The countdown is on!
100 days until my next marathon. The Blue Ridge Marathon. Also affectionately known as America’s Toughest Road Marathon.
Why Blue Ridge Marathon? Partly because I had a free entry since I had to defer last year because of the stress reaction. But mostly because I want something really physically and mentally challenging to train for. And 7,430 feet of elevation change over the course of running 26.2 miles sounds physically and mentally challenging! (Compare to Twin Cities which has less than 800 feet of elevation change). It’s literally running up and down two mountains around the city of Roanoke.
Bonus that there is a Hill Week Cycling Camp the week before the marathon, so Scott and I are planning on making a fun trip of it. (I’m not cycling – I’ll be resting the legs and looking at the mountains and dropping F-Bombs, wondering what I was thinking when I signed up for it, while he cycles!)
So what’s my plan? I’m planning on getting through it with a combination of running and power walking – it looks like some parts are so steep that it will be impossible to run. No time goals. Just a goal to finish it with a smile on my face.
How am I training? I’m following Pfitz 18-55 plan. With an added week, so it’s actually a 19 week plan. I’m in the 5th week and feeling great! I am also adding in 2 – 3 days of cycling (spin and fat bike rides) a week, as well as 1 – 2 days on the step-mill. A friend who ran a mountain race last year said the step-mill provided GREAT cross training for hiking/running up a mountain. My biggest challenge with the step mill is not to fall off that thing and hurt myself. Have you seen it? I am definitely not one of those who can chat and/or read while on this thing. I have to concentrate on my feet and not falling off. The most important thing that I’m doing for this training is TONS of core. With the PT from my stress fractures, I’ve learned how important it is to keep my core and hips and glutes strong and in balance and working together, so my form doesn’t get all wonky, leading to another stress fracture.
The Step-Mill. Scary looking, huh?
I’m super motivated and excited about the challenge of Blue Ridge Marathon! Stay tuned!