My Ultra Experience: WK 2

Run: 18.6 miles
Strength: 2:00 hours
Hike: 12.5 miles
Sun Salutations: 1
Rest Days: 0

Week 2 of my ultra training was a wake up call to my muscles. Keep in mind that the last time I ran longer than 5 miles in one run was a half marathon in December. This was also the first week that I had two intense personal trainer sessions. There’s something to be said about muscle memory.

My first long run since the December half marathon was different…coach Kale instructed me to run for a period of TIME, rather than a specific DISTANCE. An hour and 15 minutes, the calendar read. Wait, I am to run for 1:15? How far should I go? How fast should I go? Can I run for that long? What should my pace be like? My mind was racing with questions. Give me a distance and I can pace myself, I can determine how long it will take and what route I will go. Give me a timeframe and I am lost.

Luckily my dear friend Janna started the run with me, talking me through the snowball of tumbling thoughts. After a lovely run in a former cranberry bog, through the woods not the bog itself, Janna provided some final words of encouragement and went back to work.  I kept the momentum going and finished my timed run -completing 7.5 miles in 1:15. Not bad at all!

Later in the week, the strength day with coach Kale was full of positive energy. I was proud of the work I had been doing the past year to build core strength and it was finally showing. I learned some awareness techniques that I was able to apply during the subsequent runs. Oh, and the workout itself was so fierce that I had a difficult time squatting for a couple of days. How could I forget that!

The week finished with a beautiful, spiritually cleansing 12.5 mile hike in the Belknap Range. Vistas overlooking Lake Winnipesaukee and the calmness of the trees were just what I needed to recharge. Hiking with like-minded souls provided the perfect ending for week 2 and seamless transition into week 3.

Taking a break on Belknap. With John, Sue and Janna
Looking back at Belknap Mtn. and Gunstock Mtn. (foreground)


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