A week that started out very winter-like ended in a spring-like fashion with the forecast for more mild temps ahead. Is spring really here? Probably too early to make that declaration quite yet seeing as how we often get hammered with a March or April (or even May) blizzard, but for now things are looking pretty good. The snow is pretty much gone from the lower elevations (aside from the huge piles that accumulated over a winter's worth of snow removal) and some of the lower trails are clearing up and becoming runnable. Hopefully, the trend continues.
Monday - 6 miles AM, 4 PM. Negative windchills in the morning sent me to the indoor track, something I despise normally but even more so once March arrives. It "warmed" up to 20 or so during they day, so I at least got outside for the afternoon run.
Tuesday - 8.2 AM, 4 PM. Still fairly cold, but better than the day before, so both runs were outside.
Wednesday - 10.1 with 6 at marathon pace. A little windy, but definitely warmer. Ran a hilly loop, so the first few miles of MP were a little rough, but I finished strong running (mostly) downhill with the wind at my back. For some reason, my quads took a real beating on this run. Not sure why...I've run this loop at MP (or faster) several times before.
Thursday - 6.6 AM, 4 PM. The temp continues to trend upward.
Friday - 6 miles. It was fairly warm in the afternoon, 40s and 50s, but the wind was also blowing 30 mph+. I got the run done early in the morning before the wind got too bad.
Saturday - 25.1 miles. Longest run since Lean Horse. With less than two months before Collegiate Peaks, it was high time I got in some miles. As I did last year while I was training for Lean Horse, I did a run/walk of 10 minutes/2 minutes. This isn't so much because I'm unable to run straight through for 25 miles, but more to give my body practice in incorporating walk breaks and walking at a fast pace, plus it gives me a good opportunity to eat and drink on a regular basis (if I'm just running, I tend to forget and consequently get dehydrated and low on calories). In any case, the run went great....seemed like I got stronger the further I went. Even with the walk breaks I still averaged 9:32 miles, so it's not like I was totally sandbagging it.
Sunday - 10.2 miles. My legs felt surprisingly fresh after the long run on Saturday. I didn't push the pace on this one, but I didn't really purposefully hold back either...I just took what came, which ended up being 8:17 pace overall. I noticed last year during Lean Horse training that my legs tend to feel pretty damn good the day after a really long run....in fact I ran a 10.4 mile race last year at sub-7:00 pace the day after a very hard 30 miler. One of those weird things you discover about your body when you start ultra training.
Total - 84.2 miles - first time over 80 in a very long time
This next week will look very similar mileage-wise, although I'm hoping to get in many more trail miles (of course, it's not hard to exceed the zero from last week). With the snow receding, I'll be hitting the trails as much as possible, hopefully including the longer run this weekend. Running long on roads is great and all, but nothing really prepares you for running long in the mountains except actually running long in the mountains. Crazy how that works...