I am gearing up for my first foray into the world of “ultra running” and yeah I picked a race with 8,000 feet of elevation gain but at least it will be cool and at sea level right? Wrong. When I chose the Tahoe Rim Trail 55k as my first ultra trail race I thought running with views of Lake Tahoe would be great and that I could go swimming after. I did not really take into account the fact that the race starts at over 7,000 feet and reaches almost 10,000 feet at one point. Living in Oakland, I also have pretty much completely forgotten about the concept of seasons. Specifically, I have have forgotten about summer and high temperatures. Given all the challenging characteristics of this race, one would expect anyone expecting to run it to be training their ass off in order to be as prepared as possible. In my case, you would be wrong.
Something switched over in me when I was sidelined for 3 weeks after the Boston Marathon. After the panic of not being able to run and losing fitness subsided, (or rather was subsided by drinking lots of beer) I kind of drifted into a state of ambivalence and denial. I planned lots of workouts, but when it came down to actually executing them, I didn’t seem to have the motivation and I was certainly in denial about how much fitness I was losing. I don’t want to make excuses for myself but I think I also just got overwhelmed. In between some personal stuff, travelling every weekend for over 2 months, starting a new job and having to look for a new apartment (in the Bay Area with 2 beds and 2 baths and that accommodates a dog– pshhyeeah right) I also had no idea how to train for a 55k trail race AND a half ironman at the same time. So I just didn’t make a plan.
If the past few months have taught me anything, I am not a person who can train for something difficult without an excel spreadsheet, at least one online tracking app and a daily training Journal. We kind of knew this already, but the theory had never been tested. Well, now it has. And I have proven that I can not just fly by the seat of my pants. However, this experiment has left me in a bit of pickle. I am basically 2 weeks out from what will probably be the hardest physical thing I have done in my life and I am not prepared. So now its time for the Hail Mary.
The TRT 55k Hail Mary