Mon - Noon: 9.5 miles (2,500'). Audra/Horsetooth long, with a tag of the summit for kicks. Kind of funny to weave through the crowds now that CSU is done for the year and the weather is warming up. You run this thing all winter long and, on a day-to-day basis, you typically see very few people (often no-one), with those dedicated outdoor enthusiasts that you do see being rightly unimpressed by the fact that you're out running. Then the fair-weather hikers come out of the woodwork and you're dodging people left, right and center, all the while being hailed as an athletic hero for a feat that you're repeating for probably the 150th time this year. I tend to just exchange pleasantries, nod, smile - whatever - and keep on keeping on, but occasionally I'll play along and induce another ego-massaging comment before I'm out of earshot. Sometimes you just can't help it, especially when it's hot out.
PM: 6 miles easy (500') on valley trails.
Tues - Noon: 6 miles (500'). Cruised on the valley trails. Felt good.
Weds - Noon: 8.5 miles (1,600') easy. Home - Falls - Spring Creek - Stout - Sawmill - Loggers - Herrington - Spring Creek - Soderburg - home. Kind of sluggish despite lightning-caused cancellation of second run on Tuesday.
PM: 5 miles easy at Pineridge.
Thurs - Noon: 5 miles easy (900'). Falls loop.
PM: 10 miles (2,000'). Out and back to Sawmill on Valley from Soderburg as warm up for Towers tempo. Saw first rattler of the season at Sawmill/Valley junction. Surprised myself with a harder than planned 30:13 up Towers.
Fri - PM: 3 miles easy with Tim in Los Alamos
Sat - AM: 50 miles (12,200'). Jemez 50.
Sun - PM: 1 mile hike with Alistair at Horsetooth. Streak ends at 105 days. Some pretty gnarly blisters on my heels plus all-day Daddy duty ensured the end of the streak. Feel good about ending it a little earlier than planned, although fretted a bit that it might bring bad luck. Wah?!
Total: 103 miles (20,200').
This was a good week with a couple of quality runs, and an adrenaline shot to the confidence meter on Saturday. Decided to do the easy week taper thing for Jemez, but ended up going way harder than originally planned on Towers on Thursday (probably 85%), which left me with a tight hamstring Friday and Saturday. I felt it for most of the run at Jemez, and it threatened to mutate into cramping at various points along the way, but never became anything more than one more thing to take stock of as the race went on.
Dana was out of town all day Sunday, so I never got the opportunity to run, thus ending my running streak at 105 days. I considered dropping Alistair off with my neighbors for a half hour so I could log a completely unnecessary run, but eventually made the call to stop being such an idiot and get on with enjoying the day with my son. We got out for most of the afternoon at Horsetooth, but can't have covered more than a mile, as we were mostly just playing on the rocks, throwing stones and having sword fights. Alistair covered probably twice the ground I did - running back and forth - and was very understanding of the fact that Daddy wasn't up for anything too vigorous. Picked up a couple of nasty heel blisters at Jemez, so all the hiking was done on the front of the feet. Quads were sore, but have certainly been worse. Today (Tuesday) and yesterday the quads continue to hold some aches, but have felt solid through a couple of runs.
Two more weeks of 'training' and then the focus shifts to recovery, rest and sharpening through the last 20 days. Been thinking through various race strategies for States, which I won't go into here, but most people who read this blog probably know the skinny on my plans anyway, as I haven't been shy about letting people know about goals and such like.
Hope to bag back-to-back long runs this weekend, probably 30-20, and then it is the FoCo leg of the Front Range TT series on Monday morning (Memorial Day). We'll be doing it on Round Mountain, just west of Loveland off Hwy 34, and anyone and everyone is welcome to come join the fun. Stats for the rocky singletrack climb go 4.8 miles (9.6 RT) w/just under 3,000' of vert. The current FKT stands at 52:55, but I am fully expecting that to be decimated on Monday. Personally, I'd like to go under 50 minutes. There are faster guys than me coming out for it, so I'm sure I'll no longer have the FKT after it's all said and done. The exact start time hasn't been finalized, but it will likely be earlier rather than later. More to come on that.
Got a comment from some local mountain bikers on my Towers post from a few weeks back. Apparently they'll be out there tonight charging up the road on the FKT route (bikers typically don't take it all the way to the top when they TT Towers, but they will be doing so tonight), so it will be interesting to see how their times stack up against run times. My money is not on the bikes.