I was brave enough to sign up for a 50K trail race in June. Maybe it was more about stupidity and ignorance than been brave. The race, Chattooga River 50K, has more elevation gradient than anything around here, so training for it will be interesting.
Tomorrow is my day off from school. Since we're going to Florida this weekend for a family function, I moved my long run to tomorrow. I'm going to try to do 26 miles of mostly trails in Umstead. I mapped out a loop that's about 10 miles of single track and 3 miles of bridle trail there. Two laps gives me 26. This way by the time I'm really tired, hopefully I'll be at the point of no return on the second lap, so it'll force me to finish.
Having paced my wife for the entire Tobacco Road Marathon, next paced a friend a week later at Umstead 100 for 25 miles, I feel 26 mile trail run should be well within my ability as long as I'm patient enough to do it slowly. Pacing my friend during his 100 mile race showed me how to conserve energy and yet still not loose too much time. He was averaging just under 13 min/miles at around 85 mile mark, even with power walks up the hills. So tomorrow I'm going to try to incorporate some power talking into the run, especially at a few undesirable hills. Chattooga River 50K will have far more steeper and longer hills than Umstead, so I better get used to power walking.
Reading Jonathan's blog entries gave me some new idea about how to prepare for long trail runs. We'll see how it works out. Plan to start at 7am when the park opens.