Monday, October 11, 2010

WEEK 40: 35 Miles and Monroe-Dunbar Trail Race

AM: Strength + elliptical; AM2: 5 mi TM/45 min, speed and hill play...good workout

AM: Strength + elliptical; AM2: 5 mi TM/45 min, more speed than hill play...good workout #2

Spin + 2 miles TM + core and some strength (hip/pulldowns)

4 miles ashuelot Road loop + 4x hill sprints; feel pretty good, IT band still lingering, log 5 miles

Pisgah run with Griffin, keep passing LilyPond Trail! North Ponds over to Baker-hubbard...IT Band got bad with downhill- uh oh. Might be a problem Sunday, but it was a beautiful day! Log 7 miles.



Monroe 10.5 mile Trail Race; Holy crap that was a hard 1:58:30!   Log 11 miles

Miles: 35

Good week until I got my ass kicked at the trail race, but I digress.  I think the light strength sessions in the early AM followed by a run a little later (after a class or meeting) early in the week were really good for my body.  I felt strong and flexible and my usual morning sore/stiffness didn't exist.  I would have had a 40 mile week if I had run with Donna in Pisgah on Friday- but she had to cancel because of a meeting.  I went out on my own and had to cut it short because of my IT Band anyway.  That was the biggest worry going into  the trail race, downhills especially seem to fire it up.

So, the Monroe -Dunbar Trail Race.  Greg and I headed out on a beautiful, chilly Sunday morning to Monroe.  Very pretty drive, but very winding and soon I was car sick.  No, it wasn't Greg's driving- well, not until he was annoyed we couldn't find the race and then was driving like a crazy person.  We did get there in time and got warmed up...well he did- apparently I took too long getting my shoes tied! haha

What a beautiful morning!  At 10am we were off and Greg had warned me that after we run along the river the trail goes uphill and I would probably have to hike.  sweet.  He was right- I hiked for a LONG TIME!  I tried not to lose my cool and ran when I could.  Finally we came out to a fire road and I felt pretty good- the car ride nausea had worn off.  The course turned onto another single-track and I felt my IT Band a little bit on this downhill.  "Luckily" another uphill came and my IT Band stopped hurting.  I passed a couple people on this climb and thought I was doing well until I realized we were still going up.  Holy cow I was tired.  I "hiked" a couple more times and obviously wasn't the only one hurting as a guy who passed me while I tied my shoe asked "when do we start going down?"  No idea, dude.  I thought it was never going to end- everytime I looked ahead of me the people were above me somehow!  I didn't look at my watch much but remember thinking at 1:15 that Greg was probably done and I just got up the hill!  Pretty close. 

The trail finally started to go'd think that'd be good news, but it was bitter-sweet.  This was some serious downhill stuff.  I tried to bomb down as fast as I could- a couple people got out of my way- more scared I'd fall into them than awed by my graceful descent.  At least I was covering some ground now. 

I was on my own for a bit and started to worry I was not on course, but a woman I had passed on the uphill came up behind me and I let her pass so I could follow someone.  I stayed with her for awhile.  We got to the first creek crossing and I didn't stop at the water station because I didn't want to lose her!  We got across- that was fun by the way- and there were rolling hills to follow.  At another major descent she pulled away and I was babying my right IT Band unsuccessfully as my left foot was hurting.  This is where I started to get frustrated just a tad.  Every little hill was like a kick in the chest and I really just wanted to be done. Another creek crossing reminded me that this was "FUN"!  FINALLY, I got across the road and to the last little bit of the course that is through huge tall pine trees (Greg will fill in what type exactly).  Time 1:58:30, felt like 4 hours and damn I was thirsty!  Greg won overall (yay!).

We ate meatball subs, drank cokes, and sat in the sun.  That was a really hard course.  I wasn't expecting it to be harder than Pisgah, but because the downhills are so terrifying and the uphill so long and brutal it really was for me.  At Pisgah I only walked a little on the ridge.  Crazy.  It was fun though and maybe by next fall I''ll consider doing it again. Not bad for my fourth trail race.

This week I have to treat these nagging injuries i.e. Right IT Band, Left mid-foot sprain.  I don't think they will be as cooperative on 13.1 miles of flat road.  I know that sounds strange, but in the trails I'm thinking more about where to put my foot and how to avoid that tree rather than how much I'm hurting; on the road I can feel everything and mull it over. Today, my legs feel good!  But my feet, oh yah, right foot heel spur too, are making me walk as though I am sore.  Just got out of a cold whirlpool and will go from there.  I will take today off from activity as I am already at the office and have a pile of stuff to do, but I would like to repeat the lifting/running scheme of early last week tomorrow and wednesday.  I am looking forward to Baystate- more as support for Greg and to hang with the Keenyans who are running the full.  My goal is still sub 1:50, but if I feel strong and am not hurting I won't rule out something closer to 1:45.  It's a process...and I love it!

A stop at Hogback Mtn on the way home after the race....I guess I was kinda zonked!


  1. Jen - nice job with the race. It sounds fun in a hard way! Tell Greg congrats for me!!

  2. They were red pines. Good race!

  3. Haha I love it, way to push through! Nice smile in your photo by the way........
    I love Hog Back!!!