Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Training Journal 6/10-6/16

Monday, June 10-June 16, 2013: It felt right this week to begin to taper for San Juan Solstice 50 miler (June 22).  The SJS50 is most definitely one of the toughest 50 milers in the US with 12,800 ft of climbing and high altitude running (7,000-12,000 ft).  So I'm taking the challenge seriously and letting my body rest in anticipation.  There is a chance I won't get into the race since I'm still on the wait list.  Also this week I spent some significant time slack lining (6.5 hrs!), what an amazing workout!! Core, legs, arms, everything!
Slack lining this week.  It was so much fun I got out most days and practiced. 
Monday: 2 runs for total of 17.5 miles: 4 mile easy AM (1hr 1200ft) plus 13.5 mile run PM 2,000ft/2.5hr- Twisp to Winthrop via trails.
Tuesday: 6 miles easy Patterson & Winthrop Trail. Legs are feeling tired. Maybe time to taper for SJS50? 1,600ft/1.25hr
Wednesday: 7 mile run from Whatcom Falls to Boulevard/Sehome (500/1hr). 2 mile easy PM run. 8.5 mile bike ride. 1 hr slack lining.
Thursday: 1.5 hr slack lining
Friday: 3  mile run Sehome to Whatcom falls (300ft/20 min). 2 hour slack lining, 8.5 mile bike ride
Saturday: 2 hrs slack lining
Sunday: 5 miles on Steven's Pass, 1hr/1,600ft.  Left for Colorado today!!!!

Running Miles: 40.5 miles
Running Elevation Gain: 7,200 feet
Biking: 8.5 miles
Slack Lining: 6.5 hrs
Total Running Hours: 6.5hr
Total Exercise Hours: 13.5hr

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Training Journal 6/3-6/9

Monday, June 3-Sunday, June 9, 2013: Big deal this week was biking from Bellingham to Winthrop and in the process going over the mountain pass and logging 152 miles with 8,300 ft. I've been scheming to do this route for a while and the weather & my training finally lined up.  Two days later James and I climbed Gardner Mountain, one of the toughest training days this year.  Good scrambling and lots of elevation gain 5,000ft climbing in just 2 miles.  Good week for toughening up mentally/physically.  Mileage this week suffered a bit due to my long bike ride and helping race direct at the Winthrop Marathon. When I added up the numbers, I realized I did 28.5 hours total biking, running, and slack lining.  Damn that's pretty solid.
Biking up to Washington Pass and all the way down to Winthrop from Bellingham
Monday: 10 mile run Stewart Mountain, 2900 ft/2hr
Tuesday: 152 mile Bike ride from Bellingham to Winthrop. 8,300 ft/climb/12hr
Wednesday: 10 miles 3,800ft/3.5hr Canyon Creek Ridge, much of it off trail, read: slow
Thursday: Climb Gardner Mt. 7,000 ft climb 24 miles. 8hr.
Friday: day off, well deserved!
Saturday: 10.5 mile run Patterson Mt. & lake trail 2hr/1,900 ft
Sunday: RDing, too busy to run :(

Running Miles: 54.5 miles
Elevation Gain, Running: 15,600 ft in just 54 miles
Biking Miles/Elevation Gain: 152 miles with 8,300 ft
Other: slack lining 1 hr
Total Time Running: 15.5 hr
Total Time Exercise: 28.5 hr
Climbing Patterson Mt.

Road Trip!

Sunday afternoon James and I began our journey to Colorado.  We are both on the wait list for the San Juan Solstice 50 miler this coming weekend in Lake City, Colorado.  If we don't get into the race, we'll do the Manitou marathon, It's almost 27,000 ft of climbing in 26 miles.  It's not an actual race, just a masochistic self-propelled repetition of a 1 mile uphill that has 2,100 feet of climbing.  Sounds awesome.  It looks like this is the only guy who has ever done it.  Can we beat his time of 13 hours
 15 minutes?! 
Manitou Incline: 2,100 feet in 1 mile
Last scramble to the top of Rock Creek Butte at 9,100 feet.
Back to the road trip, James' trail finding/race directing skills sure come in handy on these kinds of trips.  He managed to find one of the coolest trails I've run on in a while.  It was a 6.5 mile out & back (13 miles total) up to Rock Creek Butte, a 9,100 ft peak.  There's a nice scramble up the last 1/2 mile to the peak, where we saw a couple of mountain goats, one was a tiny baby.  I call it "nice" but full disclosure: I expressed how much I hate climbing up scree on the way up.  The route climbed 4,000 feet.  I'd love to explore more of the trail.  The Elkhorn Crest Trail is almost 24 miles and would make a great high altitude training run, since most of it is over 8,000 feet.  
Almost at the top of Rock Creek Butte, enjoying the view of Twin Lakes

After our adventure in Lake City or Manitou Springs this coming weekend, we'll make our way to Silverton (with some exploratory detours) to train and for James, to run the Hardrock 100 mile Endurance Run in mid-July.  Right after Hardrock, I'll be heading to Lake Tahoe CA/NV to prepare for and attempt a FKT on the 165 mile Tahoe Rim Trail
James trying to move rocks on our Elkhorn Mountain run.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Training Journal 5/27-6/2

Monday, May 27-Sunday, June 2, 2013: Solid week of running and biking, but nothing too crazy.  My body was feeling a bit tired by the weekend, and I took Saturday completely off so as to not risk over training again.  Plus, I'm getting ready to leave to Colorado/Lake Tahoe California for a month, so there's lots of work to do!  I managed to get two runs and one bike ride in on Tuesday, plus a 20 mile run on Thursday.  Next week, I'm leaving for Winthrop to help put on the Winthrop Marathon.  Lots of work to do!
Running at Baker Lake on Thursday
Monday: 10 miles at Ebey's Landing. (1:40/1240ft)
Tuesday: 2 runs for a total of 14 miles: 4 miles, 300ft/35 min in the AM. 2nd run 10 miles on Stewart Mountain 2,900ft/2hr. Bike: 19.5 miles (1270ft/1:20).
Wednesday: 4 miles very easy 55min/1,100ft.
Thursday: 20 miles on Baker Lake Trail, 2800ft/4hours. Legs felt really tired. 39 mile bike ride (3hr/1500ft)
Friday: 10 mile run at Stewart Mountain, 3000 ft/climbing
Saturday: day off. Feeling too tired to expect a run to be beneficial today.
Sunday: 12 miles 2,000ft/2.25hr

Running Miles: 70 miles
Elevation Gain, Running: 13,340 feet
Biking Miles/Elevation Gain: 58.5 miles/2829 ft
Other: slack lining (2hr)
Total Time Running: 13.7hr
Total Time Exercise: ~20 hr
View from Baker Lake Trail

Friday, June 14, 2013

165 Mile Tahoe Rim Trail FKT Attempt

Me en route to getting 2nd in the TRT100 miler last year
The Challenge
I am very excited to take on the challenge of running the entire Tahoe Rim Trail, all 165 miles of it, while attempting to set a women's Fastest Known Time!  I will begin my run around July 19 (final date still needs to be set).  If you feel inspired please consider donating to the Tahoe Rim Trail Association, in tribute to my attempt.  More details below.  I have run about 80% of the TRT at various times in the past couple of years.  I feel that my experience on the trail itself, my wonderful crew, my stubbornness and love of the pain of ultra running plus my training and background in long distance running will help me reach my goal!

Please consider donating to my TRT Speed record attempt! All donations go to the Tahoe Rim Trail Association so they can continue the amazing trail building,
trail maintenance, and educational programs.  Over the next 10 years, the TRTA will be adding 65 new miles of trail, thanks to your donation!

DONATE TO THE  TRTA HERE---In the comments section, write:

in tribute to Candice Burt's TRT FKT attempt.

And thank you!!!!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Getting High

This is a very exciting time of year.  As the snow melts at higher elevations, there is suddenly a whole new playground high in the mountains that was previously too cold/snowy/dangerous to run in during the fall, winter and spring months.  So it was finally time to run/climb Gardner Mountain, the highest point in the Methow Mountains at 8,956 feet, on the East side of Washington.   James and I took the route of Wolf Creek Trail to summit the mountain. The Wolf Creek Trail is 10 miles long and climbs about 1,500-2,000 feet in those 10 miles.
At mile 10, we left the trail and began to climb almost straight up the mountain, gaining about 1,500 ft/mile for a pretty slow 2 miles to the saddle.  The last mile was through some short snow patches and lots of scree.  The scree fields became steeper and steeper as we climbed and I found myself worrying about how we were going to get back down. Just before the top, I had a major fear moment.  Looking back it was a bit odd because I have climbed on scree before and descended scree fields, but today I let fear overtake my better judgement and I sat about 50 meters from the saddle. I'd gone far enough.  After some convincing by James, I continued to the top.

The descent was much faster and fun than I'd expected.  And it made me wonder, where was that fear on the climb coming from?  Why do we sometimes freeze in a moment of fear and think that things are worse than they really are?  As someone who enjoys the challenge the bigger it is, this is an interesting question.  I have seen a number of people "freeze" before on steep, tough terrain.  It's usually just before they get to the top of something: they're almost there, closer than ever and yet they cannot continue because of fear.  Sometimes when we are the closest to our goal, the challenge is at its greatest and it seems as though we will never get there.  Most pivotal, memorable experiences have that moment where you think I can't do this!  It is worth remembering that those thoughts mean that you are close to your goal, closer than ever.  And to continue on, despite those fears is  a powerful experience.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Canyon Creek Ridge Explorations

Rainshadow Running was out causing more trouble in the Methow, exploring new trails yesterday.  My quote to James Varner, this is the worst beginning of a trail that has ever turned out so good!  We began by following what looked like a glorified animal trail and at times no trail to make our way up to the ridge where we couldn't stop exclaiming how incredible the views and running were.  I'm glad James played tour guide though, cause I certainly would've gotten lost on those "trails". 

This was a plaque on the ridge for a "long shot"

We're at the top!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Ultra Running Pack Personality Test

Why research your next Ultra Running pack when you can take the Ultra Running Pack Personality Test?   I decided there must be a more unscientific way to pick that perfect pack than pouring over online reviews and visiting your local running store. You're welcome.  I am here to help you choose your very own pack in a fresh, hip, and intuitive way.  If you thought you knew how to choose a pack, then have a seat. You're about to be schooled.
Add a little personality to that pack, Rrrrrrroar!
How to take the Test:
I have 3 categories. Each category corresponds to a specific pack. No peeking ahead of time!  After answering the questions add up your "True" responses for each category (A, B, or C).  The category that has the most "true" responses is your ideal personality matched pack.  Once you've tallied your responses, scroll down to read what pack best fits your personality! 

Disclaimer:  This test in no way gives you a meaningful way to pick a running pack.

I know who K-Dog is.
I have a French first or last name.  (If you don't know, answer "false")
I don't like to wear pink.
New Zealand accents are hot.
I can go without a bra comfortably.
My ideal date speaks at least 3 different languages.
I like boob bottles!
Whistles, emergency blankets, and poles are important.
I am a smallish man or medium to smallish sized woman.`
I know Salomon is not a fish.
White spandex is a totally acceptable shorts color.
I'm not on a budget.
I like lots of bells and whistles.
I know who Emelie Forsberg is.
I'm up to speed on current ultra running news and follow elite athletes.
I like really technical and really steep races in foreign countries.
I want to run UTMB
I like analyzing running gear.

I like the super hero look of the rocket pack.
I like hydrating with a bladder.
I don't need a bunch of bells and whistles.
I'm on a budget.
I'm not very style conscious. Practicality & comfort is most important.
What is an elite athlete?
I like things that are simple and straightforward.
Who needs poles?
I live in Washington State or Pennsylvania
I shop at REI
I don't need a lot of space in my pack.
I don't particularly care to have water bottles fit in my pack.
I am not in a hurry at aid stations.
Shock cords are awesome!
I'm not picky about my gear. I just want something that will carry my $hit. 
I like my pack to sit a bit lower on my back so I can scratch between my should blades.
Grey is awesome!

I'm a vegan
I run in the mountains shirtless
Ladies: my ideal date is tanned, toned and bearded
Men: my ideal date is a sunset on Green Mountain
I live in Boulder, CO or would like to move there.
I am in a hurry to get in and out of aid stations
I don't usually need to carry much
I don't like a lot of bells and whistles
I'm sort of on a budget, but I am willing to invest in my pack.
My pack must be lightweight
I'm going for a FKT
Shock cords are awesome!
I like boob bottles!
I mostly follow U.S. Ultra runners.
I know what "AK" stands for and it's not a gun.
I totally dig minimal footwear.
Reading "Born to Run" inspired me to run my first ultra.
I want to run Western States.
My ideal date shops at the local natural food Co-op.

 Alright, are you ready to learn what you'd be if you were a ultra running pack?!  

Pack A: Your personality translates to a Salomon S-Lab Advanced Skin Pack, 5L or 12L

5L size
12L size

Pack B: Your personality translates to a Nathan HPL 2L

Pack C: Your personality translates to a Ultimate Directions AK Vest or SJ Ultra Vest
AK Vest
SJ Ultra

Training Journal 5/20-5/5/26

Monday, May 20-Sunday, May 26, 2013: This was a pretty big week. Although my mileage only reached 80 miles, I did most of it in 4 days. I had 2 days where I did double runs, one in the morning and one in the evening.  I also completed the longest bike ride I have ever done, 85 miles.  I paced James at Pigtails for 2 loops, one of which was in the middle of the night.  All in all it was a great week for exhausting myself--building, building, building and by the end of the week I can feel that I need a day off completely (that day ended up being Saturday 6/1).  Overall I am feeling a lot stronger and right on track!
Biking the 85 miles from Bellingham to South Whidbey Island
Monday: 19 miles on Sun Mountain, 3:30 & 3,100ft/climb.
Tuesday:  2 run day, 15 miles total.  10 miles on Sun Mountain, 1:45/1200ft, 5 miles Sehome urban loop 40min/656ft
Wednesday: 4.5 miles, 719ft/50min, lake Louise. 30 min bike on trainer.
Thursday: Lake Padden horse trails x2 and back home via Connelly Creek. 2,730ft/3hr/14.5 miles. 45 min bike ride on trainer.
Friday: Bike ride from Bellingham to the ferry on South Whidbey Island, 85 miles. (6:30/3,900ft). No run.
Saturday: 9.5 miles pacing James at Pigtails. 1:50/900ft
Sunday: 17.6 miles in 2 runs: 9.5 miles pacing James at Pigtails. 3:00/900ft. 2 pine and cedar repeats= 8 miles, 3200ft/1:50

Running Miles: 80 miles
Running Elevation Gain: 13,405ft
Biking Miles: 100 miles
Biking Gain: 3,900ft
Hours Running: ~16hr
Hours Biking: 7.75hr
Total Hours: 23.75hrs