Friday, May 29, 2015

Cayuga Trails 50: Final Preparations and Additional Resources

With only a few days to go before the Cayuga Trails 50, I feel like I'm as ready as I could possibly be. The previous five months of training have been a lead-up to this coming Sunday. The last few weeks have been a combination of running on the course and getting in an ample amount of hill work. I'm hoping to run a PR for the 50M with the secondary goal of beating last year's time here, and feel like I have a good chance to do both.

The fun starts tonight (Friday), as Scotie Jacobs and Ithaca Beer are bringing back the Lucifer's Steps brew in conjunction with the race. The brewery is hosting a MUT runner social gathering of sorts, along with a pre-race briefing. The Race festivities continue tomorrow with the Trails in Motion Film Festival. Even if you are not running the race, considering checking out the Film Festival on Saturday afternoon, held downtown at Cinemapolis. I attended the festival last year and it was well worth it! (Click here for a full rundown of the race schedule of events.) There will also be mid-race live

Monday, May 25, 2015

Gnarly Times: The North Face Endurance Challenge at Bear Mountain

On the first weekend in May, I headed down to the Hudson Valley for a 50K trail race as a warmup for the Cayuga Trails 50 Miler. I've previously run the half marathon and full marathon at the North Face Endurance Challenge: New York, and thought the 50K would be a solid training effort for Cayuga. (I crashed at my friend Adam's house the night before the race, which helped immensely on the logistics. Thanks Adam!). Based on my memory of the marathon from 2013, I figured I could break six hours in the 50K without putting in an all-out effort. The 50K race started at 7:00 AM. After some brief pre-race announcements from Ultramarthon Man and North Face athlete Dean Karnazes, we were off, and by 7:05 I had already realized how wrong I'd been.

Pre-race sunrise. Looks to be a beautiful day!

 "And we're off!" Photo: Ultra Race Photos

Cruising in the early miles. Photo: Ultra Race Photos
In the two years since I'd run the trails at Bear Mountain and Harriman State Parks, I'd forgotten how the tough, gnarly terrain took a pretty good toll on my body. Despite being in better shape with more trail running experience this time around, I was still running that same marathon course plus an extra