It was nice to change the routine a bit this week and head out to the mountains on Saturday. I ran the final 26.6 miles of the MMT course which I hadn't covered yet. Now that I have all 101.8 miles of fun logged in my brain, I have all the information I need to come up with a solid race plan. One peice of info I'll surely benefit from is to expect to fall at least 3 or 4 times. Hard. I took a couple tumbles this time out, one of which definitely falls under the "spectacular" variety. I was about 8 miles into my run on a very steep and fast downhill...normally I'm an excellent judge of character when it comes to picking out the best rocks to trust while flying across a boulder field...but not this time. All I remember is going really really fast when the rock under my left foot flew out from under me causing my toe to drag and catch a rock in front of it, thus sending me airborn.
As you can see, my left knee got the worst of it on the surface, but lucky for me I'm a pretty good faller (Lee Majors eat your heart out), so I'll escape from this with just a couple bruises in various other parts of my body. One note I think is pretty cool about that picture: You'll notice all the blood that ran down my leg is mixed with trail dirt, but the wound itself is clean and fresh. How'd I keep it so clean while running another 18 miles or so on dirt trails? I tore off a piece of my Clif Bar wrapper and slapped it on the wound. Turns out the semi-waxy covering on the wrapper aheres itself perfectly to an open wound, and when the time comes to take it off, it comes off cleanly. Clif Bars...is there anything they can't do?
One more note about the week before I get to the log: Knowing I'd only be running 26 miles or so on my long day (granted 26 mountain miles are infinitely harder than road miles), I made sure I got some extra suffering in by running my Treadmill Death March the night before heading out to the mountains. Friday night on the 'mill I climbed 4000ft, and then in the real mountain world on Saturday I climbed another 7000ft. Clearly all the suffering I've be putting myself through on the treamill is working because my climbing legs were feeling strong and fresh the whole time. Of course a treadmill climb is nothing compared to a real climb, but since DC is so darn flat, this weekly Death March routine is filling in nicely for me in between mountain trips.
Monday - 8.5 miles - Hains Point Loop
Tuesday - 8.5 miles - Hains Point Loop (ran this one crazy fast in my racing flats)
Wednesday - 8.5 miles - Haines Point Loop
Thursday - Off
Friday - 4.3 miles - Treadmill Death March
Saturday - 26.6 miles - Massanutten Mountain course
Sunday - 8.5 miles - Hains Point Loop
Total: 64.9 miles