Monday, October 12, 2015

the old runaround

i'm still running.

i just don't write about it much.

prolly because my events since june have been kinda uneventful.

in july, there was the seafair 8k. a fun run with my friend michel, who was getting trained up to race for the first time in a year. i thought, "i'll just hang back and run with michel, and not worry about my time." ha. turns out, michel is fast. i had to work my butt off to keep up with him through the streets of seattle, whilst he was frolicking like a kid. see what happens when you assume?

in august i ran the columbia winery 10k. a fundraiser with my friend molly, who was coming back from an injury. not being one to learn from past mistakes, i again thought, "i'll just hang back and run with molly, and not worry about my time." turns out, that's exactly how it went. we meandered along the sammamish river trail, chatted about this and that, and had a nice time. not a good time, time-wise, but a nice time.

when september rolled around i hadn't run particularly long, or hilly, since the deception pass marathon (the first week of june). not-perfect training for the cle elum ridge 30k. this race, a laid-back affair on the east side of the cascades, features 3700 feet of climbing (most of it in the first few miles). the views and contours reminded me of the front range of colorado; lots of rolling hills, ponderosa pines, and big rocks. the only thing lacking was the mile-high altitude and thinner air.

it turned out to be a great day. sunny, not too warm, with miles of runnable terrain. we could've done without the dirt bikers on the trail...but i'm sure they weren't thrilled to see us, either. not being familiar with the course, my 3.5 hour goal time was completely arbitrary...but i finished in 3:28. self-fulfilling prophesy or past-life experience?

october. two events on the calendar: magnolia run the bluff, and the gunstock trails half marathon. one is our neighborhood 10k, the other is on the north shore of oahu. almost the same thing...
feeling runner-ish at the run the bluff 10k.
photo courtesy of glenn tachiyama.

at last year's run the bluff i surprised myself with a PR for 10k (44:something), even though it's a hilly course. "so what's your goal for this year?" i was asked a couple times. "uh, 43:something?" i answered lamely. no, i didn't believe that. at all. too many slow trail miles, no speed training, no chance.

see what happens when you assume? i went 43:15, shaving more than a minute and a half off last year's time. i have no explanation.

[gunstock trails is oct. 17. report to follow.]

which leaves november and december.

early this year i became emboldened by ambitious friends with audacious goals. they were busy planning and signing up for big, worthy events and it occurred to me that i should do something similar (within my scope, of course). if not now, after all, when? when i'm 55? 60? these legs, while mostly willing and usually reliable, are not getting younger.

so, i decided to attempt five events of 26.2 miles or longer in 2015 (up from two such distances in 2014). that was the goal-setting part.

the goal-achieving began in march with the chuckanut 50k. it continued in may and june with the sun mountain 50k and the DP marathon.

in december i'm signed up for the deception pass 50k, but november is still undecided. the three most likely options:

bellingham trail marathon ~ nov. 7
(a challenging course on some familiar trails)

kill bill's oyster dome 50k ~ nov.14
(four 50Ks in a year would be a huge leap for me)

seattle marathon ~ nov. 29 
(logistically the easiest, and just two weeks before deception, a good long training run for 50k)

i can't decide.


cle elum ridge 30k

3/6 (m: 50-59)
16/52 overall
shoes: altra lone peak 2.5

run the bluff 10k

1/10 (m: 50-59)
13/186 overall
shoes: hoka clifton

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