Calendar's filling up for next year, folks. I've got four races on tap between now and September 1st. One of them is over already. One is a mountain bike race. One isn't even a certainty as I haven't yet registered and I expect it to fill up quickly. And the final one I am registered for, can't wait for and hope to safely train for.
|Alena and me pre-mud Diamond Trail Mud bath|
The First is already over.
Last weekends Dirty Duo saw the dawning of new socks, a new partner and yet another win of the relay. A third partner in as many years and yet another win with an even faster time. In 2011 I ran the 25 km course in 2:21 and partnered with the great Kim Steed of Steed Cycles. Our combined time was 4:14. Last year, with Nomad and fellow Marx Conditioning disciple, Arthur Gaillot, I ran 2:25 for a combined time of 4:03. With yet another Marx Conditioning/Nomad, Chris Johnston, I ran 2:23 for a combined time of 3:58. My times are relatively stable but the bike times keep improving. Eventually someone will get themselves a real fastey of a runner and rattle my relay successes. Until then, I'll keep racing. This year the power was in the socks as Monika Marx watched her athletes succeed in every discipline. Special thanks to Monika and Arthur for all your support that day.
The second isn't a certainty.
On March 25th registration opens for Rainshadow running's Sun Mountain 50k. This classic is timed with the bloom of wild flowers in the Methow Valley, near Winthrop. It comes highly recommended by trail legends like Adam Way and Josh Barringer. I do believe Dave Papineau even enjoyed himself down there. Everything is crossed at this point in hopes that I am able to register and get in to this one. The race itself is scheduled for May 19th. After last years 4:40 at Baker lake, I can't wait to see what I can do over 50k this year.
|Handles like a Lotus - looks like a 29'r|
One is a mountain bike race.
Attempting to add some variety back into my training life, I registered for a classic. One I've done before and one that is either loved or hated by many and nowhere in between: Test of Metal. Late last month I entered back into the world of mountain biking by selling my 2007 Yeti 575 and bringing home a Specialized FSR Comp Evo 29'r. Yesterday's bombing decent of Ned's was all I needed to feel confident that my decision was right. And I used the command post like a rented mule. On-the-fly seat adjustment is a great addition to biking... along with 29 inch wheels, of course. As for Test of Metal, I am yet to break the elusive 3:30 barrier and would love to. I've been close before so perhaps 29 inches of rolling steam will help make up the time I need. I'm really looking forward to the training variety that this will bring to my running brain.
To finish my season in serious style, Meet Your Maker. This 50 mil'r was such a huge success last year and I loved being involved in the relay. Although the elevation gain and huge distance is daunting, the course is second to none and can only be described as beautiful. Where else can you take an 11 minute break on a Peak to Peak Gondola?
After a month in the French Alps, I arrive back in Canada on August 29th with very little time to reset my internal clock. I'm hoping my time overseas will be as much a family stay-cation as it will be a time for some quality long training runs in places I've only dreamed of or looked at on Google images.
Although it's not a busy season I am very excited about my commitment to:
- racing less
- mixing things up with variety
- running for adventure and resting more
- and staying healthy and energized by eating well and getting plenty of massage
I'm looking forward to using my time to help out at races in as many ways as I can and also continuing to put people in amazing Salomon gear at 5 Peaks events.