Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Taper Time - 10 days til Badger 100!

 To say that I am looking forward to running this race is an understatement.  I mean really, who wouldn't want to run a race put on by these guys?

This training season has been a series of tests and challenges.  From losing my big brother at the end of May to COVID (my favorite person since birth), coming back to my busiest work season, spending a week on the couch with a cold (first time in YEARS that I have been sick), and lastly - and this one was a real kick in the pants - pulling a back muscle while choking on my recovery drink. Ironic, no?  There have been so many times when I could have decided that this wasn't the year, but the thought never crossed my mind - mainly because I REALLY want to do this race!  I love these people and I have only met one of them (the best one, in my opinion) in person.  Yes, at some point the race will cease to be fun, but I will approach the start line with so much gratefulness that I will have plenty to carry me through.  

I met with my crew/pacer/little sister/daughter (yes, all in one) today to finalize race and travel plans.  Fawn is a pro at this, and she and I are usually similar mindsets when running long races - all business, little small talk - so it just works. Here are pics of my pacing and nutrition spreadsheets - sorry, I was lazy so I just took pics of the computer screen.

Of course, everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.  But, I like starting with a plan.

As it looks now, race day temps will go from mid 60's to mid 80's, and they aren't anticipating rain during the race, but really, who knows?  We will be prepared for anything.  One thing doing these races has taught me is adaptability.  Anything can happen, and you just have to roll with it and consider it a good story for after the race is over.

I am really hoping for this race to be a celebration of life.  Mine and my brother's.  It will be a great time to meet new people, cheer for those who look strong, and encourage those who are suffering.  And, in the meantime, hopefully I will learn a thing or two about myself.  I usually learn something in ultras, whether I intend to or not, so let's see what the lesson is this time.

Fawn will be updating FB during the race. She will be running the last 20 miles with me, so there may be a gap, but we'll update after we are done, and once I get home and rest up a bit, I will do a race recap for you guys.  Send some positive thoughts or prayers before you go to bed on July 31st, as I head into the nighttime hours.  Every little bit helps!  

Happy Running! 

Monday, July 5, 2021

3 weeks? Yikes

According to my training software - which loves to taunt me with the countdown to the Badger 100 miler, I am a little over three weeks from my race.  Three.  Weeks.  

This is the first time I have trained for a 100 miler over the summer, and it has been...interesting.  I have about 600 miles on my legs since the training cycle started in March, and I am looking at about 12 hours of running per week for the next couple of weeks. It seems like my body is responding well to the training - I am a little creaky for the first few steps in the morning, but other than a little stiffness, all is well.  

 Finally, over this last week, my runs are starting to get "easier" (sucking less).  The humidity isn't feeling quite as stifling as it has and the heat is a little less oppressive.  On most runs. I am hoping the slight difference in temps in Wisconsin and slightly lower humidity give me a bit of a boost.  Current conditions:

Either way, in a little over three weeks, I am running 100 miles on what looks to be a beautiful rail trail (old railroad track converted to a walking / running path).  The crew putting this race on are top notch humans, so I know it will be a great event.  I am looking to have fun, but also to push myself depending on how I am feeling on that day.  

I am getting my race day nutrition fine tuned on my long runs, and I think I am close to having it dialed in.  This is the first 100 miler that I have trained for that I have really paid attention to my nutrition, and tracking my calories during my efforts, and it is paying off.  I am planning on getting a fair amount of my calories in liquid form (Skratch Superfuel and Tailwind), and supplementing with calorie dense foods at the aid stations, averaging at least 200 calories per hour. Because of the way my heart rate reacts to caffeine in the heat (soars), I will be staying away from that until I really need it (about 2 am during the race), except for the occasional sip of Coke at aid stations - its the nectar of the Gods when you need a quick boost.

Travel arrangements are set, thanks to my pacer/crew person/top running buddy, Fawn, and it is looking to be a great trip all around.  Ready to get out there and see what running 100 miles at 50 years old feels like.  This will also be my first time flying to a 100 miler so trying to get off of the plane when we land back in NO should be entertaining.

Big shout out to my coach and good friend, David Theriot.  He has been a great resource for nutrition and training guidance, and I am looking forward to working with him through Badger 100 and into the Arkansas Traveler 100 (October 2nd).  If you are interested in running an ultra, and want some expert guidance, David is your guy!  Check out his info here:  https://www.theriot.run

Tapering in a couple of weeks, so I will plan a post about packing for a 100 miler and outlining the gear that goes into these races.  In the meantime, here is a quick video made at the inaugural Badger 100 in 2019, if you are interested.

Happy Running!