No rest for the weary this week. After the Deadwood-Mickelson half on Sunday, I took one day off and got back at er on Tuesday. I was actually pretty sore from Deadwood...as sore as I've been after some full marathons. I definitely felt that soreness on Tuesday and Wednesday, but it went away by Thursday, just in time to race again.
Monday - Rest.
Tuesday - 6 miles. Felt really stiff and sore at first, got better toward the end.
Wednesday - 5 miles. Still stiff and sore.
Thursday - Dino Trail Race in Rapid City. This was a 4 miler on Dinosaur Hill. Although my legs didn't feel bad all day long (the race didn't start until 5:30 PM), they certainly didn't feel all that lively once I started running. I had no energy whatsoever. Ended up finishing in 37:17, 5th overall and 2nd in my division. My placement was aided by the fact that one guy who had been in front of me took a wrong turn at Albuquerque (as did several other runners) and I passed him while he was on his detour. Still, it was a good time and I maintained my 2nd place standing in the Black Hills Trail Series.
Friday - 5 miles.
Saturday - 13 miles. This was a rough one. It didn't help that I ran a really hilly course, but it helped even less that my legs were bitchin about the abuse they'd already taken this week.
Sunday - 22.8 miles. Another long run using a run/walk strategy. This time I tried out a 20 min. to 4 min. ratio (as opposed to the 25:5 I used a few weeks ago). It started out really well and I felt great right up until about 16 miles. Then, I hit a big steep hill (actually, a series of three hills). Even though I walked a good portion of it, it still took a toll and the last 6 miles were an exercise in misery. I kept telling myself it was good practice for what I'll be going through during the 50 miler, or in the late stages of a marathon, but the mental games can only go so far toward convincing yourself that your calves aren't screaming for mercy. When I got home, I noticed salt crystals (not stains, like real grains of salt) on my ipod band. So, looking back, I probably should have pre-hydrated better since it got fairly warm out. Some electrolytes along the way probably would have helped too (I had only water, no Gatorade).
Total- 55.8 miles
I've only got 4 weeks before the Missoula Marathon. I'm still not sure what my goal there is going to be (I really don't know....not like last year when I just claimed to not know but was hoping for a BQ). I do know that it'll be one extreme or the other; either a PR effort or a nice, easy long run where I get a shirt and a medal. Over the next couple of weeks I plan on ramping up my weekend back to back long runs. My taper for Missoula will be short, but that's how it was last year too and it worked out fairly well. In fact, I very well might go back to last year's log and repeat the last couple of weeks exactly. Don't fix what ain't broke, right?