April 14 – 8:20 PM
Last week, I described how I’ve been training through weekly cycles… this week was a Recovery Week and I fully enjoyed it. Here’s what the training looked like…
Monday, 4.7 – Rest Day!
Tuesday, 4.8 – 6.05 miles @ Standley Lake
We now live very close to a large reservoir called Standley Lake, and up to this point I’ve only run around the gravel roads below the dam. But finally, the single track trails actually around the lake were dry and it was a blast to explore some new areas around our home. An absolutely beautiful evening that inspired a bit of prose… Legs felt a bit heavy from last week’s effort, and I only intended to do 5 miles, but it was just so glorious out that I had to keep going!
Wednesday, 4.9 – Cross Training 2.5 miles @ Apex Rec Center
Pretty easy going, low impact effort on the legs but worked the core and upper body a little harder.
Thursday, 4.10 – EXTRA Rest Day!
Have just felt pretty beat down, so I took an extra rest day and I’m so glad I did!
Friday, 4.11 – Rest Day!
2 in a row! Hasn’t happened in a long while…
Saturday, 4.12 – 3 Runs/ Workouts
#1: 2.5 miles @ Wash Park
Saw on the social medias that ultra-legend Hal Koerner was going to run at Wash Park in the morning and that if anyone wanted to join him… So I went stalking… I mean, erm… uh… looking for him but didn’t find him, so I just did one lap and called it good. Not a huge fan of that park or track.
#2: 5.34 miles @ Standley Lake
Melanie needed to put in 5, as she’s training for both the Leadville Heavy Half Marathon AND for pacing me the last 13.5 miles at the #LT100. So, I took her out to the paths I’d run earlier in the week. Another gorgeous day!
#3: 1.75 miles @ BRC-CC and The North Face Mountain Athletics Event
The brand new Boulder Running Company store in Cherry Creek was hosting an event for The North Face, showcasing their new Mountain Athletics line of gear and training plans. I drove to the store and then jogged to the park where the event was to be held. Met Anne and Sarah there after they’d done 13 miles out at Mount Falcon. We had no idea for the smoking we were about to receive!! The workout is very cross-fit-ish and was made to work the core in a functional strength kind of way. There were sandbags. There were weighted backpacks. There were pushups an sit-ups in the goose pooh on the grass. There were “Jane Fondas” (you don’t want to know…). I’ve done more core and upper body work this round of training than any before and I was utterly unprepared for that workout. I’m still sore 55+ hours later. Can barely walk. Unfortunately, I tweaked a niggling injury in my left quad… we’ll see how it goes but I don’t think it’s anything too threatening to the big goal.
The best part of the event, though, was getting the chance to just chat with two stars of ultra-running in Hal Koerner and Mike Wolfe. Hal’s written a book that’ll be out in August that’s a “field guide” to ultra-running and he shared more about that, and I picked his brain a bit about Leadville. Mike Wolfe is another stud of the highest order and he shared more about how he mixes in these kinds of workouts into his training.
The fact that one can get so up close and personal with these guys is pretty amazing. For golfers, it’d be like getting to hang around a putting green with Tiger Woods. For baseball fans, it’s like playing catch with Jeter. Hal and Mike are at the absolute top of the ultra-running galaxy and yet this is still such a niche sport, that you can just hang with them for a bit, no big deal.
For perspective on what these guys can do, check this report of their running the length of the John Muir Trail (220-ish miles long, mostly above 9,000 feet, with stupid amounts of vert) all in 3 days, 12 hours and 41 minutes. Most people do this trail in 9-14 days.
As individuals, they’re also ridiculous.
And apparently the girls find him dreamy.
And then read through (or watch) this interview with Wolfpaw after he won a 50 mile race after cracking his head on a tree and bleeding all over his singlet. He’s done more cool stuff since then and had big wins and great showings all over the globe.
The event then rolled back to the store where there was free food, free massages and more nerdy running conversations with other like-minded people. A really fun event!
Sunday, 4.12 – Rest Day!
Was still so sore… took another rest day.
I am pretty convinced that having a low-key recovery weeks is a real secret to successful ultra-running. Embracing rest days and listening to one’s body can be a challenge though. The down side of this week was getting so worked on Saturday that I’m still soooo sore here on Monday. And I’ve got to start running again tomorrow!!
But, overall, I feel energized to step into another cycle of tough, tough training! Looking to get speedy this week!