Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Getting Ready

WOO HOO!! Training is going well . . . and we finally had a great day to run yesterday. Joe did a 14 mile training run on the Catherine Valley Trail (rails-to-trails path) on Friday when it was so disgustingly hot and humid, so the weather today was a definite welcome. Joe and I went out for a run on his "Mountain Madness" course (18.6 miles) yesterday as a nice training run for Joe's upcoming Beast of Burden 24-Hr race (where Joe wants to run 66 miles - the longest he has ever run at one time!) and my upcoming Green Lakes 100K. We had a beautiful day - temp was 73 at the start, sunny, nice cool breeze. Fortunately, Joe had the great idea of putting out an "aid station" for us about 10 miles into the run. So we parked a car with extra water and food, and when we both started to feel a little whippy from the hill climbs out in the open sun, just knowing that the food was waiting for us really kept us going. I have just two words: tapioca pudding. Let me just say how awesome this tasted! We were hot and hungry and cold tapioca pudding just slid right down our throats and immediately absorbed! No GI distress after and it was really nice to not have to think about chewing. My only regret is that we didn't have a little more at the stop and that we didn't put out another station in the later miles. However, this little experiment revealed another food choice for Joe, who doesn't like to have to chew any dry food during his runs.

The entire run took us about 4 hours, 15 minutes. If you check out the Mountain Madness pictures, you will see why. LOTS of hills. Joe won't have those hills at BOB but the training on them will make him mentally and physically stronger.

And we finished-off the day with a nice dinner of cucumber slices and a spicey chicken/rice dinner. So training is looking up.

"God has given me the ability. The rest is up to me. Believe. Believe. Believe . . . "
- Billy Mills

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Way Too Long

OK, it's been way too long since my last post. My bad . . . I have just been totally overwhelmed with preparing for and then cleaning up after the big ultra . . . The Finger Lakes Fifties. This year I did not sign up for the Vermont 100, which I have done the past three years. Last year I realized that after putting so much of myself into getting The Fifties together, I just couldn't make that switch from race director back to runner in time to get myself ready for Vermont. So this year I didn't even try to. And I have to say that despite the fact that I felt like I was in withdrawal this past weekend with not being at Vermont, it was the right decision to not do it. No way I would have been ready. I have not been able to put in some really solid training runs for at least a month leading up to The Fifties and now that it's over - two weeks plus after - I am finally getting my mojo back on. The trails await me! So much to do, so little time. So as to keep myself on track and make myself feel at least a bit more accountable, I am going to put it down in writing right now what the plan of attack is . . .

* Stop eating so much crap! I have been living on instant sugar energy to keep going with race preparations and then feeling too tired to put much thought into eating the right stuff. It's time to get my training mind in order. Balance the diet: protein, carbs, veggies, and lots of water. Lay off on the beer for a bit and reserve it for the reward after hard training and racing.

* Get Joe in gear. Joe is doing quite well in his preparations for his big summer ultra - The Summer Beast of Burden 24-hr run. The plan is to run 66 miles in the given 24-hr period. I am confident that he can do it as long as he paces himself during the heat of the day, stays hydrated and electrolyted, and listens to his pacer - me - finally, I get to be the whip-ass! Rock on - what goes around, comes around, my lovely crew-man! I can't wait to help him reach his goal. Still more training runs to go, but his is on the right path.

* Gear up for the Green Lakes 100K. This will be my first attempt at the 100K at this event - actually my first real 100K race! I have completed 100K before during my 100 mile attempts, but have never actually run a 100K race flat-out, so I am really excited for this. The biggest issue with this race is the lap-thing - EIGHT laps! This is going to be a real mental challenge to keep going each time I come through the start/finish area, but Joe will be there cow-belling me on.

So that's where things are at right now. Other than that, I am glued to the Tour de France and am totalling rooting for Andy Schleck who, after yesterday's chain disaster on the climb, must have a gut full of anger that will bring him back to the yellow jersey. The kid's got style and he's an amazing climber. I am confident he will make his move on Contador.

And then there is Tri-Nations rugby starting up again. I have to admit that I haven't been able to get away from The Tour to even watch one game. This is a great tournament - New Zealand, South Africa, and Australia pitted against each other - and I don't have any emotional attachment to any of the teams, so it doesn't matter who wins! They are all super teams but I have to admit that if I had to pick one, South Africa - winners of last year's Tri-Nations - is my team for this year.

Time to get out for a run - maybe I will check out Joe's Mountain Madness 30K course today for a run. If you're up for a good run on August 15, check us out! It's huge fun. CLICK HERE for a tour of the course.

Until next time - cowgirl up!