Monday, February 23, 2009

What a Great Week!

This week consisted of lots and lots of running (13 hours and 12 min). I am really starting to feel good and looking forward to running Way Too Cool 50km (in California), which is only 3 weeks away!!! I know who I am up against and the top 3 ladies last year are all returning, so it should be a competitive run. Cross your fingers, I need a top 3 female position to gain an entrance into Western States 100-miler. On Tuesday, Peter and I hit the track with the North Shore Athletics run clinic and pounded out some hard laps. The 50km course is a little faster than most 50k's and I wanted to give my legs a chance to remember what running "fast" felt like. With all the snow on the trails this year, I am worried I won't be able to match the speed of my competitors. Thursday, Peter and I went out for an awesome tempo run, snow free! We were playing cat and being the cat, him the mouse. It's always fun trying to chase after someone, especailly because that's what the race is going to be like. Just looking at this photo makes me nervous/excited.

Way Too Cool is just a warm-up race for Miwok 100km, May 2nd. This is going to be a hilly course, it says right on the website! I have been working really hard over the last few months to improve my hill endurance, speed, and power. It's a good thing I live in North Vancouver, where every single run involves LOTS of hills. Peter is an excellent power hiker and over the last couple of years has taught me a thing or two about it. I have used it a lot ascending hills in my past races, always trying to conserve energy for the descents. After looking at my splits from past trail races (especially those in the U.S), it is the ascents where I am losing time to my competition. I feel that for me, it is more effective for me to run (at a low heart rate) the hills, unless they are ridiculously steep. So that's what I have been doing. In all of my runs (with the exception of my LSD), I have been trying to run every hill. I have really noticed a difference in my heart rate. Hills that used to spike my heart rate, no longer do. As well, I am able to run up them without accumulating as much lactic acid (that "oh my god, my legs are going to blow up" feeling).

Saturday I ran 3 hours with the Mountain Madness Trail clinic. It's always nice to mix it up and run with a new group of people. I was leading the fast group and a friend of mine from North Shore Athletics, Sammi Loft-Pour, decided to come and join us. He is a very fast man, his personal best marathon time is 2:49. He is a machine on the hills. Needless to say, he is the reason I ran every single hill on Saturday and he pushed our group very hard. He also had no clue where he was going and I was forced to keep up with him to ensure the group (and Sammi) didn't get lost. THANKS SAMMI, HOPE TO SEE YOU OUT NEXT WEEK (that wasn't said sarcastically, I swear)! Sunday, Peter and I had the pleasure of running with our friend Jurgen Watts. He had a rough night the previous evening, which was perfect, because Pete and I's legs were tired from the day before. The weather did a 180 from the glorious sunshine on Saturday and we were up against some rain. I won't lie, I really enjoyed it. We managed to make it out 4 hrs and 12 min. We cut it short because Pete rammed his head into a tree while running up a set of looked painful!

We finished off the day with a wonderful birthday dinner at Peter's sisters house. We were well fed and even worked off all that birthday cake playing Dance Revolution all night long. It was not only fun to play but even more hilarious to watch, you honestly work up a sweat. Here is a picture of what the dance floor that you play on looks like.


Gary Robbins said...

Go Gilder Go!!
You're going to get to Western through one of these races...I can feel it!

Kim Steed said...

Totally! Nicola, you're going to be Western's best! Keep it up!


Nicola Gildersleeve said...

Thanks guys...I was doing hill repeats yesterday and the only thing that got me up the last one was my "western, western, western" self talk!