Saturday, June 4, 2011
Last week I hit the magic number 80 for miles. I'm still feeling pretty good--no injuries, not too sore or tired. This week I cut back a little bit as I'm pacing the 3:15 group at the Minneapolis Marathon and I didn't want to go in too tired to be enthusiastic and helpful during the race. The pace, 7:27 / mile, is probably at the faster end of my pacing spectrum but should still be doable, especially during a cutback week.
After the marathon I'm going full throttle for the Afton Trail Run on July 2. Not counting cross country in college it'll be my first trail race and it will definitely be my first 50k. I got out on Thursday to Afton and did 11 miles up and down the hills--although the hills are killer I still love running out there. Again I saw a couple of deer and wild turkeys. One of the deer was laying down right on the trail as I came flying down a hill in the woods--I think we both scared the crud out of each other.
I'm really digging the trail running thing. There are two decent running trails close to me in Eagan but one is flooded and the other's about 5 miles away and the best loop I can figure out is only about 6 1/2 miles long--a little to short to make me feel like it's worth driving too.
Laura and I did some camping over the long weekend and I got a decent trail run in at Banning State Park. I had to go through lots of mud and tall grass since they don't maintain all the trails there. I also forgot running shorts so I did my run in sweet hiking shorts that used to be pants with legs you could zip off (the legs now reside at a portage in the BWCA unless some kindhearted canoeist properly disposed of them). The trails I ran on went through pine and mixed deciduous forests and climbed up the bluffs along the Kettle River. The great views made the muddy shoes and legs, stupid looking shorts, and pulling ticks off my legs all worth it.
Tomorrow the Minneapolis Marathon starts my highest mileage week of the year. I'm hoping I can get through the week with no injuries and cruise on into Afton with a great mileage base and healthy legs.