This past week and the beginning part of next week are making up my heavy training for Chippewa. I'm really trying to spend a bunch of time on trails, and this week I managed 56 miles!
Monday: Uneventful 6 miles around town.
Tuesday: 4 miles in the morning with Parsenn, 6 in the afternoon at Walla Hi County Park, once again completely flustered by the trails out there. I think I have an idea about this place, though, and am excited to go back out and see if I've gotten the place figured out.
Wednesday: Big fat ZERO.
Thursday was a solid 2 hours on the Ice Age Trail. At the time, I was a bit discouraged about how many miles I covered (12) but I'm starting to think that the Greenbush area doesn't have great satellite reception, and perhaps the 405 may be registering the runs a bit short due to that and the fact the trail changes direction every 10 feet. I took a couple pictures of this run--the trail was fantastic, and my running partner (Bonnie the hyper Yellow Lab) had a blast too...although she couldn't stand to pose for a picture...
Friday was a BUSY day at the office (we closed early for Good Friday services) followed by a wonderful night with family decorating Easter Eggs. I had big plans for Saturday morning, so I did my best to rest the legs.
Saturday morning I was out the door by 6:45 AM and in the Greenbush Trails parking lot by 7:15. I had packed a cooler full of gels, shot bloks, and S!Caps along with a 2 gallon jug of water. After finding a picnic table to put it on, I began my run. My hopes were to get in 24 miles on the trails...or 4 hours. Whatever came first. I really wanted to get my legs fatigued and "bonk" a bit so that I could get a better idea of how my body would react. This was going to be the first of two "long" runs on trails in my final training for Chippewa. In short, I absolutely LOVED IT!
I first ran an hour and a half on my own, absolutely loving the soft single track moutain bike trails. Ellie then came out after yoga, so I ran with her around on the trails for another hour and a half. She was supposed to run 10 road miles in her training for Grandma's, so 90 minutes on trails was probably pretty close. After she left, I downed another gel, refilled the water bottle, took 2 S!Caps, and went back out for another couple loops. I had a couple rough spots on that last loop, but all in all, I felt great! Saturday's run ended up being 4 hours and 22 minutes, with Garmin saying I covered 22 miles. As I had mentioned, I was beginning to think the 405 was measuring short on these trails, so I ran a couple loops of which the mileage was known to see what the 405 would come up with. Sure enough, a loop that was 1.5 miles in length only measured 1.41 on the 405. Because of this, I'm calling my run 24 miles in 4:22.
The best part of that run is that my legs felt GREAT today. It's amazing how gentle the trail can be. So many different muscles get used that your legs stay so much happier! I'm hoping to extend this heavy running through Thursday, when I'll get in another 4 hours on the trails around here. After that, it's time to relax a bit and let the chips fall where they may for Chippewa! I have NO IDEA what time is possible for a trail 50k, but I'm excited to (finally) meet a bunch of runners I only know via Google Reader and find out along the way.