This is the year I'm making the jump to 50 miles. I have long held my five year goal (which sometimes changes to three depending on the day you ask) of running a one hundred mile race, and I realize the only way to get there is to keep increasing my mileage. So why not do it this year? To be quite honest I'm nervous as hell, but looking at it with the goal to finish. It worked out well for me that a friend will be heading up to Ithaca for the Cayuga Trails 50 inaugural race and asked for company. So I filled out the registration and mailed a check--old school, right?! Well, as it turns out, I got it all done in time and am registered.
Then the nerves kicked in.
Just over five months to get my training in and and be ready to toe the line. I'm excited, nervous, scared and looking forward with anticipation. Although the June 8th 50 is my goal distance, it is not my only goal for this running season. First up is the goal of setting an FKT, or fastest known time. Fastest known times don't have a ton of hoopla surrounding them and are most often based on the honesty policy (because there is still one in the ultra running world). The more photos, watches and documentation you can take, the better. Peter Bawkin gave a basic write up of what it means to get an FKT and I can cross number one off my list!
That's right you heard it first, right here. A friend and I are shooting for early May to set the men's and women's unsupported speed record for the West Rim Trail. It's a 31 miles trail that runs south to north in northern PA. I'm really excited and focusing on both distances. I think the West Rim trip will work out well in timing before the 50 miler.
There are a few other races that I am planning through the summer: Quadzilla, in July, a really fun 15k that just gets you used to some hilly speed. It's also a great transition run into fall races. I'll most likely also be running the Blues Cruise 50k in October. This will be my third year racing, and after a 43 minute drop last year, I want to trim off even more. If you are looking for a great single loop fall 50k, look no further. This is not only an incredibly well managed race, it's marked perfectly, aid stations are manned with the most amazing people (including a hugger at the marathon mark) there are cheeseburgers being grilled on the course and a great pre run meal served up hot and fresh as you cross the line. It is worth coming back to year in and out. They also reverse the loop every year so it makes for a fun change up. I plan to throw a few more in there..even entertaining the Oil Creek races if I'm fast enough to get registered as it sells out amazingly fast...more decisions to be made as the days tick on and I gauge how my training is going.
My training this season is focused. I spent my off season reading nutrition and training books and studying training plans. Base mileage will follow the metabolic efficiency training (here) to build aerobic fitness along with my base, and then I will up the intensity, focusing on long tempo runs, intervals and increasing my lactic threshold. I will take on these challenges head on. I couldn't be more excited about them.
It is always my goal to better myself, whether with race times, distances or knowledge. I would like to help others meet and surpass their goals, in fitness, running, and health. This is my forum until my training and schooling is completed; my place to share what I have learned, and am still learning.
Cheers to a great season ahead and to challenging yourself with making your goals a reality.