Monday, April 23, 2012

Garden of Eden Week XVI

Mon - 0hr - rest

Tues - 0hr - laziness and the calf was feeling tweaky

Wed - 100min/ 9m/ 2000' - Crowders - Just my favorite 9 mile route in the park.  Out back from the visitor center on Turnback/ Pinnacle/ Ridgeline trails with one summit of Kings Pinnacle.  It was foggy, about 65 degrees, and perfect.  Really love coming out here on Wednesdays!

Thurs - 50min/ 5.1m/ 300' - Latta Plantation - Really was feeling sub-par today and the foot was giving quite some pain.  I guess the mostly gravel surface didn't really help it.  Depending on how this weekend goes, I might be taking most of next week off to just go ahead nip this foot pain in the butt.  Very frustrating.

Fri - 0hr - Was planning on running up Eden Rock with Mad A but are plans got botched and we just hung out.  We'll tackle it this weekend though.

Sat - AM - 110min/ 10m/ 2700' - Eden Rock - Mad A, Andrew and I headed up to check out the views from Eden Rock and then explore after the infamous decent off the back side of Eden Rock.  The run was a blast and beautiful.  There were scenic vistas, gorgeous wildflowers, and a million crazy jumping crickets!  Seriously, the shear amount of crickets was insane.  I though we were running through a biblical plague or something!

         PM - 70min/ 8m/ 1800' - Greens Lick Loop - After this mornings run I was feeling great and thought to myself why not get in another phenomenal mountain run in after purchasing a new pair of MT 110's at the local Discount Shoe store.  This loop out at Bent Creek was perfect and climbed steadily for the first 3.5 miles.  Once I reached the awesome downhill on Greens Lick trail, the bottom feel out of the sky and it proceeded to dump on me all the way down this 2.2 mile section.   The trail turned into a stream and I was having a way too much fun splashing and sliding down the trail.  It was a pure jovial experience.  The foot felt good even after this second run of the day which is very encouraging.

Sun - AM - 55min/ 5m/ 1200' - Kitsuma - Nice easy wet run with Matt Kirk. 

         PM - 85min/ 8m/ 2200' - High Top/ High Windy - Scramblicious!

Totals =

Time - 7.6hrs
Dist. - 45.1m
Vert - 10,200'

Well my foot was kinda feeling crummy this week and I missed quite a few days of running, but I really made up for it on the weekend by running doubles.  I had a blast and the body felt really well.  Icing the foot after each run was money and allowed me to handle the steep downhills of this week.  The vert total for the week really surprised me as it is the most I have had all year with similar mileage, but much quicker total time for the week.  Actually looking at it, other than the run at Latta, every run had significant elevation gain!  Needless to say, I am feeling really good about my abilities going into next weekends Great Eyrie Marathon!  I will however be only running one day prior to the run as to make sure the foot is ready to tackle that beast and that run will probably be only around an hour in duration.  Hopefully some solid icing will get rid of the little bit of tendinitis going on down there. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Wet 'n' Wild Week XV

Mon - Camping on Cape Lookout National Seashore

Tues - 40min/ 4.5m/ 0' - Cape Lookout - beautiful mid-day run on the beach with the wind for the first half and then against a steady 15mph on the way back.  That counts as hill, right? haha.  Still a bit under the weather.

Wed - 0hr - driving back after a windy and sandy last night on the Outer Banks

Thurs - 64min/ 7.5m/ 600' - Laurel Bluff/ Reedy Fork Loop - my favorite shorter loop on the Greensboro Watershed Trails.  Still getting over the cold.  Back to the mountains tomorrow!!!

Fri - 50min/ 4.5m/ 1100' - Hunt Fish Falls - quick little run down to Hunt Fish Falls on the MST in the Wilson Creek Area.  Jumping into the frigid swimming hole was quite shocking to the body!

Sat - 4hr/ 16.5m/ 4000' - Wilson Creek Waterfall Run - Stephen and I ran from our campsite to Little Lost Cove Cliffs, down the N. Harper Creek Trail past N. Harper Falls and Bard Falls, and down Harper Creek Trail to Harper Creek Falls where we hung out for a good hour waiting for the sun to come out so we could take a swim, but it never showed.  Stephen still jumped in though and it was quite comical.  Then we went up the Yellow Buck Trail back to the car.  Phenomenal run!

Sun - 2hr/ 7.5m/ 2500' - Rock Jock Trail - Loved every bit of running my favorite trail in the Linville Gorge.  I believe Stephen was quite impressed with depth and beauty of Linville.

Totals =

Time - 8.5hr
Distance - 40.5m
Vert - 8200'

I have to say that this week wasn't great just looking at the numbers (mileage wise that is), but it was one of the more fun weeks I've had in awhile.  I was suffering from a pretty nasty cold the whole week, but I didn't let it break my plans even though it may have slowed my pace a bit.  Monday, Hannah and I, along with her sister, her brother, and her sister's boyfriend went and camped out for two nights on Cape Lookout National Seashore.  I was planning on running a bit more while out there on the Outer Banks, but my cold was in roughest part and the 4.5 mile run was a chore, even though it was quite refreshing.  I enjoyed a nice run in Greensboro after returning from the coast and on Friday headed over to the Wilson Creek Area for some more camping, running, and potential swimming with my cousin Stephen.  Friday's run down to Hunt Fish Falls was a blast and the leap into the frigid waters had myself and Stephen talking like Scooby-Do.  It was quite a shock and hysterical!  Saturday's run was beautiful and relaxed past gorgeous falls and short,  but steep peaks.  Stephen and I were having such a good time, that we decided to camp another night, but this time in the near by Linville Gorge Wilderness to run the wild and scenic Rock Jock Trail on the western rim of the gorge.  The gorge is one of my favorite of all places and anytime is a good time to be there.  On a side note, the foot did hurt most of the week, but no more than it had the previous week and long runs definitely don't seem to make it worse.  Really confused as to what the actual problem is, but I feel like going to the doc would just be a waist of time as they would just subscribe RICE, which I am already doing.  Oh well, hopefully it improves in the near future.  Enjoy the pics from this week below!

Sunset on Cape Lookout at our campsite

Cape Lookout Lighthouse

Hannah and I

View from Rock Jock

Stephen at Zen Point

View from Zen Point

Tire swing, not gay

Linville Falls

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Weak Week XIV

Mon - Rest

Tues - 36min/ 4.5m/ 200' - Latta Plantation - felt blah

Wed - 47min/ 6m/ 600' - Fisher Farm - blah

Thurs - 0hr - foot hurt

Fri - 0hr - foot hurt

Sat - 100min/ 12m/ 800' - Triple Lakes Half course - Great run with Stephen.  Felt good and the foot didn't bother me until I hit pretty solidly on a root a mile from the finish.  Oh well, icing should help.

Sun - 50min/ 3.5m/ 100' - Chatfield Trail - I woke up with a sore throat and just trying to breath in during this run was killing it so Stephen and I walked.  Very disappointing end to week.

Totals =

Time - 3hr50min
Miles - 26
Vert - 1700'

Wow! Extremely disappointing week other than Saturday's run.  Hopefully, next week I can get it back on schedule if the foot heals up and the cold doesn't persist for long.  Blah!!!!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

2012 1st Quarter Review & 2nd Quarter Preview

This has been a phenomenal 1st quarter of the year in regards to running.  So far I have kept up my New Year's Resolution to at least log 8hrs a week of running/hiking.  Most of that has been running and that is the plan.  The hiking is only for recovery reasons when I am feeling pretty weak and it has worked out well the few times I've done it so far this year.  My training runs during the weekend have been spot on and I am getting in around 25-35 miles on the weekend alone, which has helped a ton in feeling less crappy at the end of long runs.  Needless to say, I feel very confident in my running so far and can tell in just these three months how much I have improved.  This consistency has also revealed a light onto my weaknesses and I will be tackling those this next quarter.  That being late stage climbing.  Here are the numbers:

Time ~ 110 hours
Distance ~ 650 miles
Vertical ~ 102,000 ft

Looking towards the next three months, my schedule is almost already fully booked.  I'll start it off with some nice coastal running in the Outer Banks after Easter which is going to be phenomenal.  The following weeks see a busy line-up of fun runs with the WNC crew including:  the 2nd Annual Pisgah Camping and Running Weekend, The Great Eirye MarathonCinco De Mayo Sombrero Extravaganza7th Annual May Mountain Mama's Half, Assault on Pisgah, and the 6th Annual RAM.  That is the fun planned!  Happy trails!!!!  Below are a few pics from last Saturday's run with Matt up to Bald Knob!  Photo cred to Matt.

Bald Moses View Week XIII

Mon - 0hr

Tues - 45min/ 5.5m/ 500' - Fisher Farm - good run winding down for 40 miles of Bartram on Friday

Wed - 45min/ 5m/ 500' - Laurel Trail - felt a little sluggish in the heat, but getting pumped for Bartram!

Thurs - 0hr - driving to the Bartram Trail to crew/pace for Adam.  Arrive and wait for him at the Wallace Branch TH to see him come in feeling pretty bad and cramping seriously bad.  Needless to say, there would be no 40 miles of the Bartram the next day and we drove back to Asheville.

Fri - 4hr5min/ 20.5m/ 3600' - Pisgah - beautiful out and back on the MST from Pigeon Gap to Mt. Pisgah and back.  The grade was very reasonable the entire way, but the trail was a bit more technical than I envisioned.  Regardless, it was a phenomenal stroll through the woods up to a peak I should have summited years ago.  Glad to finally have Pisgah on my summit list.  If you can tell by the time, I enjoyed my run and never ran hard and took a lot of breaks soaking in the beauty.  After I was done, I barely felt as if I'd run at all.  Which is awesome!

Sat - 3hr40min/ 14m/ 4000' - Bald Knob - Matt and I climbed and descended 37 SWITCHBACKS up Bald!!!! What a climb and what a beautiful section of the MST.  It was nice to finally reach this lofty summit over Marion after a failed attempt earlier in the month.  I got a little sunburned and dehydrated while on the run though and even after a dip in the N. fork of the Catawba River I was slowed tremendously.

Sun - 28min/ 3m/ 200' - Fisher Farm - recovery jog

A week that began with great excitement and anticipation, after Thursday night was looking to end in disappointment.  Unfortunately, Mad A had to drop out of his Bartram Trail FKT attempt due to some major cramping issues.  Before the cramping issues though he was having a stellar run and had made it from Cheoh from Wayah in 6:30.  That was just under 24 hour pace for the whole 110 miles.  Although my planned 40 miles of pacing duties was botched, I was able to come up with some last minute plans and scheduled two phenomenal runs that did not disappoint.  I have to say that the views from both Pisgah and Bald were extremely gorgeous and totally different.  Good luck next week to Matt Kirk as he attempts to set the FKT on the Bartram himself.  Unfortunately, I will not be available to help him out next week and feel kinda bad about it.  I think Matt knows that, so it is all good.