Stellar course, not so stellar run

IMG_20140405_114310_899Saturday, Kurt and I headed down to Roanoke for another training run on the Blue Ridge Marathon course.

The sun was shining, the sky was blue, and the trees were in bloom, but the wind was COLD.
IMG_20140405_084225_924I was wishing that I’d brought my gloves and a long-sleeved shirt.

There may have been some whining.

I actually felt better than I did last time as we climbed up to the Blue Ridge Parkway.
IMG_20140405_093907_453Soon after we started the climb up Roanoke Mountain, though, my energy and attitude took a nosedive. My hands were freezing in the relentless, frigid, wind and my legs and lungs were screaming at me.

The climb seemed to take forever, but eventually we made it to the top.
IMG_20140405_100856_574At the top, I had the bright idea to take the trail to the true summit of the mountain. Neither of us had ever been, and it seemed like something we should do. The sign said it was a 10 minute walk. Kurt probably knew that this was a terrible idea, but didn’t want to risk upsetting me any more than I already was, so he agreed.

I figured we’d run, but we were soon climbing stairs. I only had to jog a few steps before I realized there was no way that we’d be running. Whose idea was this? We walked until we got to a clearing that was sort of flattish. We called it the summit, although I’m guessing it was not.
IMG_20140405_100804_108

The steep road down Roanoke Mountain was a welcome reprieve.
IMG_20140405_101919_234The mile or so of climbing back up to the turn-off for the road up to the Mill Mountain Star is the hardest part of the run for me. I expect the climbing to be tough after the turn-off, but I always forget that it’s tough for quite a while before that.

We didn’t linger long at the star.
IMG_20140405_111501_947I suggested that we explore the trails around Mill Mountain Park, not because I at all felt like doing it, but because I still wanted to get my mileage in (I was hoping for close to 20). I knew that if we went back to the car, there was no way in hell not much of a chance that I’d continue on.

Kurt was hurting even more than I was at this point. He vetoed my idea.

My feelings were not hurt.

We made our way back down the mountain.
IMG_20140405_112137_075IMG_20140405_112159_613IMG_20140405_112748_887IMG_20140405_113002_862
When we got back to the car at 15.7 miles, we called it a day.
IMG_20140405_114345_575It was our last long run before the Blue Ridge Marathon. I was a little disappointed that we cut it so short, but neither of us felt like we could run another step.

It was not the confidence-building run we had hoped it would be.

Later, when we were trying to figure out why we both crashed so hard, we realized that neither of us had been drinking enough.

It was sunny. We had been sweating like crazy (just look at the selfie we took on top of Roanoke Mountain) but we felt cold. The wind was also evaporating our sweat away so quickly that we didn’t realize we were sweating at all.

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7 Responses to Stellar course, not so stellar run

  1. Meagan says:

    One things for sure, you are going to be mentally prepared for the course after training so much on it! And if you get to a point where you’re feeling tough on race day, you can think back to the training runs that you completed on the course. I get excited for Blue Ridge each time I read about one of your training runs on the course.

    • Blue Ridge is such a great race!
      The worst training run on the course I ever had was the first one we did last year. We did the same 16 miles, but I didn’t bring ANY fuel. Just water. And I hadn’t eaten much for breakfast. STUPID!! But now every time I run it, I feel better than I did THAT time 🙂

  2. “Neither of us had been drinking enough.” I read that twice before I realized you referring to hydration during the run and not adult beverages before.
    And I can’t help saying this since there were several photos – so Kurt was your pace booty done Mill Mtn? 😉

  3. *down. (C’mon Brian! Proofread!)

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