July 14, 2013

Hill running? More like Hell running...

"We're gonna mix things up with some light trail running tomorrow." 

Doesn't that sound innocent and delightful? That's the invitation I received for a run this morning that was basically two hours of sweaty hell.

I have a few events on my "bucket list" that I want to participate in, which includes a 1/2 marathon. I've been talking to our Endurance coach Speed (Yes, that's his real and very appropriate name) about running in the Akron half coming up this fall. He invited me to join the endurance class today at Squire's Castle Metropark.

Squire's Castle MetroPark
First of all, Squire's Castle is a fantastic place to run. I did most of my Tough Mudder training there and really enjoy the views as well as the trails. They are challenging but not overwhelming.

Speed spent about 10 mins teaching me a "pose running" technique that he said would make me more efficient. He kept comparing it to falling (which I am good at) and Olympic lifting (which I am not). I felt like it started to make sense but I am sure I looked like I was running with a butt plug. I'm assuming of course. I have no experience with said butt plug....

I'm on the right. The dog kicked my ass...

Once instruction time was over, we started out with a light run through the park for probably a little over a mile. It wasn't enough to wind me but it was humid so my bald dome was getting pretty soaked. Note to self: Bald men should wear hats. At the end of that run was a hill that seemed like Everest. Fortunately we were traveling down it, so all I had to do was not fall. Once we reached the bottom I was informed we would be doing 5 intervals up this hill for 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off until we reached the top with the goal of reaching the top in two intervals. This hill was easily about a 60 degree grade and was about 1/8th of a mile long. I was not feeling good about what was about to transpire but felt ok that if I sh*t myself I could blame it on the bridal trail, my running partner Larry, or the dog that was with us. This is the first time I have done hill training and I can only compare it to Deadlifts. It makes my ass hurt and want to pass out. It's kind of like prison without the orange jumpsuit. Regardless, I hit the goal of 2 intervals each time and I think I started to get the hang of pose running. At a minimum it looked like the butt plug dislodged so I'll count that as a victory. Once we were done with the hill, we made our way back to the cars or as I was calling it, Base Camp Alpha for a much needed rest and post run Paleo cookie.

Much like every painful thing we do at CFD, I had a blast and will be working with Speed to incorporate a day or two of endurance into my normal training over the next few months. Hopefully I can continue to improve, be ready for a 1/2 marathon, and not look like a prison b*tch all at the same time.

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