A little bit about….everything
|July 26, 2016||Posted by Melinda under Uncategorized|
It’s time for a post where I talk about ideas that have been hanging around in my blog post draft file, but will probably never ever be fluffed out into actual posts. So instead *you* get a numbered list and get to delete them out of my draft folder as “officially covered”. Enjoy!
1. Glow bar marking for Tevis was a BLAST. It was a great training run too – almost triple digit temperatures on the first couple of miles which gradually morphed into evening and then night complete with running by headlamps. 6+ hours of marking a 10 mile trail section (Fransico’s to hwy 49 crossing) and 20 miles of running. The river crossing ended up being no big deal – the water was WARM – and the biggest adventure of the day was having a glow bar snafu about 2 miles before LQ and having to mark it with really dim marginal glowbars and then re-running the route in the dark back down to LQ and realizing with dismay that you could barely see them (same for the Quarry Road section). Fortunately that section is a wide road and we got the single track in our section marked really well. We watched the first 4 horses through LQ and then because it was REALLY slow and sorta boring we ran back out to our cars parked at hwy 49.
Because I am a cat and tend to scream like a banshee and swear like a sailor when confronted with the idea of cold water on my skin, I actually discussed a “code” word with Cyd and the onlookers. No matter what I screamed….the code word that I was really in trouble was “help”. (Thank you Cyd for capturing the moment on video!)
Crossing the river on foot was actually a lot less stressful than doing it on horseback. I had to work hard on keeping my footing on large algae-slimed rocks especially as the water gets deeper and the current is pulling my torso. But, if you contrast that to last Saturday when I was doing my best to resist curling into a fetal position on her neck and panicking because I couldn’t get my feet out of the stirrups. The the momentum of the water rushing past as she was walking forward was actually carrying my stirrup OVER my foot as I was trying to kick free. I finally stopped frantically kicking and lifted my foot OUT of the water and shook the stirrup free. Good lesson there. As opposed to being an object lesson.
Speaking of not being an object lesson…
2. It does not appear that I have Giardia. Yet. Another 1 1/2 weeks to complete the longest possible incubation period!
3. You may have seen my comment in an earlier post that I’m doing my hot runs in a cotton tee. For hot runs a cotton t shirt is working really well in my dry climate. The trick is to not make it too big otherwise it stretches and hangs when wet, and to be able to get it wet often enough. It is hotter than a tech tee and sorta scratchy when dry. The idea isn’t new – the well-known ultra running Pam Smith advocates it’s use at WS100. After some experimentation I would NOT recommend it for riding. It’s harder to consistently get it wet (because I may or may not already be dismounted when I get to water) and I don’t generate as much heat while riding and end up feeling clammy, cold, and gross. For riding I my preference is still a long sleeve button up “sun shirt”.
I don’t have very many cotton tee’s any more so I was “forced” to buy one for the Pioneer 50. It’s perfect!
(as a side note, on that hot run when I ran out of water I sucked on my wet cotton tee out of desperation to moisten my mouth and it actually worked).
4. ML is positively absolutely gaining weight. Last night is the first time I would have called her a solid 4/9. Woot!!!!!
5. I got into a conversation with another vet about the current understanding of equine vitamin E supplementation and picked her brain since she could be considered an expert in that subject. Here’s my latest and best knowledge about the subject based on that conversation.
YES you can use human vitamin E capsules and have them be effective. As long as it is NOT the synthetic form of vitamin E.
NO you don’t necessarily need to pop the capsules to release the oils prior to feeding.
YES supplementing with inorganic selenium is preferred over organic.
NO, supplementing with high levels of vitamin E won’t eliminate needing to supplement with Se if the horse is deficient in Selenium. (this is different from what I was told by the nutritionist).
YES you need to supplement Selenium based on testing the horse for Selenium level, and confirm results of supplementation with another test.
YES most horses in CA are vitamin E deficient because of our reliance on dried forage and lack of access to fresh forage.
Looks like I need to make a couple of tweaks to my supplementation program. Never stop learning eh?
6. I think I may be addicted to running. And maybe I’m starting to cross a line. I’m trying to cut myself some slack because I’m at the height of my training volume for Pioneer 50 miler and start tapering next week, so “running all the time” at this point in the training cycle isn’t inherently bad.
What is bad is the number of times in the last couple of weeks that I found myself minimizing the number of miles and times I run per week to my family. The 18 mile run where I ran out of water was “a couple of miles with a friend.” The 14 miler last week where I did a hill work out was “a run around the block”. The 20 miles I did on Saturday was “I’m just marking a short section of trail for Tevis”.
Trying to make my training as invisible as possible so it doesn’t impact my family is important. But actively hiding the amount of mileage I’m doing doesn’t seem reasonable or healthy. I also do my best to pretend that I’m not sore or tired from the long run….the better to not impact family life. Finding a balance between being gone for hours and hours and hours training, versus being completely secretive about it is hard for me for some reason. Why can’t I just be a normal reasonable person and behave in normal reasonable ways????????? Why do I always have to overdo it one way or another?????????
7. Speaking of training in a healthy way, I also started noticing some warning signs of overtraining last week – not surprising because last week might be my highest ever mileage for a training week at 45 mile total. I’ve started not sleeping well and I’m irritable.I’ll have to see how the next month goes – both during the taper and the recovery period post 50 miler. This week I’m planning ~30 miles for the week and then for the next two weeks leading up to the race I’ll do 15-20 miles per week. I’ll see how the reduction in mileage affects my mood/sleep. Usually I’m injuried way before getting this mileage/training level so subtle signs of overtraining are new! :-p
8. I’ve always thought about preparing mentally for an endurance event as being something that comes from INSIDE myself. Practicing running on tired legs, or making myself train when I don’t want to at the end of a long day. Building up a larger store of will power to utilize on race day to keep myself going on the trail. Dealing with pain and fatigue.
I have realized there’s another piece to the mental preperation. It’s the belief that what you are doing is actually attainable by you. Not someone special and elite, but YOU. Not a hope or a dream or a possibility. An actual belief that this thing that you are setting out to do is doable by ME. At least for me, this belief comes from people OUTSIDE myself.
I need to be told over and over that running and riding 100 miles is something that is doable by normal every day people. Running with Cyd – a runner who has finished 100 mile ultras before – over the last 2 weeks has been great – but normally I don’t have such a great training partner and it’s just me and my busy little brain. I find that a really effective way for me to integrate this belief that I *can* do 100 miles into my subconscious (as opposed to *hope* I can finish) is to listen to podcasts and read blog posts that focus on people’s stories and experiences doing the distance. It sorta gets my brain used to the idea and past the “OMG you are going to run for how many hours?????” reaction.
Yes, finishing 100 miles is special. The first step is believing I can do it. The second step is doing the work, including mentally training for it.