Spring Into Racing

G'day! Its been a few weeks since my last posting, so I figured now would be a good time to provide both an update and a look at what's ahead. 

Road Work

The week after my last entry consisted of some manic weather, which is quite typical of early spring in Colorado. The week of March 17th, I managed 3 workouts and my highest mileage (110 mile) of 2013. The workouts were 5 x 2 minute hill repeats at Mount Sanitas on one day and 2 x 4 mile tempo on the roads a few days later.

The week came to a close with a blizzard, which sent me to the dreaded treadmill. The final workout of that week was a shorter tempo of 5 miles. It closed out a weekend with 34 miles over two days on the treadmill. Needless to say, my hips weren't terribly pleased. C'mon SPRING, get it together!

"Spring" in Boulder

The following week, I decided to take it easy as I was feeling a bit tired. I've always liked the quote, "It's better to be 10 miles undertrained, than 1 mile overtrained". So with that in mind, I just logged easy aerobic miles all last week. 

Core buster w/ heavy rope

I also spent much of that week at Rally Sport, my local gym. There I swam between 1 and 2 miles per visit on top of my typical core/weight routine. I always enjoy heading to Rally. Their staff is very knowledgable and my fellow gym-goers are inspiring, from world class triathletes, runners and cyclist, to a new mom who's looking to get back in shape. 

So now that we're up to date, what's up next, you ask? I'll be racing back to back weekends. First up is XTERRA Cheyenne Mountain in nearby Colorado Springs, where I'll compete over 12 Kilometers. I'm looking forward to it, but also anticipating a very challenging course. It'll serve as a shock to the system and a reintroduction to racing. Workouts are great, but racing is an art in it of itself that can't be duplicated in training. 

The following week, I'll make the trek to Las Vegas for the XTERRA West Championships, where I'll compete over 21 Kilometers. I'm still quite a novice on the trail (RACING) scene. In anticipation, I asked a mate of mine: Joseph Gray, an XTERRA World Champion as well as a 4-time NACAC Mt. Running winner for some advice. On racing trails, this is what he had to say, "Depends on your strengths. If uphill running is your strength then plowing downhill will thwart your potential to use your strong climbing. Your legs get beat up from the impact and that will slow your climbing if you aren't used to it. It's a gamble, you have to decide whether to run mediocre on the ups and downs or run extremely well on one and not so great on the other. A lot of it depends on who you are racing as well..."

2012 Xterra Trail World Champ @ Kualoa Ranch. Oahu, Hawaii

This week has been purposely top heavy. The goal of Monday-Wednesday being to exhaust and overload my legs both on the hilly trails and in the weight room. Monday morning I ran a hilly trail 10K. In the afternoon I incorporated the usual 10 x 10 second hills into my 2nd run. Tuesday I ran a 2 x 4 mile tempo on the roads again. That evening I went to Rally where I purposely added an extra set to each weighted rep I did. This left my already tired legs, comically exhausted (picture the Tin Man doing a "Harlem Shake"). Yesterday I duplicated Monday's training and added a 2 kilomete swim in the afternoon at Rally. 

So this brings us to today (Thursday). I've accomplished the 1st part of my mission this week. I've exhausted my legs over roads, trails & the gym. I'll now take Thursday & Friday really easy and allow the body to recover some. I'm purposely heading into this weekend a bit over worked and tired. I hope to get a great blow out and some much needed trail running experience before next weekend's Championship race. Only time will tell if my plan over the past 2 weeks will pay off. Needless to say, I'm enjoying the journey and newfound challenges. 

Lastly, a big thanks to my nutritional sponsor, PowerBar, for keeping me upright. Don't know where I'd be without their Cookies n Cream Caramel Crisp Recovery Bar. I literally have a "Recovery" drawer filled with their stuff! Can't get enough of it! 

Cheers for reading, till next time...