Now on to the main reason for this post: trail running is HARD!!
I think that Mike and I went into the trails at Mendon Ponds a little bit on the cocky side based on our stellar "trail" runs prior to yesterday's run. Ha! Those trails were nothing compared to the pain that we endured yesterday, I wouldn't even go so far as to call them trails anymore. They were roads that had dirt instead of asphalt, of course we could hold sub 10 minute pace!
Since we needed to make up a brick workout and our duathlon is next weekend (the run legs are on trails), we decided to head to Mendon Ponds to get in some hill work on the bike and run on the trails. We didn't run on the trail for the duathlon, though, and Mike picked the West Esker trail for our run.
West Esker is the trail in orange
Here's the description of the trail:
This is a 1.5 mile moderately hilly trail.
Moderately hilly? I guess so if you are used to trail running but for me it was really hilly!
After getting off of our bikes, which was an adventure in and of itself let's just say I slipped off my bike going uphill, we quickly did our "transition" and got on the trail.
It wasn't bad in the beginning and then we started along the loop. When we hit the first couple of hills I knew that my pace was going to be horrible (for me). I actually thought of Eric's advice about walking up the hills but I pushed on.
The worst part was this evil downhill that I wasn't even running down, I was basically shuffling! Then I lost Mike and I had to yell for him to tell me which way he went and luckily I heard him yell, "to the left".
After scaling a tree, and scraping my thigh in the process, I had to run up another hill and I finally gave in and walked up a portion of it.
Then we got to do it all over again since we had to do 3 miles and the loop is only 1.5 miles. It went better but I was still really slow on the second loop. Here are my paces if you are interested in knowing: 10:59, 11:48 and 11:02.
Now I have to admit that I am really nervous for our duathlon. Not only am I really slow on the bike (I think the fastest I have clocked on an actual bike is 13.7 mph average pace), but now I am terrified of the trails! I think that the trails that we are running on aren't as bad, but I am still worried that I am going to come in last place.
I know this is crazy but I just wish I was going into the duathlon a little bit more confident than I feel right now. Plus, it is going to be a long race since it is 2 mile run, 10 mile bike, 1 mile run, 10 mile bike, 2 mile run. I just hope that I have enough endurance to finish this thing! Right now that is my only goal: to finish.
Any advice for me for next Saturday's duathlon?