Well hello, friends!
Thanks for your patience as we update our blog. Most of the kinks are worked out!
Meanwhile… I signed up for my first 100 mile yesterday. I’m running 100.9 miles in the Burning River 100! And, it’s THIS weekend! As I went through the steps to pack and make food, it felt kind of as if I was eating and preparing my last meal. It’s coming!!!
I’d been considering it for a while, especially after the 77 miles at the Hawthorn Half Day went so well. I was back to running in no time, and it really wasn’t as painful as I expected besides the mental challenge of it. Fast-forward to Western States, and seeing Ben and all the hundred mile finishers was just… Inspirational! So after talking about it all week, I finally did it at the prodding of one of my favorite crewies! [I weather-stalked all week to make sure it wouldn’t be terrible-hot. With the lower humidity in the past few days, it seems like it was meant to be.]
I’m blogging now from the car– we’re somewhere in between Cleveland and Columbus on our way to packet pickup! To my Clevelanders, the race starts in Willoughby and heads through the Cleveland Metroparks and Cuyahoga Valley National Park to get to Cuyahoga Falls (a little north of Akron). It only takes about 40 minutes to do the drive itself on the highway, but the course winds over to the West through the parks to hit some roads, horse trails, and crushed gravel paths.
I’m excited but worried. I was so laid-back for the 12-hour, but I keep getting “butterflies in my basket” when I think about it. Here’s my plan/goals:
- Finish in under 20 hours
- Finish in under 24 hours
- Finish not hating running
- Finish uninjured.
You all know I’m really casual about race prep. Mentally, I’m really anxious about all of the tightness and aches and pains I’ve been feeling in my legs. My quads just feel so fatigued! On the preparedness side, I ran DWD in may and felt great for being so early in the season. My 77 miles at Hawthorn was about two months ago and I’ve been running an average of 5-6 miles each time I go out since. I paced Ben at Western States, walking the majority of the pacer leg; I felt pretty recovered and back to running within a couple days. Essentially, I just unintentionally trained for my first hundred!
Like I told Ben before WS100, and Ben told you… You only get one chance at your first. I want to make this enjoyable, and I want to make it one of my best running efforts.
Go easy, run comfortably, avoid getting caught up in a too-fast pace that’s not sustainable.
A few things I’m doing to get ready—
– relaxing!! No stress.
– preparing some of my favorite whole foods.
– getting more sleep.
I signed up with an hour left until registration close, as usual. Reasoning: Rather than register and stress myself out by worrying about weather and how I felt, I waited as long as I could to feel like its be ok. And, for being so on-the-fence, i didn’t fully announce my intentions to the entire world… Not that that truly lowers the stress level, but maybe it just feels like less pressure to totally kick butt (I’ll shoot for kinda kicking butt on this debut).
Yep, I’m still eating clean and loving it!! I feel so much better and stronger, alert and energetic. But enough with the infomercial– I’m not eating a lot of the typical stuff you’ll find at aid stations. The plan:
Race day breakfast – sweet potato and 2 hardboiled eggs, chicken-apple sausage with macadamia nuts.
During race –
Homemade energy gels (puree of sweet potato/coconut milk/applesauce and pumpkin/banana/apple juice)
Meat bars – homemade!
Energy supplements (once every hour) –
Endurolytes & S!Caps
I’m no longer on my 30 days of Whole30, but the experience has taught me to fuel and run best when eating clean and nutritious foods. With such a long race, I’ll need some sugars to get quick energy when my energy stores are running low, which I can get from gels (as natural as possible, like from fruit– not just straight up processed sugar). I also don’t like feeling hungry in the pit of my stomach when running, which happens in long runs. This kind of hungry can only be solved by eating real food during my runs, which kept me pretty full and satisfied during the 12-hour. The meat bars and chunks of cut-up sausage address protein needs, while nuts and the coconut milk I blended with the sweet potatoes should be enough healthy fat to stay comfortably full without feeling bloaty! And last, sweet potatoes, apples, and pumpkin should serve as my starch/carb AND fiber at the same time.
GET MORE SLEEP
I’ve felt straight up tired this week, and I read this article about sleep affecting all areas of your life and health (not that this idea is new, it was more motivating than anything!) On Sunday I made some rules for myself to make sure I could recharge my batteries enough before the race:
1. Shut everything down at 10:30pm.
No more “just one more thing to look up” on the computer, no watching “one more show” on the DVR. Hard rule– 10:30!
2. Be in bed, or close to it, by 11pm.
I have a foam rolling, stretching, and strength drill routine I do before bed. It takes a while, and that on top of shower, brush teeth, etc. this all easily takes another 30 minutes.
3. At least 8 hours of sleep.
No exceptions. With my earlier bedtime, this was so much easier to accomplish.
Result? I feel amazing this week! I don’t yawn as much or nod off during conversations. This – sleep – is a good thing.
That’s about the extent of my race prep. I have some bag prepping to do tonight once we check in to our hotel and eat.
You can track me live (I believe) on
2. Twitter @bartleysrun with live tweets from Erin & Ben! And….
3. On BartleysRun! www.bartleysrun.com/br100