Friday, January 4, 2008

Running in '08

I’ve recently cobbled a potential race schedule for 2008, starting with a 20-mile snowshoe race tomorrow in Leadville, Colorado. The race is celebrating its 19th year due to the efforts of Race Director Tom Sobal. Tom holds the current world record for a marathon in snowshoes (3:06:17) and routinely finishes in the top two or three at this race, which is quite an accomplishment for a 50-year-old guy. I DNF’d last year due to catching a cold two days before the race and battling sub-freezing temps, but this year I plan to finish, despite the fact that I have again been saddled with a bug that appears to be taking permanent residence in my head and lungs. Fortuntately, the weather is supposed to be a lot warmer this year. Aspen decided to sit this one out, as she was getting over my cold and was blindsided by another one. This is a shame, since I look forward to our time together in Leadville each year. We stay at the Timberline Motel, which allows dogs and has a hot tub. The night after the race, we iceskate at the local rink. Skate rentals are $1, and we’re usually the only ones out there. This year, however, I’ll be staying at the Timberline alone and possibly making the drive home shortly after the race. I expect to see my new friend Kurt at the event as well, where his hours of recent training will be put to the test. I'll probably start out slow and pick off runners in the closing miles.

My race schedule averages about one per month, and I’ll be posting this to the blog shortly. In the meantime, I’ve been employing training techniques devised by Dr. Phil Maffetone, which requires running at a pace that keeps my heartrate below a calculated limit to build aerobic capacity. The jury is still out on whether I’ve made any measurable gains using this method, but I have noticed that I can stay on my feet a lot longer that I used to.

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