Thursday, February 28, 2013

Recap: February 2013 Running

I agree with the sentiment of February being the longest but shortest month of the year. It sure has felt like a long one. Miles were on the low side this month just north of 136 miles, down from about 160 in January. January had a 50K and February had no race and 3-4 day gaps with no running at all. When I did run, though, it was seldom under 6 miles and whenever I could, I grabbed my favorite 10 miler and knocked it out. Undoubtedly, that's become my favorite "around home" distance. If I have about 80min to spare, I'll take it. Not too sure I want to get up before 3am, though. If I were to make that a normal routine, I'd have to break that barrier and that's a line I'm not too fond of crossing. 3:10am is early enough, right?!

For races, I signed up for my "big" race of 2013, a 40-miler in the mountains of West Virginia. It's Father's Day weekend in June and has a reputation of being a bit steamy. What sold me were a few things: 1) It's an easy drive...not too far away but close enough to feel like a mini-vacation, 2) The headquarters for the race is a ski lodge and is perfect for my family to hang out at the pool, take a hike, or whatever while I'm galavanting through the mountains, and 3) I like going to races where I'm anonymous. Just me and the trail. Don't get me wrong...I like local races and seeing everyone but it's nice to get away, too. Plus, with the turn of several local races to a new structure, I won't be running some any longer so time to find some new races out there.

To compliment my running, my wife finished her 40 days of clean eating and pushed through the 40th day and is continuing on. I made sure to plead with her to continue on as I LOVE the recipes she's been coming up with. She steers clear of meat, sugar and processed foods. It's the perfect compliment to a Spring where I'll have increasing mileage and will help me keep running strong and injury-free. Just last night, she hit a grand slam. She named it pierogi pizza. It was her homemade wheat crust with mashed potatoes, corn, sautéed onions, and a few bacon pieces sprinkled on top. (ok, we cheated there a bit) So, so good. I grew up eating Mrs. T's pierogis from the skillet with butter and sautéed onions and just the smell of them drives me nuts.

To wrap up the month and since it was my scheduled day off, I headed on out to the trails today for the first time in a long time. Low 30s and an atmosphere that couldn't decide on snow, sleet, or nothing. No wind, though, and the candy coating of snow overnight made the trails gorgeous. The drenching, though, that we got yesterday made it a mud pit. Multiple stream crossings with water half way up my calf....COLD!!!! By the end, I had wrapped up a satisfying 14 miles and nice capstone to February. Here are some photos from today on the Buckeye Trail.  Enjoy and have a SUPER March! Spring is coming!
Pine Lane on the Buckeye Trail

Pine Lane on the Buckeye Trail

Blue Hen Falls

Perfect print in the snow of the Brooks Cascadia 7 trail shoes

Old Barn at the Boston Store trailhead

Buckeye Trail

Buckeye Trail

Several water crossings today...all ice cold...but refreshing

Downed tree becomes new runners' tunnel (Buckeye Trail)

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