Sunday, June 8, 2008

Good miles and night eyes

This past week I logged some pretty good miles for a guy with two kids under 4 and who has a full time job. I logged what I believe was just under eighty miles for the week. I really took advantage of the alternative commuting deal this week by driving my bike into work a couple times, biking home after work, and then running into work the next day. This gets me 15 miles of running on the day before work even starts. Pretty good deal.

The week until Friday was standard fare. Friday was special. I ran into work, doing the 15 miles at a pretty good pace for my 100-mile race legs (clocking somewhere in the 7:20 range) on some pretty hilly roads. I then worked all day, came home and ate, played with my kids, and went back out running. At 8 PM I met a sizable group at Pineland for a "run to midnight". The group consisted of a lot of the usual suspects with a number of surprise attendees. Check out Ian Parlin's Trail Monster blog for a picture. Set to run the night was Ian and Emma, Jamie (this was his last hurrah before the Western States 100 in three weeks), Eric, Jim and Shawna (sic?), Phil, Allen, and Blaine. The temps were in the low 50s and to my estimate a little cold and clammy. There was a good bit of fog as the warm front was rolling in (leaving us with temps in the 90s today).

The run started nice and easy, but I was feeling pretty energetic so I ran off the front of the group awhile to settle my self and reflect on the day at work. I finally saw the group through the woods and cut through to join the others for the rest of the evening. I ran a bit with Jamie and discussed a number of things, including WS 100 logistics where I will act as his pacer. Around mile 8 we returned to our cars for a refill and some food before we began our repeats of the Campus Loop. I decided to head over to Gloucester Hill with Phil and Allen to get some different terrain on my legs before doing the loops with the group. Phil set the pace pretty quick which I didn't mind but I knew would leave me hurting pretty good later on. Once we returned to our "aid station", Phil hit the road and I rejoined Jamie and the rest of the guys. At this point a few of the others called it quits but decided to hang out a couple hours and head over with the group to Denny's. Unlike the rest, Denny's was not in the cards for me. I had to get my beauty sleep before the kids forced my day to start in the morning.

It was at this point, near the 12.5 mile spot, that I joined the group going for midnight. All told I ran four laps around the Campus Loop. I had a great time, as always, shooting the breeze with Jamie. His excitement for Western States is obvious, as it should be. He is definitely ready for his run to glory. I am extremely lucky to be able to partake in it. I only hope that given his excellent fitness that I can keep up with him! Roughly ten minutes before midnight, Jamie and I called it quits. The big disappoint of the night was that none of us saw any night eyes, or animals caught in our headlamp lights. Other than the fantastical turkey that decided to fall out of its tree near us at the start of the run, there was no other nightlife about, at least that we could see. The irony was that as I was leaving I passed a skunk. Good thing he didn't decide to join us on the trail! At the end of the day, I got in 36 miles of running. A good day.

This morning I ended a good week with a great run with my buddy Jim from L.L.Bean. We knocked out 12 miles at 6 AM, beating most of the heat. By the time we finished, the deer flies were still asleep. As of yet, I have not seen the first one but after temps in the 90s today, I don't suspect my luck will continue for much longer.

1 comment:

mindy said...

Awesome Friday. I'm envious of your superpowers to fend off injury and keep up so many (fast!) miles. Here's to the summer!