Monday, June 4, 2012


Last week was one of the best weeks of training I've had. Maybe ever. I've certainly logged more miles and more elevation gain in a week in the past, but such efforts have always left me feeling depleted, sore, and hobbling around the house in the morning. Last week was different. Sure, my legs are a bit tired, but it's a good tired. I wasn't exactly moving fast on my run/hike up Mt. Sheridan on Sunday, but neither was I completely spent. I managed to finish the route running 8:00-9:00 mi/miles.

The Turquoise Lake Half Marathon on Saturday was perhaps the most confidence-boosting race I've run this season. (And that's saying a lot since things have been going pretty well for me.) After running a 50K on Monday and then climbing three 14ers on Thursday, I was fully expecting to be running on dead legs. I felt like the PR I had set two years ago was well out of reach. As we climbed the first hill on the road around the lake I was completely surprised to be feeling strong. No aches. No dullness. My legs actually seemed like they wanted to run! I am not exactly a fast runner, and 1:56 is a pretty modest time for a half marathon, but I managed to shave 2 minutes off my PR! You would've thought I'd just won the Boston Marathon if you'd seen me at the finish. To feel so good after ~60 miles and ~10,000' of vertical for the week was fantastic.

Something is going right.

After looking at my training log, I feel like what really set this week apart is the variety of runs I ran. A long, long run on Monday. An easy bike ride the following day for recovery. A long, slow hike on Thursday that finished with some fast miles. A fast, flat run on Saturday. And then another slow hike on Sunday, which finished with a few fast miles.

  • Mon: 31 mi, 4600' vertical (PR)
  • Tue: 13 mi bike, 800' vertical
  • Wed: off
  • Thu: 15 mi, 4700' vertical
  • Fri: off
  • Sat: 13 mi, 1200' vertical (PR)
  • Sun: 12 mi, 3800' vertical

If I had to pick a single adjective to describe my training goals for this year it would be "indestructible"-- not "fast". When I'm feeling sluggish at the end of a long run, I try to visualize myself staggering into the Fish Hatchery in the cold darkness at mile 75.

That's what I'm training for.

The view from Mt. Sheridan.

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