Wednesday, December 21, 2011

3 months 'til Bel Monte 50

After a successful and surprisingly injury-free season of races and hard training, it's time to get back on it in full force. With the NYC Marathon behind me, I spent the remaining few weeks in November with some low key running and cross training, but now with December in full bloom and 2012 waiting at the next trailhead, I'm feeling fresh and focused on my first ultra -- the Bel Monte Endurance Run. 50 miles through the Blue Ridge Mountains and trails of George Washington National Park in Charlottesville, VA. Already 2 weeks into "official" training, there's just 14 weeks left before I toe the line for my maiden ultra-trek through the mountains and, I must say, I cannot wait! The Northeast has been experiencing unusually warm temperatures for mid-December (it hit 60 today in Manhattan and we're just 4 days from Christmas!), but I am not complaining about that. The temps have been ideal for training. An early morning run during the month of December typically triggers imagery of multi-layered clothing, icy roads and trails, and a deep breath that becomes visible upon exhale in the frigid New York air. But, with the exception of a day or two, the average temperature over the last couple of weeks hasn't dipped below 45. The new move to Manhattan has also helped training, both mentally and physically. Every day I'm feeling fully rested and recovered and revving to get out the door for a run up the East River and into Central Park where I've been doing most of my trail runs and getting some solid climbs in through the North Woods. The forecast calls for at least another week of this late-spring December, but one things for sure: mild, hot, or frozen -- I'm raring to lace 'em up each day and tackle the trails in preparation for what March 24th has to bring... 3 months until Bel Monte.

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