September 24, 2013

The Hail Mary Training Plan

I've started noticing, I think I'm one of the few runner bloggers who is not fast. One of the few back of the packers. Which is okay with me...someone has to be relatable and represent the turtles out there!

I'm here for you, slow people!!! Turtles UNITE!

I was googling some race reviews for the Blue Sky Trail Marathon I have coming up on Oct 6, and all of them were from people who almost won or placed pretty high for their age groups.

Then I googled another race and the same thing happened! I don't know if it's just that only fast people recapped those races or what...but it's suspicious.


On to my Hail Mary Training Plan. I feel like I've been here before. Maybe more than once. I'm a bit of an expert at fudging up my training plans and then having to scramble to somehow make things work so I can attempt to be ready to complete a race. That's a really bad thing.

So there it is. Readjusted for the millionth time. After this past weekend's awful long run, I decided that there is a slim chance I would be prepared to complete a 50K on Oct 19. So I pushed it back a week to Oct 25. Doing that allowed me to rearrange pretty much everything to bring me to the plan you see here. The Hail Mary.

I'm considering running the Rim Rock Marathon in the Grand Junction/Fruita, CO area Nov 9. It's about 13 miles all uphill and then 13 miles all downhill. Still deciding if it's worth the four hour drive out there...but the proximity to Colorado wine country is appealing, and it would be my last tune-up race-chance before the 50 miler.

And now to talk about that dreadful 17 mile torture fest I had on Saturday. I did some research online for Bear Creek Lake Park, things looked okay, and I decided to head out there early Saturday morning for my run. Big mistake. I got to the park around 7:30ish, paid, and once inside the park I realized that the main road I wanted was blocked off. Okay then...

I found myself parking in front of the archery range and decided to head out to where I saw people cycling and running. It was a short dirt path to a paved path. About a mile down the road I got to the visitors center. Shortly after that, the path was closed off. So I turned around and ran back to the car. I decided to run on the road around the park and see how far that got me. It was only about 3 miles around. Well, crap. I was hoping to get 20 miles in, and the idea of running a 3 mile loop over and over was not remotely appealing to me. I managed to get about six miles in when I finally found a different direction of path that appeared to be long in distance.

I went back to the car, refilled my water bottles, re-band-aided my blisters (bad shoes in Breckenridge...), and then ran down through this campground area to try to go 6.5 miles out and 6.5 back. It didn't work out that way. By then I was in pretty decent pain with the blisters but so determined to get these miles in that I just tried my best to ignore everything ailing me (knees were pretty shot too). I got to the top of Mt Carbon (??), which has a view on one side of a golf course and downtown Denver, and on the other side you can see the dam and the lake. The trail for the park ends though. It did split and continue on around the golf course, so I decided it was kinda my only option. At around mile 11, I decided to just turn around since I was by a different golf course now and heading towards a residential area. I was pretty far away from the park I planned on doing my entire run in.

The next 6 miles back were pretty uncomfortable and mostly consisted of walking. I don't think I'll be going back there this year...not until all of the trails and roads are back up and running. I just felt like I could have had a better time running around the neighborhood.

I'm scouting out new spots to run for the remaining weekends. Gotta get it done.

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