It’s Trail Racing Week!

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Blog 8/24/09

Well this is it…the week I’ve been waiting for. The USATF National Trail Championships are this Saturday. I’ve booked my hotel room and downloaded a map of the course and I’m ready to roll. Last Saturday I did a Time Trial on my practice course. It’s roughly 6 miles long and very hilly trail running, so I figured it would be a reasonable mock-up of the actual race course (most likely easier than the real course which has 1300′ of vertical gain… and, of course, another 1300′ of loss as well). Three months ago best time on my practice course was just under an hour…58 minutes and some change. Last Saturday my training partner, Billy Jonas, and I ran it in 47:10 which tells me that all of my conditioning work is paying off. Since I haven’t been on the actual course, I’m not making any predictions on how I expect to do.

Here’s my race strategy. What I do plan to do is focus for the entire race on all the ChiRunning hill focuses I’ve been practicing… lots of upper body and arm swing on the uphills and as much speed as I can ask of these old legs on the downhills. As is traditional for me, I don’t plan to push the uphills much since that’s the place where most runners burn through their stored glycogen too quickly. I’ll be racing in a pair of La Sportiva Crosslite trail shoes designed for fell running. They’ve got incredible traction and they’re flexible, flat and lightweight…couldn’t ask for a better shoe for this event.

I’m taking it a little easier for the rest of this week…stoking up on my carbs and spending as little time sitting in my office chair as I can get away with (it’s deadly on my hamstrings and back). You’ll be the first to know how I do.

Happy trails,


Posted in Technique

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