Monthly Archives: July 2013

First Overnight Run

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I love this deep blue just before sunrise, it gave me a little boost 6 hours into our run.

 

Now I am a girl who loves her sleep, give me 6-8 hours or give me death! Well, not really…that is an exaggeration, the death part, not the 8 hours of sleep part.  I awoke Saturday morning knowing that I would be running beginning at midnight (starting 3 hours after my usual bed time.) I had 7-8 hours of running planned, so I had to decide whether or not I was going to nap that afternoon to help me stay awake. I opted not to and instead went out with friends and ran errands at night to stay awake.  I also may have given myself a hair cut, it was getting long and very heavy, almost past my belly button and I was having a hard time finding elastics that would keep it in place while I run.

 

Several friends planned on coming out at different times during the night to get in their miles and keep each other company.  At midnight my husband and I and our dog Emmitt drove out to the trail meeting spot and met up with Remus and Cashe.  Remus had started at 11pm and was hoping to get in 40 miles, Cashe was just out for fun!  We geared up and set out for some single track, after about an hour we swung by the trail that leads to my house and said goodbye to my husband and Emmitt.  We continued on for several more miles, hiking the uphill and running everything else.  It had stormed earlier in the evening, so the trails were damp and slick, and the spiders were out weaving their wet webs to catch all the bugs that had come out to enjoy the damp summer night. Also out enjoying the summer night were several deer, bats by the dozen, and even a fox.  At one point I stopped to eat and drink just as a screech owl caught dinner, it was an awful noise just to my right, I was not expecting that and I may have freaked myself out for a moment…I am an artist, what can I say, I have a wonderful/terrible imagination and at that moment I was imagining someone coming after me with a bloody knife.  Note to self, work on running alone and shutting off your imagination…or it could be a very short 100 mile race!

 

Speaking of damp summer nights, here in NC most of the summer we all just accept the fact that even just walking will produce a nice dark wet spot on any and all clothing at any time, day or night.  Remus thought he was going to avoid this by making wardrobe changes at the car every few hours.  By the third outfit change I was beginning to wonder if he had brought his entire running wardrobe in the back of his Subaru 🙂 

 

By 3am we had said goodbye to Cache, and picked up Lynx, and headed to some wider track to pick up the pace a bit.  By now the fog was settling and anytime anyone picked up the pace or dropped back their headlamps would fade and you would feel alone in the dark. After a few hours the breeze picked up and the clouds moved off leaving the moon and stars overhead. 

 

I was feeling good, for the most part, drank a liter and a half in 25 miles, and ate a few bars, (I have been following a mostly vegan diet for the last year, and am gluten intolerant, so I eat almonds, bars made with cacao and seeds, and my favorite, Coconut Chia Bars.) Though my energy was up, stepping in holes and roots was making my left ankle sore.  I was thrilled when 6am came, because with it came the sun and NOVA!  She texted to see if anyone needed anything, of course the response was random greasy food items, and beer from the guys.  She did not have a burrito on hand, but she did bring some beer!  We parted and I went back to the car to get Nova while the guys continued on.  I was so happy to see her, its so great to have someone with energy join at the end of a long run, it seemed to give me a second wind!  (I was at the end of a 130 mile week, while Lynx would hit 180 for the week)  So needless to say we were not too talkative by 6am.  Nova was looking ready to run and we headed off to rejoin the guys.  by mile 33 I was ready to be done, I had hit my mileage goal for the week, and decided not too push it much further.

Remus continued on, accumulating about 42 total…meanwhile, I passed out on the pavement in the parking lot waiting for everyone to finish and head off for coffee and a comfy couch.

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Summertime Training

Well its almost August and I can’t believe how quickly this summer is going.  Most of my summer has been filled with swimming, eating, friends, work, and of course lots of training.

I signed up for Grindstone 100, or more accurately, a friend signed me up as I was having trouble actually pressing the enter key on my laptop.  100 miles in one day, I am super excited, and nervous all at the same time.  I have been reading blogs, planning nutrition, and logging miles ever since.  Because there is no terrain near where I live, a friend has come up with a plan to mimic several miles of climbing.  Typically we pick a hilly route, run 15+ miles and end up at the gym, then we get on the treadmill at a 15% incline and walk/jog for 2-4 miles, and finally we finish up a few more miles back to our cars.  Its interesting to notice the change, when we first began this workout, the treadmill had to come first, and it was a struggle to maintain an even heart rate for even 2.5 miles, the hilly trail miles came after and it was a struggle to just get to 18 or 19 miles.  Now this workout happens twice a week and the treadmill portion either comes at the end of the long run, or (if we are short on time) we make it a two a day and do a second run in the evening on tired legs.  I know it doesn’t take the place of actual hiking miles, but it will have to do.

As for races this summer, there was a challenge thrown to me by my husband.  He has been watching me log all these long slow, slow miles, and got it into his head that he could finally beat me in a race…so he challenged me to race him at a local 4th of July race.  Four on the Forth is a great local race put on by the Cardinal Track Club.  Last year I ran it in 25:46 and placed third female overall, this year with the fear of my husband beating me, out of nowhere I ran a 24:58, placing second female overall.  I guess lots and lots of miles made up for my lack of any speed work whatsoever.  Though my husband did not beat me, he did PR by nearly 2 minutes!

4 on the 4th Me photobombing my training partner at the starting line

My “training partner in crime” (shown above with me photobombing him) of course smoked the race, he ran a 5:44 pace after running 11 hard trail miles before hand. Needless to say that I only ever see the back of him when we train…but its great motivation for me to run faster!

This next weekend I will finally get out to the mountains of western NC for some good climbing, no more flat-landing this weekend!