Wednesday, June 3, 2015

SRM WEEK 8 OF 20: Pleasanton Ridge Trail Run

This ended up being a low mileage week with only three runs, but all three of them were more challenging & sufficiently different from most of what I've been putting my legs through over the last nine months or so that I still feel like it was a pretty productive week training-wise.

First, there were of course my two speed(ish) workouts. Normally I would have done an easy run Friday, taken Saturday off, & then done my long run on Sunday, but this week I had plans to run trails with friends in the East Bay on Saturday. We were planning on 12 miles, and since a) I'd done two speed workouts already this week for the first time in many many months, b) I almost never run trails, and c) this would be my longest trail run ever by 100%, I figured it was smartest of me to take Friday off & then tack on a few easy miles Sunday depending on how I felt after the trail run.

Jen, Cathryn, Jess, and KP scoped out the situation at Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park in the East Bay, and Layla, bt, Debbie, & Amanda joined as well, so there ended up being a solid group of us.

Trail runners were indeed mighty that day.
(As always, carrying on the proud tradition of awkward running photos.
I call this one the "Hurry-up-I-have-to-pee.")

For the next 2.5-3 hours we ran-hiked along dirt trails over golden hills and did our best not to spook the cattle.

There were a good number of hills and many of them were quite steep, so we definitely did a fair amount of hiking as well as actual running. Different people turned back at different points, & the last group of us went out five miles and then tacked on a two-mile loop, which saw both our fastest miles (sub-10, baby!) as well as potentially the longest, steepest hill I have ever "run" in my life. utterly fail when it comes to communicating the actual steepness you're dealing with.

If it looks like we're kind of dragging ourselves up, it's because we were.

As a non-trail runner, the downhills were definitely the trickiest thing for me, of which there were many (particularly on the way back).

Jen's selfie attempt becomes an artsy shot of me.

Then, of course, there's the aftermath.


I don't get to do a ton of social running thanks to my schedule (or much trail running thanks to where I live), so it's always super fun to get in some miles with friends on new and different terrain.

Thanks for a fantastic morning, ladies! :)

~*~*~SRM WEEK 8 OF 20~*~*~

Grand Total: 28 miles

    * 8.2 easy
    * 7.8 speed/tempo(ish)
    * 12 trail/long

    No strength work this week because apparently I can't get myself to bed on time lately. Mostly I blame the daylight for consistently tricking me into thinking it's earlier than it is. This is fast becoming a serious problem that I'm not entirely sure how to solve.

Monday: I did nothing but rest & recover on Monday. PSA: Do not run 14 miles & then forget to eat anything but roast pork while drinking heartily.

Tuesday: 2 warm up / 4 progression / 2 cool down = 8 speed

    I don't know if I would normally call this workout "speed," but that's how it was listed in my little mini-intro-to-speed plan I'm doing, so what the hey. I was a little hesitant since lately any amount of fast running has angered the gods of my right leg, but after the whole engaging-the-power-ray experiment went well during Sunday's 14 mile long run, I decided to give it a try. And it was not horrible! Hard from a cardio standpoint, yes, but the leg held up pretty darn well.

Wednesday: Karate.

Thursday: 2 warm up / 15 x 1:00/1:00 fartleks / 2.2 cool down = 8 speed

    McMillan says the actual pace of the fartleks don't really matter; the point is just to run "pretty hard" for a minute, then recovery for a minute, wash/rinse/repeat. This, I have no qualms about calling speed work. I still clearly have some work to do to get my speed back, but I was happy to see that I could push it pretty hard & still have my right leg feel okay and get through all 15 feeling like I could have done more.

Friday: Rest

Saturday: 12 trails

    My schedule called for 16-17, but at 2.5+ hours, I feel like this run got the job done time and effort-wise. We spent almost the entire run either running or hiking up steep hills at a good clip, with only one significant pause (5-10 minutes or so) plus a few other quick ones for water/fuel/etc. Much has been made of running different types of terrain in order to work different muscles, and that much was *definitely* accomplished.

Sunday: 8 easy Rest

    Another way I can tell the trail run was a solid "long" workout is that WOW, did I have some sore glutes & hamstrings the next day! Also, I can tell I was using my feet more effectively as well. They definitely have that sore-from-hard-work feeling (as opposed to the overdoing-it/injury-type soreness). I probably would have done a shorter easy run if I hadn't been so sore, but as it was, letting my body recover seemed like the smarter choice.

Next week, my SRM training officially officially starts.

Dare I say it:



  1. I'm always amazed at how much more fatigued trail running leaves me. I'm almost never sore from running, but I'm typically sore after 5+ miles on trails.

  2. Is that your arch taping, like the article you referenced referred to? How did it work?

    1. It was a first attempt. He didn't specify exactly how he did it, so I googled a bunch & it seems like there's a lot of different ways to do it. This one seemed simplest (ie, the easiest for me to not screw up), but it didn't really feel like anything. I tried it again today & basically discovered I have to stretch it as tight as it goes, & then it does actually feel like there's some extra support.

  3. Ooof dirt tan, which always looks like dirt at first until you realize, nope! Ha ha

  4. Looks like a fun morning out. I like the idea of trail running and have sometimes done it but the trails around here are just full of ruts and roots and rocks. I get a little freaked out that I'm going to fall and break something.

  5. So great to see you and run together! Glad we didn't run into any trail-blocking angry cows this time. ;)