Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Uwharrie 40 this weekend

A new year, a new race season awaits. I love "the renewal" that the new year brings. Opportunities for reflection on what went well and what needs improvement (in ultras AND in life!), and opportunities for new challenges, new friendships, and continued personal growth. Uwharrie 40 has become my traditional first race of the new season, because I love the RDs, the trail, and the entire event. Read my report on the 2005 race here, and view pics of the 2007 event here. The NC folks know how to show the VHTRC a great time, and the team aspect of the race is really fun.

My recovery from Hellgate went smoothly, and I transitioned into my Uwharrie build-up with no problems. I have been training with a group of friends who are Boston Marathon-bound, and I jump into their 3:20 pace group training runs whenever it fits my schedule. We ran lots of good tempo runs and long intervals off the track for the month of January, and now the gang is hitting the track, and I am racing trails. Since I will be racing a lot in the next few months, I am experimenting with racing/recovery/repeat. If anyone has tips for me on this (Goat? Meredith? Anyone?), I welcome your advice.

Looks like I will be getting into Bull Run (yay!), and I am seriously thinking about's to 2008!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Last week I went to hear my friend and fellow counselor Anne Lundblad speak about balancing speed and endurance while training for endurance events. Anne should know all about this topic--she is a many-time member of the US 100K World Cup Team, and was the silver medalist at the 2005 World Cup 100K. Basically, she can run really fast for a very long time (her PR at 100K is somewhere in the sub-7:50 range). Yowsah!

During her talk, Anne shared her training tips as well as tips for balancing life's other demands while training at a high level: balancing working full-time and being a mom, racing and training, and indulgence and sacrifice. She is also a real believer in the power of positive mental imagery, especially using affirmations during the race such as "You are strong, fast, and tough." During the past two years at Hellgate, I used a similar mantra as I was running through the rocky dark: "Smooth, light, and steady." It really helped me and I give Anne all the credit, as she has been very helpful to me over the years whenever I asked her for training advice. I am looking forward to using lots of her training tips as I prepare for my 2008 races...including a *possible* 100-miler...YIKES.

On Sunday, I took Anne and her hubby Mark on a 17-miler on the country roads near White Hall...we had a great time catching up, sharing our WS100 experiences and race goals for 2008, and I loved showing them one of my all-time favorite running loops. When we were done, Mark went on for another hour or so, while Anne and I met her mom and daughter Emma for coffee at...where else but Greenberry's!

A great run in the country with good friends, with coffee afterwards... balancing life's simple pleasures!