Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Funk is Officially Gone

Its official. I am no longer in a funk. I have had a couple good days of training.

Tuesday morning I was up at 5 to rum some intervals. My legs felt fresh for the first time since Chattanooga. My sprints were rather fast, but the recoveries were super slow. I am finding it is hard to really recover in 30 seconds, but I guess that is the point. I am really having to slow down on the recoveries so I can hit each sprint hard. I was even able to run the uphill sprints well. It was glad to finally feel fast again.

Wednesday morning, I was up again early to get on the bike. Because it was a short trainer ride, I opted to skip the dvd player. This was definitely the right decision. I used my Ipod and played my spin class playlist. I have compiled a large amount of songs that they used to play in the spin classes I used to do at Gold's gym (RPM). A couple of years ago, long before I started doing tri's, I was a spin class junkie. I would do three classes a week, including a 90 minute class on wednesdays. I often would arrive 30 minutes early to get an even longer ride. So as I was saying, I had a 45 minute ride on the trainer with some really good music. I find that on the bike, good music can make all the difference. I basically did my own spin class, letting the cadence of the music direct my speed and gearing. My legs felt great. I did a good mix of sprints, rolling hills, and climbs. My speed sensor on my garmin actually maxed out over 50 mph (that cannot be right) when I hit a cadence of 120 rpm while in the big ring/small cog. My average was 28 mph. I did a total of 21.14 miles in 45 minutes. By the time I was done, I knew I was definitely out of my funk.

Last night I didnt sleep to well. I think I am sleeping hard on my shoulder because the time it really bothers me is in the morning. Plus, I tend to wake several times during the night right now. When I rolled over at 4AM, I knew I didnt want to get up at 5. I decided to reset my alarm and I would try to get my run in this evening. Luckily, it rained while I was at work, but was done by the time I got home. I decided to head out to Sawnee Mountain to do some trail running. Its nice having this park less then 10 minutes from my house. There is about 3 miles of trails with lots of elevation change. I hadnt been there in almost 6 months.

Heading out from the trailhead, the first mile was almost completely downhill. The thing is, this means there is a whole lotta climbing in the next mile or so, because you have to climb back to your starting elevation and then climb even more to the top. I stopped at about the 1 mile marker to tie my shoes and snapped this picture of this cool accessible treehouse they built in the park

Then I was back off. At this point I had to start climbing again.After climbing for about half a mile, I came to a fork in the path.

I had a choice, go left and keep climbing to the top, or go right and head back down. Of course I chose to keep climbing. Not much later, I cam across a fox running around in the woods. I tried to take a pic before I scared it off, but they all came out blurry. So I kept heading up, up up. There was a good section of climbing I had to walk. Ultimately my goal is to be able to run it all. With stopping and walking, the second mile took me over 17 minutes. I did not have my garmin on auto-pause.

When I got to the top, I stopped to rest and take some pictures. At the top of the mountain are these rock outcroppings known as Indian seats

Apparently this area used to have some sort of ceremonial significance for the local indian tribes. The best part of this area is the great view.

The view is even better during the fall and winter when there are no leaves on the trees. The good thing about the view is that it looks out to the north and west. This way I was able to see that more rain was moving in (you cant really tell from the camera phone pic). At least the rest of the run back to the start would be downhill and much faster. So I took off and headed back down the mountain. When I got to the bottom, I had just hit 3 miles and figured I had another 10 minutes before I needed to head home, so I did 3 laps of a little .3 mile loop and added the last .1 to do a full mile. I finished just in time, as it began to rain. I did some stretching since the rain wasnt making it through the trees and then headed home, thoroughly satusfied in a strong, yet not really fast, trail run at the mountain. I will definitely be doing this more often as I plan on doing a 15K trail run in November, plus this is a really great way to get stronger on the hills and buld stronger ankles.

This was the first time I had used my Forerunner 305 at the mountain. I had used my 201 here and was unable to maintain satellite reception. I was glad that not once did my garmin beep that there was loss of gps signal. Its great that it works amid heavy treee coverage. So, when I got home, I loaded the run into Motionbased and look at this elevation

Now of course I wasnt able to run all of that big hill, but I want to eventually be able to. Its 400 feet of climb in right around 1 mile. Talk about some serious hill work. Oh and if anyone has any good suggestions for trail shoes, please chime in. I want to buy some dedicated trail shoes. I have been looking at a few new balance ones, but I am not sure what to look for

So here are my totals for July. Because this was a month with a couple of races, my totals are a little low, and my swim number is really off because of my shoulder injury. Hopefully August should be a big number month

Swim12,300 Meters
Bike187.74 Miles
Run60.08 Miles


Sherry said...

Wow... Sawnee Mountain is so pretty. I love Northern GA and Southwestern NC-- have lots of family that live in that area. Glorious stuff! We don't have much of that down here. I don't even know what it's like to run on a trail yet(or have a 'view').

What trainer are you using? I've been debating on getting one for a while now. I'm pretty much addicted to spin classes and I work HARD (it's amazing how some people don't even break a sweat). You are right about the great songs that you can compile from attending RPM classes... they pretty much rock. I use a lot of them for running too!

So glad your funk is over!!! I knew it wouldn't last too long.

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

I just realized that the month has eneded....time to do my tally too *yikes*

Your month looks good to me.

Best news is that the funk has ended. WooooHooo

Marcy said...

Oooohhh Wow that looks like an awesome place to run!! The elevation looks scary (well at least to us non ultra folks :P) but the scenery is to die for!

ShirleyPerly said...

YAY, the funk is gone! And I'm so envious of that trail!! I wish I had a way to strengthen my ankles, run on a softer surface and run hills all at the same time. That view is gorgeous.

Hope that shoulder gets better soon!

Wes said...

Love those trail runs. There are more good ones around here. The fun part is taking them and not realizing what you are getting yourself in to! But that makes 15-17 minute miles OK :-)

Katie Weaver-Jongerius said...

Yeah! I am so glad that funk is gone!!

How cool is that trail?! I am so jealous. I love to trail run. An hour trail running is way more fun than and hour on the road!

Stef said...

Cool pics!!!

Glad your funk is gone. Mine is too -- right in time for a rest day today. LOL. It's okay though I've worked very hard this week and will again this weekend.

Have a great weekend!!

Jess said...

Glad to hear the funk has lifted! Usually, all we need is a few good days of training, and those moods do disappear.

LBTEPA said...

what a lovely spot! And so satisfying for you to have a great week of training :)

Xenia said...

Ding dong the funk is dead!

That looks like an amazing place to run, but what a killer hill! My pathetic flatlander butt would never be able to handle that. More power to you.

Viv said...

Glad you are back up out of the funk. I swear somebody has been passing it around...

Great pictures and trail run

triguyjt said...

grerat post...loved the pics...and its great you have that so close to home....

looks like you are off and running in great fashion in your second 100 set of posts.. thanks

cindy said...

Glad your funk is gone...those are no fun. Great climbing!! The pics are beautiful, too.

Karen said...

what a great place to run! I'll have to check that one out sometime.

Ms. V. said...

Nice stats for July.

Yay for deleting the funk. Couldja help me on that one?

Frayed Laces said...

Yay getting out of the funk! Sounds like you had a great run. Way to go!

Makita said...

What a great place to run! I'm glad you are out of your funk!