Monday, February 15, 2010

2/15/10: A Bunch of Sissies

I was supposed to run the George Washington Birthday Marathon this weekend. I was really looking forward to this race, as I had a great time there last year.

They ended up cancelling the race because of the recent snowstorms. Seriously?! I mean it’s a road marathon, and the snow was finished 5 days before the race.

Ah well, what can you do? I’ve been trying to get a lot of miles in with the snowy conditions. My runs have been slow, and my legs are shot, but hopefully it’s making me tougher. All of my runs are on a mix of packed snow, slush, and deep snow.

The trails are still beautiful, and the forests are still just covered with snow. I was kicking myself for not taking my camera with me yesterday, as there were really some great shots.

Next race up is the Seneca Greenway 50K on March 10th. They are thinking about rescheduling the GW Marathon for March 6th, but I’m not totally sure how that will fit into Boston and other race plans.

Enjoy all that snow, everybody!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

2/10/10: Snowpacalypse!!!

So in case you haven't heard, we've been getting A LOT of snow in DC. We had about 2 feet over the weekend and another foot last night. In a city where a dusting shuts everything down, it is complete pandemonium here!

What can one do when school is closed, roads are closed, and restaurants/stores are closed? Go for a run! I was in Chicago over the weekend and traveling some for work as well, but I managed to get in a great run on Tuesday morning. I brough along the camera and got some good sunshine pictures of a buried DC.

Right now I'm stuck on a train trying desparately to get back home to DC, but hopefully I can get back our for another run tomorrow morning and take some more pictures of the fresh powder!

(Sunrise in Rosslyn)

(Some big ol' piles of snow)

(Iwo Jima)

(Glad that's not my car!)

(Field by Iwo Jima)

(Sunrise over DC)

(Looking out over the Potomac)
(About to cross Memorial Bridge)
(National Mall)

Saturday, February 6, 2010

2/6/10: Trials of Miles, Miles of Trials

Recently I read Once a Runner. I've heard about this book for years. It's supposed to be THE novel about running. However, the thing was hardly published at all, and the only copies you could get were the rare used copy for hundreds of dollars. They finally republished it more broadly, so I picked it up and gave it a read.

Well, it delivered. It's something like a cross between F Scott Fitzgerald and Chariots of Fire. It's very well written, truly describes distance running better than I've ever seen it described, and it gets you REALLY fired up about serious running.

The main character, Quentin Cassedy, talks about the "trial of miles" and "miles of trials". The basic idea is that you get fast by putting in miles. Lots of them. Every week, every month, every year. Sure speed workouts, fartleks, and tempo runs are important, but the person is wins races is the one who gets his/her ass out there every day and runs himself/herself into the ground.

Put that way, it sounds kind of bleak. However, a few lucky people actually enjoy the act of running. I'm fortunate enough to be one of those people. Anyway, I've been putting in my on miles of trials over here. Hit 5 weeks in a row of 80+ miles. Felt great throughout. I had a great race at the Cat 8 and came in second, some fast long runs with the road runners, some of the fastest track workouts I've ever done, and some big mileage weeks (hit 95 one week).

This last week I dialed back bigtime. I got really sick and was also traveling a ton for work. My right leg also felt pretty tweaked, so I think it worked out for the best that I took it easy. I'm healthy again now and feeling good. Today I went for a 20 mile run, and it was awesome to get back out there and hammer it.

I'm signed up for the George Washington Birthday Marathon next week. Definitely very far from peaking for this, but it should be a fun tough run and good fitness indicator. I'll be sure to let you all know how it goes!