So, I’m back at it again. It’s been 3 weeks since my last post, and most of my time has been devoted to training, planning the Africa trip, and getting my fundraising back up and running (www.seegundyrun.com). I finally put together the training plan up until Badwater, which includes the time I’m spending away in Africa. While the trip does come in the middle of the training schedule, I’m hopeful that in the early mornings there I’ll be able to get 5-6 miles in before I eat breakfast and start my day’s itinerary. I don’t want to take away at all from what I’m doing there which is meeting with villagers where World Harvest Mission has built wells, speaking in local churches, and speaking with local schoolchildren. So, the mornings will probably be the best time to run. As far as heat training, that should be no problem there, considering that I’ll be on the equator.
I am incredibly excited about going there. This is why I work were I do and why I go the extra mile in my running. Sometimes I have a hard time explaining the whole 100 mile runs to people, but something like this speaks for itself. I love the people there and this is just an opportunity to connect my running to the greater purposes which fuel me. While there, I will visit the villages where the wells we. That way, I can show the sponsors the tangible places and people whose lives will be affected by their giving. The great thing about working with World Harvest Mission is that no money goes to administration since the organization is run by volunteers. So when they give $25, all $25 is put to work in the field to do the work. Probably the most exciting thing is seeing friends I worked with last time there. It’s been almost 6 years, so hopefully I recognize them. I'll post pics of my last trip to Africa in my next update.
As far as the running is concerned, the Boston Marathon is now 3 weeks away. I’ve had some IT Band stiffness over the last couple weeks, so I’ve been alternating rest and running. ITB is a common injury in trail running due to the uneven terrain which can stress the IT Band which runs down the leg.
While I’ve still be able to get my weekly long runs of 25, 23 and 20 miles, it’s limited some of my shorter runs and forced me to run them at a slower pace than usual. Although my lungs and aerobic fitness is still excellent, it keeps me from those faster paced tempo runs which help stretch the ability to keep a quick pace. I’m still targeting a sub-7:00/mile pace, just trying to best gauge how the IT issues will affect my overall performance. I expect that my marathon PR under 3 hours will probably not occur at Boston, but will probably have to wait until the California International Marathon in Sacramento in December. By then, I’ll have a good mix of speed training and long run fitness from my numerous ultras to take a hard look at setting an initial target of 2:55.
I’ve finished my initial training calendar for the rest of the year leading up to Badwater. The major goal race in the calendar is the San Diego 100 on June 7th. Another key race I just added in the past week is the Running With The Devil 50 Miler just outside Las Vegas (http://calicoracing.squarespace.com/running-with-the-devil). It’s the last weekend of June, about 2 ½ weeks prior to the Badwater race. It’s a road race which will give me one last opportunity to evaluate my hydration, electrolyte and nutrition in a super hot environment. I plan on going at a pace commensurate with my expected pace for the first 42 miles through the Valley (10 min/mile pace), trying to be as even and consistent with my pace as possible.
What’s your goal race for the year? How are you preparing for it? How does each aspect of your training? Are you just running or are you adding weights, core and back exercises? These are questions that I continually ask myself, and hopefully you’re asking yourself when you’re mapping out where you’re going this year and in life.
Ok, it’s time for me to get back out there, keep stretching and make it happen. Take care, run hard and God bless.