Friday, July 29, 2011

Week 30 - 12,100' (368,100')

204 - 500' - Roads
205 - 1,200' - Mix of trails off BRPW.
206 - 3,650' - 151, Shut-In, Pisgah. See this post.
207 - 1,400' - Shut-In.
208 - 500' - Roads
209 - 1,500' - Sleepy Gap/Shut-In
210 - 3,300' - 151, Shut-In, Pisgah
Had a pretty good week with some steady vertical. This morning I was able to talk a friend into dropping me off down on Rt.151 so I could uphill TT my new 7 mile 3,300' climb. I tore into the sun-a-bish, but suffered big time on the last 500' and loved every bit of it! After Jon dropped me off he drove up to the Mt. Pisgah lot, then hiked the 1 mile 700' climb to the top of Mt. Pisgah. What I didn't know was that he had a nice suprise waiting for me, an oil can of Foster's! It was ice cold and it was good and could feel it jiggling around in my stomache the way back to the car!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Connecting the Dots

I found a solid 7 mile, 3,300' sustained (almost) climb much closer to my house than the Mt. Mitchell trail an hour away that goes 3,700' in 5.5 miles. I almost feel stupid for not putting this together much sooner. There's a 4 mile, 1,550' climb up a beautiful road, Rt. 151, with almost no traffic, then a 1.5 mile, 1,050' climb (50' down) on Shut-In's final section, then a 1.5 mile, 700' (300' down)up to the summit of Mt. Pisgah. The 300' descent is really the only interruption during this climb, and it comes right between the 1,050' and 700' climbs. The 300' down is done in just a 1/4 mile so it's only a few minutes for the interruption.
I wanted to get most of the descent done early while my legs were fresh so I parked my car at 5,000' at the Mt. Pisgah lot, then ran down Shut-In and Rt. 151, where I turned around and did the 3,300' climb to the top of Mt. Pisgah 5,700'. Felt really good the whole way. Now I just need to get some one to drop me off at the bottom so I can TT this bad boy!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Week 29 - 11,520' (356,000')

Let's see if he can hang on to it now!

197 - 500' - roads
198 - 3,400' - Did some hill work on Shut-In's last climb.
199 - 1,220' - 20k out/back on gently rolling dirt road.
200 - 500' - roads
201 - 3,400' - more hill work on Shut-In's last climb.
202 - 500' - roads
203 - 2,000' - out/back on Shut-In.

Quite a fun week running and watching the TDF. On day 199 I was going to do a moderate 12 miles, 6 out/6 back, but really started feeling it after 5 miles. So I decided that I'd go out 10k, then do a hard 10k Tempo back. Nothing zippy, 41:00, but pretty good after the hill work I did the day before. Yes, I did run the extra 20' that day so I could have a pretty total vert number for the year.
The 2 days that I put in 3,400' were done on a 1.5 mile section of Shut-In between 4,200'-5,300' (CO folks, no laughing). During the 1.5 miles there is about a total of a 1/2 mile where it's flat or slightly down hill, so the 1,100' of climbing is done on about a mile of distance making the grade during climbing about 20%. I did 2 reps of the 1.5 mile section, then did 4 reps at the bottom/start of the climb that went 300' in a 1/3 of a mile. My only goal for this run was to never walk - mission accomplished!
With the hot weather we've been having all summer, these types of runs work out very well for using my car as an aid station.
When I finished Wed run a cyclist was coming up the steep road, Rt. 151, that ends at the Blue Ridge Parkway where I was parked. I asked him what kind of climb that was, he said it was 4.8 miles with 2,600' of climbing. After looking at a map I'm a little skeptical about that 2,600' so I'll need to go and have a look for myself in the next few days. What I'm thinking though, is if it is 2,600' then I can pick up that 1.5 mile section of Shut-In where the road climb ends and have a sustained 3,700' climb just 20-25 minutes from my home! Trying not to get my hopes up too high, but if it's even close to a sustained 3,000' foot climb I'll be pretty jazzed.

I was listening to a wide range of music on Wed. run and it occured to me that a verse in a song reminded me alot of what ultra runners might experience. More specifically I thought of FootFeathers at HR when I heard this verse. This band has more to do with Ultra-Drinking than Ultra-Running, but perhaps there are similar dilusions in each sport. So, the words, as I think I hear them from The Dubliner's "All For Me Grog" go a little like this...
I'm sick in my head and I haven't been to bed
Since first I came ashore from me slumber.
I've seen centipeeds and snakes
And my head is full of aches
And I'll have to take a path for way out yonder.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Week 28 - 7,700' (344,480')

190 - 900' - University Geneseo campus.
191 - 1,500' - Village/Univ. of Geneseo.
192 - 1,500' - same as yesterday.
193 - 0'
194 - 0'
195 - 1,400' on Shut In.
196 - 2,400' on Shut-In.

A nice week with a good mix. Had fun in Genesoe running around the village and campus, then stopping by the track a few times during the run to do a hard mile. This was kind of like a fartlek in the sense that each trip to the track during the run was unplanned. I'd just stop by whenever my path led me back that way.
Was suposed to travel back on Tuesday, but after 4 hours at the airport with a delay due to a mechanical issue my parents came back and picked up my kids and I to stay another night. The only other alternitive was to spend the night in Atlanta or Detroit -no way! Worked out well as we got out of Rochester, NY at 6:30 am and landed back here at 10:30am. Not a bad deal at all on Wed. morning.
Was glad to be back on the trails here in Asheville. Yesterday was nice and easy on my staple section of the Shut-In course. Then today was hard on all the ups and easy on the downs. Near the end I was feeling it so I went a little hard on some of the downs as well.
There are some good races I'll be following the next few weeks. Looking forward to seeing how Tim W does doing the double at Silver Rush this weekend as well as GZ at the BTMR.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Week 27 - 11,700' (336,780')

183 - 2,600' - up/down in Shut-In.
184 - 3,900' - up/down on Shut-In.
185 - 1,400' - up/down on Shut-In.
186 - 1,400' - up/down on Shut-In.
187 - 0'.
188 - 900' - in the Village of Geneseo.
189 - 1,500' - in Geneseo and University of Geneseo track.

I nice week with a mix of things. My parents live in a small village in upstate NY called Geneseo with a nice University very close by. On Friday I jogged the hills around the area and went to the track for 3 different runs between hill jogs. I was suprised with myself going a little faster on the flat track than I thought I would. So, on Friday I jogged around for about 20:00 before heading to the track to do 2 miles in 13:00. Then I jogged around for another 30:00 before heading back to do 1.5 miles in 9:30, then another 20 minutes of jogging around the hilly campus before finishing it off with a 5:49 mile. I stayed on pace for a 6:00 mile thinking this would be tough, then went heard on the last 200 meters just to be sure to go well under 6:00.
Heading back to Asheville tomorrow(Tuesday) feeling pretty good about the running I got in on a vacation. Looking to rev up a little on the vert and speed in the next few months. We'll see how it goes.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Week 26 - 16,400' (325,080')

176 - 3,900' - up/down on Shut In.
177 - 2,300' - up/5own on Shut In.
178 - 2,300 - same
179 - 900' - up/down on Shut In.
180 - 2,300' - same
181 - 2,400 - up/down on Shut In.
182 - 2,300' - same

A short and steep week. Did all the vertical on just 58 miles, which means just 29 uphill miles for 16,400' of climbing.
The 4 days of 2,300' were all done on the final 1.5 mile, 1,150' climb on the Shut In race course.
The 3,900' day was a 1,300' climb done 3 times. This type of run works well this time of year with the extreme heat because i can set up an aid station that i can get to every 45 minutes or so. It's been brutally hot here the past 2 months, pushing 90 everyday. I can't wait for Sept/Oct/Nov/Dec.
taking my kids next week for a weeks visit with my parents in upstate new york. should be a great week with the family. no big hills up there, but hilly enough to get some vert in while i am there. might even see if there are any races to jump into next weekend.