Friday, October 1, 2010

New Paths

Last night, I ventured into a new type of run which will from now on be affectionately known as the UGH run. 
UGH because that was all I could mutter out of my mouth by the time I had reached the top floor for the tenth time, and UG because, well, it wasn't the prettiest run I've ever been on so this run helps put the UG in UGLY! 

Because I live in a fairly hill-barren area of Texas, hill training, unless you have access to a treadmill, is difficult to attain without weekend trips away to the Hill Country.  Obligations to family and church tend to keep me close to home for most of my training, yet I understand the importance of hill training if I am planning to run anything hillier than Rocky Raccoon.

Several seasoned ultrarunners have recommended parking garage workouts, lunges, and stairclimber workouts.  I had not yet attempted the parking garage, so last night became the night. 

It was a nice 4.5 mile run to the college campus.  I do believe I had a red and white bullseye mark painted on my shirt as it appeared that the drivers along 242 sped up with each attempt to cross the highway.  I was happy to find a much safer route home which I'm sure was much to the dismay of the blood-thirsty urban hunters. 

The stair well run was not one that will ever be listed as a top ten experience, but I am hopeful that if I can commit to completing these runs, the benefits will be forthcoming at Cactus Rose. 

I was half-expecting the security guard to ask me to leave the property, but he never did.  I am thankful for that because of all the parking garages available to me to run, I feel this one is the safest.  The stairs are clean as they are brand new. The campus police station is housed within the parking garage.  The stair well is completely open with very few blind spots in which a character of ill-will might decide to hide.  I honestly do not know who in their right mind would approach me after a few miles of running, though.  The stench is fairly unbearable. 

I am still going to continue with the lunges, as they seem to provide the most level of pain on any given day.  I have increased my weights while performing them and I am feeling the effects in all the right places.

What I am lacking most of all right now is my core and UE strengthening.  I am consistently inconsistent, completing the routines approximately once a week.  This is not going to serve me well.  If I could get it in twice, I would feel much stronger and much more prepared for the race. 

I do feel generally stronger overall right now.  My running is strong, not fast, but strong.  My legs are definitely stronger than they have ever been, but legs are not what is going to keep me upright in the late miles of the 50/100.

I seem to have been able to  fix the problems with my iron levels.  I am trying to take in more calories to keep my energy up as well.  I remain vegan MOST of the time.  I have had salmon twice in the last 4 weeks.  I find that the fish is nice, but honestly, it seems too greasy to me now. 

Running alone has become the predominant occurrence of late.  I love when I am able to meet up with a friend to run, especially on a long run.  This is not always possible though, so for the good of training, I run alone if needed. 

Looking forward to the fall season of running.  The long hot summer is hopefully behind us and all of those runs in the grueling heat will give way to pleasant runs in low humidity and welcome cooler temperatures.

Found this quote today to pass along to a friend who will be running her first 100 this weekend in Arkansas.  Thought it might be a good point to ponder for the weekend!

                           "What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?"
                                                                                                     - Vincent van Gogh

 So get out and make your own new paths this weekend!  Happy Trails!

1 comment:

  1. Good idea! I thought about doing the parking lot thing while doing Seattle training, and I should have followed my inclination!

    I have a great, actually halfway entertaining core routine I have been doing to up my functional strength while rehabbing. Let me know if you would like to check it out and I'll zap it your way.