OK, still no Reach the Beach race report, haven't posted a training log in a couple weeks and have just been pretty terrible about keeping this place current in general, but here goes something on a soggy Sunday in September.
Reach the Beach, in a nutshell, was the funnest 24 hours of running-related fun I've ever been a part of. As Captain Carrara put it, "there's nothing funner." Of course, it's always nice to win, too. Luckily, we had all our bases covered going into battle and everything came together for us at the right time.
Of course, preparation is key. We couldn't have done what we did without the help of 2 Chevy Tahoes, 20+ pairs of running shoes, 10 blinking lights, 6 reflective vests, 2 headlamps, a dozen bananas, 10 gallons of water, 2 lbs. of Swedish fish, 2 loaves of bread, 1 large bucket of GORP, a jar of peanut butter and a partridge in a pear tree. And most importantly, don't forget a dozen of funnest, funkiest-smelling, sleep-deprived runners to ever blaze the blacktop between Cannon Mountain and Hampton Beach.
Sadly, RTB '08 is over, but I am already looking forward getting down during the pre-race warmup (see photo below) and defending our crown next year with the same crazy contingent of Kitty Killers.
Anyway, on to the other topic of interest I've failed to touch on in the past few weeks, that being training. The numbers don't lie, and in the grand scheme of things they probably don't matter much, either, but the fact of the matter is I've been packing away the miles in the last month getting ready for this marathon that is now exactly three weeks away.
My last four weeks since the hammy went haywire in New Haven have totaled 71, 104, 80 (6 days), and 93 miles for the 7-day stretch ending yesterday. I've nailed a smattering of solid workouts in the last month, many of them with this guy, including a hearty hill session on Heartbreak, 25 magical miles on the roads of New Hampshire, a solid Squires long run on the trails, a few fantastic fartleks and most recently, a terrific 10-mile in-n-out tempo run on the track - yep, all 40 laps of it - in 53:34, alternating odd miles at 5:27-5:31 with the even ones at 5:11-5:16. Man, did I go adjective happy there. I'll stop now.
Kidding aside, I can say with confidence that my fitness is as good as it's ever been for a 26.2 miler. I've nailed my workouts with hammer-like precision, I'm recovering quicker than I have in recent memory and other than the niggle at New Haven, I've kept the health hiccups to a minimum. My resting heartrate is 5 beats south of 45 and I feel like a lean, mean, running machine. I don't weigh myself or keep tabs on my body fat, but when my grocery bill jumps 15-20 bucks a week, I'm pooping at least three times a day and I'm forced to pull my belt buckle back to the 4th hole so my pants don't fall off my ass, I don't need a scale to tell me I'm rounding into form. Take my word for it from past experience, there's no need to stress over a few pounds. When you're fit, they'll disappear just as quickly as that fourth belt loop does when you're not.
And that just about covers it for my own running-related ramblings of the past few weeks. Maybe - and you know how that goes around here - later this week I'll babble on about this morning's manifestation of brilliance in Berlin. That said, I'm off to San Diego on Thursday to visit this guy and his galloping-girlfriend-turned-fiance for a few days of much-looked forward to R, R & R - running, rest and relaxation - so that babble will likely be put on the backburner.
Hey, the thought's there, along with a 6-hour flight. We'll see what I can do.