Gearing up For The North Face 50-miler

October 30, 2012 | By | Reply More

Training Log Update (10/30/12)

Gearing up for The North Face 50 miler:

My next (and most likely final) ultra trail race of the year will be The North Face 50 in San Francisco on December 1st. This is a big race for me as it is considered to be a “championship” where pretty much all the best ultra runners in the US come together to compete. Doing well here is a big step for attracting sponsors, improving rankings, and getting to really push oneself. There is also a significant amount of prize money in this race. Since I quit my office job to focus on running I view this event as a major potential income opportunity. (There is nothing like the pressure of thinking that you must place in the top 3 in a race in order to pay next month’s rent!….actually I take that back, there is: having to win prize money through running in order to feed yourself and/or your family – which is the case probably for some Kenyan and Ethiopian runners)

How can you not get pumped up for this race after watching what happened last year?!:


Anyway, after the UROC 100km I was totally beat up. The long downhill stretches of pavement on that course pounded my feet, tendons, knees and muscles harder than any other race I’ve done. It probably didn’t help that I went into this first 100km running relatively low mileage in training (that is a mistake I never want to do again!). Anyway, I was basically forced to take 7 full days off  from running after UROC to recharge and let the inflammation and soreness die down. I also finally got around to going to the doctor and getting myself a hefty dose of antibiotics to treat any suspected parasites that were still lingering in my gut from my European travels last month.

So on to training:

top of Bear Peak
Put in some vertical on the weekend Long Run!

My weekly mileage totals in the last 4 weeks since UROC have gone as follows:





The first couple weeks back have been entirely “easy” mileage mostly on flat trails. I’ve only run twice a day a couple times. This past week (official week #3 in training) is the only week where I’ve actually put in some significant workouts in the form of long runs. The day-to-day breakdown of that week went as follows:


PM:  Steady 76min with housemate Dan “Stormin” Gorman (31min 10k runner for Cornell) on his “11-mile loop”  (ended up being only 10 on my GPS). He surged on the uphills trying to drop me and we got going pretty fast on the downhills (felt calf strain a little….not good)….maybe 1500feet of vertical gain.

(10 miles)



AM: Easy 70min out  and back on flat creek path…calf a little jacked. Wore GPS and got 9 miles exactly

(9 miles)



AM: Easy 40min…filmed prairie dogs….calf felt a little better. Had stuff to do and decided not to double….gearing up for big long run tomorrow!

(5 miles)



PM: LONG: 3hrs and 4min….(8:15 pace ave.)…went out on some hilly trails…started pouring rain, wind, temp 40…hands freezing…took one gel  and 20 ounces Gatorade…muddy and wet! Didn’t push, just time on feet and quad pounding vertical.

(22.5 miles)



PM: Easy 47min on flat trails…calf and quads a little sore.

(6.5 miles)



AM: Easy 72min out flat trail

(9.5 miles)



AM: LONG: Ran 4hrs 40min for 20 miles with Trent Briney (ex-Hansons Runner who ran 2:12 in the marathon and got 4th at the Olympic Trials in 2004). Ran up Green Mountain then over to Bear Peak. Several inches of snow and mud! Added on on mesa trail and partly up S boulder peak. Left knee hurt a bit…never low on energy (20 ounces Gatorade, half a powerbar and 2 gels).

PM: Ran back from Pearl street very late at night after slamming two pieces of deep dish pizza…28min or so probably sub 7min/mile pace the whole way.

(24 miles)


WEEK: #3:  86.5 miles….gettin back into shape!


So there you have it. Going into week #4 of training I’m looking to try to hit over 100 miles and keep it above that for most of November. This should actually be pretty easy to do because Dan “Stormin” Gorman and I (along with another crazy ultra runner) are attempting a run across the Grand Canyon and back pretty soon….that’ll be a good 45-mile day!

Also, I plan on kicking up the intensity with a nice road tempo run so I can work on my turnover a bit and get that Lactate Threshold dialed in. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more updates.

VLOG recap (you can see my Halloween costume)


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About the Author ()

2-time Olympic Trials Qualifier, Mountain runner, Author of "Running For The Hansons," trail runner, videos for Vo2max Productioins, LLC.

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