When you run on the earth and with the earth, you can run forever. ~Raramuri Proverb
This was another high mileage week. I’ve been really trying to balance the increasing endurance while still getting the appropriate amount of rest. I feel the need to push myself with the mileage and back-to-back runs so I convince my brain that I have the physical fitness and stamina necessary to complete the Georgia Death Race. At the same time I want to make sure I get quality miles, over quantity, and don’t burn out/injure myself before March 19. Even though, I admit, I don’t follow what my coaches at SweatTracker tell me 100% of the time, I feel strong and more tuned to my body than I have, ever. I’ll give myself a 95% so far for nutrition and following directions. 🙂
Here’s the week of February 8-14, 2016:
- Monday, February 8: Sufferfest at Energy Lab. Last week was the Tour of Sufferlandria so the studio was doing the scheduled Sufferfest video each day. I did not take part in the tour this year since my training schedule doesn’t allow for it but I did want a good spin so I spent 45 minutes with them on the bike. After a hard weekend of racing, spinning on the bike feels really good.
- Tuesday, February 9: Cobra camp, Sufferfest. This morning started a new Cobra Camp series. This month we’re focusing on head stands. We didn’t actually get to any head stands this morning, and I’ll have to miss a few classes when I travel this month, but I’m hoping to have some success. I never did head stands/handstands as a kid so this is something that scares me a bit. This evening was another Sufferfest ride, although this one was an easy power session, working on some low cadence hill climbs. I also cracked into the first few products of the Tri Box my lovely BRFs, Tina and Stephanie, sent me for my birthday. I’ll end up going a full write up of the box system after I go through the first box.
- Wednesday, February 10: Jump rope, distance run. SweatTracker had me scheduled for a 13 mile run with 4, 15 minute steady state efforts in the middle. Ideally, I wanted to do this in the morning. However, it was colder than Hoth and very windy this day. I’m pretty hardcore but even I’m human sometimes. I opted to push the run to the afternoon. It would still be cold but at least I’d have the sun. Honestly, it didn’t matter. I made a strong effort for the first few 15 min repeats but my lungs burned and, eventually, GI issues had me heading home. I still made 10 miles though, but it just about killed me. I was an absolutely wreck by time I made it home. Some runs have to suck in order to appreciate the good ones.
- Thursday, February 11: Recovery from the disastrous run on Wednesday evening. Like I said, that 10 mile run (that was supposed to be 13) knocked me out good. I was coughing and snorting for the rest of the night and Thursday I woke up feeling like shit. I didn’t even make it to yoga. Sleep was my training for the day (I still made it to work though – money pays for races).
- Friday, February 12: Run to work day! I had a 7 mile run planned but I opted to run to work today for some variation. The weather was finally warmer today, 40 in the morning and 60ish in the afternoon. It’s a 5.5 mile run to work and I wear a day pack that’s about 12 lbs with my clothes and lunch for the day. Run commutes aren’t my fastest runs but they are great for strength building. My stride definitely shortens with the pack so it’s a better simulation of running on trail. Also, running home allows for a double run day. Normally the second run of the day would be tough on tired legs but I actually felt much better in the afternoon and made it home 5 minutes faster!
- Saturday, February 13: Atlanta Track Club training run. Another frigid, windy morning, and we had 11 miles on the schedule. Luckily the course was a relatively flat out and back. Other than waiting on some long lights at intersections, we stayed warm (ish) and maintained our 11 min moving average. We also had a running shoe drive this morning. Run leads and participants donated 155 pairs of shoes! We also had a Valentines Day potluck but I think it was too cold for most people to stick around long.
- Sunday, February 14: Yeti Heartbreaker Marathon. I’ve been trying to do as many back-to-back runs and trail races as possible to get in my trail miles training for GDR. The Yeti races are always fun and low key so this was an easy decision. I’ll post a full review on BibRave in the next day or two and then link it back here. I was worried about 3 long days in a row but felt this would be a good test of endurance, muscle fatigue, and nutrition. I opted to run with only a handheld bottle between the aid stations so I could time my hydration and endurance better than normal. This plan worked well and I felt strong most of the day. I only had a problem towards the end of the run when I accidentally dumped about half my water/Nuun and was forced to under hydrate for the last 5 miles or so. Overall, I was surprised how good my legs felt. It was a hilly course with lots of powerhiking but I pushed through with a good pace. I cam home in a good mood, to the relief of my husband. 🙂
After all these days running, and over 50 miles this week, I finally had the thought that if I toe the line at GDR tomorrow I’ll be as prepared as possible. I have a very healthy amount of fear and respect for this race; I wouldn’t do it if not. Barring any injury or outside forces I truly feel I have the ability to finish Georgia Death Race. I also know it will suck, a lot.