Switching Gears: Week 1 of Dirty 30 50k Training

With Easter yesterday and The Boston Marathon today, I’m going to make this quick! Now that I’m training exclusively for Dirty 30, my training will look a little bit different than it did during my build-up to Platte River. Specifically, I’m going to be much more focused on getting vert! I have a solid aerobic base from half marathon training and I hope to just keep cranking up my mileage until the end of May.

Monday: The day after the race, I took completely off and didn’t do much of anything at all.

Tuesday: The return of 10 Mile Tuesday at Green! This was one of my and Robyn’s favorite regular runs while we were both training for #ECSCA 50k. Getting in ten miles of trails on a weekday is solid. Though I had to wake up before 5 for this, it was worth it on such a beautiful morning. We didn’t push the pace at all and just soaked it all in.

At the crest of a hill, there was a line of deer with the almost-full moon behind them.

Wednesday: November Project in the morning included 100 100s which is one hundred push-ups and leg tosses. Yeah, my abs feel these for days every time we do them. In the afternoon, Dan and I kicked off “honeymoon incline” season. We started calling it the honeymoon incline last summer before we went on our honeymoon to Chamonix where we would run steep, technical trails. The name stuck. This trail up South Table is right behind our house and climbs about 500 feet in less than half a mile. It’s pretty technical too, so it’s great training for Dirty 30. I decided I’m going to do this multiple times a week in training and keep track of how many times I make it up between this week and the race. I did 2 laps to start it off – it’s hard!

Dan going down the honeymoon incline.

Nearing the top.

Thursday: You know where to find me on Thursday morning. This week, we did a warm-up lap and then 6 x 2:30 hill repeats. This is tough because you don’t get any rest – your recovery is the time it takes you to get back down the hill and then you start all over again. I didn’t go all out this week since I was still recovering from Platte and had Dino Ridge Relays coming up. In the afternoon, I did one lap of the honeymoon incline.

For our friends running Boston – we love you!

The view from the top of the trail – to make it legit, you go up those stairs on Castle Rock (aka the nub).

Friday: I never have big ambitions for Friday mornings. I didn’t set my alarm or make plans to run but I woke up at 6:15 and realized that I had exactly 30 minutes to run and still make it to work on time, so I did. I loved the no-pressure, relaxed morning run. 3.4 miles.

Saturday: The day I had been waiting for – Dino Ridge Relays! After running Dino Ridge so many times on Thursday mornings, Mike Bell and I came up with a plan to host a relay race to get a bunch of people out to run our favorite stretch of road. From gate to gate and back again is 2.2 miles of car-free road with 220 feet of climbing and great views of the foothills. Everyone found a teammate or two to tackle the 4 x 2.2 mile relay race.

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Of course, Robyn was my teammate and we were excited to set some Strava PRs on the segments that we’ve run multiple times. She went first and while she was out I jogged up to use the port-a-potty. By the time I got back down, I didn’t have too long until she was back and it was my turn! I started running and immediately realized that I hadn’t eaten or drank much and was feeling a little empty. My heart rate was high and I was sucking wind on the climb. But before I knew it, I was back down to the start and covered the segment in 15:10ish (my watch didn’t start right away, so I’m guessing). Birdie went back out and I chugged some Tailwind. That is by far the hardest I’ve ever run this road so I didn’t think I would be able to do it as fast on my second leg. On my second time out, I was a little more relaxed during the climb but then when it came down for the long descent, I really pushed it. I finished that leg in 14:59 (6:51 pace) which was a pleasant surprise! I managed to nab 3 Strava course records from Dino Ridge in the process. Score! I ended up with 7.8 miles for the day. I meant to do a few more miles, but then we helped the Pace-Bells move and I was too tired.

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It was such a great morning and I’m really happy with how everything turned out. I think people had fun and worked hard. Thank you to everyone who came, took pictures, cheered, brought donuts, etc. Having a community like this makes my running and my life so much richer. I hope MB and I can do more stuff like this in the future! Also, there are a bunch of awesome photos on Facebook so check them out.

Sunday: I had planned on doing a 16 mile long run, but woke up feeling conflicted and a little anxious. I told Dan I wasn’t going to run at all. And then 10 minutes later, I was putting on my clothes and finishing a bagel. I decided to go up Lookout Mountain road, which Dan was doing too but before me. I didn’t really get into a groove during the run and I was in my head pretty much the whole time. I started at 7am which is much later than when I normally run Lookout and by the time I was coming down from the very top at the nature center, there were way too many people out for my preference.

I started to take it personally when a cyclist didn’t acknowledge me or a car wouldn’t move over to give me room. I saw one other runner out there who I excitedly said “hey there” to and he didn’t even grunt or glance in my direction. For some reason, on this morning when I was already a little emotional, this really bummed me out. But then, I passed the crazy skateboarders and they all waved enthusiastically or gave me the hang loose sign. And near the top, a cyclist cheered on “you’re almost there!” to me. So, I was reminded that people are good and friendly and that not everyone has the same norms and expectations that I do and that’s okay.

Total mileage: 46.9 miles

Total climbing: 6,138 feet (yay!)

High: Dino Ridge Relays! Everything about it.

Low: I’ve been dealing with some stomach issues for the past few days and I don’t know why. This week, I’m going to do a little dairy-free experiment to see if that helps. Pray for me.

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