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Sep 4, 2012

First 50 mile week

6 miles on the schedule today.  Hot and humid, humid, humid.  Did I mention it was humid?  This week is a cut back week for me so my longest midweek run is 6 miles.  I can deal with that!

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So this past week I did my first ever 50 mile week.  Wow.  I can't imagine what it's like to actually run a 50 mile race - crazy.  Anyway, The big thing last week was two 10 mile mid week runs.  I never imagined a 10 mile run was possible during the week.  For me, that's about 1.5 hours of running ---- then I have to work all day!  Needless to say, I'm quite tired at the end of the day.
50 miles? Check!
I do notice that my legs are getting stronger.  I guess that's the by product of so much running.  The other thing I love about this time in the training?  Eating!  I get to eat when I want and what I want and it's fuel I use for the running.  It's nice to once in awhile not have to worry about what you eat.  I'll be eating some donuts for my next twenty miler in two weeks.  Haha!

Last weekend I was in Northern Michigan or as we Michigander's call it, "Up North"  I took off Friday so I was able to beat the crowd a little bit but it was still fairly crowded.  I also left on Sunday evening after dinner as well.  The drive to our cottage takes about 3 hours on a typical drive.  On a Holiday weekend, it can take up to 5 hours.  It's not a fun drive and there is one part that gets so backed up that a normal one hour stretch takes 3 hours.  A few years ago, my wife and I decided that we were not going to drive that.  It was either go/leave a day early or don't go.  That is one of the advantage to owning a place -- there's always next weekend.

Anyway, as most of you know, I've gotten to run on the North Central States Trail which runs from Gaylord to Mackinaw City.  I've already run from Gaylord to Vanderbilt which is the first stretch of the trail.  I've also run from Vanderbilt to almost Wolverine which is the second stretch.  This time around, I decided to drive up to Indian River(and skip the Wolverine to Indian River stretch).  I wanted to run Indian River because you got to run right next to Mullett Lake.  This stretch takes you from Indian River to Topinabee but it was only about 5.5 miles and I had 20 on the schedule so I ran past Tobinabee another 4.5 miles.  This stretch of the trail is INCREDIBLE.  I'd have to say it's one of prettiest runs that I've ever run.  Because it was a holiday weekend, there were lots of people on the trail between Indian River and Topinabee.

The stretch also includes some nice wooded areas.  You also got to see the many cottages along the way including most of the lake front cottages plus the views of the lake were spectacular.  It was a perfect day for a run as it started at 50 degrees, sunny and a slight wind.  I could not have asked for much better conditions.  I took lots of pictures along the way with my iPhone so excuse the poor quality.
It looks like I'm heading into a dark tunnel, doesn't it?
Mullett Lake Labor Day weekend
A fantastic road(trail)
This trail begs to be run on


It goes on and on!
I wanted to run this bridge so bad but it's under construction
So now I've still got several more sections of the trail to do.  This would be from Wolverine to Indian River(9.6 miles), Topinabee to Cheboygan(11.9 miles), and Cheboygan to Mackinaw City(16.3 miles).  I won't be able to run these sections this year so I'll have to save some of them for next year.  Also, I'm not sure how I'm going to run two of those since an out and back is 24 miles and 32 miles and I'm not sure I'm ready for either of those runs in training.  Another alternative is to bike the entire trail next year.  I so wish this trail was close to my home but there are plenty of trails around my home to run as well but not quite as remote as these are.

Do you have trails close to your home?  Or do you prefer the roads?

Have a great day and....Keep Running!!!!

7 comments:

  1. Always perfer a trail if I can, but I don't have any of those long trails near me. Heritage park has some great hills, but limited number of miles. Maybury has a 5 to 6 mile hilly trail loop, and of course there's kensington which is pavement but a great workout.

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  2. Wow, that is a beautiful trail! I would love running there. Congrats on the 50 mile week. It's hard work but so worth it.

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  3. Trails! I love them and prefer them anytime over a road...way to hit 50 miles in a week..that is not an easy task!

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  4. Congrats on the great week Jeff! I think you'll notice the additional mileage will make your upcoming race much easier. 50 miles is like everything else - when you start it, it seems like a lot, but as you ease into it, it's not as hard as you thought it would be! Congrats!

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  5. 50 miles is 50 miles, nice going, now keep it there for 4 weeks and then (if your body hasn't fallen apart) the marathon will be easy...

    Love the trail, but one needs a bit of tar...

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  6. I love trail running! I truly believe it helped me with my marathon PR! I did almost all my long runs on Poto. Sadly, the closest trail to my house is an hour away (Poto in Pinckney). There are not any trails in the Downriver area.

    I also like to go down to Ohio and run Oak Openings. If you ever get the chance, head down and hit those trails!

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  7. Mark - must get to Kensington someday. With Stony 5 miles away from me, it's hard to beat location.

    Jim - not sure it gets easier but I've got two more 50 mile weeks in my schedule for this marathon session so we will see.

    Coach - only two more for me(I might die at 4 more week at 50)

    Steph - the Ohio trails look awesome. I've never been on Poto but I know Running Fit does races there.

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