Egads, what have I done!?!
I pulled the trigger on the ‘Whole Enchilada’ and then I couldn’t sleep that night. The day before my final PT appointment, and after whining two posts ago about losing out on entry fees due to injuries or illness, I registered for two demanding races this month. I guess I felt like I am on the road to recovery and wanted to roll the dice a little bit. Smart? No, but I’ve never been accused of that anyway.
Now that I’m feeling better and have been training consistenly for two weeks I started looking at race calendars to see what might be my next target. I discovered that the Sage Burner 50K was being held a little earlier this year and lined up nicely with my work schedule – done deal. I had a great time at the race last year. Whatever fitness I had is long gone, but I was optimistic I could at least finish. Then I noticed a statement at the bottom of the race website:
Note: there is also The Growler Mountain Bike Race on Sunday May 24th directed by 6 x Leadville 100 Mile Mountain Bike Champion, Dave Wiens. Special awards to those who complete both “long” races.
Right on! The Growler is 2 laps of (roughly) the 50K running course. Doing both the running race and bike race puts you in for the ‘Whole Enchilada’. I immediately contacted Dave and was able to get a spot in the race (as online reg had just closed). Now I’m coming off injury, with hardly any fitness, and am signed up to run 32 miles and then race 64 on a bike the day after. I haven’t been this nervous about a race for a very long time, and I’m loving it! I feel a whole new level of focus and excitement. My eating habits have improved by about 1000% and I have been better about getting more sleep.
Instead of getting a new bike, I ordered the parts necessary to convert my existing bike to a singlespeed and will be racing the Growler that way (planning on 32×18). I’ve only done a couple of simulated singlespeed rides (just leaving it in the selected gear and not shifting) and have really taken a liking to that style of riding.
Oh, and I’ll be doing my first road marathon a couple weeks after the Sage Burner/Growler combo. So that means I’m training for a tough trail 50K, an ultra distance MTB race on a singlespeed bike, and a road marathon pretty much all at the same time. Good thing I like a challenge!
I just finished up 45 miles of running and 55 on the bike this week and am feeling pretty decent. FAR from 100%, but things are coming along. The achilles/heel problem still flares up, but is manageable for the most part. I caught myself limping the other day purely out of habit – I don’t need to limp anymore, kind of funny when I realized I was still doing it, and definitely nice to not have to limp every time I get up and start walking.
For a bit of a rehearsal (since I won’t have my bike conversion work done until Wednesday at the earliest), I’m registering for the Battle at the Bear MTB race this Saturday. It will be my first mountain bike race since 1999. It’s 30 miles and will probably be my 5th singlespeed ride. The SS cat lines up with the Pro/Expert riders – so my plan will definitely be to take it easy at the start and see how things go from there. I’m also going to run a fairly hard 18-20 miles after work on Friday night. That will give me a good mini-simulation of the races later this month and help fine tune my recovery and nutrition strategies, and see how my legs hold up in the bike race after a run like that.
Should be fun!