Sunday, August 26, 2007

Cougar Mountain 14 miles

Current Mile total: 1058.75 miles

Well, its another Sunday and so that must mean we're out at Cougar Mountain. But things have changed. I'm a new man and I have confidence out here now. The dreaded Cougar Mt. can't discourage me anymore. I've conquered it and I will forever be the victor. And all that blah blah stuff.

Kathleen decided to join me this week with her new found confidence from the day before. Seems she's just one week behind me. We get there and its just Brian Kathleen and me. Small group. And I believe this is why Kathleen and I are the strongest. We show up nearly every week and put the necessary miles in. So Brian heads out. We're going to do the reverse course today to break things up. I let Kathleen lead the way. And Brian is almost immediately gone from our sight. There will be no sight of him for the rest of the day. Seems he wants to run his own pace today and remind us just how superior he really is to everyone else. We really are lucky to get to run with this guy on the weekends.

Kathleen's pace is good. And I'm encouraged by it. Glad to see her having a good run out here. After about 7-8 miles I loosen up and could probably go a little faster than her pace but its not necessary and probably the wrong thing to do anyway. I remind myself that today is about recovery and I should take it easy. The run goes by fast and I'm recognizing the trail, even as we go in reverse I see that I'm becoming familiar with the trails, where to turn, when to hold back and when to open up. Earlier on in the training I had begun to dread Cougar because I thought it was boring and I feared becoming too familiar with it. But I find its actually more exciting knowing the trail. Almost like when I used to mountain bike. Trying to have the perfect bike ride without touching my foot down on the run. Well now I'm trying to have that perfect run. One where I feel strong the whole way through. One where I feel like a wild animal running skillfully and effortlessly through the trees. My lungs relaxed, my legs light and my feet quick.

Lately I've begun to notice the physical changes to my body. My calves are thick. So thick I can't touch index finger to index finger, thumb to thumb. My ankles no longer show the definition of bone, but rather go straight down to the foot. All muscle. And my feet are muscular too. Is that possible? There's muscle on top of my feet. Its all a bit surreal to me as I've always been a bit of a skinny punk. So to see this much muscle mass on my tiny frame is hysterical. But its cool in the sense that its the by-product of being a good animal, out there running through the wild. This is what legs should look like. I swear I'm not bragging, its just freaky, I've run for years but never have I had this much muscle. Trail running sure does have its benefits.

I signed up for the Sacramento Run on Dec 2nd today. This is a race that I've been wanting to do for 4 years now. Fastest race in the US. If I can qualify for Boston, this is the race to do it. I think I have a good chance. better than good. With all this trail running I've built up a lot of strength and endurance. When the race is over I'll take a couple weeks off to recover and then I'll do speed workouts. Boston will be mine before the end of the year.

I hope.

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