When I registered for the Physco Wyco 50K in Kansas I thought 'yippee, I won't need to do a 50K AND a 50 Mile around the Minneapolis Lakes in preparation for McNaughton 100' Well, that didn't hold out, as I wasn't able to take part in the PW.
I'm ok running about 20 miles on the Blue Hill Trail this time of the year. It is snow covered and icy; very uneven. Over 20 miles and I am just wore out from trying to navigate the trail. It is slow going and takes forever. For my Bday I did 42 miles out there and it took forever. I can't get any leg turnover on the snow and ice.
So this morning I headed off to the Minneapolis Lakes for a 50K training run. Maria offered to join me for 10 miles, so we met up at the Lake Harriet Bandshell at 8 AM. Luckily I left home in plenty of time, as I wasn't paying attention and ended up in Eden Prairie on a frontage road next to the Minnesota Vikings training center. Good grief.
The wind was whipping. On the way to Harriet I heard on the radio that it was 13F with a -4 wind chill. I was thankful I brought around my Turtle Fur neck gaiter that stretches to my hair line and wondering if one pair of pants was going to be enough. Thankfully, one pair was fine.
At 8:00 we headed into the wind. Brrr! There weren't many other runners out today, there were a good number of couples, walking hand in hand around the lake. Maria and I chatted around the first loop of Harriet-Calhoun-Isles, quite quickly, before I knew it we were back at Harriet. Luckily for me, Maria felt amazingly well, only a week after PW and decided to run Harriet with me again. Yeah! After the loop we parted way. Maria headed for home, I headed for my car for a refill of Heed and my iPod. I had only consumed 12 oz for the 2.5 hours we were out there, not nearly enough. I am just not thirsty in cold weather. I know that I should be drinking more, but I do not. I wasn't hungry at all either. I had ONE gel the whole damn 50K.
For the second loop of the three lakes I became bored. Mentally. I struggled. I knew part of it was because I wasn't fueling as I should be, I wasn't drinking as I should be. I was watching people in love holding hands and talking and smiling..and I was all alone. God, I felt lonely! How odd that I was thinking this way. Finally I switched on my iPod and quit grumbling to myself. You know, a big part of ultra running is mental. Really. My body wasn't tired, wasn't in pain, but my mind wanted negative thoughts. At one point, at Lake of the Isles, I was watching two Border Collies run as fast as they could in front of their human, who was skiing across the lake. I cried. I missed Topaz. See, crazy..and low fuel will bring on sadness. Finally I quit crying and laughed at myself.
I let Ozzie Osbourne and Black Sabbath occupy my head. I sang along and cruised back to Harriet, ready to begin loop three. I ducked into the biffy for a few minutes, out of the wind, sucked back a gel and was thankful that I didn't head back to my car and drive away. I had actually entertained the thought, back on loop two. I told myself that I was here to run a 50K, that training for an ultra at this point is more mental than physical and how great I would feel when I was finished. Did I want to run well at McNaughton or did I want to pack it in now. The choice was mine.
I bucked up, smiled and laughed at myself and off I went, around Harriet, around Calhoun and up to Isle. I like Lake of the Isles best. There is a dog park, a skating rink and a ski path across the lake. The scenery is very pretty and the homes, my gosh, who lives in those mega million dollar homes? I can't imagine.
I was feeling good. Mentally I was back in, glad the bad patch was over. As I came back up to Calhoun I could smile again. In order to make it a 50K I ran two more Harriets and called it a day.
Only 60 oz of Heed today, my biceps are a bit tender to the touch, as they are whenever I am dehydrated. My jacket had a layer of ice in it and my face was numb. But I was happy! I did what I had planned to do. I'm a bit closer to my goal.
If the trail doesn't clear in a few weeks I'll be doing a 50 mile around the lakes. I hope the trail clears!
I was back at my sister's in Zimmerman by 4:00, in time to pick up Troy. Then he let me know he wanted to spend the night. Oh well. We had a nice visit.
Tomorrow Topaz will get in his run.