Monday, May 14, 2007

Ohlone - out, Mt. Diablo - in

Family time is busy the next few weeks. My son's AAU team has three basketball tournaments in a row including one that we are hosting next weekend. Since I'll be helping out all weekend to support our team, I had to bail out of the Ohlone 50K. It's not an important run training wise and I only signed up to close the loop on my first year of running (and try for a sub-7). The race director was kind enough to let me transfer my bib to another runner so I am happy that someone who wasn't able to get in will now have a chance to run the race.

In the place of Ohlone, I have decided to run the Mt. Diablo 50K on June 2. I have always wanted to run a race on Diablo as I will forever consider it "my mountain". I grew up on the back side of the mountain, went to school in Clayton and have hiked, biked and done training runs all over. However, I have never participated in an organized race there. My sister lives about 2 miles from the trailhead so it is pretty much a no-brainer. I also really like the fact that the course is pretty much all-up, followed by all-down. It kinda suits my running style. The only thing I don't like is the multiple loops, but we'll see if I can keep from blowing up after the first. I want to shoot for a sub-7 hour which is a pretty good goal for this race with almost 9,000ft of gain over the 50K distance. Should be a great time!

As for my training, things are going to be a bit thin here for a few weeks as I will pretty much have no time on the weekends to get in any long runs. Last week, I did about half my normal training mileage which was just fine for me after Miwok. The next two weeks I am just going to run when I can and try to get in some good workouts at the gym to focus on my core and some of my muscle imbalances.

Finally, I haven't yet signed up for the 100, but I'm getting there. I am also considering running the Tahoe Rim Trail 50M in July. I was looking for a longer race to do in July before my 100 and its timing just 3-weeks back seems perfect. However, it is a very tough race and is all above 6500ft elevation (tops out close to 9000ft). It is also only one day before we leave for a trip to Las Vegas so I would need to head right back to the Bay Area to get up early the next day and get on a plane. I'll have to think about it.

13 comments:

Jessica Deline said...

Hope to see you at Tahoe. I've heard is a great race (but challenging).

Norbert said...

Steve,
I see that we have almost the same finishing time at Pirates Cove (you 5:35, me 5:41). Having said that, I believe a sub-7 on Mt. Diablo will be pretty tough. I shoot for a sub-8 (I did the first half in a little less than 3:30) and at least I NEED that time at the aid station.
Good luck for your goals and see you there, Steve!
Norbert

Chihping Fu 傅治平 (超馬阿爸) said...

Steve, glad to hear your attitude about racing at YOUR mountain. I had the same when I did Ohlone as I used to train on the Mission Peak. I was thinking in the run that I wanted to show off my flying down from the Mission Peak.

Last year, I passed about 10 runners from the top to the trash can, where Scott Dunlap was the last one I passed :-). Saying these, I love to see you have a blast at Diablo 50K.

Welcome to TRT50M. We have a couple of Ultraholics (you're now part of it) there. I believe it's an excellent one before your first 100 miler at Headlands 3 weeks later.

Chihping

Eudemus said...

Jessica, Tahoe looks like an awesome race. I'm a little afraid of the elevation which is part of the reason I have yet to sign up.

Eudemus said...

Norbert, I agree that sub-7 at Diablo is very aggressive, but I do like to set a good stretch goal for myself. I would need to hit the first half in well under 3:30. Targeting just in the 7's or even low-7s is more realistic, but I like to set high goals. As for the aid station, I have learned to be pretty efficient them these days. However, we'll see how it goes. I'll probably burn myself out on the first lap and crawl the second, but that's how I like it :-)

Eudemus said...

Chihping, it sounds like you ran like me at Ohlone last year. I passed a ton of people heading down from the peak. However, it was my first ultra and somewhere after 5 hours, I paid for my early exuberance.

As for TRT50, I haven't signed up yet. I need to figure out if I can do it logistically. However, it is good to hear that you consider it a good training for my first 100.

Sarah (PCTR) said...

I'm so glad that you're going to make it back to your old stomping grounds to run next month! I knew that you grew up around there, but what I didn't know was that you'd never run an organized event there. How fun!

Sub-7 is a good, aggressive goal for you, I would think. I think you can run 7:00 - 7:30 at Mt. Diablo...especially if the weather's not too unbearable. How do you do in the heat?

And I wouldn't advise waiting for Norbert to start Loop 1 - he's been known to have several bowls of chili and a couple bagels between loops.

See you early next month! Have fun at the basketball games!!

Norbert said...

Steve,
yes, Sarah is right. I actually learned over time that it makes more sense to eat 3 chilis after the race rather than in the middle of the race. So, I agree, with a first lap comfortably under 3:30 (3:15 or so) you would be able to do a sub-7. With your race history you can do it! Make sure you wait for me at the finish and we can have a chili or two together! ;-)
Best,
Norbert

miki said...

Diablo 50K was my first ultra last year. I finished in 8:23:26. At the time, I couldn't believe that I had run over a work day. It was my longest ever! But I had a blast and didn't hit any real snags. It'll be fun.

I might see you there. If all goes well with the ankle, I was going to do my first official trail run that day with the 8K.

Eudemus said...

Norbert, I honestly don't know whether or not I can run sub-7 at Diablo (or even just over 7). However, I always like to have at least one "stretch goal" in mind for my races. I generally target 3 different goals for each race, but I will explain this in a full post.

Sarah nailed one thing that has me greatly concerned and that is the heat. I am a bit bulkier than your average ultra runner having an endo-mesomorphic body type. This means that I generate heat easily during exercise (except in my hands for some reason). I am hoping for temperate weather and the 10lbs of weight that I have (hopefully) rid myself of over the last year to save me from the "slow heat death".

Eudemus said...

Miki, I remember that you did Diablo last year as your first. Hopefully you can come out there this year. I think it would be great if you can do the 8K. I'll be rooting for you.

Norbert said...

Steve,
it seems we have much more in common than we thought. I'm also a bulky runner, and I always joked in past years that if there was a weight class, I would win races in my particular weight class. I lost 20lbs over the last 2-3 years, and in particular ca. 10 lbs after I started ultra running. So, I feel my shape becomes more normal ;-) But still, as you, I sweat a lot, produce a lot of internal heat, and hence suffer from warm weather during a run. I just wonder when I will reach an equilibrium where I don't loose much more weight and can produce consistent results. As for Mt. Diablo, I consider a 25k as an ultra run (not ultra marathon), because of the diabolic combination of heat exposure (no shade), elevation and therefore, downhill grade at the end (when you're already tired). As for the race goals, I always look at past results, read the finishing time of the middle-field runners, pick one that is of my age and then try to be better. Simple, isn't it? ;-) Now, the weird thing is that using this formula, I'm still convinced I'd win my weight category (190lbs). It's great to see that, over time, I don't really get faster, but have more endurance which makes me run longer (farther). This is what keeps me motivated and curious to stretch my (mile) goals further. Will I ever cut the post-race beer? Never! Have a good one, Norbert.

Eudemus said...

Norbert, I'm not quite in your weight class, but then I am all of 5'6" tall so maybe if they had a grading based on height/weight ration I could win :-). I know what you mean about the heat/elevation on Diablo. However, since a lot of my weight rests in my "stump-like" thighs, I generally am just fine with the downhill. As my weight goes down I seem to be doing a little better on the uphills (if they're steep enough). However, I don't see much improvements on the flats and sometimes I actually feel like I am getting worse on flat land!