I have done some good runs lately but my hubby and my friends have really been doing some fun stuff. First off, Bill, Jim and Scott ran the Marine Core Marathon. Scott was pretty trained up since he just ran Portland a couple of weeks prior but Bill and Jim......hmmmm not so much. Jim finally getting back from the middle east still sporting his full beard and Bill....well training using his standard plan.....go minimal and suffer the rest had a slow but good time. They all had rave reviews of the race and all that it was. Suffice to say all three had a fun and Bill is not complaining about being very sore.
I had to miss a trip around Mt. St. Helens with Steve and Micheal. I am just not ready for a long hairy run like that. They picked an awesome fall day where the sun shone and the wind was only bad in one area of the mountain. With St. Helens recent years of volcanic activity the once awesome trail around the mountain has not been maintained and the usage has been to minimal to keep it up. On top of that the winter we had last year left some of the washouts which were once gentle traverse drops now full on cliffs. The trail would simply disappear and they would be left searching for the least death drop. Micheal said he there were a couple of times where he was pretty nervous while Steve maintained his general....it's all just fine attitude. They saw awesome fall colors and a few elk sighting. All in all I missed out on a great day. I sure hope some day they will rebuild some of the trail as this mountain run is very unique and a must do.
I have got myself in a good routine now feeling good on my runs and beginning to incorporate some of my traditional speed workouts into my weeks. Last week was the end of my first 3 week cycle and I got just over 65 miles in. That is actually a pretty high number for me this time of year. Besides my 3 recovery runs I did a solid track workout consisting of 200 meters and some 400 meters. It was a pretty good workout. On Thursday I did my first real tempo run. Since I am VDOT less meaning I have no good numbers to use for my speed work I used heart rate. I kept my heart rate between 165 and 171 for the tempo portion of the run. My mile spits were interesting...not horrible but not great either. One good thing is I felt super strong and in control. I wasn't dragging myself by my ear. :) My tempo splits went like this: 7:57, 7:34, 7:49. I have a bit of a consistency problem......
Saturday Micheal drug me for 14 mile run in Forest Park. After a good two mile warm up I let him take the lead and that's when the dragging started. We did this same run the prior weekend and with Micheal driving we knocked of 12 whole minutes! It was so much fun being pushed but not killed. Afterwards I was sweating like a pig but felt like I good a good workout. The downhills are coming back. Surprisingly I am stronger on the uphill climbs and wonder if that is due to all the incline walking and a stronger glute/hamstring tie in. I can't wait for hill repeats to test it out for real!
Sunday was a trip up Table Mountain. Since the weather has turned meaning no more sunny crisp clear fall days and the rains have moved in it might be the last time we are able to do this run before late spring. I haven't been up to the top of Table Mountain for years. I have run the PCT leading to the trail head many times but they closed the center most trail leading up the top so they could rebuild it. I was excited to see the new steep trail. Steve, Micheal and I headed out in drizzle for the 6.5 mile run to the trail head via the PCT. Steve is just so excited about running right now he continually quizzed me about the schedule....when do Black Saturday's start....when do you start the serious back to backs...how about this race....how about that run. He is excited for winter training but both him and Micheal are so far ahead of me it's not even funny. As we continued, Steve finally says, "Are you going to be in shape enough to do C2M"? When I just kept my mouth shut simply because everything he said sounded so fun he proceeded to tell me that if not it will right back into that bikini! I gotta love brother Steve! The ideas for winter training are coming together nicely. When we arrived at the Table Mountain trail head we began the steep 1.1 mile climb to the top. This is about a 2000+ foot climb in 1.1 miles so it's good and vertical. Although I have been on this before it was quickly apparent it was a new trail. If it wasn't for Steve, Micheal and I would have needed to turn back because when we hit the boulder field I would have had no idea if we were still on the route up. It is completely re-routed from the old center trail. We got to the top and decided to take the other trail down. It's a bit longer but no less steep. It would be good training ground for the dive and and plunge at Wasatch. We slipped and skidded out way back down to the PCT then raced back to the car arriving just as a down pour started. It was a great training day with over 4,500 feet of climb in 16 miles.
Funny how fast the running comes back. Especially the endurance part. That is comforting and good to know. My quads are only a bit sore which is surprising but maybe they will be sorer tomorrow. Boot camp is still a killer on Mon, Wed, and Fri. morning but I am becoming addicted. Alex came one morning since Bill was gone and proceeded to take pictures of us suffering! Not only did he find this to be good sport he also thought he should give us pointers on how to better do the excersise to get maximum suffering. He will make a great boss someday! He is growing up so fast! Now 5"7" tall at 12 years old....I just can't believe it. I love to see all the changes as he grows into a young man but sometimes I just want to turn back the clock.