Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Prepping For A Long Walk In The Mountains

Looking for a different type of challenge and the chance to run something new, I'll be embarking on the 54 mile Manitou's Revenge Ultramarathon this weekend. I can hardly wait to hit the rocky, rugged Catskill mountain trails in the predawn light this Saturday. 

It will be interesting to see how my body holds up after running another 50 miler only two weeks after a hard effort at Cayuga Trails. Unlike Cayuga, the Manitou's Revenge course is barely runnable at all. Even on a good day with a proper taper, I'd likely be walking a good portion of this beast. To add to the adventure, I'll be camping out near the finish line in Phoenicia, also a first, then taking a bus (provided by the race) at 3:30 AM to the starting line in Windham.

Per the race website, Manitou's Revenge ascends about 15,000 over the point-to-point 54 miles through the Catakills High Peaks region. I've hiked extensively in the Catskills over the past few years, including a good portion of the race route, and I know first hand how "rocky and precipitous" those trails are - super technical, typical east coast stuff. Needless to say,

Friday, June 10, 2016

Ain't No Easy Way Out: 2016 Cayuga Trails


noun \so·di·um\

1.  a silver-white soft waxy ductile element of the alkali metal group that occurs abundantly in nature in combined form and is very active chemically.

2. one of several electrolytes required by the human body during an ultramarathon, the mismanagement of which may cause a long and painful day.


noun \ˈslēp\ 
1. the natural periodic suspension of consciousness during which the powers of the body are restored.

2.  a condition required by the human body in the days prior to an ultramarathon in order to replenish energy, the mismanagement of which may cause a long and painful day.

That's now three finishes at the Cayuga Trails 50 and that elusive sub 10 hour time still escapes my grasp. Going into the race, I thought - no, I knew - that my fitness was there, and that breaking 10 hours was all but given. Unfortunately, this is

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

2016 Cayuga Trails Pre-Race Info

Ah, late May in Ithaca. The grass has greened up, flowers are in full bloom, watermelon is at its juiciest, and of course Cayuga Trails is only a few days away.

The Cayuga Trails 50 is once again the USATF 50 Mile Trail Championship. This is the first year the race has sold out, and it seems the front end is the most competitive it's ever been for both the men and women. (Must Love Jogs previews the elite field here.) This is also the first year the event will host a marathon - one loop of the 50 mile course with a little extra thrown in to make it 26.2. It appears that race day temps will reach the mid-70s with no chance of rain - a bit warmer than ideal, but at least the course will be mud-free and not scorching hot like it was in 2014.

This year I feel much more confident about my chances of breaking 10:00 at the Cayuga Trails 50. My run at the Breakneck Point Trail Marathon in April has shown that I can continue to run strong and efficiently after several hours of gnarly terrain,