This was a tough week and it was for no apparent reason. Leaves me shaking my head, but was also able to do some great work. I definitely wanted a day off, but ended up taking two, but it led to a gnarly Sunday run, so, cuss works out.
Monday - after yesterday's long run I felt surprisingly good! The weather was cussy so I opted to take a stroll into Grafton and run the dirt roads. Grafton has an awesome dirt road loop that can be 8 or 12. I figured on 8 with waning daylight and having brought the girls. I was hoping for no traffic and like a mind reader I was able to see the future: not one car. I then foresaw free spirited, tight bodied and amazingly breasted women with NLT's, rock hard cushions, with no inhibitions or shame falling from the sky in desperate need of Ferencness: my ability to see the future ceased to exist... But what the cuss, it was worth a try.
The run was awesome and relaxing. It finishes down a long winding road that leads into the finish, which was great to finish the last 12 min downhill.
Wednesday - I've been very happy running the White Dot trail behind the house and insanely enjoy the switchbacks. The off balance running of the hardened snow is paying off and I feel adapted and used to it. It helps being a phenomenal athlete with balance like a jungle cat and the agility of mythical creatures... No big deal. I had to flip the switch of the headlamp and ended feeling very relaxed after a job stressed day. Very cool way to end a day.
Friday - I was gearing up for the Hoot Toot and Whistle snow shoe race in Readboro VT on Saturday so I only hustled 4 miles on some dirt roads. I am envisioning my fitness returning, and really want instant results. But that wouldn't be fun... Haha (not funny, it sucked huge bean bags missing time). I thought a little rest of a day but still running was going to pay dividends. As always, I was right!
Saturday - Hoot Toot and Whistle Snow shoe race in Readboro VT. The last time I came over I left with a W and was in killer shape. This time I'm like a barbarian: I have the tools and weapons but they are blunt and dull. The only thing I can do is muscle and pound away until the competition's will gross tired and hope it is enough to get me to the finish line. Every thing I do now is for the greater good of races in May, so I'm going to push the redline until I crack. So no matter what, its going to be a great effort day and huge step in the fitness. I'm done trying, a former mentor once told me that there isn't a try, only a do. Thanks Yoda.
The race course was a point to point with a lot of single track. I made the ride with Greg and his beautiful wife, Jen. This would be Jen's first snow shoe race and it is a great one to be the first. I was thinking of a plan that would benefit my racing fitness and here it was: get to the single track first and dictate the pace but blast all systems as long as you can. Simple plan.
Greg is world record 35-40 4x800 shape right now and I wasn't concerned with him or anyone else, just concerned with the execution of my race plan and if I would make it to the finish line still running.
They said "go," and I unleashed hell on myself (and I imagine everyone else) to start the race. I was first to the single track and kept on pushing. It was only a matter of time before Greg's world record fitness passed me, but I was going to work as hard as I could. Greg and I gapped the field and I was all systems, and I was making it hurt.
Greg eventually passed me and pulled away by about 10-15 seconds. We settled into an honest pace, but Greg seemed to be effortless. It was just enough to be a great motivator for me to keep digging. as it turned out there wasn't a lot of race left, which I was thankful for, and we went 1, 2 in a great paced race. The terrain was tough footing but awesome. Great day. Jen had a blast and had a great day as well.
I needed a few moments after the race to regroup my composure, but recovered and felt awesome.
The best thing was I by the end of the day, the headache I had for almost two weeks was gone! Cuss yea!!!!
Sunday - Waking up without a headache was as if God confirmed I was the second coming or finding out my true hero status as the last hope.
I Voltroned with Greg at his place to get epic and run a 3 hour trail run that would circumnavigate Pisgah State Park. We were to hit every major climb but one. Cuss yea! The weather was epic and cooperative, so my people on Mt. Olympus got my memo.
Greg, myself and the girls began by running to a side of the park I hadn't been to. We climbed to a great eastern looking vista to see Monadnock off in the distance. This is where the true adventure started bc Greg hadn't run this loop in a few years. We had to cross a couple beaver ponds which was exciting, always a good way to see if you weigh too much and kept in rolling.
It was great to hit places in the park I hadn't been to before. Especially when those places did bring me to recognizable trails and junctions. My only requests were for 3 hours and included the switchback climb that is in the 50k race, which we hit very far into the run.
The weather was unreal. I carried a pack with water and ended up stashing my long sleeve in it. I had great warm gloves and was able to haul around in a t-shirt. Great day, and a Ron Jeremy huge day! My ability to run is is gaining and sharpening is in the near future. Very cool, very pumped, very grateful, and very awesome.