It’s taper time. Week 2 – unbelievable. Race day is almost here and in one week I fly to Colorado. Last week was very emotional; I was making bad decisions and not thinking things through – typical taper. And that has never worked well for me. But the good news – it was all reparable. I think things are finally turning in my favor. Perhaps I’ve outlasted it all. I keep working at it, keep coming back and keep getting back up after falling and failure.
However, there was some good – some good hiking, an off-road triathlon and a few good runs. This week will be all about running 20 miles for the entire week, some mountain biking and stretching.
Also very important is mental training; knowing that I can do it. Knowing that all my nutrition planning, gear preparation and training will get me to the finish line.
Today was my first off road triathlon since Xterra Indian Peaks in 2009. I used no technology during the entire race except the photo at the beginning. I forgot my watch at home.
Bike: Unlike most off-road tris the Top Notch triathlon started with a bike. The bike was 6.5 miles and the first half was on a road and uphill! Then we turned onto some single track for about 3 miles. It was hard. My heart was beating through my chest but felt great on the short downhill.
Swim: The swim in Echo Lake was glorious. The water was so clear and I could see a crawfish-like critter scatter around the bottom. I have only swam once in the last four months so I wasn’t really prepared to swim ½ mile but it was a great cool down after the bike.
Run: As soon as I exited the cool waters, I began the hike up Cannon Mountain. I thought it would be more runnable but it was not. I felt like it was good Hope-Pass-training; endless steep uphill.
At the top there were beautiful views of Franconia Notch where I hiked last weekend. Since I was in the self-supported Iron category (I completed all legs, instead of a relay), I had to figure out how to get back to my bike, then bike back to my car in the town of Franconia. So I took the Tram down, ran the trail by the lake to get to my bike and asked a few people along the way if I was heading the right way (I didn’t have my phone). Even with no phone I got back successfully. See we can make it through a race with out a phone. Seriously, a guy behind me was Facetiming someone. Luckily, the miles back to the car were downhill.
2nd in my age group, baby!
Such a fun, hard day. Tonight I’m hiking Kearsarge, hoping to get some nighttime hiking in and then a run tomorrow – then it’s taper time! 11 days until I leave for Colorado. 14 days to race day!
Week 4 was pretty good until it wasn’t. Ha. That is fun to write. Kind of. Not really.
Every day this week was great until the fiasco that was Sunday. The week started with a Tuesday-Wednesday-Friday run schedule. It should have been Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday and then maybe Saturday would’ve been a little different; but should’ve, could’ves will kill you.
Saturday was the Pemi Loop with a wake up call at 2:30am. At the Lincoln Woods trailhead at 4:30 to meet Bob, Mark and Jen. We are all running Leadville 100 in a few weeks. We started with headlamps on the Osseo Trail and then about 45 minute in could turn them off.
Up over Flume, Liberty, Haystack, Lincoln, Lafayette, Garfield, South Twin, Bond and Bondcliff.
The best part was the Franconia Ridge and the Bonds. Beautiful, above treeline hiking and running.
The hardest part was the doom and gloom of the Garfield Ridge and the .8 mile climb up South Twin.
It was a hot day and I did a lot of things wrong: not enough water, no electrolytes, not enough food – all contributing to the fiasco that was Sunday.
I woke up with low energy and super low heart rate, which scared me. I really wanted to rally and have a great day with a run in the morning to start. But nope. Couldn’t do it. At 5:00 pm I finally got out of bed and got in a swim with Winnie and ate a good meal. Today, Monday, still sore but energy seems to be restored.
I’m not sure I could do the Pemi Loop solo. It was so fun to talk and laugh with people. There were about 10 runners we encountered that were doing the clockwise Pemi Loop. It’s pretty popular. I think now, two days later, I might do this again. Maybe in the fall.
Now it’s time for Week 3 and to have a good almost-taper week.