It’s been a pretty interesting 7 weeks. I ran more miles at the Bandera 100k this weekend than I’ve accumulated over the past 7 weeks. Hence, the “macro taper”.
My goal after running the Chimera 100 mile was to train well, and do well at Bandera. Well, all solid training took a backseat on a 15 miler on Antelope Island on December 1. I was running along and within a minute or two, my left hamstring started to “hurt”. I walked it in, the final 5 miles. Ok, now what? As I always do, I went to see my doctor, Russ Toronto. He is the man. I was diagnosed with an “inflamed peroneal nerve”. If you don’t know what or where this is….it is where the sciatic nerve splits in the back of the hamstring about 3″ above the back of the knee. It’s not pleasant, it doesnt’ allow extension of the hamstring as the hammy rubs against the nerve….causing frustrating pain.
Then it started to snow…and we all know what that means…it’s time to luge. Over the next 3 weeks, no running, but lots of snow moving, bootpacking, uphill “hiking” and a few random 3-4 milers the PN as we’ll call it, was not really getting better. Still no running….lots of luging. I have no problem with that, but as the time went by, I was debating running Bandera. My wife Cheryl was entered in the 50k, so what the hell?, I’ll just go and start, more than likely drop if my PN hurts. On Monday before the race, I jogged 4 miles, very slow. It felt ok, so on the plane we went.
With situations like this, pressure is off for me to perform well. I had no idea if I’d get 1 mile or 62. I have been working alot on that damn luge run, so my fitness was not too bad going into it. Not to mention I’ve been sleeping at 10,000 feet in a Hypoxico Tent. Yah, I”m cheating right? I honestly feel the tent has made a big difference in my cardio….so off we went.
Bandera consists of 2 loops of 50k. They are “technical” for most, for me, the rocks being fixed in the ground are just like a normal trail run. I mentioned to Bronco Billy (Jeff Browning) that the second lap is where I”ll thrive…if I make it that far. Sage Canaday took off..no surprise there. Mac Daddy, Dave James, Josh Brimhall, Paul Terranova, and a few others went on ahead. I started “slow”. But I knew it wasn’t slow. My PN felt fine, so I started dancing on the trail. It had been a while for me, so I was pretty excited to be in the mix. We ran, we jostled. Bronco, myself and Gary Gellin were running along in 9-11th place. Cruising. Jeff and Gary fell off my pace at about 25 ish…..I proceeded to push my “autopilot” button and kept running. Chris Lundstrom and I moved away from Jeff and Gary fairly quick, and after some leapfrogging between Chris and I thru 48 ish, Chris decided to deposit some puke on the trail. I kept running. Chris bailed later on. All I had to do now is keep jogging to stay in 4th. Not a big deal as I really don’t feel warmed up till about 60 ish.
Sage obviously smoked us all, and ran a stellar 813 and change to take Mackey’s record down. As I usually do, I closed well. I didn’t gain much, but didn’t lose any either. I’m not so sure it’s smart to run on no training, but this old man has that autopilot button. I’m not so sure others do. I find it amazing sometimes how I can run 62 miles, and not even blink. Knowing “how” to run far, really makes a difference.
Am I paying the price? Damn right, I”m damn sore right now, but it was worth every minute of it. It never gets old. Perhaps I’ll now go shovel the 2′ of snow we just got at the luge.
Don’t forget the Speedgoat 50k, now has less than 100 spots available, out of 350. So you better get on it if you want to run a nice gentle, easy 50k……sort of.
Now go buy some coffee dammit, I”m going sledding!