Monday, January 7, 2008

Getting Ready for Rocky- The first 100 miler of 08'

The last two weeks of training have gone well, with a 70 mile and 80 mile week respectively. I will try to bump that up to 90 miles and 100 miles for the next two weeks, before slowing down to a much lighter load prior to the Rocky Raccoon 100. I know there are other runners who believe in consistent weeks above 100 miles, but I am not one of them. I have enjoyed playing basketball and using some of the other cardio machines at the gym (when I don’t feel like running in the rain), which have helped me feel better about the time I’ve been putting into my runs. I’m making a conscious effort to include activities I already enjoy doing to enhance my focus during my runs. So far, so good.

While I wasn’t 100% happy with my race at the Rodeo Beach 50k on 12/22, but there were some positives out there on the trails. I was really sick going into the race, continually trying to fight off a cold I had caught the week before. The time in the race where being sick really took its toll was over the final 20k loop. On the first major ascent of the 20k loop, I felt like my energy had been sucked out of me. I started to suffer from just being plain tired, continually wiping my nose and spitting flem. I felt better over the last 10k, but still tired from the lingering illness. The major plus from the race was feeling the benefit of my road marathon racing on the downhills. I flew downhill, hitting sub-6 minute mile speed at times while moving efficiently over the somewhat uncertain footing of the terrain.

Rocky Raccon, which once felt ages away, is now only 4 weeks away. 4 weeks until I’m back attacking the 100 mile distance again. The goal will be to have a negative split between my first half and second half. With 5- 20 mile loops, it’ll give me an accurate look at how my first half loops compare to the second half loops. Considering the relative flatness of the course (5500 ft. of elevation gain and 5500 ft. of elevation loss) and being the first 100 miler of 2008, I have shaped my pacing plan to a sub-20 hour finish with the following tiered-goals for the race:

1) Finish the race
2) Finish under 24 hours
3) Finish under 20 hours
4) Finish under 18 hours
5) Finish under 16 hours, 40 minutes

The goal for the race which I believe I’m well trained to reach is goal #3. I will adjust accordingly, but I plan on running the first two loops in 3:30 minutes and 3:40 minutes, with 6 minutes of breaks on each lap. From the first lap on, I will gradually increase the number of calories coming from solid food sources to control potential nausea. I’m concerned more with setting the stage and laying the foundation for a race like Badwater in the summer. Oh well…..even the best laid plans still require tinkering during the race, so I’m prepared for anything both positive and negative.

Time for me to go to bed….I’ll post the training log tomorrow.

Stay strong, run hard, and God bless,

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