Coach Spencer Runs in the Woods

Coach Spencer Runs in the Woods

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Nice Runs Over Break

Nothing earthshattering, but I had some nice runs over the Thanksgiving break. Good to get back into the swing of things and enjoy some down time from school.

Wednesday- 1 hour at Beatty Park in Matthews with some WHS runners. We train here a few days a week over the summer but it's been a little while since I've been. Rooty as always and those roots were hidden under the leaf cover this time but no one fell.

Thursday- 1 hour at Fisher Farm Park in Davidson. This one was a new one to me. I was up at my parents for Thanksgiving & planned on running at North Meck Park but changed my mind the night before. I got a little lost before I understood the concept of these trails (Part of that was b/c I went backwards, apparently.). If you just follow green, you have a 2.8 mile loop or something like that. There are also blue and black spurs here & there, but it all comes back into the green... at least I think. There are a total of about 4 miles of trails here from what I gather. I went on all of them at least once. You go through woods & open fields. I kind of liked the open fields. Some of the trails in the woods were a little too tight to get much flow. Felt like they were trying to cram too much trail into small patches of woods. Then again, I guess the green trails were pretty easy to run. The black diamond had lots of little 6' dips and quick turns. Hadn't rained in 3 days but the trails were still a lot more muddy than Beatty the day before. I'm sure I'll go back to Fisher Farm Park since my parents live 4 miles from there, but this is not a destination trail. The fog & 45 degree temps of the morning were half the fun.

Friday- 1 hour on Smoketree Trail + gravel & paved roads, Beech Mountain. 25 degrees & 20-30 mph sustained winds with gusts over 50 mph! A little snow on the ground too. I can't describe how much I love the cold & miserable conditions. Wore tri shorts, tights, long sleeves, short sleeves, thin Brooks Infiniti jacket & toboggan. I was a little toasty under the jacket when climbing, but my ears & face stayed cold the whole time. Legs were perfect. I was a lot more cold watching Wren sled afterwards! I've done this loop a few times when I've been up here. It follows some abandoned dirt roads that have washed out. Rocky. Passes a couple of small waterfalls, which had icicles on them this time. When I was on this trail over the summer, I saw a bear scampering away from me. I think they were smarter than me this time & found a warm place to be.

Saturday- 2:10 on several trails & roads on Beech Mountain. I had planned on starting at 4900' where we stayed, but instead, got dropped off at 3400' and made my way up. Total climb of 2900'. Ugh. After injury and illness, I don't think I've run over an hour in the 2 months since the 24 hour race. 2:10 on rolling terrain would've been OK, but the fact that is was my longest run and by far the hardest, ugh... I really struggled, but got through it.

Sunday- Thought about running. Decided against it. Calves, achilles, sciatic nerve enjoyed the day off.


David Ray said...

Nice. Love to try out new trails. Good job running over the holidays.

Lynne said...

Sounds like some really nice trail running. What kind of long runs are you going to do in preparation for the 24 hour race?

Coach Spencer said...

Lynne, preparation? :)

I suppose I could muster up a 3 hour run this weekend, a 4 hour run the following weekend, and against my better judgment, I'll probably end up running a long run or two in the mountains 10 days out from the race just because I like to run in the mountains in the cold and check out new trails, as David noted. I guess that 3 hour run this weekend should be on asphalt to prepare for Morganton.

Jason said...

I enjoyed those photos. They really get you in the mood for some winter running. Thanks for sharing coach.

Rachel said...

Great pictures! Snow!