The hardest training for the Meet Your Maker 50 is done, but the most important piece is two weeks away.
The roughly 25-mile stretch from Winfield to Hope Pass where I’ll be pacing Sherrie Klover at the Leadville 100 is critical not only because it’ll be my longest – and final long – training run before the MYM50, but also because of the psychological edge that I need it to provide.
I’ve made it through serious training largely unscathed, other than the occasional cranky knees and a nasty case of plantar fasciitis in the right heel, but the effects of the humidity have felt much more harsh on my system than in previous years.
This summer has been considerably more mild and comfortable than in 2011 and 2012 when most days included 90+-percent humidity and 100+-degree temperatures and my system got used to it. My body has really suffered each time the humidity has spiked this summer and it hasn’t adapted like it did in the past. I’ve had good days like last Saturday when the temperature was in the upper 50s, the humidity was low, and 22 miles came easy. I’ve had far more days like Saturday where any distance from 5 to 23.5 miles left me sapped of strength, energy and enthusiasm.
I take confidence in the fact that I had great runs at Pikes Peak in 2011 and Leadville Silver Rush in 2012 in the humidity-free elevation after grinding through the Midwest humidity all summer, but I also was in a better place mentally for those races than I am right now for the MYM50. I think pacing at LT100 will provide the much-needed psychological boost. I need it to.
It’s four weeks until race day in Whistler, I’m mostly healthy and am in unofficial taper mode, but I need to get my head straight. Leadville is a wonderful and inspiring place, and it need it to work its magic for me once more.
This week’s totals:
Total running miles: 51.5 miles
Total vertical gain: 5,278 feet
Time running: 9 hours, 44 minutes