Another beautiful morning for a race in the mountains. We have been so fortunate with the weather during this series. Just like the first race four weeks ago, it rained off and on all week and the people on TV who get paid to "predict" the weather were talking rain off and on all weekend as well.
We arrived at race start under mostly clear skies with temps on the chilly side, about 35 degree F. The 18K course was predominately a replay of the 12 and 15K course with a little extra loop thrown in. The extra loop was part of the Chiquita Trail. It is one of the most easily runnable and enjoyable parts of the entire series so far. My friends and I have finished up in the same order at each race. Jim comes in first among us and wins his age group, then Julie, me, Terry and Mike. There were 108 starters and finishers. Within the first mile we've each pretty much found our groove. For the last three miles I ran alone. There was no one in sight in either direction of me. I ran that rocky downhill alone again but this time I knew I was on the right track. By my watch my time was 2:10, about on target for my pace in the other races of this series, at 11:30-ish.
By the time I drove home and showered, it was 2:00 in the afternoon and raining again. Not a bad day at the races. As predicted in the last post this was pretty much my only mileage for the week. I did get in 1 mile on the treadmill before weights with the personal trainer on Wednesday.
Speaking of the personal trainer, I've had an appointment with him once a week for the last 7 weeks or so. When I signed up I negotiated some extra sessions and my son was taking advantage of those. Although he still goes to the gym his tolerance for being pushed a little extra by the PT has worn out after about three sessions, so for the last two weeks I've worked with the PT twice a week.
My primary goal when I signed up was to gain some upper body and core strength. Every week the PT asks what we going to work on and I always say upper body. He has tried to convince me to add some leg work into the mix. After working the upper body two times with the trainer last week (I've been working the upper on my own at least two other times each week as well), I finally decided to throw legs into the mix on Wednesday.
I've resisted leg work assuming that as a runner, my legs were strong. Boy, oh boy, was I wrong. He worked my legs and it hurt way more than I ever expected it too. Thursday my legs were sore. By Friday they were major sore. Sitting down and standing up were major undertakings. I believe they hurt worse than after any marathon. By Saturday, race morning, they were still pretty stiff and sore. The first few steps of the race, I felt like I couldn't get moving. Fortunatley they finally kicked into gear and the weight session didn't seem to have much of a negative effect on the outcome of the race.
The pain between my shin bone and calf was noticeable during the race, but not so painful that I couldn't run. I iced it when I got home and for most of the afternoon it felt pretty good. By late evening it had knotted up pretty well and walking was painful, especially the first couple of steps. Today my legs are feeling a little livelier post workout and I've continued the ice and Alleve regimen for the shin/calf thing. I plan on sticking to non load bearing cardio this week with only a 15 miler or so planned for the weekend. The 4th and final race of the WTRS is in two weeks. It is 21K on completely different trails. This one includes part of Main Divide Road and Trabuco Trail, which I've run before, in the rain. We'll see what the weather dude's have in store for us this time.
Until then, run happy!