It's been a fun last month. Training as resumed en force; I had a great training (and social) weekend spending time in Ashland, OR, with The Olsons (who are soon to be "+1"!). The weather wasn't great, but Tim and I had a terrific 30-mile(+?) run, punctuated by an epic bonk on my part, just a few miles from finishing. But, with some water, a generous gel donation by Tim, and a few deep breaths, I pulled out of it quickly.
What a great learning experience! Bonks are scary. Running hard is scary. Running far is scary. Not always, but many times. As AJW says, training is familiarization with pain - and fear.
We're only days from Chuckanut. It should be a great weekend. I'm not sure how the race will shake out; there are tons of fast guys on a Jekyll-Hyde course.
As for me, I'm at the tail end of the first of at least three microcycles of "Three Up, One Down" -- three big weeks, then a down/rest week. Coincidently, the down weeks coincide with both Chuckanut and Lake Sonoma 50M. Working full-time and Life makes running big mileage difficult. But when I know a rest week is coming, it's akin to a hard interval workout: rest is upcoming, and it's more doable to push. This pattern worked great for Bandera, with three weeks averaging 100M before a big drop and rest.
I've averaged 90 miles per week the past three weeks before the down, punctuated by the Ashland trip, then a fun and surprisingly fast track relay with Dan-O at McKenzie High School, in the foothills of the Cascades. The relay called for 40 total laps, split equally between partners. Dan-O and I thought we'd do some 800s - 10 each - but once we arrived, we changed it to 8x800, then 4x400 - the only rest being when the partner ran.
We also thought we'd do them on/off: a 2:30 - followed by a 3:00 - as neither of us had been on a track in months. However, we had extra motivation and pacing, via a strong crew of Oregon Track Club Elite Runners, there to take part in "the workout". So that "on-off" turned into "on-on": we wound up running nearly static 2:30-flats -- ranging from 2:27 to 2:32 -- followed by 4x400s, all between :68 and :72.
So, some good solid work was done, and I feel relatively strong going into Chuckanut 50K.
Lastly, some exciting news in two-fold! This week we ("Media Mogul" Bryon Powell and I) have launched a new sports med column on iRunFar.com: "Stay the Course". We should be posting once or twice per month with some interesting pieces on everything from injuries to nutrition to run mechanics.
Secondly: I've relaunched my coaching services. I think the space between my ears might be useful to some folks, so I've restarted that. Check the link above for more info!