Again I have fallen behind on my blogging, and all I can say to that is I have struggled to make time for it lately. The training is actually going quite well, and physically I'm feeling great right now. Turns out, that in hindsight, I never watched that much t.v. to begin with, so my somewhat far fetched dream of finding hours of more free time a day was not properly thought through. Either way, I believe my apartment looks much better without a t.v. in it, and it feels much cozier then it ever has before.
Enough with the babbling, here's my attempt at a quick update on how stuff has been going. The last training update was up until Sunday Jan 4th at 105km for that week. In the weeks since then:
Jan 5th - Jan 11th:
-100km of running in 11hr, which really means nothing unless you know the terrain covered. It ended up being more road heavy then I like, but still some big climbs and great trail runs.
-1x gym session, 159 lbs (down five in two weeks of training, must have been beer weight!)
-1x skate ski, 11.5km in 1hr, but conditions were terrible and it was a very tough workout and struggle to log that many km in sixty minutes. Lotsa climbing, which I love!
-Highlights, solid interval session on Tues night, and on Sunday I completed my first 50k 'ultra run' in training of 2009, and just second ever. During the run, which I fully completed with teammate Ryne Melcher, we were paced along for the first 40k by friends Duncan Coo and Tom Craik. Turned out it was Duncan's 40th B.Day, a little 40 on 40 action going on so we decided to dedicate the final 20km of their run, from 20k-40k, to the years leading up to the present. Every four to five minutes we would all have to tell a story of the corresponding year, from 1989 until 2009. I certainly can not say that I got any smarted on that run, hard to ever accomplish that with Melcher by your side, but I did learn that at one time Duncan was 4th in all Nato countries for shooting in the Pentathlon. What does that mean exactly...not sure, except that if Duncan actually owned a gun I might be scared of him, otherwise I know I can out run him!
Jan 12th - 18th:
-Recovery week after two building weeks to get back at it.
-Run 41km over three separate runs in 3h30m, mostly road or flat terrain
-Skate Ski x2, 30km in 2hr, much faster terrain then previous week
-Gym x1, 158lbs
This was less then I had scheduled for the week, but I have learned to listen to my body first, and it was asking for an extra day off, totaling three on the week, so I did not argue with it so early in the year!
-A simply gorgeous road run across The Lion's Gate Bridge and then along Stanley Park's seawall, totally 25km with a 1/2 marathon split of just over 1h30. I was not racing or tempo'ing my run, simply running a good pace, then I upped the pace towards the end when I saw the numbers on my watch. I have run four half's in my life, although one of those would hardly be considered running (over 2hr in my first attempt with no training, a beer gut, and no calories or thermolytes along for the ride!). I have not touched this distance since I started taking running seriously or actually started training. This run would have been a P.R. for me... and that to me is pretty funny! It was enough to get me thinking about possibly running a 1/2 marathon 'for fun' sometime soon. It would be a nice gauge to truly see how far I've come in the last few years.
-6am gym, 7am run, 10am work, 7pm skate ski on Wed
-Skate skiing in The Callaghan Valley with some good friends and running into no fewer then ten people I had not seen in six months or longer. A pristine sunny day, fast snow, and good times!
-Heading to Victoria on Sunday to visit my good friend and adventure racing partner Todd Nowack before he moves to Norway for a year! Unfortunately Todd injured his foot pretty bad recently and could not run, but he volunteered at an Orienteering event and I tagged along to look at a map for the first time in well over a year! Our Raid The North Extreme 2007 teammate Christiian Piller, who recently moved from Toronto to Vancouver, also randomly showed up and it was great to have everyone together again for the first time since that race! I managed to finish FIRST in the event!!! I'm not lying, check out my pic...
Ok, maybe, just maybe, there is a story here that needs to be told, but you ain't getting it from me...all I will say is this, the ribbon is legit, but Chris beat me by twenty minutes, actually, the race was less then an hour, he was almost twice as fast as me...Chris won 'the smart guys' event, and I placed first in the 'somewhat challenged' category!
Jan 19th - 25th: Bringing me back up to speed here.
-Run 131km in 13.5hr, a true mix of road and trail with some tough terrain covered, including another solid 50k run today. Finally feeling like I can start handling the miles again and looking at possibly running 150k-160k for the upcoming coming week.
-Gym x1, 158lbs
-No skate skiing as I was dealing with a few 'niggles', injuries in the making, and I made a few changes based on what I perceiving to be possible problems. The skate ski experiment continues, and I'll talk more about injury prevention, and recovery in a coming posting, for now though, I just wanna get this one done, grab a beer with a few friends, and call it a day!
-Visiting Todd for three days, getting to run completely new terrain, and not seeing a cloud the entire time! North Vancouver was buried under a thick for for a full week, while just 'Up The Sound' in Squamish and Whistler, you could have pranced around in shorts and a t-shirt. Just 'up the street', on top of the local North Shore Mountains, temps got as high as fifteen degrees, and just 'across the pond' on Vancouver Island, they had no idea what the rest of us were complaining about!
-Running up Mt. Doug in Victoria to a spectacular panoramic vista, on a day that had me constantly reminding myself that it was still in fact winter, and not springtime already!
-Seeing 'Grand Torino'...had to throw that in there, Todd and I checked it out and double thumbs up for sure!
-AND, drum roll please....daadaadaadaadaadaadaadaadaadaadaadaa...not quite sure how to spell that sound...anyways, getting to join Todd and his co-worker, in a four seater Cessna Float Plane, to what was scheduled to be a four island tour for what Todd actually calls work! I knew by joining them that I'd miss my anticipated return ferry, and possibly face a parking ticket, but I did not question it at all, especially after I was cleared to bring along my running gear! The initial plan was going to allow me to run on Salt Spring Island, Saturna Island, Galiano Island, and a coastal town named Gibsons (for Canadians out there, the home of the famous 80's t.v. show 'The Beachcombers'...and they still have a 'Molly's Reach' restaurant too!) I had never been to any of the islands before so I was very excited about possibly completing a running tour like no other!
Once we departed Victoria however it was shocking to see what the rest of the lower mainland of B.C. was buried under, yet more fog! We landed on Salt Spring and I was able to get in a quick 6km run before we were back in the Cessna again. We attempted to land at our second destination of Saturna, but the fog was just too much and we ended up having to return to Victoria. In essence though, I got one of the most scenic tours of my life as the views were absolutely incredible with only the mountainous peaks shining through the clouds below. I uploaded a small web album with the twenty best shots on the day.
From there I finished up by logging some miles back in Victoria before returning to the fog you could almost taste, back in North Vancouver that night.
TODD BEST OF LUCK IN NORWAY, THANKS FOR AN AWESOME FEW DAYS, AND KEEP ME IN THE LOOP ON SOME RACES OVER THERE, I MIGHT JUST MAKE IT OVER FOR A VISIT!!
Almost done here, on Thursday I hit up the local climbathon known as B.C.M.C., which is basically a 3000 foot climb in under 3km. Running back down was interesting as I could feel that I had not logged miles like this in awhile. Great views up top, escape the fog down low, and feel the burn for a few days afterwards!
TODAY, 50k, nothing but sun, feeling strong, ran the first 32k with Tom again, then put my head down and knocked off the last 18k on roads in under ninety minutes...AND DONE, onto the beers, I could use one, or maybe even two...