Monday, August 10, 2009

M-Cubed for 8/10/09

Monday Morning Musings for August Tenth, Two Thousand and Nine. A smattering of thoughts that alone don't constitute a blog post but together end up here on Monday morning.

- Back to the cage today. I've enjoyed ten wonderful days away from punching a time clock and it's been superb. Another 100 miler done, 4 days escaping to a cabin in the hills, some good recovery running, and a fun celebratory party for the local ultra-runners at Melissa's. Awesome! The pic below is of Ash Cave down in Hocking Hills. It is so mammoth that you can't take one pic so I took three and pieced them together to give it some perspective. It's the biggest cave in Ohio.
- Common question: so now what? Another 100? Answer: yes, but not in the foreseeable future. I'm certainly not done with the 100 mile endurance race. However, for the short-term future, none are on the calendar. I'm "mentally" exhausted and it's time to decompress. For the rest of 2009, nothing over the 50K distance. In a nutshell: Labor of Love 5-Miler on Labor Day in Akron, YUT-C 50K, the Akron Marathon a week later, then the Inaugural Bobcat Trail Marathon in November. Of course, a few of the staple short races around the holidays are always thrown in there for seasoning.

- Speaking of Bobcat: I will be speaking with the group sales person at Burr Oak Lodge, race headquarters for the marathon this week about costs/options/etc. Once I get that, I'll be posting it on the VR Discussion Board. Many, many local runners are planning on running this new race this year and many want to share rooms so this should help. Speaking of that, I'm one of those people looking to split a room. I plan to go down early Saturday. The marathon is Sunday.
- Recovery from the BR100 is going way better than expected and better than after the Kettle 100. I ran an easy 3 the morning after, hiked all day Tuesday, walked a lot on Wednesday, ran 6.4 easy grassy trail miles Thursday, took Friday off, then ran 16.3 miles of the Akron Marathon course on Saturday morning. Feeling so good, I dropped the last 5 miles to the finish at under 8min pace. I really felt like I was getting my "marathon groove" back on. It's startin' to smell like fall marathon season! After I finished, I felt great and felt like I could have just kept on going. I'll continue my recovery and not assume I'm back 100% for several more weeks but I do feel really good right now.

- After another week or so, I'm going to do something I haven't done since last year: speed-work. I'm a big believer in doing repeats at the track, especially when training for the marathon. I'd like to awaken some of the fast-twitch muscle fibers that have been sitting dormant since last year in preps for the Akron Marathon. My PR on the Akron course is 3:33:00 from 2007 (overall PR is a 3:21 from the 2000 Richmond Marathon). I'd love to challenge that (3:33) but honestly, I have no idea what kind of shape I'm in right now. I've heard that runners coming off of a successful 100-miler can often go out and do quite well at the marathon. Heck, it's only 1/4 of the distance, right?! So, to the track I will go. It'll be a love/hate relationship with those 800s. I've seen them work, though!

- It's hard to believe it's already been two years since I went back into the Navy. August 20th marks my two-year point and my promotion to the next rank. Promotion is a beautiful thing! Things are quiet in that part of my life right now. My once-a-month weekend continues with more testing and qualifications. I'll go back to Athens, GA one final time next March for graduation from the program I've been working through. After that point, then "that part" of my life when go from quiet to center stage. I'll take the "quiet" for now!

"We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves...The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, 'You must not run faster than this...' The human spirit is indomitable." - Sir Roger Bannister

Have a great week, everyone, and Happy Trails!

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