Attempt at Hill Work

Thursday’s workout was supposed to be 1K intervals at my half-marathon pace. Because the HM I’m training for is really hilly I figured I’d switch that to hill work instead, focusing on 1K intervals based on cadence instead of pace.

BA HA HA. Yeah no.

I’d “run” at Chamna on Wednesday – it’s still largely covered in snow, and one section I ran had no human tracks on it. I’ve put run in quotations because my pace was nearly a 20:00/mile. I keep at it, though, because all this running in snow is good work for the legs & hips (great mobility & flexibility on a side-to-side plane, something runners frequently lack). If Chamna is still covered in snow, it stands to reason that Badger would also be covered in snow. I s’pose I was hopeful that they’re been enough folks on the trails up there that they’d be well-packed and runnable.

BA HA HA. Yeah no.

Parts of the trail were as I’d hoped, but there were places where the snow had drifted that are much deeper. I’m pretty gun-shy when it comes to running on snow if there’s a chance I’ll post-hole: I believe that’s the mechanism of injury that did the damage to my left knee two years ago that sealed my DNF fate at the Badger Mountain Challenge & sent me on this journey of “WTF is wrong with my knee?” and trying to mitigate the damage that’s already done. Thus, even if I can get to ‘respectable’ pace, I’m likely to slow down so I don’t risk the sudden stop & knee-twisting spin that happened on Candy two years ago. I was pretty much guaranteeing Badger would be a slow slog, but with the conditions I found it nearly impossible to get my cadence into the desired range. I started to run the west side of the hill along the Skyline trail, but the snow was just too deep for me to comfortably navigate it. That left me with the option of running & down the access road, and that’s no picnic with the snow, either. While it’s not as nasty as the backside of Candy Mountain, there are large-ish pieces of basalt along the road, and when that’s mostly covered in snow they’re more of a tripping/falling/twisting my knee/making me cry hazard. My slowness, combined with the wind & the cold, led me to truncate the workout.

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