8 Mile Hill Course on Broad Mountain
Remember last week when I was all excited about doing hill workouts and and I even used the word "fun" several times to describe it? Well I've determined that feeling to be rather ephemeral. In fact, in just a week I've come to realize that I both fear and loathe hill workouts, despite how much they are doing for me and my race preparedness.
Quite simply, they suck....but in that satisfying sort-of-way? Type 2 fun vs type 1...or something like that. You know, when it's terrible while you're doing it, but great afterward?
At any rate, I could run and hide...or I could embrace them. I've chosen to embrace them in all of their wretched glory. And so this weekend will again be chock full of hilly long runs.
But first, a quick recap:
On Saturday and Sunday I did my back-to-back Rothrock 19-milers. This course was a nice combination of both distance and hills. I had great weather for it and was able to spend 5 hours out each day. In a nutshell, I really enjoyed Saturday, but Sunday was a bit much. Needless to say, I was pretty whooped on Sunday evening.
Rothrock 19-Mile Long Run - Profile
Rothrock 19-mile Course
Total "Hill" Miles: 38
Total Ascent 9000ft
Time: ~10 hrs total
After a leisurely saunter around the flat neighborhood on Monday, I went out for my first mid-week hill workout on Tuesday morning. I thought it would be "fun" (there's that word again), to do repeats up and down Mt. Nittany....you know, the "pride and symbol of Happy Valley" and University namesake (blah blah). The climb from the parking lot is about 650ft....so I decided to do it three times, adding on an extra summit push on the last loop. I quickly remembered that hill workouts take significantly longer than normal workouts.
Mt. Nittany Repeats - Profile
Mt. Nittany Repeats - Course
Total "Hill" Miles: 4.6
Total Ascent 2000ft
Time: ~ 1 hr
On Wednesday, I went out for a nice 9 miler through the neighborhood to give myself a break from the hills and focus on normal-paced miles. But then I thrust myself into the fray again yesterday for a brutal trip up and down Broad Mountain. I basically took out the topo maps for Rothrock State Park and said to myself, "Where is the single most brutal climb in the entire park that's on a marked trail?". This is what I found. So what did I do? I ran it twice. Of course it will soon get to be even more fun when I start doing hill workouts by bush-wacking my way up steep, 40% graded, non-marked routes....but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. Anyhoo...this workout was an ass kicker. I did a full loop around the mountain, but on the 2nd pass simply did an up-and-down to the summit. It turned out to be 8 miles of ridiculousness. My headlamp failed and I was running in the dark, getting lost, bushwacking...you name it. You might almost say it was.........wait for it...........fun? That's just crazy talk.
8 Mile Broad Mtn Hills - Profile
8 Mile Broad Mtn Hills - Course
Total "Hill" Miles: 8
Total Ascent 3100ft
Time: ~ 2 hrs
RUNNING TOTALS (Starting Last Tuesday 1/24/12):
Total "Hill" Miles: 53.9
Total Ascent 15,200ft
...And this weekend you ask? Well it'll be another back-to-backer in Rothrock. Probably the same course as last week. I'm actually excited about Saturday...undecided about Sunday just yet.
oh and one other thing.
The 7's are finally out, in my possession,...and oooooo...I'm excited.