Friday, February 28, 2014

Training for the Mountains

"The consequences of falling short made training important. I realized early that controlling the things that I could control gave me greater freedom to address the things that I could not control. And the mountains offered those up in spades." - Mark Twight (Training for the New Alpinism: A Manual for the Climber as Athlete. p. 14)

The consequences that Mark Twight talks about are without a doubt much more serious than the ones I face in my ultra running and racing, but the reality that there are many things outside of my personal determinacy, whether it be on a long alpine run or in a 50 mile race, makes it all the more important to train as if the consequences were indeed the same.

Training, as the our friendly Unicorn reminds us, is indeed at the base of every serious athletic endeavor and with my knee finally feeling a bit better I have been able to begin to rack up some more proper training for the upcoming season. It is wonderful to yet again feel the movement of arms and legs as my lungs gasp for air and my heart beats wildly inside my chest.  The time away has given me time to think about my training, about the mental side of performance, and the necessity to hone both the flesh and blood as well as the mind.

In less than a month I have Old Goats 50 miler scheduled, but my focus is more directed towards Zane Grey 50m in April and ultimately AC100 in August.  That being said, I want to go and run hard at Old Goats, but for all intents and purposes use it to really ready me for Zane Grey a month later.  In the mean time, the harder I can train the better I will be able to suffer in the upcoming months.

This is what it looks like on your first day back to serious training...Chris running away.

Scrambling fun

This was the point I should have realized I was on the wrong trail.

Any day is made better with a Lady Fox run

Going for some flatter mountain miles

New reading.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Hard Work

Its been a while since I have sat down here to collect my thoughts.  Since late November I have been dealing with an on-going knee issue, and it has been a struggle to commit to writing anything.  I have already missed two races because of my, still, mysterious knee problem and at times it has become all consuming.  I have been driven to the end of my wits trying to figure out how to fix my knee problem so I can get back to training.  I have been putting in some strength training lately, and I think that it is helping out, but I have to remember to be as patient as possible as I work back to knee health.  I was reminded of this last week when I attempted to run the last 25 of the AC course with Dom.  We started at Chantry at 2:00 feeling strong, but by the time we reached the top of Winter Creek I realized my knee wasn't in it for the long haul, so I tucked my tail between my legs and ran back to the car.  This was definitely a blow to my confidence, but on the way back down I was able to snap a few pics of the beautiful evening.

It feels like it has been a long season of dealing with this injury, and some days are better than others. Since my run with Dom I have had a couple really good runs and a couple of failures. Its apparent that it's going to take a consistant effort of hard work and nothing less. I will keep you updated.