Sunday, January 13, 2013

Easy, Light, Smooth, and Fast

Got home from my trail run this morning and realized this is the best I have felt in at least a month.  Holy cow "the crud" and the general end of year stress really took a lot more out of me than I expected it did.

At some point in "Born To Run" Caballo Blanco was "teaching" Christopher McDougall about trail running.  Lesson One:  Take what the trail gives you, don't fight it.  I can identify with that.  I do scan the trail see what looks like the best pat, take smaller steps, and not fight the trail, because seriously it is going to win.  Starting out today I was pretty confident I was good for Lesson One.  Lesson Two was Easy, Light, Smooth, and Fast.  Take the trail easy I think that links up well with taking what the trail has to give you so I worked on light and trying to tread softly and not clomp around.  I've also been working on keeping my shoulders relaxed.  Working on two things at time seems like the most I should tackle.  Eventually I will get to smooth and fast.

All in all the run felt good and it felt short.  It was a bout a mile shorter than I thought it should be.  The trail is a 8.5 mile trail.  Reviewing the trail map and the Garmin output, doesn't look like I cut out a mile anywhere, so huh...  I did figure out where an extra loop could be added on so next time I'll be looking for that cut off around mile 5.5.

My loop this a.m. 7.33 miles

8 mile loop
I really focused on keeping my shoulders relaxed and my arms at 90 degree angles and not clomping along the trail.  I could feel the difference when I was tensed up and clomping I tended to stumble more. Very  interesting.

One of the thoughts across my mind was McDougall didn't seem to finish the the thought on why women and the Tarahumara seem to excel in Ultra Running.  The drop out rate for women in Leadville is 10% while for men it is 50% does he ever get back to Joe Vigil exploring why women excel at long distances?  I Hope he doesn't loose the plot on that because I am really curious.

Personally I feel better and better the longer I run.  Today I could have taken another loop and I will do that the next time. I'm not a big fan of double loops, however I have a couple of races coming up that are going to be double, triple, and quadruple loops, better suck it up butter cup!

Pretty trail.  This is the view just after scaling a 10 ft piece of ledge
Summary / Splits:

Beth, feeling like a healthy woman again.


  1. >The drop out rate for women in Leadville is 10% while for men it is 50%

    I have three theories
    1) Commitment - women are more serious about signing up for something like this, so they put the training in
    2) Smarts - I was told by a fellow female runner that I could totally do the LT100. I balked, because we have a shared male friend who's dropped out twice. She declared that this friend doesn't run smart - he goes out too fast and doesn't respect the distance
    3) Physiology - women carry higher body fat, which we can tap into during longer endurance events. That's part of why at longer distances, the %age difference between winning male times and winning female times get closer.

    1. Andrea - Thanks!!! I agree on all three points. Did you run the LT100?