Monday, September 29, 2008

Now What?

We're now 9 days removed from the Skyline the Sea 50k (Stts) and I'm suddenly trying to figure out what to do next. The runner's high from that race is still flowing big time. My original plan was to sign-up for Firetrails 50 if I came out of SttS injury free and feeling good (check to both of those). Oops. Forgot that we had a wedding for a family friend that weekend. Firetrails is out. These things happen and I don't have to remind myself that I'm fortunate to get to run at all. It's harder in this case because the fire (no pun intended) is burning bright and I really wanted to do this race. Ok. Moving on...

So what to do next? I know there are still a lot of races out there but there are some limitations as to what I can do. First of all, I don't want to have to travel too far (within the general SF Bay area). Next up is the type of race. After having so much fun on the Montana de Oro and SttS trails, it might be hard to run a race on a bike path or non-wooded trail (Helen Klein 50-miler, or PCTR SF One Day 12/24 hour) I'd rather be in the hills trying to figure out where the heck I am, than running down a bike path behind some businesses/homes (ooh sorry - I might have just stolen that line from Rick G). At the same time, I really want to take a shot at a 50-miler before the year ends. (We are playing with the house's money so let's have some fun).

Right now, I'm thinking of giving the HK 50-miler a shot - it's on a Saturday with no soccer game for my oldest boy and it's relatively close (within 45 minutes). If not HK, then I'll do the SF 12-hour race and stay overnight for the 49er game the next day. I love the PCTR races so I'll probably sign up for at least one more of those (Woodside) before recharging for the next year.

Speaking of next year, my goal is now about shooting for the 100-mile distance. I have the base miles under my belt and enough time to start building up to what I need. Plus, I've got some new friends that I can ask for (beg) advice from. I know it's only September, but I've already started thinking about races for next year (race sign-ups are coming up soon and family life demands early planning sometimes). Here's what I'm already thinking about...

  • Way to Cool 50k (3/14/09) or Rucky Chuck 50k (3/21/09)
  • American River 50 (4/4/09) or Diablo 50-miler 4/11/09)
  • Skyline to the Sea 50 (4/26/09) - Would love to run this again; a little too close to Miwok
  • Miwok 100k (5/2/09) - steppin' up to 62 miles
  • Ohlone 50k (5/17/09) - My first one! Looking forward to see how I've progressed
  • Diablo 50k (6/6/09) - Always wanted to do a Diablo event (will do this for sure if not the 50-miler)
  • (?) 100-miler in the fall (?)
  • Who cares after this (Montana de Oro would be great again)

Should have figured out my next race or two in the next post.

BTW, health is good. Did 3 recovery runs last week - 7 miles, 3 miles, & 6 miles. Legs were dead but after the 3rd run on Saturday, I finally felt like legs were ready for more action. Will probably run to the gym today and mix in a little weights (quick reps, low weight). Until next time...


Phil September 29, 2008 at 2:44 PM  

I ran the SF 12 hour in '06 - it seems crazy to run in a loop for 12 hours, but it's more fun that you would think. You get to meet all the runners, it doesn't matter if they are faster or slower. I brought my iPod but never used it.

I won my age group that year, but the race kicked my butt. It was the last race I ran that year.

209Mike September 29, 2008 at 3:03 PM  

Thanks, Phil. I was hoping somebody would say that. Plus I love the PCTR events. Maybe I'll target that instead of Helen Klein. See what kind of destruction I can do in half a day!

Rick Gaston September 29, 2008 at 7:16 PM  

I would do the PCTR 12-hour over Helen Klein. Plus Crissy Field is a good destination for the family if they come along. Kids can hangout at the beach if it's a nice day. Here's my volunteer report from last year. You can see how people set up their pit stops and all that.

So as far as races go for the rest of the year. How about The Northface 50-miler, that's the first week of December? You can also do the Quad Dipsea which is the Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend if you are in town. Now it's only 28.4 miles but believe me it will whoop your butt and you will be thankful it's only 28.4. Lots of climbing and technical trails but I believe it's a must do for every bay area trail runner.

If you can't get in to Miwok 100k my advice is to do the PCTR Mt. Diablo 50-miler. I think it's just as hard of a race despite being 12-miles shorter. If it's hot like this year, it will be harder. Then do the Quicksilver 50-miler, it's the weekend before Ohlone.
If you do Quicksilver I would advise skipping Ohlone.

Rio del Lago is a good first 100-miler in the fall. You get the hard trails during the day and an easier loop at night. It sucks running behind homes and past strip malls in the middle of the night but your legs will thank you for the easy terrain. Besides there are some nice trail sections mixed in. It's also a very spectator / crew friendly event. Easy to get to the crew points. No buckle on this one though if that matters. You get an animal figurine of some kind. Headlands Hundred is also a great 100-miler in the fall but it's a monster on the climbing and you climb throughout the whole race unlike Rio. The weather will be good though and it's also spectator / crew friendly.

209Mike September 29, 2008 at 9:50 PM  

Awesome Rick. Thanks for the info. I knew you'd help me out. I think I am leaning towards the 12-hour now. I think I actually remember reading your report (will check it out again). I've never run in the city so that would be cool (and of course you are right on the money with the kids). Thanks again.

Donald September 29, 2008 at 10:41 PM  

I did Diablo 50M and Miwok last year, and it was perfect prep for a 100M in the summer. They're both awesome races, very well run, that will definitely kick your tail into shape.

I'm hoping to do both again next year - maybe I'll see you out there.

Victoria September 29, 2008 at 11:36 PM  

AR50!! Do that one! If I can get a ride to the SF one-day I might help out... all depends on the transportation situation...

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