Sunday, April 22, 2012

Weekly Summary: April 16-22

Mon: AM- 11 miles (1:35) Twin Gates o&b, 1097'
Legs were still pretty sore from Saturday's race, so I decided to forgo the long run. Just a really mellow, enjoyable run.

Tues: AM- 8 miles (1:01) Pogonip, 632'
Still feeling a little blah, so I settled on an easy 8. Legs are starting to perk up. Oh, and I had the best critter encounter on the trail this morning to date! Coming into Pogonip, there was a bobcat sun bathing in the middle of the fire road. After noticing me, it trotted into some tall grass, but it let me get probably within 5 feet! We just watched each other for almost 3 minutes before I decided to leave it be.
PM- 4 miles (:31) Pogonip, 300'
Super easy shake-out before class. Relaxed and smooth.

Wed: AM- 23 miles (2:54) Wilder o&b, 2748'
Was NOT feeling a long run this morning, but once I stepped outside I knew it'd be enjoyable. Lately, I've been putting more miles in Wilder to acclimate my legs for the hills of Ohlone and have been diggin' an out-and-back on a single-track switchback trail. The legs felt great at the turnaround point, and overall I didn't feel too fatigued. Coyote sighting + lots of deer!

Thurs: AM- 7 miles (:55) Pogonip, 503'
Easy-peasy run through Pogonip to shake out 'dem legs for the long run tomorrow.

Fri: AM- 20 miles (2:30) Wilder hills/bluffs, 1758'
Oh.Em.Gee. It was really hot this morning. Must have been high 70's by 9:30. Anyways, I'm not complaining, but just taking note of how much the heat affected me! I drank about 1.5 liters of water, which is pretty crazy for this loop. Anyways, I decided to mix things up and tacked on a few miles on the bluffs. Not sure why I don't run out there more often...bobcat sighting!

Sat: AM- 10 miles (1:15) Nisene fireroad, 1500'
My garmin has been wack with splits and elevation, so not positive on the specifics of this run. I decided to break up the hills of Wilder and head to Aptos for a jaunt through Nisene. I really miss this park and am not sure why I don't come here more. Tons of beautifully lush trees on easy fire road/single-track. Good stuff. Legs felt great, especially on the way back to the car, but I dragged up the incline for a bit.

Sun: AM- 12 miles (1:42) Nisene single-track, 1835'
Decided to hit up Nisene again (2nd day in a row!) with the SCE peeps, and I'm thankful I did! I haven't seen some of these guys in a while, so it was good to touch bases and run a few new trails...thanks Robert ;] (Oh, and great job tackling Boston in that freaking 90 degree heat!!) The original plan was 14-17 mile, but cut it at 12 after what I feel to have been a great week of training.
PM- 1 mile (:09) treadmill @ 11% 6.5 speed, 580'
Got a little rock climbing in at the gym tonight and decided to try out the treadmill. Well, I got pretty bored (and hot) after a mile, so I gave up. In the future I'd like to do a few easyish miles at 10-12% to rack up some elevation. Overall, felt relaxed. And as far as rock climbing goes, the technique is still there, but my muscles just can't quite keep up least I can do pull-ups again!

-Miles: 96
-Time: 12hr 25min
-Vertical: 10,950'


I'm incredibly happy that my training has begun to pick up again over these past 2 months, leaving me feeling strong and healthy, but more than anything I'm just thankful to be back on the trails. Ever since Vermont, I could never settle into a groove and found myself with a new injury every few weeks. While this was undeniably frustrating, I learned many valuable lessons in terms of training and recovery; namely, that running 130-150 miles/week does not guarantee fitness, especially when not properly fueling myself for such efforts. 

Looking back at my training logs from this time last year, I'm now running stronger than I ever have simply because I've switched my focus from quantity to quality. This has allowed me to put in solid long runs every other day with very little soreness and a very quick recovery time. Consequently, I've shaved off a full minute per mile from my normal Wilder loop (compared to last year). In the past 3 weeks I was also fortunate enough to place 2nd overall at the Pirates Cove 30k (3500' of climbing and my first race since Vermont!) and 1st overall at the Woodside 35k (3000' of climbing). All this while running 40 miles/week less than what I had been last year, and weighing 20 lbs more! 

Looking forward, I know that I still have areas to tweak in my training to produce even more gains, but for now I'm content with simply doing what I love. Hopefully, I can keep a level head coming into the Ohlone 50k on May 20th and the Diablo 60k in June. Both are very demanding in terms of vertical gain, but as long as I continue to train smart, I'm confident that I'll perform to my potential.

And lastly, I've noticed an increasing trend on the faster dudes' blogs where they share a song/music video of a favorite band. While I find this enjoyable, I regret to admit that my knowledge of music is...laughable, at best, which consequently is reflected in the fact that my iTunes playlist hasn't changed since high school. So, in lieu of embarrassing myself by posting video after video of Lady Gaga's "Paper Gangster," I've decided that once a week I'll share with everyone a newfound passion of mine by reviewing a different, and hopefully tasty, beer.

In honor of its recent release (4/16), I couldn't resist choosing Stone '12 Imperial Russian Stout.
Photo by yours truly ;)
Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Deschutes snifter. Do this beer justice and serve at room temp!

A: Pours a thick, deep black with a 2 finger mocha colored head. Nice retention that dissipates slowly, leaving a good amount of carbonation bubbles around the side of the glass. Alcohol legs are definitely present.

Sm: Huge amounts of roasted malt on the front. Coffee, and chocolate dominate, followed by fruity esters. A hint of caramel and vanilla. Alcohol is subtly present.

T: Almost spot on to the smell. Roasted malts are the key player here. It's so much like sipping on a freshly brewed cup of dark coffee that you could crack this thing open in the morning to have with breakfast. The finish is smooooth, and the bitterness is well balanced by the sweetness of the malts. The 10.5% ABV is well hidden and only briefly noticeable as it warms on the way down.

Mf: Full bodied all the way. Deliciously thick and creamy with just the right amount of carbonation to keep you interested.

O: Another gorgeous beer from Stone and an RIS at its best. I'm excited to try this with a little age on it.

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