Friday marked a fun and interesting run. I ended up heading out along Kellogg Road into Blodgett Mills and then into Virgil. This is a great run because it begins flat right in Cortland then slowly and surely creeps up with jaw-dropping climbs that make Central New York mountain running what it is. As opposed to other great running meccas such as Boulder, Mammoth Springs, Flagstaff, Central New York may not be right in the heart of steep rocky mountains with vistas in the 7,000 range to 14, 000 range but rather I feel you still can get a great workout in with the amount of steep and long maintained climbs along the calm and peaceful roads of the area. Though you can only top out at about 2,400 feet or so, every climb that is made range from the 400ft to 1,300 ft range in terms of vertical gain. So as the run progresses, you can easily get 5,000-8,000 ft of vertical gain which is insane for this area but trust me these figures are true. So I made some nice climbs and it made my left hamstring on the way back feel a little sore but I ran today like a tempo. I hit the climbing sections like I was racing Mount Washington and maintained a strong pace through all the climbs never slowing my 7:35 climbing pace. It was incredible to do such as I usually have a tough time with some ascents and then can dominate others. The day has been cloudy and overcast as snow showers blanketed the return trip. I continued to run through Virgil all the way onto the roads such as Strafford Road that I ended up running to on my 2 hour Sunday long run. I could not believe how far I went and I was only at 37 minutes! I ran one more incline then headed back at about 44 minutes. I encountered one car today which is something I am not used to but is great. I had the run all to myself. The snow showers on the way back was lovely since I have not seen much snow in a long time living out in the south but man it truly puts you in the holiday spirit. I ran a nice 1 hour and 28 minute run pretty much running even splits.
Tomorrow, I am planning on running out at Hoxie Gorge to run some trail work to mix things up as I have been running the roads a bunch lately. Maybe the soft surfaces will help to make my hamstring feel a little better.
Saturday--Hoxie Gorge Trail Run on Mcdermont Trail. I discovered all kinds of new trail sections through the forest which is awesome. I ran tons of great uphills and had a ton of run. Ran 75 minutes of trail slipping action on the wet leaves and light snow. Found the Hoxie Gorge Lean-to and checked that out. Today was not a super fast day, but it was one where I had the chance to test myself on different terrain which was nice. The views I had in the pasture of the run were just jaw-dropping. Great run in 30 degree temps .
Sunday---Run in the rain. As always my luck went south this morning as it was a lovely 40 degree day. I set out the door ready to run and as I set out the door, only 5 minutes passed and it started sprinkling. Rain always starts out nice and slow. I headed out along Kinney Gulf Road and I must say that there were tons of cars out on the roads today-something pretty rare around here. By the time I was on Kinney Gulf, the rain really picked up. Of course I had a thermal 1/2 zip on something better for a cold dry day not one with rain. So of course I endured the rain for 1 hour and a half as I headed home with frozen hands and a wet top and bottom. I ran Kinney Gulf all on the flat sections to rest my hamstring and to just run nice and easy. I logged about 15 today and felt just fine. My fitness is solid right now and I am ready to make the big leap to being a full-time professional. I think I truly have what it takes at this point in time and the training here in Upstate NY is really working out so far. I am very excited for the snowshoe season and I hope to see how the winter works out.
Monday---I went out and ran along Ames Road off of highway 13. Probably the steepest climb up in Cortland. Ran nice and relaxed the whole way and logged about 75 minutes or about 11-12 miles. The weather has recently warmed up and really 40's felt warm. I found an alternative path down a dirt road that was super steep. I felt like I was at a waterpark heading down one of those tunnels but my tunnel was carved out by trees. It was pretty cool to see. I am looking forward to my next few days of running leading up to my big 5k. I hope I can score a first place prize at the Wonderful Life 5k and maybe win some money too. I hope to use my earnings to get Ashlee an awesome blender!
Tuesday---Nice 70 minute run in 65 degree weather-made some nice climbs up along East Homer hills. Came back on 11 through Homer then back home. My body is tired from all this stress from writing and composing my last papers for the semester but all is going well. I am in tip top shape for the 5k this weekend and should come out on top. I am looking for a sub 15 minute performance to ensure a nice victory.