Friday, December 28, 2012

The Road to Badger Mountain: Notes

Yesterday, Thursday, after a short house/cat-sitting break, in which I did nothing but watch lots of DVDs and eat mostly junk food, I returned to my new schedule of a long long run. Again, I’m not sure on the length, but I was out for another eight hours. I’d like to say that puts the route at 35 miles, but I run really slow, so it could be 30. I think it’s at least 30.

On Wednesday, I also fasted, something I’ve been doing for a while now: fasting one day a week, though on the run I felt pretty low energy, so I’m not sure fasting the day before a long run is the best thing to do. I may have to change the day. I’m trying to find the optimal three days for running, based around what’s going on in the rest of my life. So far, it seems that Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, will work best, with Friday and Saturday off. The holidays are kind of messing with that schedule though, what with people coming into town and such. I don’t want my running to interfere with my social life (such as it is....)

Anyways, though I felt low energy, and walked mostly all the hills, that eight hours wasn’t much different from my last run on the same route, which is something to remember: feeling low energy doesn’t mean running isn’t possible! With the low energy, my mantra became, don’t fall in to the Death March.

I invested in better gloves, which made the run much more enjoyable. I was warm enough the whole way. In fact, the weather was good, with actual sun. I still dressed fairly warm, with a shell and two shirts and runing pants and a pair of shorts over them. Most of the other runners I saw were dressed much lighter, some in just shorts and a t-shirt! But they were moving faster than I was. I didn’t hardly break a sweat.

The Merrell Trail Gloves are still the best tool for the job, for both the cold, and the muddy trails. I wouldn’t run on pavement in them, but for cold trail running, they’re perfect. I suspect I’ll want to use them for at least the night portion of Badger Mountain.

The things I carried: One Clif Bar and a bag of raisins. I didn’t seem to get the boost of energy from the Clif Bar that I got on the last run, but I think I’ll be taking one with me on each run. Maybe even take two. They’re cheaper than I thought, just over a dollar.

What I was really grateful for was being able to attend a yoga class almost right after I got home and ate something. Doing all the stretching, along with some strength poses, took the ‘edge’ or ‘bite’ out of my soreness. I could move a little more easily afterwards. This option isn’t available after races, which are on the weekends, but I’m thankful to have this yoga studio right down the block! Yoga maybe be my secret weapon on the road to Badger Mountain!

The one thing bothering me is that I'm not running barefoot. I miss it. And, in fact, need it. For this trail route, carrying my Merrells part of the time is just not really feasible. I'll have to move out to some city running, where I can carry my Xero Huaraches part of the time. That or sneak in some short barefoot runs here and there.

Now, two days of rest, and then another 30 miles on Sunday. I do like this ‘not running every day’ schedule of Mark’s. I just wish I were a little faster so the 30 miles didn’t take all day!