ECSCA 50k 2017: Training Check-In

I haven’t blogged since Grand Traverse. Somehow, I feel like I haven’t really run much since then either. But I look at my Strava and I see that I have!  What a relief. Between Dan’s big race, traveling, and busy times at work, I feel like the only energy I’ve had to devote to my training is while I’m physically running. I certainly have the time to be doing more, but at the end of the day, I’m drained and want nothing more than to read a book or scroll mindlessly on my phone and think about nothing. When I look at my log, I see that I’ve been putting in some pretty good mileage. But I haven’t really been conceptualizing any of it. Last year while training for ECSCA, I felt like the race took up about 50% of my brain in the couple months before. This year, as I have more responsibilities at work and am just in a busier time of life, there is less space up there. No complaints here, though! I’m incredibly privileged in getting to choose the pressure I put myself under. And I certainly know that many people are much busier than me (hi, Adrienne). But with a little over a month before the race, it’s a good time for me to take a step back and reflect on where I am.

The Big Picture

  • In July, I ran my highest monthly mileage ever: 212 miles with 26,331 feet of climbing; for a total of close to 37 hours of training logged on Strava.
  • In August, I decided to run the Steamboat Stinger at the last minute after a tough week and had a great race and came in 3rd. I took a few days off and then we paced/crewed Mike Bell at Leadville.
  • In September, I got a horrible cold then ran the Grand Traverse. I keep forgetting that this race even happened. Over this past weekend, someone asked me if I run 50 milers and I told them the longest I’ve run is a 50k.
  • I’ve been averaging one yoga class a week, thanks to Alex Ammons generously gifting me with an ambassador pass to Kindness. The studio I go to is in downtown Golden and I’ve been finding the walk to and from to be a surprisingly enjoyable part of going. It’s always when I’m busiest or want to go the least that I get the most out of class. I rotate between hot series, yin, and restorative. My favorite is Friday afternoon yin. It’s the perfect way to shut down the work week.
  • Between July 4 and now, we’ve spent a total of three weekends at home. We traveled to Montana, San Luis Obispo, St. Louis, New England, Pennsylvania, and all over Colorado.

Best Workouts this Cycle So Far

What’s Next

  • I’m planning and wanting and hoping and preparing to have a big week. My goal is to hit 60+ miles and 7k feet of vert. After getting home from Pennsylvania where Dan raced this past weekend, he said he wants to focus on me having a good week and has taken on some of my chores and is helping me plan the logistics of my training. A true sign of affection in running couples: driving somewhere so your partner can run to meet you there. Thanks, love. ❤
  • Next week, I’ll take it down a notch before topping out with my peak week the week of October 23rd. A highlight of that will be Hilloween on October 28th.
  • I’ll do a full two-week taper, which will include a trip to St. Louis.

Comparison by Years

Once in awhile, I get nerdy about training numbers. Here I’m comparing my three-month buildup to ECSCA last year with the past three months this year. I’m averaging just slightly more running this year, but it’s really close. I’m hoping that this October will be my biggest month yet.

2016 2017
miles time feet miles time feet
July 212.3 36:39:00 26,331
August 171 30:47:00 22,995
September 157 25:51:00 17,217 178.7 32:08:00 23,142
October 214.8 33:59:00 28,950
November 184.9 32:47:00 20,993
Averages 185.6 30:52:20 22,386.7 187.3 33:11:20 24,156.0
Difference per month 1.8 2:19:00 1,769.3

Going into ECSCA last year, I said that I was in the best shape of my life. These data show that I’m around the same place now. But I don’t have the same confidence I did then, for whatever reason. I think a few big weeks of vert will help. But at the end of the day, it’s just running, man.

In Other News

  • I’m currently fan-girling Abby Levene. Of all the running blogs I’ve read, I find hers to be the most well-written. Looking forward to see what she and Clare Gallagher do at TNF50!
  • I’m excited about cheering at the Rock n Roll Denver half marathon this weekend. Organizing a cheer station here last year totally fired me up. It should be a perfect fall day!
  • As mentioned above, Mike Bell is hosting Hilloween on October 28th. This year, we are adding a new element and are going to be raising money for Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado! I feel constantly guilty about not doing enough to support the things I care about. Giving money isn’t enough, but it’s something at least.
  • There’s a brand new trail running store in Denver! I’m so excited to check Berkeley Park Running Company out.
  • Speaking of gear, I’ve found a new trail shoe love: adidas Outdoor Response Trail Boost Trail Running Shoe. They are kinda goofy looking but I’m digging the ride.

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