Monday, January 10, 2011

January 9, 2011 - Mt Elden Run - - COLD!!

My training this Winter has been pretty consistent so far.  Coming off an intense Summer & Fall, my focus has been on having a lack of focus… Meaning, I really want to “just run”… nothing too stressful until mid February.  I have been running about 1hr per day during the week and then doing a good long run on the weekend of at least 3hours.

This weekend, I ran from my house to Mt. Elden Summit.  The total run is about 24miles.  This time of year the terrain can be anywhere from snowy.. to muddy.. to icy.. The first 5miles I ran on snow packed trails full of “foot-holes” and slush.  Considering how rough the terrain was my split for this section was a steady 7min pace. For the next 1.5miles leading to the “Elden Gate”, it was pretty smooth sailing as this is entirely on pavement.  Once I got to the gate, I started to make the 5.5mile 2,395ft ascent up Elden Road.  During the winter this dirt road is typically snow plowed to the summit.  As such, at the bottom it is usually muddy.. and at the top it is usually icy.  This trip was no different.  I made the trip up at a good clip… I got from the gate to the summit in a shade over 50min.  Considering the footing, I was pretty happy.  That’s when things got interesting…..

At the top you run about 1mile to get from the first set of towers to the second.  This is the most exposed and has some of the craziest weather.  When I crested the “lip” coming into the first towers, I was blasted in the face with wind gusts that seemed to be 50mph plus… I figured, “hey, I have come this far, why not finish it up”.. Making the 1mile trip over to the summit, I was pelted with ice in the face and hit a few gusts of wind that I would pick me up and throw me over the side.. pretty crazy.  I made it to the top and quickly turned around and headed back down. I was happy to get past the “lip” and head back down the road, but as I started to head down the road, I noticed that my fingers were in serious pain.  I am sure anyone who does “winter sports” has had this experience and will think I am a wuss, but man, my fingers hurt.  I shook them hoping to get some blood flow… then I was breathing on them.. at one point, they hurt so bad, I considering “taking a leak” on them.. not sure if that is something Bear Grylls would recommend, but they hurt so bad it sounded like a good idea.. Thank goodness this was unnecessary, as the lower I got, the warmer the weather turned.. and I can still say that I have never intentional urinated on my fingers…

The rest of the run was a lot less of dramatic… I was happy that I kept a consistent pace and finished the run in just under 3hrs.

Fuel:    18oz of Water with 1.5 scoops of Perpetuem – consumed over entire run.
            1 Hammer Gel at 2hours   

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