Tuesday, May 31, 2011

May Summary

Total Miles: 225
Total Vertical Miles: 8.2

Trail: 13 runs, 172 miles, 7.5 vertical miles, 38 hours
Road: 3 runs, 17 miles, 0.1 vertical miles, 3 hours
Track: 5 workouts, 29 miles, 5 hours
Treadmill: 3 workouts, 7 miles, 0.6 vertical miles, 2 hours
Weight Room: 10 workouts, 15 hours
Rest Days: 7

My total mileage was down slightly from April (244 miles), but I set a new personal record for monthly vertical (8.2 vs. 7.9 miles last month).  I probably should start some specific training for the Black Hills 100 (i.e., bigger miles with less vertical).  That was my intention this past weekend, but the valley trails were too muddy (so back to the mountains).  I still have 3.5 weeks, no worries.  At least I kept my perfect winning record alive this month in races for 2011.

Beware of the "Mountain"

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Crosier Mountain

Creeping a little bit higher in elevation with Crosier Mountain today (elev 9216 feet).  Still not going to get into the "high" country probably until July.  The plan was a "Crosier Triple" which includes 3 summits of Crosier from 3 different trailheads.  I kind of squashed that plan when I flew by the summit turnoff in the dark this morning and found myself well on my way down to Glen Haven.  I still racked up about the same vertical and distance as if I had completed the official triple, I just did it in my own convoluted way.  Met up with Kevin and Daxpy at the Gravel Pit trailhead for a summit run with them.  Just a little snow and slush near the top.

Today's run:
24.52 miles, 7321 feet climbed, GPS data here

An official Crosier Triple (from May 22, 2010)
25 miles, 7870 feet climbed, GPS data here

Kevin and Daxpy leaving the summit.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Horsetooth Falls

They were flowing pretty strong this morning.  Most of the time we are lucky to see any flow at all.

Video from the top:

Video from below:

Plenty of snow flying above 6500 feet.  Isn't June less than 2 weeks away?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Round Mountain Ladders

I believe today was the most vertical I have done in any workout other than my 50-mile and 100-mile races.  Yes, even slightly more than Pikes Peak.  The FCTR crew was out for another crazy workout, this time on the 4.5 mile trail with just under 3000 feet of climbing to the summit of Round Mountain (in a snowstorm).  Running to the summit and back for a good 9 miles and 3K of climbing is just not good enough for this bunch, however.  How about we run up to each mile marker and then back down?  And, of course, add the summit for good measure.  Well with a variety of workouts going on from I think at least 20 like-minded crazies, I am sure the FCTR racked up well over 100K feet of climbing today.  I headed out for the full increasing ladder (up 1 and back, up 2 and back, up 3 and back, up 4 and back, up summit and back) which looked to be good for about 29 miles and 10K feet of climbing.  Pushing the limits of my planned 7 hours on the trail for the day, I ended up with a 1-2-3-4-4 ladder and never actually reached the summit despite climbing 8382 feet according to Garmin.  A lot of fun and misery all rolled into one out there today.

My workout:
1-2-3-4-4 Ladder, 26.52 miles, 8382 feet climbed, GPS data here
Looks like the mile markers were a little bit short, but the climbing certainly was not.

Gotta love this elevation profile.
Kevin all smiles after leaving me in the dust (or snowdust) on the final climb.

I believe we can blame Nick for this craziness.

Alex having way too much fun.

Pete going strong all day despite a Crosier Mountain Triple yesterday.

Nick Seaman Memorial 5K

Very rarely do I run 5Ks these days.  Really the only reason I do occasionally is because it benefits a worthy cause, as was the case today.  The last 5K I ran was this same race 2 years ago, slightly different course, when Nick was still fighting his fight with cancer.  Nick passed a few months ago, but today with the hard work of some Fossil Ridge High School students, the race was continued to benefit Nick's family and the RamStrength/Lubick Foundation.  Coach Lubick even walked the course with his family this morning.  So this race was special for a number of reasons, including this was the first time in my life (almost 30 years of running and hundreds of races) that I crossed the finish line first!  Obviously there were no elite runners out there today and I think 23:22 is the slowest winning 5K in the history of 5Ks, but it really doesn't change the fact that I met my goal of winning at least one race in my lifetime.

This race is run partially on the Fossil Ridge High School cross-country course (the school where Nick worked and touched so many young lives) and with all the rain this week, many were complaining about the mud.  I thought the mud was a non-factor (advantage: slow trail runner).  I settled in behind the leader for the first half-mile at what felt like a somewhat comfortable pace.  When I saw he was having trouble with the mud sticking to his Nike racing flats, I knew it was time to make my move.  I have only led in 2 previous races and both times it was very briefly.  This time I was venturing into an experience I have never had before.  I had to hold off the rest of the field for another 2.5 miles (or at least so I thought).  I regret not wearing my GPS because there were no mile markers, but I felt like I was running close to 6:00 minute mile pace.  So I figured I had to hold this lead for about another 15 minutes.  That's nothing, right?  This was the longest 2.5 miles I have ever run in my life!  The mental roller coaster I was experiencing in just a short time compared to the highs and lows that occur over a full 100 miles.  Well I'll never know how fast I was running, but when my watch passed 20 minutes and I was still a long way from the finish, I figured the high school kid trying to run me down would catch me and I would have to settle for 2nd.  Then I would tell myself "Dammit, this is going to be your best chance ever to win, dig deeper".  So the course must have been closer to 4 miles, but I managed to hold off that high schooler just long enough for a 15 second win.

Watching Nick's 1-year old daughter Stella jump out of her Mom's stroller and run across the finish line all smiles reminded us all why we were there today.  The challenge of a 5K or a 167K race will never come close to those challenges we never ask for.


Friday, May 13, 2011

Room with a view

Just got an office upgrade.  Now I can wish that I was trail running even more when I should be working.  The Forest Service building just barely cuts out Horsetooth Rock but I can see the rest of the Fort Collins foothills that I so often run to the north through Lory State Park all the way to Greyrock and beyond.  Most of the recent snow is rapidly vanishing today.

By the way, I have scrapped the weekly training summary post idea.  Not really the direction I wanted to go with this blog.  If you want my training secrets you can wait for my book, "How to be a middle of the pack ultrarunner on 50 miles per week".  I do still post all of my trail runs on Garmin Connect, at least when I remember my GPS.

Running first 5K in a long time tomorrow.  Think I am more nervous than I would be for an ultra.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

8 Weeks to Black Hills

Coyote Ridge
Monday (4/25)
3 miles road, Strength training

Tuesday (4/26)
Coyote Ridge/Laughing Horse/Indian Summer
14.89 miles, 2201 feet climbed, GPS

14 miles before sunrise (from Coyote Ridge)
Wednesday (4/27)
CSU Track, 4x1600/400, 1 mile warm up, 6 miles total
Strength training

Thursday (4/28)
Horsetooth Rock time trial, return via Audra Culver, up Southridge, down Horsetooth Rock
5.05 miles, 1515 feet climbed, GPS

Friday (4/29)
Incline Treadmill Walk, 4 miles at 4mph, 2369 feet climbed
Strength training

Saturday (4/30)
Coyote Ridge TH to Devils Backbone TH to Coyote Ridge TH
19.62 miles, 2723 feet climbed, GPS

Sunday (5/1)
11 miles road pacing Deanne to first marathon finish!

Mile 25 of the Colorado Marathon
Week totals: 63.56 miles, 8808 feet climbed

I normally look at road running as a day missed out for a good trail run.  I must admit though that a marathon event still carries a lot of excitement for me.  I'm a little curious to see what I could do, but I'm in no rush to go sign up for 26 miles of pavement pounding anytime soon.  It sounded like Greyrock got pretty well tackled by the FCTR on Saturday.  Congrats to Pete for completing the full 6 pack!