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Sunday, April 4, 2010

White Oak Canyon trail - This is a recovery run?

Day 459, April 4, 2010

What was I thinking...ok here's the deal. With the Charlottesville Half Marathon and the Tough Mudder races fast approaching, I needed a way to balance my road and trail running. There are three more weekends before the tough mudder and one of those is the half marathon. An 8 mile trail run the weekend before or the day after the half marathon sounded like a bad idea and I'm not sure how much benefit I would get from waiting until the weekend before the race. But, I really need the trail work. What to do?

As I posted yesterday, I ran the Charlottesville 10 miler and today should have been a recovery day. But I decided that today was the day to try the trail run. I called up a friend and off we went.

We found the lower trail head off of Rte 600 and started out at a leisurely pace up the trail. The first mile was a gentle climb and not too bad. But, then it got steep. The trail was in pretty good shape and there were plenty of waterfalls and views to distract from the pain of climbing. Near the top, the trail leveled out and there was another mile of relatively flat running before reaching Skyline Drive, 1 hour and 12 minutes after starting. Not bad for 5.2 miles....wait a can an 8 mile run on an out and back course be 5.2 miles at half way? I went over to the trail head sign and sure enough, the GPS was dead on. This run was going to be even further than the race yesterday. Fortunately, the down hill running wasn't too bad. I felt ever drop in my quads, but we were able to return to the car in just over 49 minutes. Not a bad pace for the terrain.

I'm sure I'll really feel it tomorrow, but I'm glad I got some experience in on the trails. I also have two weeks to recover before the next race, so I think I should be ready. I'll do some more trail running before May, but I won't tackle anything that long or steep. I need to really start thinking about the other obstacles and figuring out how I will maneuver them. It should be a fun 4 weeks.

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