Monday, March 3, 2014

Week Ending March 2

Mon - 7 miles (1,800') easy. Horsetooth north summit. Legs were pretty tired from the weekend. Kept this one super easy. Gorgeous day out.

Tues - AM: 7.5 miles intervals. Workout was 5 x 1 mile (City Park). First and last mile were steady, middle miles fartlek. Got there late so no time for a warm up, so the first couple of reps were essentially the warm up. Started on the long mile (1.02) with extra hills and alternated with the shorter route (.98): 5:50, 5:30, 5:38, 5:21, 5:33. Ran mainly with McCullough. Frozen hands in the unusually moist air.
PM: 5 miles (1,000') easy. Jogged out a Falls loop in the snow at a really easy recovery pace.

Weds - 7 miles (1,800') easy. End of day summit was showing a super thick layer of brown hanging over the Front Range plains. Nasty business.

Thurs - AM: 10 miles (1,400') hill tempo. Out for five miles easy on Centennial as usual (43:30), then back at a hard tempo effort with Jason. Just a killer morning out there today with an unbelievably colorful sunrise to the east, mild temps and no wind. It doesn't get much better. Back in 30:38, which is a bit quicker than I have been doing these, but due mainly to a bigger effort rather than miraculous fitness gains: 7:24, 6:00, 6:31, 5:42, 5:01.
PM: 9.5 miles (2,000') steady. Towers Rd. Jogged out a couple warm-up miles with Burch before heading up the hill at a reasonably steady effort. The legs felt decent after the warm-up and the 34:00 came pretty easily, which is encouraging. Need to drop the morning run one of these Thursdays and give the hill a full-on effort to get a read on fitness. No better indicator out there.

Fri - AM: 7 miles (1,800') easy. Got in a super casual morning Horsetooth summit (47) with Danny. A little stiff from Thursdays exertions, but nothing that a few easy warm-up miles couldn't resolve. The track is now 75% clear of ice, and the weather so mild that it should be close to fully clear by the end of the day.
PM: 5 miles (1,500') easy. Was back and forth on this one but finally pushed myself out the door for a quick summit (48) from the trailhead.

Sat - 20 miles (2,800') easy. The original plan was a loop of the Quad Rock course with Ostram and Andy J to map the exact route for this year's race - as there has been a slight re-route on Sawmill - but overnight ice rain with a couple inches of snow over the top left the trails in pretty treacherous shape, so we aborted at Horsetooth Upper and ran back via 38e and the valley trails, tacking on additional up-tempo road mileage at the end to at least salvage 20 from the day. A little weak to bail on the original plan, but none of us wanted to break anything with a nasty fall, so it was probably the right call. Pete got out a little later in the day to map the new section of trail on Sawmill, which cuts about a half mile off the loop versus last year and puts the full course right back where it was originally at just a few tenths - give or take - over 50 miles.

Sun - 6.5 miles easy. Got out in bitterly cold temps to mark the Tortoise and Hare 10k route in town. It was my only running window for the day, so would have to do. Unfortunately, I couldn't drag myself out of bed any earlier than 5:00 to bag extra miles, capping something of a disappointing running weekend. I was looking for 40 over the two days but ended with 26.5 miles and significantly less vertical thanks to Saturday's cop out. And so it goes.

The propane heater helped, but man it was cold this morning. Aided as always by the wonderful Hannah Eskew. 
Dave Huner sporting an immaculate ice beard.
Mine was a little more scraggly, as usual. Pics: FCRC
Maureen Hyde picked up the win for the third month in a row. 
Total: 84.5 miles (14,100')

With the exception of the weekend, which was something of a bust, this was a decent week of training. I got some workouts done and managed to find the time to get three double days in, which is where I like to be when loading the mileage. At the beginning of the week I was looking for 100+ miles, as mentally that kind of volume makes me feel like I'm properly invested in my training. But, you know, life and weather gets in the way sometimes. I'll make sure to hit the digits I want this week, though, before cutting things back a bit in the week leading up to the Salida Trail Marathon.

Salida has marked the beginning of the racing year for me for many seasons now. I know the course well, I know what kind of times I should be running, and I just love the low-key vibe mixed with the always solid competition. Speaking of which, perennial favorites and previous winners Timmy Parr and Ryan Burch will be running again this year, alongside Josh Arthur - who edged me out for the win by a minute last year - Jason Koop, Joe Grant, and young Fort Collins (now Durango) upstart Paul Hamilton, among many others. There's plenty enough competition right there to make sure this will be a proper rust-busting race effort.

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