Another PR on my 2.5 mile hill climb. Last week I took 1:30 off my best and today I took an additional 26" off with my HR one beat lower than last week. I stopped to pick up a penny too (I learned from Paula Newby-Fraser that it is bad luck to not pick up a penny before a race. Now I can't get it out of my head and am too scared to ignore it). During my taper for my first 50 mile race I ran 15:56 on Sanitas so I think this week might be another hard effort up to see how I compare. I've never been as strong on hill climbs as I am right now. A combination of double baby jogger, very hard focus on weight training, and also 1-2 hard bike workouts a week that focus on strength. It shows on the scales too as I have gotten my weight up to ~150 on a good day. After some runs I am still hitting in the 145 range though.
And I have gotten tons of comments via e-mail regarding my strategy for Leadville. To be clear, Justin put words in to my mouth and made an assumption. In my comment I said that a "friend suggested" which is far from me saying what I will be doing. I honestly have no idea how I will run. Not a clue. When I am jogging very lightly and almost uncomfortably slow I am hitting about 8:30 pace. This is one minute per mile faster than Matt Carpenter's course record... or in other words my recovery jogging effort is a suicidal pace. And there in lies the real conundrum. I do believe that running too slowly is very stressful on the body, so all I can imagine I will do is stay as relaxed and easy as possible and exert as little effort as possible in the first 50 miles and let the fatigue come to me rather than chase it. I will wear a HR monitor and hold my HR to a very low ceiling in the first 50. My only other real goal involves the number of calories and ounces of fluid I take in before half way. I feel that nutrition is my strong point which I learned from Ironman. Being able to run a 2:50 marathon after 6 hours of hard swimming and biking requires that you eat a lot. In 15 Ironmans my slowest over-all time was 9:50. For running my longest run so far has been 10:30... so beyond this I have zero plans or clues as to what is going to happen.
I may feel amazing and strong and positive or I may be crapping myself and weeping for my mom. I don't know and I think it's a waste of energy to assume or try to predict. But I do believe I am capable of going under 9 hours for the first half and then under 11 hours for the second half. Sub 20 hours, which has been my goal all along.
And there are still the possibilities of either a DNS or a DNF. Although I am pretty sure that my pacer will not allow either.