow for at least 15 miles. NB MT101s.

Totals for Nov 14-20

6 runs
45.20 mi
07:25:37 h:m:s
6,172 ft Elevation Gain

Although not part of this last week's running I wanted to mention that I did manage to get in my second long run yesterday (Sunday):

Time: 02:39:08
Distance: 16.34 mi
Elevation Gain: 775 ft

Well I'm now two weeks out from the NF 50 mile race. Still not sure if I'm capable of finishing this distance, but that is part of the mystery of doing an don't really know what your capable of until you give it a shot. This weekend really took me to a new place of what I thought I could actually handle physically and mentally. I've been really pushing the envelope on what would be considered smart to try to squeeze in training and racing wise for my first year of running and I can feel the effects of that. Yet, I am constantly amazed at what our bodies are capable of handling and know for sure that we don't tap into our full human potential nearly enough. What I love about ultrarunning is that not only does it teach you your limits, but it also allows you to be surprised by your capabilities. This mixture of harsh truth and unexpected surprise builds character and keeps things interesting. Till next week...

Monday, November 15, 2010

Nov 7-13

Sun, Nov 7 PM Vista Heights - Sports Complex Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:46:22
Distance: 5.25 mi
Elevation Gain: 403 ft

Decent little run to try to get back into the swing of things and see how my feet were doing after the weekend. My left arch was feeling better, but my right peroneal tendon was still sore on my right foot. Slowly, but surely these little aches and pains will work themselves out, but I'm not sure if I'll be able to ramp up the mileage like I need to for the 50 miler yet...we'll see how the rest of the week goes. Raining and 40's. VFF Flows.

Mon, Nov 8 PM OFF, 30 min Lap Swim

Tue, Nov 9 PM
Ag Shop - Cell Site Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 00:52:03
Distance: 4.43 mi
Elevation Gain: 1,353 ft

Ran this route nice and easy to see how my feet were doing and if the MT101's would help with the tendon issue on my right foot. Good news was that they helped a bunch. I think the 10mm heel lift on these shoes, while not liking that spec much in the past, might really help me keep running for the next few weeks and give my tendon a break. Run was nice and I ran it at a really casual pace most of the way. Started to snow heavily about halfway through and I ended up being a little cold with only shorts, my heavy icebreaker and gloves. Good to feel like I can do a run like this and still recover my tendon...if I can get in some consistent running the next couple of weeks, I may just be crazy enough to try the NF 50 miler. Just found out today that Dave Mackey is going to be there in addition to Tony Krupicka, Geoff Roes, and all the other top names that are going...will be super competitive and a real unique opportunity to watch. NB MT101s.

Wed, Nov 10 PM -
Vista Heights - Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:38:09
Distance: 4.01 mi
Elevation Gain: 398 ft

Ran up Vista Heights and around town late at night. Temperature was around 30 degrees and ground was frozen. Felt ok. A little sore from yesterday's decent, but not bad. Looking to run a little longer tomorrow...we'll see how that goes. NB MT101s.

Thurs, Nov 11 PM - Virtue Flats
Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 01:28:53
Distance: 9.17 mi
Elevation Gain: 726 ft
Ran with Dad and the dogs out at Virtue Flats. Was feeling a little sore initially and tendon in my foot was a little tight, but everything loosened up as we got going. A few good sections of climbing. Was a little muddy in spots, but we were still able to make decent time up and around the hills. NB MT101s.

Fri, Nov 12 OFF - 30 min, .9 mi Lap Swim

Sat, Nov 13th PM -
Elk Creek - 4 Corners - Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 01:39:55
Distance: 10.94 mi
Elevation Gain: 1,335 ft

Ran up Elk Creek with Dad. Fairly nice weather @ low 40's and no precip. Road was dry until we got into the timber and then there was some snow, ice, and mud mix; fully runable conditions though. Peroneal Tendon was tight for about 2 miles and then by about mile 4 I didn't even feel it until I was done...this is a good sign as it actually felt more sore near the end of our 9 mile run Thursday. Felt pretty good most of the way on this run and pace was good @ 9:08/mile especially since we weren't really pushing. NB MT101s.

Totals for the Week of Nov. 7-13:

5 Runs
33.80 mi
05:25:23 h:m:s
4,216 ft Elevation Gain

This was an encouraging week as I thought last week my hopes of putting in any significant mileage were pretty much non existent. Although this week doesn't represent the type of mileage I was hoping to be putting in by this time, I'm feeling better at the end of this week than I was at the start of it and this is a good sign that my tendon on my foot might be coming around. I'm planning on keeping steady runs in the 4-8 mile range the beginning of next week and then hitting a back to back weekend of long runs in the 15-25 mile range (probably around 3 hours each run, the distance will depend on the amount of elevation gain). Depending on how I recover from this upcoming weekend, I'll know whether my body is up the task...I know that if it is, I'll be shooting for a completion oriented pace as opposed to the sub 10-hour pace I originally had in mind, but the experience will be well worth while.

I felt good on my run on Saturday and enjoyed getting out into the more wintry conditions at the higher elevations. The change to winter though often dreaded is actually a nice change of pace for now. It is so nice to get up in the mountains and beats running in town any day. The running gets so much more simplistic and the time flies up in the mountains...I look at my garmin much less and just enjoy the run.

Have a good week everyone.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Oct. 31st-Nov 6th

Sun, Oct. 31 OFF

Mon, Nov. 1 PM High School - Cell Site Via Cell Rd Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 01:06:53
Distance: 6.17 mi
Elevation Gain: 1,471 ft

Ran with Trevor and Tanner to Mom and Dad's drive way and then met up with Mom and Dad and the dogs for a run up to the cell site. Felt decent most of the way, but the outside part of my right foot started to ache a little and by the time I got down and felt my foot I could feel that creaky tendinitis felling that I've experienced before with my Achilles tendon. Looked it up and sure enough there is a tendon group called the peroneal tendons that run through the area that is sore. Not sure what to think lately...I was just feeling like I was getting over the hump of recovering from Portland and resolving any IT band irritation and this popped up. I didn't really have any warning that this tendon group was even hurting before the run and I had taken the day off yesterday. I'm just going to take it day by day and see if it will heal with some easier running. Inov-8 F-Lite 195s.

Tue, Nov 2 OFF - 22 miles on Road bike

Wed, Nov 3 PM Run to Pool Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:18:40
Distance: 2.08 mi
Elevation Gain: 0 ft

Ran with Dogs to pool to test out my feet to see how they were recovering. Tendon on the right foot felt surprisingly strong, but arch area on my left is giving me some troubles still. Barefoot.

Thurs, Nov 4 PM XC Practice #45
Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:33:42
Distance: 4.05 mi
Elevation Gain: 19 ft

Ran to high school and then around pathway. Stopped and played a game of ultimate medicine ball (like ultimate frisbee) then put on another 2 miles getting back home. Still feeling the arch on my left foot, however, I did some tinkering with my foot strike and it seemed if I shifted my foot strike slightly forward from what I was doing that the arch felt better. I need to watch this and see how it goes. VFF Sprints.

Fri, Nov 5 PM
State XC Course Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 00:28:13
Distance: 3.13 mi
Elevation Gain: 19 ft

Ran the State XC course the day before the race. Nice course, felt alright, but for some reason, my feet are still not recovered...what a weird week. VFF KSOs.

Sat, Nov 6 OFF

Totals for Week of Oct. 31st-Nov 6th

5 Runs
15.84 mi
02:31:12 h:m:s
1,508 ft Elevation Gain

Man, this was a hard week for me. Just as I started feeling good, my feet started to act up on me. I've never had any significant foot issues since I started running, but I did run the marathon in my Five Fingers and then probably tried to ramp up the mileage again too quickly after Portland even though I was taking a more tapered approach to the re-entry phase than I did after my 50K in September. All part of the learning process. What makes things most difficult at this point is deciding whether to pull the plug on the race that is in 4 weeks. The conservative thing to do would be to just cancel my race plans...and I may have to if I don't see a big improvement this week as it is probably just too much to try to fit in in a short amount of time. I was really excited about this option could be to see if they will let me transfer my 50 mile entry down to a Marathon entry (which my Dad is doing) and that way I could still race and see some of the course as well as the runners that I was looking forward to seeing. I'll post my decision as I reach it. Have a good week!

Monday, November 01, 2010

First week of real training after PDX

I thought I'd blog each week on how my training is going for the North Face Endurance Challenge 50 mile trail race that is coming up this December 4th. The first two weeks after the marathon were mostly filled with rest, some lap swimming, helping out with the Cross country team and slowly easing myself back into some shorter runs.

The weekly totals for those weeks are as follow:

Oct. 10th-16th, PDX Marathon week:

2 runs
29.44 mi
04:08:21 h:m:s
1,020 ft elevation gain

...this was basically just the Marathon and then 4 days off and a short warm up run with XC team at their meet in Milton Freewater.

Oct. 17th-23rd:

5 runs
18.11 mi
02:30:32 h:m:s
799 ft elevation gain

...biggest run was 6.16 miles on Saturday up Vista Heights and then to the Water Reservoir. This week was mostly about feeling my body out and see how my legs, especially the IT band was going to react to some longer runs. Did most of the runs either barefoot or in my Luna Sandals. I think almost every run the IT band was tight after about halfway through...I wasn't worried too much though because I knew I had plenty of time and it was get better slowly.

Now on to this week which was the first week really back to some normal sense of running for me. I'll use my running log format which I keep on Garmin's website (this also saves me the work of typing most of this twice :) ). Let me know if this is too much info or if it is interesting to see the process for these weeks. I could just post a weekly summary like I did for the two previous weeks if the individual run breakdowns are too much.

Sun, Oct 24 PM Night run w/Jack Activity Type: Street Running
Time: 00:31:53
Distance: 4.06 mi
Elevation Gain: 83 ft

Ran in the dark with Jack. Felt good for first two miles and then felt low on energy. Leg still not 100%...I'll just have to wait and see. Kinvara's worked out alright, I'll slowly rotate them into some of my runs and see how they break in. Saucony Kinvaras.

Mon, Oct 25 OFF

Tue, Oct 26, PM
Sam-O - Spring Garden loop Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:35:32
Distance: 4.15 mi
Elevation Gain: 25 ft

Recovery day. Legs are still not fresh. Knee felt a little irritated around mile 3. Was going to go up vista heights, but bagged it and will save for another day. Not sure how long this is going to take, but I need to wait it out before I push up the mileage again. Saucony Shay XCs (Racing Flats).

Wed, Oct 27 Mixed run - Warm up - Speed Work - Vista Heights Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 01:00:35
Distance: 7.68 mi
Elevation Gain: 413 ft

Ran a warm up at XC Practice and then did a speed session on grass infield. 20 length in 10 minutes barefoot. Then cruised over to post office to meet up with Barry for a quick climb up Vista Heights to the top of the dirt road. First day where I actually felt somewhat decent. Hope this is the start of the upward trend. Inov8 F-Lite 195s were really great. Not the best feeling on the road, but felt superb off road up the Vista climb. Super light and extremely comfortable. First run in them with no socks and had zero issues. Love these shoes and really look forward to future products from this company. Inov8 F-Lite 195s.

Thurs, Oct 28 OFF

Fri, Oct 29 PM
Vista Heights night run w/Barry Activity Type: Street Running

Time: 00:45:45
Distance: 5.17 mi
Elevation Gain: 400 ft

Good little run with Barry. My legs are starting to feel better each day. I still need to make sure I give myself plenty of good rest/easy days after some of the longer runs as I build back up...but I think it is slowly happening. Ran up Vista height to the top of the dirt road and felt good all the way. Got some big dreams for the future as long as I can keep if fun and stay healthy. Modified MT100s worked pretty good, especially on the dirt, but will have to be tested further to see if they are suitable for longer runs as my mod job wasn't the best and I didn't account for the forefoot being stiffer because of the rock plate and therefore compressing less than the mid to rear of the shoe which made it feel a little more uncomfortable near the end of the run. Zeroed MT100s + 1.11 miles Barefoot.

(Note: this post refers to a shoe where I cut the heel off the shoe to make the forefoot and heel height the same, like it is barefoot, if you have any questions about this feel free to ask).

Sat, Oct 30 AM Elk Creek - Water Shed Loop Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 01:20:13
Distance: 8.76 mi
Elevation Gain: 1,180 ft

Ran with Mom, Dad, and Barry. Felt really poor the first 20 minutes, probably from too big of a breakfast right before and knee (IT band) didn't loosen up till after a few miles. All in all, I'd say that this was my first run that I felt somewhat back to form. Now just need to rest and recover for a couple of days and then see how I feel as the next week progresses. 195s were perfect. Inov-8 F-Lite 195s.

Sat, Oct 30 AM XC District Meet Activity Type: Trail Running

Time: 00:11:36
Distance: 1.24 mi
Elevation Gain: 77 ft

Just ran a little around the course as I watched the meet. Legs were definitely tired. Soft Star Ramblers.

Totals for week of Oct 24th-30th:

6 Runs
31.05 mi
04:25:37 h:m:s
2,177 ft elevation gain

This was a good week, both mentally and physically. It showed me I can finally get back into a few longer runs without any real issues coming up which is progress.

On the list for this next week is a run in the 2 hr + range...I'm thinking probably Marble Creek to the Elkhorn Crest Trail as the mostly likely candidate (3,600 ft elevation gain - 6.6 miles up 6.6 miles down - it would be a killer half-marathon to put on next year :) any takers?)...might even see some snow. Hopefully mileage is up in the low forties, but this might be difficult as it is the last week of Cross Country and I will be traveling to Eugene for the State meet on Friday and back on Saturday, so those days might be hard to get a run in. I might be able to squeeze some shorter runs during the off ours (earlier morning or night). All in all, I don't have specific weekly mileage goals other than really getting in some long runs that will give me the confidence to know my body is up for 50 miles. I'm guessing my peak week might be in the 50-60 mile range. I suppose I'll know around the 3rd week of November whether I will be at that point or not, but I'm mostly just going to enjoy the nice cool fall weather and the joy of running in the mountains while they are not completely covered in snow, however, I'll be running in mountains in the snow through the winter as I don't want to be confined to street runs only like last winter...we'll see how it goes as the snow starts to stack up.

Wow this was a really long post...probably a record for me. Hope it is of interest to some of you. Have a great week.