Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Long Run

Hit the Tolt Pipeline at 5:30 this morning and finished my 30 miler at 9:40. There were some pit-stops and a refueling/stretch session at my car around 8:00, so while my average pace was 7.5 mph, it would be a little higher considering my time only while making forward progress.

Tolt was great. The hills are extremely runnable, in fact I only hiked up one hill, the 25%+ grade slope out of Blythe Park. Otherwise, my route was two out-and-backs between Woodinville and Snoqualmie Valley, and one out-and-back from Woodinville to Blythe Park in Bothell. The Pipeline has two ~15 degree kinks just before Snoqualmie, so it's essentially a straight shot except for the jog around the Red Hook Brewery on the way to Blythe Park. You'd think that this would make it quite boring, but it isn't. The hills constantly keep you entertained and never allow more than a half-mile or so of visibility of the trail ahead, and the scenery changes constantly. One moment you're running through horse farms and meadows, then through thickly-wooded valleys filled with gorgeous houses, and then across the 405.

I had 5 Gu's and 4 S-caps on the run, along with 70 oz of water. Very little for this distance, and I certainly started dragging ass the last hour. My right hip flexor/gluteus medius started to feel tweaked about 3 hours in, so I'm going to have to go back to work on it immediately (the glute was part of what caused my DNF at Rocky, the hip flexor gave me grief after Badger Mountain). More clam exercises!

Calorie burn from running was 2300 (weight x 0.63 x mileage), but if you consider my basal rate plus the exercise, my total calorie expenditure was around 2700. Eating 5 Gu's, that puts me at a net of 2200 calories burned, so I was definitely putting a strain on my reserves*. Hopefully my crazy hypothesis is correct - that training with a bare-minimum calorie intake provokes a more substantial response by the body to conserve glycogen and burn fat.

If nothing feels like absolute crap, I'll try to go for 2 hours tomorrow. Running on tired legs is good training. I need to hit mile 40, before Hope Pass at Leadville, feeling fresh and ready to do some work.

*A 150-lb man stores about 2500 calories worth of glycogen (2000 muscles, 500 liver). However, it's your leg muscles that need the energy, so some of the glycogen stored in muscles isn't going to be of much use to you while running. These numbers also assume you're "topped off". I estimate that at 120 lbs, I probably store at most 2000 if I carbo-load right before the run.

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