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Training Update: Weeks 5 & 6

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Training Update: Weeks 5 & 6

A training update for the last two weeks with some trail running tips.

Week 5:
  • 3 M - 24:04/8:02
  • 6 M - 1:00:00/10:00 (ripping/burning pain in arch during mile 5!!!)
  • Lifted & 2 M - 20:00/10:00 (weighted squats, lunges, and calf raises)
  • 4.2 M - 42:00/10:00
Week 6:
  • 5.25 M - 47:45/9:07
  • 5 M - 44:30/8:54
  • 12.21 M - 2:59:06/14:40 (TRAIL)
I generally took it easier the past two weeks, deciding to run a bit longer distances at a slower pace. It seemed to help my heel/arch pain.

This past Sunday, I ran a Down2Earth Half Marathon Trail Run at Oleta River State Park. (It's not really a "half marathon" per se, but four 5K laps, which is why my Garmin tallied in at 12.21 miles.)

This was my second time doing a trail race, so I had an idea of what to expect. (Last time, I did the 10K, it was wet, I slipped on a plank, and broke my butt.) It is a grueling course, not to be underestimated. I knew that I had four laps, so I decided to be extremely conservative. I kept a very easy pace all throughout the race and had no trouble finishing. 

That's not to say I didn't have plenty of suffering over the course of that three hours to offer up to the victims of the Boston marathon bombings. It was tough, but quitting never crossed my mind. I left this race with a ton of confidence going into the final stretch of half marathon training. 

Finishing was so glorious.
Which is why I am bombarding you with multiple pictures of it.
Also, Will took them.

Now I have some advice for some trail running newbies. I am no expert, but I have a bit of experience with trails and I see people making the same mistakes all the time. 

1 - Do not underestimate the trails. Oleta is tough. Of course it's possible to run your first 5K or 10K ever on the trails, but you won't be happy with that decision! You WILL exert 1,000 times more energy to go the same distance. Also, be vigilant and don't overexert yourself. If it's your first race, you'll want to. But if you get delirious from running hard, you are so much more likely to trip on a branch, slip on a plank, or hit your face on a tree.

2 - Wear proper footwear! Ah, this is the toughest to watch. This past Sunday, I think I observed at least four really bad spills. Five, including myself! Last time I ran and I broke my butt, I was wearing an old pair of Newtons and it was basically a slip-n-slide to the finish. This time I wore Merrell trail running shoes and it made a world of difference on those steep slopes. (N.B. I wore these same shoes hiking Camelback Mountain and I was so glad I had them. Definitely worth the $50 or so spent.) This includes socks. Will did not have the proper socks on and he wound up a blister the size of my sister.

3 - LISTEN!!! Passing on trails is dangerous. There is nothing worse than shouting "on your left!!" over and over only to be drowned out by Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake. The trails are much quieter than Miami roads or your gym; there is no reason to blast your music! (Unless you are that very old man blasting Gangnam Style. You can do no wrong, sir.)

4 - Keep a moderately steady pace. Passing on trails is dangerous. Don't sprint ahead passing ten people only to crap out in a quarter mile, get passed by all ten of those people, and then sprint ahead of them again. (I'm looking at you, stranger called Travis!)

Those are my little tips if you are ever thinking about doing one of these trail runs, which I highly recommend! They are relatively inexpensive to enter, are held every month, and will give you an excuse to eat lots and lots of ice cream the entire following week. 

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At April 25, 2013 at 9:25 AM , Blogger Big Momma D said...

A blister the size of your sister is not all that large, unless of course you are talking about your other sister.


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