Sunday, April 29, 2012


I have to say, it's been a pretty good running week.  Taking a solid week off to recover definitely showed when it came to running this week.  I felt much stronger, and was able to ramp up the intensity of my workouts, without ramping up mileage too much.  I decided to bring the mileage down a bit this week, and I'm going to slowly build it back up, following the 10% rule.  I know especially for my long runs, that's not something I've always followed in the past.  While I hate to admit it, I believe that may have been a contributing factor to the leg issues I was having that forced me to take a week off.  So, time to build again; 35 miles this week, and I'll slowly increase until I can maintain around a 50 mile/week average.
The North Face Endurance Challenge 10k trail race is coming up in just over a month, so I've changed up some of my workouts.  I'm trying to focus a little more on speed work.  To accomplish that, I'm doing one interval day a week, some incline treadmill repeats, a little bit of tempo, and making the long slow run more of a fartlek style.

The Endurance Challenge - Washington, DC

Ran the Neusiok Trail again today, for a total of 10 miles, and it felt great.  This is definitely the strongest I've felt on a long(er) run in quite awhile.  I didn't focus as much on keeping a steady pace this time, instead, I just ran how I felt.  If I felt like running faster, I did.  If I needed to recover, I slowed the pace down.  That worked out perfectly.  While I understand there is a certain benefit to pacing on longer runs, lately, I've been less worried about pace and more about feel.  After all, even in a race, if I just run as hard as I can when I can, and recover when I need too, is that such a bad method?  I guess I'll find out eventually.

In other news, the maltodextrin/gatorade mix drink I've been using as a fuel for the long runs still seems to be working great.  Ran all day today without using any gels, just the drink mix, and never felt a lack of energy.  I think I'll experiment some more with maybe making something more gel like out of it, if for no other reason than to have something more concentrated.

And, lastly, I finally finished Once a Runner by John L. Parker, Jr. this weekend.  Excellent book.  I highly recommend it to anyone, whether they are a runner or not.  It's really just a great story, but it would help if you have some knowledge of running so that you can understand some of the lingo.  I downloaded the sequel today, Again to Carthage, and I hope it's just as good.  Pretty excited to get my pre-ordered copy of Eat and Run by Scott Jurek when it comes out, too.  I think for anyone who's an athlete or aspiring ultra-runner, he's definitely someone to strive to be like.

I also ordered my Cascadia 7s, and they should be in this week.  Looking forward to bombing around some trails in those.  I don't believe I'll be using those as a 10k race shoe, but I know they will for sure get some mileage.  Oh, and I almost forgot, my DVD copy of Unbreakable: The Western States 100 is in the mail, and I'll post a review as soon as I watch it.  I'll also post my thoughts on the Cascadia's after I get some miles in them. 

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