Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Fueling For The Ring

 Want to read about The Ring 2014 and not the fueling strategy? Click here!

Planning on nutrition and hydration for The Massanutten Ring can easily be the same as planning for a 100 mile run. Although 29 miles shorter, there is also far less (but awesome!) aid stations for The Ring.

Milford Gap Mile 13.1   
Camp Roosevelt  Mile 25   5 hours
Crisman Hollow Road 34.3 3.10 hours
Moreland Gap Road 40.7  3 hours
Edinburg Road 48.7  3.30 hours
Woodstock Tower 56.9 2.25 hours
Powells Fort 62.7  3.15 hours
Finish Mile 71

I target 300 calories per hour, so I need to carry 5 x 300 calories= 1500 calories to get to Camp Roosevelt, for example. Yes, there will be limited aid at Milford Gap, but it's always much wiser to bring your own calories.

For the rest of the aid stations, it will take me approximately 3 hours or so between aid stations, so my rough estimation of food stuffs will be 900-1200 calories to carry.

For the record, I always seem to have extra food that I haven't ate when I come into the next aid station.  I am going to try and focus on eating my calories, so I need to plan out what will taste good.

This is the tricky part. Rereading my old run reports and race reports, my stomach has been turning from my old "iron stomach" to becoming a bit more fickle after around mile 50.  Last year, during The Ring, I was nauseated.  Same with my Zion 100 Race.

Items I am going to try this year:

Tums on a schedule. I am going to take a Tums every 4 hours.  That is not too much Tums. It's just calcium carbonate.  I will also carry extra Tums for nausea,  but I am hoping this Tums experiment will work.

Tailwind Nutrition: I bought a bag of this a few months ago. I've used it on shorter runs.  I drank a bunch of it hanging out at the Ouray Aid Station at Hardrock. It's a bit salty, but that did not bother me.  I am going to fill two of my three bottles with Tailwind to start The Ring.  I am also going to put two servings of the powder-actually the caffeinated version-into my drop bag, for Woodstock.  That will be easy calories, with a serving containing 100 calories and 35 mg of caffeine.

Ultragen: My recovery drink from First Endurance! LOVE THIS!  I will use a half-serving (one scoop) in a water bottle, probably around Edinburg. I did this during Zion and I think it really helped.

It is more the savory items that I want to eat, late in an ultra.  I will use gels for the first half of The Ring. They are easy to carry, I have less water to drink in the first 25 miles, and my stomach will still (hopefully) be good.

A new item I am trying: Epic Meat Bars

  11 grams of protein, 200 calories.  I ate one today.  It tasted okay.  It tasted like soft beef (or in this case, bison) jerky.  I have them stashed in the drop bags also. In the case that the "sweet" foods are nauseating me, I can try out the savory side.  It's not that many calories, but any calories can be good if they stay in your stomach!

Items in the drop bag:

Honey Roasted Peanuts
Cranberry juice
Nut Butter

Payday Bar
Hot Tamales
Beef Jerky
Some assorted gels
Epic Bison Bars

Food I won't be carrying:

mouth watering Beef Medley with vegetables + potatoesI tried this on my 20 mile run at Mohican.  I guess I was expecting more pot roast flavor. No. Not so much. I did eat it on my run there, but this item won't be tempting me at mile 48 at The Ring.  I guess I  was expecting "Dinty Moore" type flavor, but it was pretty bland.

I will be sure and post how my nutrition and hydration plan works for The Ring 2014!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Week in Training: Week Nine

For the record, not even close to the same category as John DeWalt Tough

I would characterize my personal life last week as horrible.  My dog had surgery and is doing just fine. My reaction to the surgery was not fine.  It was very traumatic to me-probably more so than the dog. I didn't get all my runs in, my eating was awful, and sleep was horrible.

On Friday I travelled to Mohican for a nice soothing long run, only to get a flat tire as I arrived.  With the help of a nice man, I got the tire changed and the tire repaired in Loudonville.  I canned that run because I was just emotionally spent with how the week had gone.

Saturday I bailed on a family reunion, got my run in, pottered around the house, cleaning and cooking.  I think my bit of "nesting" and getting things redecorated is my way of dealing with the stresses of my life right now-these are bits that I can control-like painting a wall or cleaning the bathroom.  That made me feel better. 

Sunday we visited the dog in the hospital-she's just fine! so good to see.  Went to lunch with my husband, had pizza and a beer, and then went and saw "Expendables 3" a completely mindless and entertaining action packed movie.   That's the most time my husband and I have spent together, outside the house, in six months or so.

That Sunday really helped my stress levels. I'm about 80% less stressed than last week-I was a freaking mess last week, so I would say I'm about 40% stressed right now.

I ran exactly 22.95 miles last week.  Let's just call it a taper for The Ring.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

It's Time for The Ring Again!

It's the most wonderful time of the Year. Of course this pertains to the time frame before The Ring and about 4 hours after finishing The's that weird time of actually running The Ring that is kinda uncomfortable.

I just re-read all my Ring reports. It's useful in that it helps me remember small details and larger issues that may have occurred.

2010 The Fellowship of the Ring
2011 My second Ring
2012-I foolishly ran a boring 50 mile race in Michigan instead of The Ring
2013 Part One
2013 Part Two
2013 Part Three

It dawned on me that it could be useful to look at my splits from the last few years, as The Massanutten Trail has not changed at all, so this will be the same course!

My "A" goal will be a sub 25 hour finish.  Slim and I finished in 25.01 in 2011! 

Goals for The Ring 2014

Camp Roo-arrive any time before 230 pm

"I was trying to describe to Alan (my husband) how that long stretch of trail through the Peach Orchard/Duncan Hollow area is aesthetically uninteresting, has almost no view, and grinds you down by that slight but wearying uphill grade as one approaches Waterfall. I finally described it like this: "It's like walking through a bland office corridor in Purgatory." -Carter Wiecking, VHTRC'er

Crisman Hollow Road-arrive before 5 pm

Moreland Gap-get here before dark!

Woodstock before 230 am

Signal Knob-before daybreak

Slim at SK at daybreak w/me 2011

It's almost time for the festivities to begin!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Coutdown to Uwharrie: Week 10 in Training

26 miles this week!  Not so much.  There was the 18 miler on the Zoar Valley Trail, which was 9 miles out and back.  All road!  It really beat my legs up.  Friday was a rest day, and my calves really ached all day at work.

I worked all weekend.  I was supposed to run both days before work. I did not run on Saturday, and my legs-the calves-were really still aching.  I planned to run Sunday, but I woke up tired, and said the heck with it.

As a result, I felt really good on my Monday morning around the block loop.  Sometimes you do have to just listen to your body and take down time.

I would like to have more miles in before The Ring, but I have to remember that The Ring is also just a very good training run for Uwharrie in October.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Southern Miles on the Zoar Valley Trail

I have done it! I have successfully navigated the southern miles of the Zoar Valley Trail. I've been on the trail miles of the ZVT a few times, but finally was able to follow the directions for the road portion of the route.

The Route:
This scenic 20-mile trail provides hikers with a variety of historical sites and changes in terrain from rolling hills to level paths. The trail is anchored at the southern end by the village of Schoenbrunn in New Philadelphia and on the north by Fort Laurens in Bolivar.

0.0     Schoenbrunn 

Schoenbrunn, founded in 1772 as a Moravian mission among the Delaware Indians, was the first Christian settlement in Ohio. Although the village prospered for several years, pressures from encroaching settlers and British-aligned Indians forced the abandonment of Schoenbrunn in 1777, shortly after the start of the Revolutionary War. 

      Leave Schoenbrunn and follow SR 39  State Route 259  to University Drive (TR 312)           
      Turn right onto University Drive and proceed east          

I did not park or start at Schoenbrunn Village, as it closes at 5 pm.  I parked at the Buckeye Career Center, on University Drive, and started from there.  About 1.5 miles from Schoenbrunn.

No berm through here, so you have to be careful and watch for cars.

About one mile or so, you are out of the houses area.
A gradual climb up to the ridge line.
 It's a good uphill climb up to Ridge Road-hence, the ridge!

2.5     Cemetery/Junction of TR 312 and TR 306 (Ridge Road)

 I didn't notice the cemetery, right at the intersection,  until my return route.

     Turn left onto Ridge Road heading northwest          
3.6     Pass through intersection of Ridge Rd. and TR 313--continue west

Nice views of the farmland up on the ridge.  Rural Ohio is very pretty.

What I love about running: the things that you see.  I would have never seen this sign, painted on the barn if I was driving along.  They do indeed have a beautiful vista.  My picture does not do it justice.

     The route stays on the ridge for about three miles.  The area is not too populated.  There's some high end houses tucked back in the woods.

5.9     Leave Ridge Rd./Follow Dawn Drive northwest to SR 39    

Dawn Drive is just a very short (1/4 mile or so) connector to State Route 39.  Then you are on SR 39 about fifty feet.

6.3     Turn right onto SR 39 and head east to Hillandale Road

 6.4     Turn north on Hillandale Road/Follow Hillandale Road to old railroad bed

This is about a 1/4 mile. Look for the bridge.

6.5     Turn right and head east on old railroad bed       

You are on the old railroad bed for about a 1/2 mile.


7.1     Turn left and head north on Pleasant Valley Rd. (TR314)    

This was the start of the big hill.  Then you run down the other side, into a nicely wooded section. Unfortunately, as I ran north, there was no berm at all, and a deep ditch as I ran facing traffic. I had to stop several times when cars came at me, hoping they would see me (I was wearing a bright yellow shirt).  If I run this route north again, I would hop over to the other side of the road where there was room to step off the road.

9.4     Turn right and head northeast on Boy Scout Road     
The problem with the directions is that it's actually Reeds Run Road that you turn onto. When you turn on CR 85, then Reeds Run Road becomes Boy Scout Road.

 9.6     Turn left and head west on CR85.      

 10.1     Join with SR 416      
10.2     Turn right and head north on old railroad bed    
This road will take you to the Dover Dam, where the "trail" portion of the ZVT begins.  I stopped here. It looks like the rough road has been completely redone.  It is about two miles to the Dover Dam.

There~ I have connected the Trail!

Previous visits to the ZVT:

October 2013
October 2012
November 2010

I have been contemplating which way to run the entire ZVT.  The northern twelve miles is more trail.  The first three or four miles is actually asphalt, then it gets a bit rougher.  The northern end is very flat.  The southern end is all road, but the only elevation would be in the last six miles.

Next on the agenda is to just get the run scheduled.  It would probably be only about a 40 minute or less car ride from one end of the trail to the other, as there is easy highway access at both ends.  I think I will want to get this run in before Uwharrie.  It is not optimal  for training for a trail 100, but it is a pleasant run and I won't get too bored on it!


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Another Go on the Zoar Valley Trail

Today I had a hair cut scheduled at 115 pm.  Which made the idea of "18 miles, hilly, trail preferably" a little tough to come up with.

I decided to look at the map and directions for the southern end of the Zoar Valley Trail. I attempted to drive it the other year and failed.

I start looking at the map and corresponding directions.

First mistake!  Which actually made the entire route easy to follow!

Leave Schoenbrunn and follow SR 39 to University Drive (TR 312) 
Turn right onto University Drive and proceed east 

It's Route 259, not Route 39-which IS near by. This should make it easier for me to get on the correct starting point!

Here's the map:
 Awful isn't it?

I just went over the roads turn by turn with Google Earth.   There is only one section, which says "Turn right and head east on old railroad bed".  I hope I can find this.  My alternative would be just to continue down State Route 39 and head north on Pleasant Valley Road.

The Actual Run:  I did it! I was able to navigate the road and find my way to the "trail section" which starts at State Route 416.

Last time I was there


Longer blog post, with lots of pictures coming next.  I'm pretty happy, as I have now connected all the parts of the Zoar Valley Trail.  I look forward to running the whole trail soon!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Countdown to Uwharrie: Week 11 in Training

It was a fairly good week in training.  44.5 miles. Thursday was a day off from running, and I had already decided to not run on Friday. My legs were tired from work and ached.

Instead of running 14 miles on Saturday and 14 on Sunday, I went with 20 miles of trail at Mohican and then eight miles on Sunday. I was surprised at how tired I was on Sunday.  The Sunday run, in full sun and humidity, was pretty tiring.

I wanted to get the long run in, as I do have The Ring coming up here in twenty days!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Mohican Buckle Run

Mohican Buckle Run Saturday

 Rob Powell, the Race Director of "Forget the PR" 50K had sent out the invite for the "Buckle Run" at Mohican-bring your buckle to show, purchase a brand new Mohican Trails map and run some different trails at Mohican.

There was quite a good turn out for the run.  $240 dollars was raised for the Mohican Trails Club.

The sale of maps provides funds for MTC to purchase materials for trail improvement projects.   New bridges, walkways and the Lyons Falls Stairs Project have been completed by the Mohican Trails Club using funds raised both through map sales, grants and assistance from the Mohican State Park and State Forest agencies. 

The new map is fabulous!

Ron and I started off together, up Hog's Hollow Trail.  We got to the Fire Tower, and I told Ron my plan was to go "old school" and follow the Red/Green OLD Mohican 100 Trail...which are just the blue/red bridle trails.  Ron agreed to go with me, and we had a great time running together.

It was great weather for twenty miles on the trails.  For August at Mohican, it was a low humidity day.  Rob had water stashed at various points around the forest/state park, we availed ourselves of the water!


Where can you purchase a Mohican Trails Map in the area?

You can purchase a trail map for $2.00 when you are in the Mohican area at the following locations:

--Mohican Lodge and Conference Center

--Malabar Farm State Park Visitors Center

    --Malabar Farm Restaurant
    --The Mohican State Campground "A" Commissary located on SR 3 just south of Loudonville

--Loudonville-Mohican Convention and Visitors Bureau in Downtown Loudonville

    --Mansfield-Richland Convention and Visitors Bureau

    --Pleasant Hill Welcome Center/Campstore and Marina

    --Mohican Country Market

    --Trails End Pizza

    --Y-Not Cycling and Fitness

    --Mohican Adventure Canoe Livery and Fun Center

    --Mohican Reservation Campgrounds and Canoeing

Thursday, August 7, 2014

My Ignite Talk: Screw Your Shoes!

My Ignite Fitness Talk is now available!

I was a bit apprehensive to watch it at first. I think it went rather well.  The audience seemed to enjoy it. After viewing it, I saw more humor in my speech that I didn't realize while writing and practicing the speech.

"Enlighten us, but make it quick".

The rules of an Ignite Talk is a five minute presentation, with 20 slides.  These slides auto advance every 15 seconds.

The idea of the Ignite Talk excited me tremendously. It was a very new (to me) idea.  I did a bunch of research and practice for my speech.

With only a five minute speech, it's very easy to practice this several times in a row, even on my lunch hour.

These were some good links to Ignite Speech planning:

I enjoy watching Ignite Talks on You Tube. I wish there was an event in my state or surrounding states, I would love to attend another Ignite Talk, or give another Talk myself!

Know of any Ignite Talks in Ohio?  Pittsburgh?  West Virginia?   Have you given an Ignite Talk and how did that go? I've very interested!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Unexpected Viewpoint

The plan was five miles, after work.  I decided to go to Salt Fork, and park in a different location than I normally do.

The problem with Salt Fork roads are: they are all up and down.

Hmm, I thought to myself, isn't that exactly what you need to run on?

In parking in a different location, I thought I would give myself a break. Do the uphill first (this was an out and back) so then I would have the nice downhill to finish.

I parked on a secluded side camp road, and decided to run a little downhill from the vehicle, down to the lake.  I knew the road would end at a "dead end" but that would give me a little flat to run on down at the lake.

We've been in a quasi drought, but I did not realize how much the lake had receded.

 Hey! I could run "on the lake" for a bit!  I was off. It was pretty hard mud for a bit.

 I got my road shoes wet crossing these little inlets, but who cares!

 I was super stoked through this section. I saw such different views, being OUT in the lake.  You don't get to see this from land.  It was an entire different perspective, and view, just a 1/4 mile out in the lake.

 I ran as far as I could.  Then the mud started to soften up more, and I turned back.
 What a little pick me up, one mile into my "road" run. An unplanned, little "off road" venture.

I continued past my vehicle, UP the hill, so I could then run back down my hill to my vehicle. It was hot, and humid, but luckily I had brought the bug spray.

It's good to have a goal event in sight again.  The Ring will be nothing but humid, training in the humidity will set me up to be ready for it!