Jul 23, 2013

Training for Run Rabbit Run 100

Looking back at my training log last week, I noticed that I had 10 consecutive days of hill training runs. Three were at Bear Mountain, four were on a local hill by my house called Kingsbridge, and three were on a treadmill, where I set the elevation and climbed 1000', 1000', and 1500' respectively.

Then, on Saturday, I participated in the Running with the Devil 12-hour race (I only had time for 9 hours), in which I climbed to one of the summits of the Mountain Creek Ski Area six times, accumulating 18 miles horizontal and 6500 feet of vertical gain (and also 6500' of loss). On Sunday I met up with Anne and a few of our friends for her birthday run in Parsippany, where I managed to log another 32 miles, giving me a 50-mile (in 90ºF temps) weekend.

What is this all for?
The Elevation Profile for the Run Rabbit Run 100-miler
The Run Rabbit Run 100-miler will be held in Steamboat Colorado on September 13th, 2013. There are three monster climbs, each over 3500', plus two 1500' climbs. Plus descents. Plus lots of rollers. And the small matter of covering 100 miles, all in the 36-hour time limit. The elevation varies between about 6900' and 10500'. To compare, here's the elevation profile for a lap at Umstead, the only other traditional 100-mile race I've ever completed:

Umstead's elevation varies between 240' and 450'.
Any 100-miler - regardless of terrain - would intimidate me, but going to a mountain trail 100-miler in Colorado is going to be especially difficult. The training to complete such an event is going to require several long runs in the 40-50 mile range, lots of hills, and lots of walking. Fortunately, I can do all three of these at the same time.

I've scheduled three of these monster runs. This past weekend was my first really big weekend before the race. 50 miles over two consecutive days with 6 big steep climbs is a great start. In two weekends, I'll be doing another 50 hilly miles, in one day, at the San Francisco 50 Mile Endurance Run, which coincides with a 100-miler. That will have plenty of elevation change. In five weekends, I'll go back to the site of Anne's Birthday run for another flat 40-50 miles at the Parsippany 12-hour race. In between, I'll have a dozen more runs up Bear Mountain on weekdays. Hopefully I'll get some big hikes and runs (in terms of elevation if not distance or time) while vacationing in California and Oregon in 2-4 weeks.

I mentioned hills and long runs, and the reasons for those should be obvious. But walking? I think one of the main factors in my success at Umstead in 2012 was an emphasis on walk training for the 6 weeks prior to the race. I walked 50 miles that I could have run in March of that year, and I'm convinced they paid off in the 50 Umstead miles I walked that I could *not* run.

It's a common theme to my site, and anyone who knows me will be too familiar with this conversation, but it also wouldn't hurt to lose a few lbs before the race. This morning I weighed over 290. I'd love to be in the 260s for the race; I think that would help tremendously.