Thursday, February 21, 2008

S. Boulder Creek

~8.5 miles
~500 vertical
1hr, 8 seconds
152 bpm average

For kicks today I thought I would run some flat trails. I started at the S. Boulder Creek TH, ran Southwest to the Mesa trail, South to the S. Mesa TH, crossed Eldo road and ran the ditch back to 93. From 93, I continued East along the ditch for a while, then looped back to the 93/Marshall road jct and followed 93 back to the car. I ran at a good pace, but nothing too crazy. I would run fast for a bit, then catch myself started to slack off, where I would again pick up the pace. It is hard to maintain a steady effort on the flats. On steep hills, I am used to just having to gun it to try and defy gravity. Downhill can be a controlled freefall, but the flats take some practice to maintain good cadence. I did feel as though I was maintaining good form, cadence etc.... Need to do this once per week at least, I think it will help make me a better runner.


~3.5 miles
1,200 vertical
20:06 up
167 HR

Fun run up Flag today. Wore the HR monitor on the trail for the first time since last spring. Once I am fit, I don’t really bother with it, but this time of year, it is interesting to monitor my progression as I increase my fitness. It seemed to take me a long time to warm up today, maybe 1/3 of the way until I got into the 160’s, then was in the 170’s for the final ¼ or so and feeling pretty good. There was still a good bit of soft mud and ice on the trail, but it was definitely better than last week. I thought it would be a given that I would go under 20, but came up just shy at 20:06. The detours around the mud and ice (no studs today) definitely slowed me down a good bit. I think if it were totally dry, that would have saved me a good minute or more. Excuses, excuses, I just have to face the fact that I am a bit out of shape. It is so fun this time of year to train hard and shave large chunks of time. It is only February after all and a year ago, I could barely get down the stairs, so I am just happy to be out and feel minimal to zero discomfort.

It is funny how your body needs to warm up more and more as you get older. Even as recently as a few years ago, I never really needed a warm up. In my 20’s, I could literally go from sleeping with my HR around 30, to 180 or 190+ bpm in a matter of minutes. Max HR really drops dramatically as well. I can no longer reach or maintain the high numbers I used to and my max hr has dropped roughly l bpm per year. I am slow to catch on to this and each year I have to re-program myself to take account of this fact. Despite all of this, I seem to become faster, fitter and more efficient each year, it just takes a bit more work and requires you to be a little smarter.