Millersylvania 50K Training: Week 1

I’d call it a good week.

I’m using the same training program I used for the Badger Mountain Challenge, with some adjustments. My overall goal is to be fit enough to complete Millersylvania rather than trying to get a great time. To that end, I’ve given myself permission to mix up the long workouts with other aerobic workouts like snowshoeing & Nordic skiing. The Cascades received a LOT of snow over the past few weeks, so I’m happy to have the ‘freedom’ to go play in the snow if time allows.

It’s kind of funny to be starting with three & five mile runs, but I know I need to rein in my desire to go farther & faster. I’m almost 180 pounds right now, and I recognize the need to gradually ramp of my distances. I’ve also decided on paces for each category of run, such as “steady” (13:45/mile), “easy” (15:00/mile), and “recovery” (walk). As my fitness improves, I will change these paces. The easy pace is the hardest — 15:00/mile is a really fast walk or a painfully slow run. It’s like hovering between walking & running and never really committing to one or the other. But right now, my steady pace is slow, and I don’t want to fall into the trap of going too hard on easy runs and not hard enough on the others. So I plod.

The Hubs & I went over to Whidbey Island to work a bit on my parents’ house this past weekend. I had a 5-8 mile steady run on the calendar for Saturday. I’m not fond of running on a treadmill — it’s a last resort in my mind — so I took the opportunity to run at South Whidbey State Park. (I got up early, drove to the park, and then met The Hubs at the house. He got to sleep in – win-win!) It’s a fun place to run. No long climbs or descents, but a fair amount of technical stuff that’ll remind the runner of why lateral stability is important.

That’s the trail – it’s about 6″ wide in places!

I arrived before dawn. Much of this trail is under the forest canopy, and because of the technical nature of the trail I used a flashlight for quite a while after the sun rose. (I also didn’t want to surprise any deer.)

Week 1 ended with three easy-pace miles on the treadmill. Uninteresting but it works. My resting heart rate is a bit high – 58 bpm – but I’ve been dealing with cranky sinuses for weeks now & I’m happy that I’m not in full-blown rhinovirus battle.


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