Monday, March 14, 2011


I’m trying to determine if it’s good or bad that I don’t have some massive weekend of training to report. On one hand it’s probably a good thing because I’m sure my body can’t handle mileage like last weekend over and over. Plus, I’m guessing that type of training is not needed every weekend. However, spring break starts this Friday for our family. With a Disney cruise on the horizon, that shoots the next 2 weekends in the foot. The best I can hope for is a long run the day after returning.

In any case, I’m not going to worry too much. I’m already feeling a lot fitter than just a couple of months ago when I was about 6-8 pounds heavier. Once I return I’ll have about 6 weeks until R-cubed. That’ll be enough for two more big weekends.

In my absence, here are some blogs I’ve come across recently.

Former Gopher, Andrew Carlson, who’s back with Team USA Minnesota for a second stint. He has some of the best interviews on Flotrack and his blog is pretty good too.

My good friend Jenna Boren looks to be putting her Dr. skills to the test and blog about injury diagnosis, treatments, etc. Note: you may have to shift through some stuff about some team called the Packers. Feel free to reach out to her and tell her to blog more often.

Finally, back in February, Ian Sharman, ran the Rocky Raccoon 100 miler in 12:44:33.

I’ll give you a minute to do the math.

Yes, that’s 7:50/mile!!! If you read his (long) race report, you’d think he just won a local 5K in 20 minutes.

And how did he follow up that race? He simply set a marathon World Record for super heroes when he ran 2:40 dressed as Spiderman at Napa Valley. Unfortunately, that only lasted a week because Michael Wardian ran 2:35 last weekend.

Quote of the Day;

“Some might say that it’s easier to be the runner than the runner’s family.” – Rob de Castella

Sunday, March 06, 2011


It's pretty clear that I'm not exactly sure what I should be doing to train for this adventure. However, I think it's pretty important to get outside of my comfort zone and do things I've never done before. It's safe to say I did that this weekend.

Saturday's run started at 6 AM, 2 hours before my running buddies showed up at Ft. Snelling. I spent those 2 hours running snow-covered hill repeats from the trail near Pike Island to the dog park and back. Then I'd run up the steep hill leading to the Fort. Once my buddies showed up, I did a 14+ mile loop with Paul, which took another 2 hours. Hard to tell how far I ran on the snow-covered trails, so I'm calling it a conservative 27 mile day.

Is it bad when 50% of your weekly mileage is done in one run?

The last time I did a 4 hour run, I preceded it with a 2 hour run the day before. This time I decided to follow up my 4 hour run with a 'normal' long run the day after. Today that meant 17 miles in 2:33. After 5 easy miles I included 5 hill repeats up McAndrews hill near County Rd 5. That took me to about mile 12. It was the 3 mile gradual downhill stretch after that, when running down hill felt like running up hill, that told me I was outside my comfort zone. I finished the run off by running up the steep Camp Sacajawea hill 3 times.

All told that's 44 miles and over 6 /12 hours in 2 days. I was actually surprised by how good my legs felt this morning. Makes me wonder if I have a knack for all this running long and slow stuff.

Quote of the day;
"At the Canyon you will see so much and at times you have to remind yourself why you are there. At times it seems like this isn't a big deal endurance wise, but at other times you are reminded how serious you have to be there." - Double

Wednesday, March 02, 2011


You’ve heard of “You get what you pay for.” Well after skiing last weekend’s Birkie, I realized it’s really “You get what you train for.”

As soon as I put R-cubed on my calendar I knew this year’s Birkie experience would suffer. There’s only 10 weeks between the two events. If I focused on skiing all winter, there wouldn’t be enough time to build up towards R-cubed. Hopefully the tradeoff is that I suffered for nearly 3.5 hours on February 26th instead of suffering for 12+ hours on May 6th.

The good news is that I’ve been running quite a bit lately. I’ve run as far as 26 miles and have put together weekly mileage in the low 60s. So I should be able to ratchet things up rather quickly for the next 2 months.

Even though I had a lackluster ski season, I’m still learning a bunch of things about the sport. For example, I’m starting to realize that runners and skier have different mindsets. My coach explained it this way; runners tend to pour out their energy evenly throughout the course of an event, whereas skiers (and bikers) tend to go hard over and over while recovering on the downhills or while drafting. That’s something I’m going to have to work on in the future. If I want to perform any better I can’t ski scared for 47K and then pick up the pace when I hit the flat final 3K.

This may tie in with the previous lesson, but I think I have to be more explosive, which means I have to work on my upper body strength. Perhaps adding a double-pole workout once a week would be enough.

I wonder what I could do if I actually laid out a training plan that included tempo and marathon-paced type workouts. And I definitely need to race more prior to my goal race. Without these things prior to the Birkie, it’s a recipe for conservatism – and slow times.

Quote of the Day;

“That's why it is a great trip. The anticipation, the planning, the what if? When you’re out there, you are the people they want to talk to. It was my best adventure of all time.” – ‘Double’ on R-cubed