Sunday, July 22, 2018

Week 7-Training to Pace the Hawk

Sore, sore, sore.  If you didn't catch my recap of the trail race, check it out here.  Since I don't get to many technical trails (and YES I need to change that), my body feels like I have been beaten up by a UFC fighter.

I put all of the race photos in my last post, but I sure do love these!  Ultra and Trail photogs do the BEST job at capturing the beauty and the beast of the courses we do.  I seriously want to frame all of these!

Monday:  Rest day.  Still pretty sore.  Glad that today was a rest day.  Did get a little bit of time in the pool with Andrew, which helped get some of the soreness out.  I tried to do some water jogging when he was in the deeper side of the pool.

My legs looked pretty rough and pictures really don't do it justice.  I had broken out in red welts all over my calf and upper thighs on both legs as well as on my back.  They all itch like CRAZY!  I am using benedryl at night and an anti itch cream during the day.

Tuesday:  Fun speed work.  Again with the 1 minute hard, 1 minute 30 seconds easy, but 10 reps instead of 8 for a total of 5 miles.  When we woke up, the humidity was 91% and I didn't feel comfortable taking Stella.  We even ended up walking most of our recovery intervals since the humidity was SO bad.
already back to school shopping.  EEEEK!

Wednesday:  Cross training/strength.  I sound like a broken record, but after a very busy day in Manhattan, I was mightily behind on my work at Coleman Electric, so I decided once I dropped Andrew off for VBS that I would get caught up.  I worked late but before I hit the bed, I tried out the Run Gum core work out that was posted on their blog.  It's suppose to take 5 minutes (if you are an elite athlete, I am sure it does) and I wanted to see if it was something I could start adding to my easy days.  It took me a heck of a lot longer than 5 minutes of course and was very challenging to me, especially V ups.  I have never been able to do those silly exercises, as I just don't bend that way.  I tried, even modifying the bridge to V up to a bridge to crunch to bridge.  I did feel like I got something out of it, so I will call this day a success with strength, sort of.

One of my most favorite Totos!

Thursday:  Woke up to storms north of us.  While they appeared pretty far away on the map, the lightening was pretty spectacular, and we decided not to chance it.  This of course meant a night run, which meant high heat.  While it was good practice for the upcoming race on saturday, it sucked horribly bad and we took lots of walk breaks and even took selfies with the totos around town.

Friday:  Travel day.  We had our first meeting with the dietician today.  I am going to talk more in detail with my runfessions post but my hubby was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.  While the medication seems to be working to get his blood sugar down, we needed some more information on how to modify our diet since we are doing this together.  She gave us lots of good snack ideas and food ideas.  Her motto was to not cut anything out completely, but to balance any carb with fat and protein.  I like that.  While we will be cutting out a few things (pizza is a main one with tortillas and white rice also going bye bye), we are pretty much going to eat the same with a few things added in.  He is on the go all day, so he will have to have portable snacks to keep with him at all times.  

Saturday:  Race day.  I call it race day, but I am not really racing.  I like to call it a supported long run  with a few hundred of my trail running friends.  I don't get on technical trails near enough (I am trying to change this) and I am not a great runner in the heat of the day.  The Psyco Psummer run started at race (10 miler) at 9 am, which is not ideal for me since I start my summer running as early as 4:30 am on hot days.  I am very excited to say that other than the three sisters from mile 9 to mile 10, I ran a strong race for me.  My mile times were ranging from 15 minute miles up to 22 minute miles (thanks to the three sisters).  The summer loop for me is way more runnable, and I am in awe of my running partner for doing it TWICE for a 20 miler.  

I also got to run with my friend from my second 50 K, Rebecca.  When I started struggling, I had her go on, but we were together for probably 8 or so miles.  She kept me going at a good pace for most of the race when I probably would have walked way more if she wasn't there.

photo courtesy of Trail Nerds FB page

If you have ever wanted to do a Trail nerds race, don't hesitate, DO IT.  The aid stations are amazing and the volunteers are amazing.  I mean what other race has a unicorn blowing water out of it's horn?  I had so many wonderful MALE volunteers that filled my boobs up with ice.  Thanks guys for not even flinching when I asked :) . BONUS, since it was my first time doing this loop, I got a  PR :).  I would have loved to do better, but when my body started yelling at me on the three sisters to slow my roll or I was going to pay, I paid attention and slowed down.  

Sunday:  Coach gave me the choice of cross training or running.  I wasn't horribly sore from the race, which is shocking, but I wasn't feeling quite up to a run either.  I decided to bike for about 45 minutes and call it good.  

I am trying to figure out how to get to the trails as much as I can the next few weekends.  I love Konza, don't get me wrong, but I really LOVE the trails at Clinton and KC.  Stay Tuned!

Have a great week!

Friday, July 20, 2018

My First....50 miler with my dog Miles: Part 3 The Race!

Here is Cindy's race report.  I am not editing it and leaving it in it's entirety.  Please read it and and if you haven't, check out how she came to running and how here and Miles trained here.

50 @ 50 Buffalo Run on Antelope Island, Salt Lake Utah race report (book) March 23-24, 2018

It’s true, Ultra runners are liars, bold face ultra-liars. I was told this weekend before the start that “That climb up that hill there is pretty much the highest elevation we will hit in this race (Craig Lloyd, bold faced liar extraordinaire as that was the “shortest” climb on that side of the island up that little rise compared to the ridges we ran up further up that side)” Then in the race “You just made it up the worst climb out here” and “Don’t worry about what is coming up, it’s not a problem” (Valerie Hewett, another good liar as that was NOT the worst climb by far, it was just the first major climb, and anyone who can look at you and tell you “it’s all good from here” just is begging to not be believed in the future). Also, “The Ranch aid station is just a little ways down and then you will be coming back up to us quickly (nice aid station worker, but a liar, who I cannot remember his name, there was NOTHING quick about the section to the ranch and back, flatter than most of the rest of the run, but not quick). And finally this one from the final Aid station volunteer, “All you have left is this little bit around this side of the island and then you are finished! Here let me show you the road to the trailhead, it’s not far.” (HOLY COW that was the LONGEST 4+ miles in total dark with no reference points that ever existed, like EVER! Even finally seeing the lights in the camp at the finish was anticlimactic because by that time you had given up hope that any other life existed out there!)
And those liars up there, every single one of them including the ones that lied just tiny lies to keep spirits up and share a little humor, made this race the most amazingly wonderful experience of a 50 year life. I love each and every one of those amazing people who find fun and humor and community together through a love of finding your deepest self and exposing it to every emotion imaginable while putting your feet and your body to its ultimate use and abuse. Fully connected to the environment, nature, around you.

Now, the report itself. Miles and I arrived in Utah and drove out to Antelope Island the day before the race to scope out what I had gotten myself into. It was a rainy, cooler, kinda nasty day and there was concern that this would be our weather for the race. At least the soil was mostly sand and drained really well, so mud wouldn’t be a big issue. As I drove across the causeway, the mountains on the island keep getting bigger and bigger. I had looked at the course map, but looking at it and understating it are two VASTLY different things. I was trying to figure out which of the peeks we were tackling and had settled on it being two “short” ones that I was able to convince myself that I could handle. I was going to be ok, and I could do this “thing”. I saw some of the buffalo, Miles really wanted to go see what they were all about, and had a nice visit with the ranger in the visitors center (very informative and she was fun to talk to before the race). Then I went back into Layton and found my hotel and decided to rest up after a 1000+ mile drive and get my drop bags and running stuff together before the race start the next morning at noon.

Woke up to wind and rain and listened to the forecast and they were predicting clearing with winds laying mostly down by 11am, AWESOME! That put a HUGE upswing in my overall mood and I had no doubts that I would accomplish my 50 mile goal as long as I stayed upright and didn’t take a tumble. Probably one of the highlights of the race was that morning arriving at the camp and meeting so many AMAZING people. I am horrible with names, so I’m not even going to try to name everyone but each one of your faces made an impact in my day beyond words. Valerie drove in shortly after I did and we gave each other a big “trail sisters” hug and spent so much time talking that we forgot to get a picture together. She is a bright ray of sunshine and has a huge heart! She was my biggest cheerleader out there and kept me going by always having a huge dose of encouragement as we passed on the trail. Finally it was race briefing time and we listened to Jim Skaggs (RD) talk about the race and course. Miles was ready to go by this time and was doing his “pre-start dance and song” keeping everyone either entertained or scared because he sounds scary right before a run, kinda like a police dog waiting to be let go to take down the bad guy. I laugh because there is nothing mean about him, but you couldn’t prove it before a race start. Then time to line up and we take our spot near the back. I opted for an early start with the 100 mile runners (as did some other 50 milers) so I got to also see all of them stepping up to the line and they were a remarkable bunch.
Countdown and we are off to head down the fence and up to the “highest elevation that we will run” according to Craig. As we were going up the hill (because it sure wasn’t one of the mountains I could see near us) I had the thought that I believe Craig is one of those ultra-liars, because there is no way the race starts with the biggest up right off the bat when so many other up options were available further on up the Island. This part is nice wide trail, solid sand/rock and relatively easy to keep up a nice pace even going up. Miles and I settled into a good 13/14 minute mile pace and kept watching runners ahead of us clear the top of the “hill” and head down and across the other side TOWARDS one of those much higher peaks. Yep, he’s a liar, up we start toward what I learned was called “One Tree Hill” and a climb that was WAY more up than that little hill we just came across and my pace went to 20’s very quickly. Up, up and more up, then round a corner and MORE UP. The trail here got rockier and not as wide but we just kept going up. Thought we had hit the final bit of climb when we got to the first Aid Station at around mile 5. There were great folks there that explained we were to go out on Elephant Head and around the top to a drop box with stickers. We were to get a sticker and put it on our bib to prove that we had done the entire out and back portion (RD called it the “Agnew rule”) and show it to them when we returned to that Aid Station. There was a drop, then the final climb UP to get to the base of the peak of Elephant Rock and around the tip.

That is where Valerie caught me again, she was coming back as I was going out. This is where she ultra-lied to me, LOL. No Valerie, this was NOT the worst of the climbs, just one of them, but thank you for the ultra-lie as it let me confuse my head for a while with the lie that from here on out it was “easy”. So around the peak I went and got my Wonder Woman sticker (appropriate I thought at the time) and took a minute to soak in the AMAZING views across the lake and down into the deep valley that I would soon be running towards the next climb. In my head at this moment was “one down, one to go!” and I didn’t let anything else filter in. I was feeling good, my legs appreciated the relative flat going around the point. Miles was still digging in and trying to convince me that I could pick up my pace but I kept him well grounded at a 17-20 minute mile pace with the minor climbs being walks and quicker downhills sprints (only sprints because the downhill parts were very short before you were climbing short sections again).

We got back to the aid station, had some more potatoes and water, and Miles got some pats, then we were off into the valley getting ready for the next climb. I could see it coming and see the folks coming back from “somewhere around the point in the valley, but a LOT higher up on the mountain than I thought we were going to be. As I was working my way toward the climb, I saw a saddled horse running down the trail without a rider further down toward the beach, then a rider on a horse running behind him trying to catch him, then the horseless rider walking down the trail behind them both, LOL. Somebody got dumped. I entertained myself watching the “freed” horse in front run tail up and looking back and “laughing” at the horse chasing him trying to catch him. It was a good bit of time before he decided it was time to be caught. It was a nice distraction from thinking about the next climb. Miles was ready to go help round up the runaway but that dang leash. We then rounded the last part of the flat valley part and saw the climb start through some rocks. A nice bit of up, then through the rock and it semi-leveled out while still going up around the other side of the point. Then I looked and saw tiny, tiny runners WAY up on the mountain and realized that my next real “up” was ahead. It had warmed so much that lizards were out all over the rocks and Miles kept darting from side to side on the trail trying to chase them on the rocks, but those guys are fast and would dart to the other side of the rocks before he could jump toward them. But it entertained us as we kept turning corners on the switchbacks up the mountain side. I lost count of the switchbacks but finally we hit the last one where the people I had seen before were so tiny and could look down into the valley below and see more tiny people down there. Poor souls, I knew just what they were thinking looking up, what I had been thinking “damn switchbacks!” But we had concurred them, the mountain did not beat us and I still had legs and lungs when I got to travel mostly flat for a while back around the side of the mountain toward the aid station I had grown to love as this would be my 3rd trip through it and it felt like coming home at the moment to people who loved me and had been waiting for me to come back and visit again.

Miles and I grabbed some more potatoes and water, and I got a craving for about ¼ a can of ginger ale and they supplied it cheerfully and with encouragement for the return trip to the camp down the “One Tree Hill” that sucked so much out of you that it was nice that it gave back on the return trip with a beautiful down, down, down into the cove and the starting area. I knew from the map that I was done with the Mountain climbs, that part was over! I had done it and still felt good, ready for a change of shoes and socks and dry clothes (sweaty) before the sundown part of the run. I felt more of that good energy returning as I “flowed slowly” back into the valley, ready to think about tackling that final 30 miles with a solid 20 under my legs already.

Made it into camp and since my jeep was right there, I used it as a drop bag point and did the change there. This is also where it turned tragic, or so I thought in the moment. I had taken off my hydration pack and laid it in the seat of the jeep, got Mile’s water bowl filled for him to drink up while I was changing and decided to use the porta potties quickly so I shut the jeep door and heard a crunch and it sprang back open. OH NO! I had just crunched my phone in the door and broke the screen. It was my brand new Samsung Galaxy S8+ bought 3 weeks ago! The screen was flickering and I couldn’t tap anything to make it work, it just flickered. MY MUSIC!!!! MY VIDEO ABILLITY!!! MY PICTURE TAKING!!!! All were destroyed in that moment, I wouldn’t have that distraction, that fun activity any more. It was just me and the trail from this point on, WHAT WAS I GOING TO DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! I slowly walked to the porta potty and was thinking this was the beginning of the end. I was done. I didn’t know what I was going to do. Well, I did my thing, walked back to the jeep and looked at Miles who was cheerfully wagging his tail at other runners who were passing by us on the way to their vehicles to do their changes and decided that I needed to get over myself and we would just run and sing and scare everything out there the rest of the night and finish this thing, damnit! I hadn’t come all this way to this beautiful place to let technology kill it for me. I was here to have fun and damnit fun would be had! So I quickly changed socks and shoes, put on dry warmer clothes and headed back to the starting line (with my busted phone in my vest just in case a miracle happened and it healed itself, LOL) and checked in with the officials that I was heading back out. Took about 12 minutes for all this to happen, so not too bad really time wise, just emotionally seemed to last forever.

Miles and I headed out for the “Ranch” side of the run, saw a pair of pronghorns who took a LOT of interest in Miles and he them till they decided a retreat was in order, which included a heck of a downhill that I knew would be a HELL of an uphill on the way back to the finish so this set in my head the entire rest of that section and I knew I had to get it settled that I was going to beast that climb back out. Then a short out and back north toward the causeway and the Mountain View aid station there which was filled with awesome guys who set me up well for the run down the shore towards the Lower Frary Peak Aid station. Left there feeling good and light was only starting to fade, no music, but the Magpies were singing beautifully so it was a treasure to not have something in my ear besides their song. Saw some more buffalo along the trail close to us, but they were busy eating and ignored us. Kept running and running and running till the light totally faded and I dug out my headlamp so I could see the trail. Kept seeing folks coming back from the Ranch and we exchanged encouraging words along the way and just keep spirits up. Miles and I were feeling good, but hungry as I hadn’t gotten any potatoes at the Mountain View aid station so we were looking forward to hitting the Frary aid station for some goodies. Finally saw the lights and heard the folks there and soon enough they were offering us good things (potatoes) and pizza! Got filled back up and hit the trail for the last part of the out section towards the Ranch and the boys scouts manning that station. Along that part I found Valerie coming back up as I was going out. We hugged, she encouraged and took a couple of pictures since I told her about my phone issue, and Miles and then off we went again each heading different ways.

I thought, in that moment that the section from the Lower Frary aid to the Ranch aid was the LONGEST part of this whole race, partially because the dark made it seem you were nowhere, and because I was seeing fewer and fewer folks out there coming back by me. Though each time I spotted a headlamp in the distance it was a great motivator and “pulled” me towards them just for the contact for a few brief, “shining” moments of encouraging words and often a huge pat for Miles from other runners. Miles is good at making friends like that. I did notice a bit of mental fatigue at this point as I was two red lights in the distance and they kept getting closer. I began to wonder who the HECK had a car out on the trail and WHY were they backing it up for such a long distance???? Then when I heard voices it registered that there were two runners together with red lamps instead of white, LOL. Finally I could smell the smoke and hear the boy scouts in the distance, couldn’t see anything yet as they were still around another bend, but just hearing the boys playing in the dark was a huge encouragement. Rounded the bend and the boys and guys there with them were asking me what I needed, what could they get me and by heavens they had the BEST potato soup I have ever eaten in my life at that point. It was amazeballs in a cup! Miles and I got sorted and psyched for the return LONG trip back to Lower Frary and then that climb that I knew was coming.

Miles was once again encouraging a faster pace, not because he knew I needed it, but because the field mice kept darting out into the path of light from my headlamp and he really needed to chase them, LOL. There are a LOT of field mice on the island and I think we met every one of them. Didn’t catch any, but sure wasn’t for lack of trying on Miles part at this point. I kept asking him where the energy was coming from, didn’t he just want to go straight? We finally got back to Lower Frary and Valerie had left instructions that someone was to take my picture there since my phone had died and they remembered to take one. As I was refueling I heard this voice, and my head went “I KNOW THAT VOICE” and suddenly there was Wanderley Reis! This amazing soul had driven out and found me just to be a voice of encouragement since he knew it was my first 50 mile race. What an AMAZING friend! It was a HUGE mental boost to have someone do that, ultra-amazing! While the guys at the aid station were setting me up for the rest of the race, refilling water and offering me the most amazing broth Wanderley was lifting my spirits and making sure I was doing ok and offering encouragement. I left that aid station with the hugest smile on my face and a song in my heart because of the friendship of kind souls just because they are good people. I knew that climb was coming but nothing could stop me from taking it on like a challenge and kicking its butt at this point! We traveled what felt like a good 4 miles and there it was, The Hill up the fence, the never ending hill up the fence. This was nothing, I had climbed MOUNTAINS, and this was just a hill. Up we went, and up and up and up till there it was, THE TOP, we were over! Miles set the pace up and I followed the whole way. Talk about another mental boost! I did it, we did it! I think I broke into song here, sorry to anyone who heard me but it had to be done, it was Eye of the Tiger, I couldn’t help myself.

Took a deep breath finally and we turned left along some road headed to the last aid station, Bridger Bay, and around the north end of the island to the finish. This is where the mental fatigue totally got to me. I was following a well-marked path on the gravel road section to the next part of trail. The flour and reflective markings were still there after the rain and very clear. I had been on the road for a bit and crossed another one and saw the arrow to cross the road on the left side of the road. I crossed and started up another huge gravel road hill, and kept going up, and kept going up, and kept going up but not seeing any more flour arrows. WHERE DID THE ARROWS GO???? HAD THEY WASHED AWAY???? WHY WASN’T I SEEING ANY MORE ARROWS??? When I could almost see the end of the road after an awful UP I gave in and hollered out “HELLO!!!! DAMNIT ANYONE THERE AT ALL???? HELLO????” I was second guessing myself but it seemed like every time I second guessed myself I should not have done so because I was right the first time. But, there was the end and nothing in sight. My shoulders sagged and I turned around and went back down really scanning for markings. Finally, at the BOTTOM of the hill, just before the road crossing, just after the arrow on the left to cross the road, THERE ON THE RIGHT WHERE I HAD TOTALLY OVERLOOKED IT was the flour arrow and reflective sign to take a hard right on a trail. OMG I SUCK, I REALLY SUCK, WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME!!!!! Then I laughed and shook it off and off Miles and I went back on dirt thinking “Dang if I’m not getting MY moneys worth out of this race, adding a mile and a half to this thing!”
Then there it was, the final aid station before the push around the north end and back to the camp. The kind volunteer got me some ginger ale and lead poor lost me to the gravel road that I needed to take to the final trail head around the end of the island. He said it was just down that way at the garbage bins. Off I went and started looking hard for the garbage bins. Once again a ways down I hadn’t seen any garbage bins, just a lot of tents and was thinking damnit I’m lost AGAIN! Suddenly, here comes a 100 miler on his 2nd lap. PRAISE THE LORD!!! “I’m following you to the trail head, you are a life saver!” I told him. He was probably thinking “crazy woman, what is wrong with you?” He takes a sudden left at the garbage bins that had magically appeared before getting too far ahead of me and I was SAVED! There was the trail (this was at about 3am in the morning BTW).
So off Miles and I went on this trail, I can follow trail, have no problems with that, it’s the road thing that gets me every time! About a mile into this section it went totally dark, not a light to be seen anywhere on the far coast of the lake, just DARK DARK DARK. Couldn’t see camp, couldn’t see life anywhere, couldn’t see beyond the light cast by my headlamp. I started thinking maybe I would just sit down on this rock over here for a minute cause I feel ok body wise, but I’m a bit tired. Might just sit for a second. “OH HELL NO! DO NOT SIT DOWN! KEEP MOVING” I started singing this over and over, out loud. Then with about a mile and a half left it finally registered with my head that I was seeing the lights from the camp, I could see the tent!!!!!!!! Miles and I picked up our pace a bit and slogged that final stretch into camp. I WAS going to do this, I HAD already run 50 miles, and this was the “Bonus” part! There it is, the fence down the road to the finish, wait, where is the little dirt road to the finish, where is my turn? OH THANK HEAVEN THERE IT IS! Rounded that little turn and “Here comes a runner!” The finish! WE DID IT MILES! 51.5 at 50! We’re not content to do the normal, we have to go the extra mile and a half dude! Finished before 5am in the morning!”

Got my mug, got a picture, then all I could think was SLEEP! I got everything off Miles and I that was “get offable” got some water and we climbed in the jeep, grabbed a blanket and went out for about an hour and a half. Total wipe out. Woke up when folks started arriving for the Saturday start and went back to the tent and visited for a while, still half out of it, but smiling even while being totally done. I had an early check in at the hotel, so we went back to town. After stopping at Walmart on the way (talk about a HORRIBLE walk through Walmart, I was leaning on that cart like a drunk sailor) for Epson salts, then a stop at a T-Mobile store to replace my destroyed phone, I got to the hotel and had a short shower and then a LONG soak in a tub full of Epson salts. Got cleaned up and NEEDED to go back out to the island and visit with everyone that I was just too wasted to see after my run.
I got some amazing Buffalo soup that the RD’s wife makes, she is an OUTSTANDING cook. And visited with some more amazing runners done or coming in. Was visiting with Wanderley at the finish as he was volunteering taking times as runners came in when he was needed to take some volunteers down to and aid station. So I offered and they handed me the timing list and I clocked runners coming in for a while. SO MUCH FUN to stand there and congratulate others finishing an amazing race. And the time back on my feet after refreshing was a good thing, I think it kept me from being too sore the next day. I met a lot of folks from the TAUR group, a lot of just amazing runners and volunteers and had the absolute BEST time of my life being a part of this AMAZING race. Ultra-runners ROCK!

End notes: I finished without any blisters and have never been able to do that before. Changing the shoes and socks (Injinji trail weight socks and Pearl Izumi Trail N3’s) was a great call, even though not wet, the change just felt good. I fueled on one Cliff Bloc every 2 hours, Coffee Peanut M&M’s, potatoes and potato soup, one Scap with caffeine and electrolytes every hour, and the equivalent of a can and a half of ginger ale over the course with just plain water continually. I never felt like I was out of fuel and could have gone further at the end if I had to so it worked for me. And, finally, I love this running thing! I never felt like I couldn’t finish, even in some of the lower points, just mentally knew that I WAS going to finish. Which brings me to my new issue. On a LONG drive home, where I felt really good and moving was not an issue along the way, I kept thinking about 100k, like why not? Stay tuned…..

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The Snake 10 miler

Okay if you know me or read my blog regularly, you know I don't do well with heat.  I tend to do races early in the spring or late in the fall.  I regularly complain about humidity and how horrible it is for me to run in in my normal blog posts.  So when Cindy told me about this race called the Snake 10 miler, I was initially like NOPE.  Then she enticed me with things like, you get a snake name, and you get to run with little fake snakes, and there are bodies of water on the course, so the dogs can run and cool off.  You had me at the dogs can run with you.  I mean she is training/running with me anyway, so why not a supported long run where you are on a trail and you get a cool name????

This is Cindy.  Please go now and read my two posts I have up about her doing her first 50 miler with her dog Miles.  Post one is about how Cindy came to be a dog runner and post two is about her training for her first 50 miler.  You will really enjoy them, I promise!!!!

The first mile or so Stella was pulling like a crazy, which was a big problem due to the heat.  I seriously thought I was going to have to pull her at the first aid station because she was breathing so hard.  We stopped periodically for both water drink breaks and water play breaks.  It seemed like each time she took a dip, she instantly felt better.

This dog would run till she passed out, so I was very careful to check her gums for cap refill time periodically.  I also tried to listen to her breathing.  When she was doing too much gulping/burping/odd breathing, I would stop and let her drink from her portable water bowl.  I carried her water and we went through a 17 oz bottle per every 3 or so miles.  I was glad that we had multiple water stations at this race, even though it was only 10 miles because we both needed the water.  

The view from Miles.  We traded spots periodically and even though we were both running our own races, we pretty much were together the whole time.  

The good thing about this trail is much of it for me, the clumsy clutz I am, is not runnable per se.  It's more of a power hike type of course with the rocks and tree roots.  I trip on my own feet so I have to be truly careful on technical trails like this.  That helped slow us down and keep her from overheating.  

At the Land's End station, we got to pick a snake to take with us to the finish.  The rule was you had to have your snake when you crossed the finish line to show to the photographer.  I picked a black cobra.  

I love this photo.  I tend to look at my feet the whole time I run.  I try and look up when I perceive a turn or a split.  Cindy caught me several times going the wrong way because I was so into looking at my feet.  This time I did look up and I was SO confused.  Someone thought it was funny to put two signs up at the same junction.  I had NO clue which way to go.  Luckily Cindy came up behind me and we found flags on the correct way to go.  Some people took the wrong way because they didn't see the pink flags on the right way.

Stella kind of wanted to eat our snake. Overall, the course was very challenging to me, since I don't do many technical trails.  I was hoping it might take me a little less time than the previous 10 miler I did out here since the trail was not so muddy, but thanks to the heat, I did a ton of power hiking.  

In some ways, running with a dog takes your mind off of the heat and humidity, because you are worried more about them and less about you.  I will be honest with you in saying that I will not be enjoying running next weekend when it will be hotter and more humid and we have a 9 am start time.  Stella of course will not be joining me because of the lack of bodies of water close by.  We had at least three dips in the water that i can remember that were life savers.  

 I wish someone had gotten our finish on video.  She heard the conch sound to signal we were coming in and she took off like a bat out of hell.  She pulled SO hard and it just made me laugh.

This was a very fun race despite the heat.  As always trail runners are so welcoming and nice and I enjoy these events so much.  This is my second trail hawks race and I enjoy their races immensely.  I really like the trail even if it beats me up and spits me out. 

I love the different medal and the ribbon is snake skin!  The soft tank top also is a different touch to the usual t shirt or tech T.  I would highly recommend this race if you are looking for a summer trail race for next year!  Here are some of the professional and amazing as always pictures!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Week 6-Training to pace the Hawk 100

My coach posed a question to me this week and I had to ponder it for a bit.  Do you want to run faster? I have noticed that your speed has dropped by almost 2 minutes per mile on your easy runs.  Want to get back to that 10 minute mile you use to run easy?  Honestly, I think the answer is no.  I am okay with slowing down, and if anything I am trying to keep my heart rate down and slow down on my easy runs.  Plus, I would love to do more trail runs and that is an even slower pace for me.  I still need to think a bit more, but I am pretty sure the answer is, I am very happy with where I am at.  Now I do need to loose weight as my weight has steadily crept up even more than it ever has.  I am currently at the highest I have ever weighed, especially since I have been running.  I have gained almost 18 lbs, probably due to us eating out every.single.meal.  This has to stop because i can not out run a bad diet and my diet is the worst it has ever been.  Other than that, stopping the aches and pains is my number one goal right now and speed is not even on my radar.

Get ready for lots of cat pictures because well, he's so damn cute!

Monday:  Rest day.  Enough said.

Tuesday:  Fun speed work.  1 minute hard, 1 minute and 30 seconds easy for 8 repeats.  1 mile warm up and finish out to get 5 miles.  We all had different paces for this one and even though it was pretty darn humid, I was able to keep most everything in the 9-9:30 range.  Again, I don't mind doing this kind of speed work because i can do anything for a minute :)  Later on in the day I was feeling super crummy.  I am not sure if my body was fighting something off or the early to rise time was just too much but I canceled my trip into town to do the group run/running form drill clinic and just hit the hay super early with some extra vitamin C.

Wednesday:  Cross training day.  I worked almost 12 hours and called it good.  Is working your butt off a cross training exercise?  If it isn't, it should be!!!  I am super excited though to see the company grow in leaps and bounds and be a part of that!  We are getting ready to move from an LLC to Incorporated due to our success and I am so very proud of my hubby:)

Thursday:  Easy run.  The humidity was horrible and i almost didn't bring stella.  I had a hard time keeping my heart rate down and just keeping up with the girls.  Later after work, we decided to get off at a decent hour and go to the movies to see the new Transylvania 3 movie.  We love that series and while this one wasn't as good in my opinion as the other two, it still was pretty good.

Friday:  cross training day.   Again worked late, ate late, and called it good.  Right now i need sleep and rest post working for my body, and that is what I am doing.

Saturday:  The Snake 10 miler.  What a fun race!  I will do a race review in another post.

Sunday: I woke up sore with a full agenda thanks to my bringing seed ticks home.  Yes, Stella and I got majorly tick bombed, and we were both covered.  Stella is on flea and tick meds, but I am not since sadly they don't make any for humans.  I had picked all of them off as soon as I had gotten home on saturday, but around 2 am, I woke up itching like crazy.  Plus, I still felt like they were moving all over me even though they were not.  I finally got out of bed, took some benedryl, and got back to sleep around 3 am.  I had a million things to do to make sure those ticks didn't spread to anyone else in the family including bombing my van and taking everything out  and doing a deep cleaning.  I honestly haven't done that in years, so it was good to get all of my dog/kid stuff out, sort through all of it, and get rid of some stuff I had been carting around for no reason.  I had decided I would ride my bike later in the day.  I worked on house stuff and van stuff till time for Andrew to head to vacation bible school and then just decided to get some work done at the shop and have an early bed time.  I promise I will get back on the cross training/strength training band wagon next week.

Another trail race and another profession of loving the trail.  I have one more trail race this next week and i am already looking for more.  Even just 10 miles feels like enough to me on the trails and satisfies my running needs. 

Have a great week!