Defn: a human male displaying evidence of devolution - exhibits distinctive "caveman-like" tendencies. This man often dribbles in public places; cannot drink a beverage without spilling it on himself, the floor or someone else; may also run into objects like lampposts & bushes; has a definite "sloopish & short legged" running style that is slow and low to the ground, often resulting in the dragging of knuckles.

These throwback neanderthals, along with their questionable diet, should clearly be avoided.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Doubling up

Double trouble.  Double the fun.  The Daily Double.  A Double take.  Double or Nothing.  Double Vision.  Double Down.  Double Up......I could go on.  Lots of things to reference with Doubles.

The last two days I pulled off a noteworthy double double of sorts for me.  Not just because it was something that I haven't ever done before.  But because it was really good endurance training - for me at least.

Not that it all went well.

Tuesday:  I am fortunate to live just a few minutes from the entrance to the Air Force Academy where the Falcon Trail is a favorite trail of mine to train and run on.  When I tack on a loop of the parking lot it is a 13 mile run - with 1300'+ of elevation gain that gives added work to a good 2 or so hour run on a really nice trail that is usually not very travelled upon during mid-week.

I had run only once since last Friday - that one run was just an easy and short-ish effort.  So I expected to go into this Tuesday's run with some pep.  Didn't happen.  I started out feeling tired, not really feeling slow, but just feeling fatigued.  Maybe not enough sleep and/or not eating well the previous couple of days.  I stuck to what felt like an easy to moderate effort and ended up with a 2:05 lap going counter clockwise.  In hindsight this was too fast.  But it didn't feel too fast - it just felt tiring.  I possibly should have stopped, but I had the day off work and wanted a long run. 

I turned and was now heading clockwise for a 2nd lap.  I tried to be conservative and really slow down the effort in order to keep moving without walking.  It seemed to work for almost 4 miles - then I couldn't muster any effort or desire to run any further.  So I resorted to walking, a lot.  Every now and then I convinced myself to run / jog.  Sometimes I even ran for a mile or so.  I also walked for larger sections.  I seem to bonk each and every time I try a Double Falcon run.  Don't know what it is - I'm sure the 26 miles has a lot to do with it, but I also believe I have a mental roadblock built into it.

What had the potential to be a new 2 lap PR (old one is about 4:15) quickly went by the wayside.

I kept moving alternating walking with running and feeling like I would never make it back to my car.  Finally with 3 1/3 miles to go of almost all downhill with the exception of the last 1/2 mile I convinced myself to move - and maintained a slow run / shuffle all they way to the end, including the last 1/2 mile of misery.  2nd lap was 2:25 almost for a 4 1/2 hour total for the 26 miles.

I lay down on the picnic table in the parking lot after I was done - and if it wasn't for not having any fluids left - would have gladly stayed there and easily fallen asleep.

Wednesday:  Much better sleep the night before.  But woke to rain and 46 degrees.  I waited until just after 9 am - had the day off work so I could afford to get a late start - the rain stopped as I pulled into a parking area at the foot of Mt Herman. 

I started out slow - way slow - really wanting to pace myself for this days effort.  I wasn't feeling too sore or even overly tired from the day before.  I also wasn't feeling overly peppy either though.  The 1700' climb up the first 1.3 miles was and always will be a wake up and get it over and done with section of the 8 mile loop.  The trail was a little slick in places but by the time I reached the summit the clouds had lifted and the sun came out.

This brightened my spirits and I continued over the Southwest side of the mountain and onto the lap.  I felt okay and managed to get into a steady rhythm - finishing the first lap only 30 or so seconds slower than last weeks first of 2 laps.  Today I was also doing 2 laps - but last week I had not been out for 4 1/2 hours and 26 miles the day before.

Needless to say my second lap - particularly the climb back up to the summit was slow.  The weather was good and clear now and I had shed a full layer of clothes at the beginning of lap 2.  After I came back down the mountain and neared the approach to Limbach Canyon I ran up on and passed 3 mountain bikers struggling up the trail.  I saw them from about a 1/4 mile away and they worked as a good motivation to keep me from walking. 

I always have a sick satisfaction of passing people on bikes - gives me an ego boost thinking that my foot power is stronger than their pedal power.  It may be the case on steep uphill terrain - certainly not on downhills though.  In any case - I passed by them, cheerfully saying good morning and trying to make it look like my effort was so much easier than theirs.

Minutes later I was heading downhill - moments after that they came flying by me.

Fun was over - just keep moving.  I did, fairly well even.  It wasn't till about 2 miles to go that I let my mind give way to my weary legs and resorted to walking some of the uphills.  I didn't walk too much though - I had more of an attitude of just get this done with.  So my second lap ended up being only a couple of minutes slower than lap one.  Overall time for the 16 mile, 2 lap effort (with over 4650' of gain) was 3:49.

For my double double I did a combined 42 miles, over 6300' of gain and 8 hours, 19 minutes of movement on the trails.  I have never run this back to back workload in the space of a 2 day period ever.  I'm thinking it was a good investment in the endurance-o-meter bank.

Needless to say - was quite tired afterwards.  Glad it was over.  Looking forward to another good night sleep and a rest day tomorrow.  I have another double lap of a nearby loop in mind for early Friday morning. 

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