Just to let anybody who’s actually worried about me know – I met neither bear nor cougar, only many deer, and I am not even sure if I am sad or happy about it.
Saturday was good. In fact, Saturday was REALLY good. I did 2 hill repeats of 55 min on PCT (and, for references, I reached the lookout in 45:10 and 45:50) and a total of 31 miles in six and half hours. I’d have to look into the elevation change, but it was somewhat less than last weekend (planned), I’d guess 6,000 feet gain? I didn’t do the Nick Eaton loop, instead went to Bridge of the Gods on PCT and back and out-back on Herman (which at that point also is not crazy hilly…well, by Gorge standards). On the first downhill I ran into Ronda, Stacey, Mike M. and Bill, but they had a cut-down week, so we parted our ways. I felt great, strong and mentally pumped about it. I found out it is a good thing I’ve been training alone so much lately on my long runs (not by choice, but) – it gives me a confidence that I can do it as well as a focus to train instead of talking too much (you know, me and my never-closing broken English word flow). I always knew I am my own worst judge, and would never ask for a break from myself. I didn’t bring enough water again and although usually drink freely from the creeks, decided against it just in case – with WS100 4 weeks away, better safe than sorry.
Sunday, on another hand, was not as good. It was a shorter run on Wildwood trail in Forest Park, and as soon as I started, I felt that this is an end of a 105M week…or so…may be I should go check the journal and enter all runs…yep, close enough, 108M. Anyway, I felt sluggish and it took me a whole 40 min to start moving more or less fluidly. Then I kind of got in a groove and was already thinking what a joyful time I am having, when – boom – my right calf muscle locked up. It had a twinge yesterday on the last hour or so, but I hoped I stretched it well. So for the second part I was doing something – my legs feel OK and I want to run, yet my calf seems to have a strain, and it hurts, and I better nurse it, but I have to hurry home to take Stephen to music class, though it really is painful and I don’t want to make it worse… There was a race going on and I bumped into a few runners (very few – low turnout?) and into Ronda/Stacey/Bill again! It was funny. Bill and I stopped and chatted for a few (oh, relief!) minutes before continuing on. All in all, I did this whole loop 15 min slower than normally. The wonder of overuse injuries…
The weather went back to usual rain/dark/wind type of PNW, and it’s gloomy. I’ve got a million things to do, but can’t bring myself to it, nor can I take a so desired nap, so I am here to shake off a dream-state. Then I go pack. Yep, it’s that time again, packing for my next race. Despite my statement that it’s not a race for me but a training run (thus no tapering), it is still a hell of a long way to run and even more hell of a hard course not to be taken lightly. I mentioned before I would love to spend on it a touch less than 12 hrs, but now may reconsider even this proposal. For now I call my “pace chart” my “general guidance”, just to see when will I meet next people on Earth with food and warm blankets. I better carry lots of warm/rain stuff with me, as the last pass at 9,200 feet threatens with thunderstorms, just as Hope Pass at Leadville, every afternoon.
I understand many of my silent audience won’t be interested but there was a great post and discussion at Craig's – thanks to all for wonderful insights. Also to officially clarify, Black Saturday name came from Ronda and Co and I am simply using it as the main idea is doing long hill repeats inside a 5-6 run. However, I do a variation of their BS and Red Sunday – 6-7 hr run with over 7,000 feet gain (these runs are Scott Jurek’s training Ronda and I were on last year) due to family obligations and differ Sunday run depending on how much time I am allowed to absent from home, so may be I, too, as Rob, should rename it into some other color…blue been my favorite, lets make it Blue Weekends!
Oh, and my weird pain…is better. Honestly. Unless I push onto some spots. And the biggest mass has gotten smaller, especially after Saturday’s run – as it were shaking away and melting. The most important thing for me is to know what is wrong, however bad or not it can be. I hate guessing and being afraid of complication not sure where and what kind, now I am calm. Charles, nope, what I have is not normal, but it's not (yet, hopefully ever) life threatening either. And so that no-one makes mistake about my Lance line, the comparacing was cool, but it's simply because endurance athletes of any kinds don't walk in to a hospital every day and get angiography done - pretty expensive and un-needed unless there is a suspected stuff, but then again, people who require angiography are ususally not into endurance sports. If we take an (almost) any marathoner or centurion biker, their blood vessels would be just the same. I just found it entertaining:)
Miwok 100k, Van Phan and I having a great time, mile 10(?)
Miwok 100k, Jas and I are chatting about guys wearing skirts and high heels:)