Sunday, April 25, 2010

Second Weekend at Michigan Bluff, One week until Miwok 100k

A short post as I begin preperations for next week and Miwok 100k. With training ramping up it was bound to happen that there are some minor pains and injuries that have flaired up along the way to the start line in June. The real goal is get to the line healthy as possible. I was able to review with Veloyce at Monsters of Massage a nagging stiffness that has gets to me at night..not so much when I run but after. We found that in a small connector area of the left knee..go figure. I think we can control that in the coming weeks. Next some IT issues. I started a good strengthing and stretching program this morning that I feel will help. Just wish I had done that feels like my hip abductors are just a bit weak. Better work on that....
On with the week in running...I took it easy during the week trying to follow instructions to see if some rest can help on the IT. I did however go to Michigan Bluff on Saturday to run a bit of the canyons. I could have done 6-7hours again this weekend but I wanted to A)test the IT again access for issues, B)Have some energy for next weekend and 100k. So this weekend not so large of a group where out on the trails. Archie the Mayor dog of Michigan Bluff was out in all his glory and we had a long chat sitting in the sun after (granted he only was nice when I gave him some of my Cliff Bar) he was good company as always at the finish...Oh back to the run..I did 15 from Michigan Bluff to Devils Thumb and back I kept it at 4hours of running. It felt short for a weekend..aside from the 2hour run the weekend before AR this 4hour time was my shortest run in a long time..I am happy that most of my time has been 5-7hours of running and with the slow 9hr 50 minute AR I have spent good time on my feet. Will come in handy next weekend. It was a stunning day..I ran a bit with Amy Schmich who is also running WS for the first time. She is pretty new to the community but is a strong runner and should do fine. Chris Perillo was out for 8hours of running today and flew by us...John Blue and posse where out and Matt Keyes, along with Nichols where out for some long suffering runs of 46-ish miles. Ken Crouse was leading the back and helping out some new runners on this day....But the sun was out mild temps...I just power walked up to Deadwood and it was fine. I left everyone and felt guilty on my turn early to head back from the thumb. I had a easy run to the river. I so love this stillness on the single track taking in this peaceful scene. I stopped for 10minutes or so and talked to Charly was that kinda day...Just enjoy. I felt better on the days climb up Michigan Bluff...Then sat in my chair and talked to Archie for about an hour.

Next week is Miwok...I am going to take it easy on the downhills and keep the IT and knees in check. This is a training does not matter about how fast I will finish...That said I would be happy with 14hours of time on feet...For this week stretch, work on the hip abductors and taper for a long run.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Week after AR50 a day in the Canyons

All Photos courtesy of Barb Ash:

First Day in the Canyons--Still a lot of Snow-Heading back from Last Chance

A good group of folks..heading back to Michigan Bluff...L/R-Sandra Ross,Jack Meyer, Barb Ash, Trish Godtfredson,me, Monica Moore, Amy Schmich

Archie the Mayor of Michigan Bluff (he is the dog!) always there to greet a runner if they have food!

As the Photos indicate yesterday was the first real run in the Canyons this year. I also was very curious on how I would react a week after AR50. I have been waxed in past years following not moving well. My post week for AR had me a bit concerned with the IT Band on the right leg. I went to the Gym on Sunday and Monday to test the leg. I was tired from the run and just took it easy. I had not done a lot of streching during those days and went for a run Tuesday and felt the IT tighten a lot. I did have my standing Tuesday appointment with Veloyce at Monsters and he worked on it..I was not too concerned after that just feeling I had to be conservative and not push it too hard for the week.

So that was what I did. I started stretching Wed morning, went on a short run with minimal tightness, did the same Thursday. Friday off and I wondered if it would be good to run up and down the canyons with everyone on Saturday. This section is Michigan Bluff to Last Chance and back. 25miles total with long downhills and climbs..all a good chance to really screw things up if I went too fast.

So I decided to give it a try. I would start with running down from MB to the river and maybe turn at the pump in Deadwood. Well when I arrived at sleppy gold mining town of Michigan Bluff I was shocked! James Barsted had sent out a note on Facebook seeing who was interested in running from MB..normally maybe 10 tops you would see..Well this morning we saw about 50 folks! Gad what a cluster! Most newbies, not that there is anything wrong with doing things the first time but this is pretty hard core if they where going to Last Chance...I saw this and jumped in front of the pack and ran as fast as I could at the start to get away from the crowd. I was taking it easy when I wanted to scream down the trail to the river. Things where ok! No real pain yet..the climb to Deadwood for 5 or so miles was hard but my week after AR50 I was feeling good so I must be getting in better shape. I slowed down to take in the views and say to myself..its a week after AR no need to go too fast. That is when I let Jack Meyer and his posse catch me..I am glad they did..I stayed with them pretty much the rest of the day.

I got to the pump with them and had mentioned turning. Barb Ash said you better keep going your in got to suffer even if your IT is acting up. She was we moved on to Devils Thumb and the descent down with the IT a little tight I actually walked/ran down DT for the first time ever..normally I run but today no hurry, the group was slow but steady and offering me some company for a change. Down to Swinging bridge and I was about to bail and turn when Barb said time to climb to Last Chance..So I did..she was good for me today. I just tucked in behind her and power walked up. I was feeling really good. We then got up to Last Chance and started to run into a lot of SNOW. We got to the spiget filled up and turned back. The run down from Last Chance would be interesting..I had a IT strap on and that seemed to keep things in check.

As we got to Swinging Bridge I should have fueled up with the steep climb up the Thumb. I was moving slow and actually getting a little dizzy and tired on this climb..I took a roctane when I caught up with Jack and the group around one of the runners..she had fell and had a gash in her ankle and a wrist that looked broken. She was really tough, they cleaned her up and we took off up DT...she just kept running. It was later confirmed that she broke her wrist.

From the pump to the river its downhill and I wanted to so run this section fast. But I took it slow..this was the last section I thought I could do damage on this run. I was near the back but not caring just enjoying the day. Finally the last climb up to Michigan was long for me today but as I got to the top I had made it through with the IT issue. I think I will be ok..I stretched after and will more this morning. My legs feel pretty was a slow day but great time on feet...I need that.

Miwok in a few weeks I think I will be ready but so much to build on in these last couple of months.


Sunday, April 11, 2010

American River 50mile-A beginning, the middle and the finish

American River 50 mile was held yesterday..As I wrote in my blog previous its a training run on the road to WS.  It is still a race though with some goals to hit and things to test.
This years addition was held under perfect conditions with steady cool temps all day, cloudy skies, dry trail when we got to it...I begin my day getting up at 2:00am to have a fast breakfast, pack the car and travel to the finish area at the Overlook.  As I approached the Overlook just before 3:30 I recalled how many times I have run from this area..its my home base.  We got to the start with about a half hour to was down out nice temps so no shivering as I said hi to a lot of folks I know...The first 19 miles are bike path and need to manage this section well and not go out too fast or too slow or your toast on the single track.

I started the race in a consistant and easy pace wearing road shoes for the race..I had said I was gonna run 10minute average but breathing and legs said take it faster so I was dropping down under 9minutes after the first 6miles...I kept a 8:40pace knowing if I bank a bit of time I would be good getting to mile 27 at beals and the single track.  I hit Nimbus 18.1 and some single track about 2:50. I had been popping two roctane and a S-Cap every 45minutes prior and no real need to stop at Aid stations.  There were a few folks that I was grouped with as we set off for the slower section to Beals....Getting to beals slowed things down a bit but that was anticipated.  The marathon time about 4:12 and hitting the mat in 4:20 versus 4:30(original goal)...Well Nature called and that slowed things down 10minutes so I was really not out of Beals till 4:30..oh well. 

Here things got rough with running on the pavement..As I hit the single track my right IT flaked out (which never happens!) It really started to slow things down on the downhills and was down and out hurting.  I lost time from 27-38 going through Buzzards and the rocky narrow sections.  I settled in with a group in this stretch with Allyson Thomas and 5 other runners..I was in the back and just dragged the was so slow I was thinking the pace was easy..I had all this energy but could not move fast...about that time Barb Ash and Kathy Welch said coming by and took off in front of sucked I could not go out with them. 

However as we got to mile 38 after buzzards the IT freed up and I was a bit behind schedule now..but I could run!  I had some energy saved up and took off making a bee line for Rattlesnake..mile 41ish..I wanted to be there by 7:30 but was there at 8:09..I was mad when I got there..but I wanted to see if I could push it hard and get in under 10hours..I took off flying out of Rattle..I was back to 9;30miles and feeling good.  I hit the last aid station before the river with a ton of folks as I got there I had my plan get to the river with 50minutes to spare to climb and finish under was doable..but some work..I shouted to a group of folks that we could get under 10..just a little work..they shouted back..and said you GO..make yourself happy...they had quit! I blew by that without looking back ran into another group and said we can get there and they started to work with me on the final mile to the river..We hit the mark with 3 extra minutes to the hard part..climb to Last Gasp! I power walked with determination I felt good as I hit the steep the top of the climb I started running no time for a break and got to Last gasp and final 2.4 with 39minutes to spare..It looked pretty good about getting under 10!  I ran walked with energy and finished in 3:51 a solid run from Rattlenake after the IT released. So I was happy going through the injury and running well at the really could have been  a lot faster but that was what the day brought...Today..legs sore, IT a bit tight..going to the gym and spin and hit the sauna...Not a bad effort but lots to do still before June....

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Pre Race Plans and the next week

Weather is shaping up nice for AR with partly cloudy, moderate temps and nice dry trails.  I have been reviewing what I want to achieve for this 50mile race.  I know the course well. Understanding that the first 26 miles are really where you will make time.  Reviewing past race info you find that the time from Beals to the finish is =to your time to beals + 40minutes -1:20=your finish time ex...4:30 for the first 26.5 + 5:10 for the last 23.5=9:40finish.  Of course there are faster more even splits but not many runners if any will run faster on the second half.  With that in mind I have a few simple goals...Get to Beals in 4:15-4:30, Get to Rattle about 7-7:30 and give myself 50minutes to climb from the river to the finish.  Just get in under 10hrs. I am excited to see how I run the next weekend in the canyons...I hope to have a few pics but if I am running fast none till I get to the finish...


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Coooold Running before AR

Cool Runners---Yes its COOOLD
L-R-Chris Prerillo,Me,John Blue,Eric Johnson, Erik Skaden (image-John Blue)
The Last weekend before American River 50 mile was good.  There where many folks out on the trail Saturday for taper runs of various distance.  I had 15 on the schedule and ran well with a group of 8 or so.  It was a strong run out and I needed to keep it down a bit and dropped off the pack about 30seconds to a minute.  It was good running with the group but I had other plans. I wanted  to use the turn and climb back to get in my strategy for those final 10miles from Rattlenake in...The clmb simulated what I am guessing my pace will be and it was really easy...Granted next week it will be after 47miles.  AR50 is just a training run in the big picture but still want to test myself a bit..  I am more curious about the following Saturday and a run in the canyons.  I feel in better shape but one never knows until you try.  The taper and cold weather have played on the mind a bit.  I want hot weather to begin the next phase of training which is gonna be critical.
Till next week...stay warm and keep running.