Sunday, May 8, 2011

Week Summary (May 8)

   Gold Hill Trail Exploration: 4.6 miles (+1,408 ft gain); 11:11 pace
   Chocolate Factory OB: 5.7 miles (+419 ft gain); 9.28 pace
   Ophir Loop: 5.4 miles (+914 ft gain); 11:29 pace
   Iron Mountain Loop: 10.8 miles (+401 ft gain); 9:59 pace
   Emma Quarry OB: 5.5 miles (+577 ft gain); 9:58 pace

Week Total: 32 miles (+3,718 ft gain); 5:32:56 on the trail

A good week on the trail resulted in my first 30-plus weekly total.  The miles add up when I get out there most everyday. Good discipline at lunch and goals for the weekend help. A week that started with warm, sunny days ended with gusty winds of the weekend cold snap. The winds hit about halfway through the Iron Mountain Loop, but I was thankful that the cold held off until later Saturday night. I am very satisfied that I reached my goal of a 10 minute per mile pace at Iron Mountain where I basically peeled a minute off each mile from my previous effort a couple weeks ago (the subject of my first Trail Option post). The joy of that long run returned this weekend and I was able to augment the effort with a pace target. The Iron Mountain Loop is a great circling trail with a mile or so of road thrown in; I'll have the route posted soon.

A couple years ago I received some disheartening bloodwork results. I missed many, if not most, of the standardized targets, on a few I failed to come close. A very good friend was battling a life-threatening lymphoma, and though a few blood statistics seemed somewhat trivial, I carried a new sense of healthful awareness. Jim is doing very well know, thankfully, and he continues to share a better outlook with many of us. The combination of the big and the small of two years ago provided a new outlook on personal health. Because my doctor uttered the words "diabetes" and "bad cholesterol" primarily, I believe, to get my attention, the numbers weren't THAT bad, I altered my diet and running became a much more common activity.  When Darren took up ultra training, I became really interested as any moderately competitive sibling might and, early last fall, longer trail runs and near-daily office runs were added to my schedule. 

Why I have come to enjoy the mere thought of trail running and why I hope to approach distances I can only imagine today will be explored throughout the Trail Option posts to come. But it seems I have already attained one of the more important goals of this effort. Tuesday I received bloodwork results from my annual (or so) physical in late April. "Perfect" was the doctor's word this time.  If we can believe the standards, then I'm nicely standardized. And I'll take it, and keep going.

In other news, the Young Mountain Runners team was busy this weekend:

-Dennis and Mary (Dad and Mom to some of us) ran their first competitive 10K of the season.  Although the classifications have not yet been posted, Dad is pretty sure they finished at the top of their respective categories because they were passing surprised 30-somethings as they finished.

-After his MRI, Darren received a go to start training again. He's getting back on the trail, so I'll only have a week or so to out-distance him (for once in my life).  As always he'll soon be impressing and motivating us all to keep at it.

-Bryan in Plano, Texas, ran his first 5K of the season in a local charity event.           

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