Sunday, February 27, 2011

Marin Headlands 22.5 Miler

I have the fortune to live in one of the best running regions in the world, the San Francisco Bay Area. On Saturday (2/26/11) I went for a 22.5 Miler through the Marin Headlands which included about 4,500' elevation gain and an equal amount of descent (I think I was on flat ground for only about a half mile total!). It was a great training run for the American River 50 Miler and it also covered some of the Miwok 100K Race Route. My legs are burning today and I feel great. I brought my iPhone 4 with me and captured some of the views. The Marin Headlands (like most of the Bay Area) is a great place to run and hike because of the exceptional views and dynamic terrain. I covered ground from the beach up thru coastal trails, down through lush stream riddled switch backs, through a zen center and farm (Green Gulch Zen Center and Farm) and through some horse stables. I also ran down one coastal trail following a mountain biking unicyclist... luckily we hit some flat ground and I was able to catch a pic of him before he took off (see image below). Hope you enjoy the images (click on them for larger versions!).  

Friday, February 25, 2011

Running and Blogging

I used to think that even though I write a running blog, running and blogging really did not have any similarities. When I first started this blog, I thought that the writing and time for it would always come easily. Recently I have learned what running and blogging have in common. Writing a blog is like being on a really long run with no finish line. You face adversity, you feel great highs, explore deep lows and best of all, overcome the adversity and find a way to keep going. That is when you realize that you have become a stronger runner or blogger. Since late fall 2010 my blogging muscles have been cramping, i've run out of my favorite electrolyte drink and it's temperature has risen in my "blog-o-sphere" and for reasons you do not care about (well maybe except for one) the time for blogging has been scarce.

Training for a 50 Miler (American River 50) is time consuming. No way around it. Particularly in the Winter. I have been religiously sticking to my long run schedule in whatever weather mother nature throws at me. Bloody nipples? Yup. Headlamp? Yup. General Uncomfortableness? Yup. But you know what? I feel great... Except, I feel like my creative drive for Undefeated Running has been shut down. It's like when you're telling your legs to keep running then they override the control center and slow to a walk.

I've been looking for that spark that will ignite the fire that burns down my writer's block. If I were running I could just grab a potato and a little caffeine and be on my way. What's the saying? "It's all mental?" I guess that explains why it might be tougher to convince your mind to do something that your body. Generally, I'll read a couple running mags/books in my spare time, or get an idea while on a run, or just be hanging out thinking about life and running and voila! I will have an idea! But with a bonked writer's brain comes no blogging, no inspirational facebook quotes, etc. Work has been oddly busy during the winter months (good for wallet bad for running), Running for 7-10 hours out the weekend, moving, and everything else life includes has left me little time to think while not running.

But here I am punching the keys again and it feels good. The only reason I'm writing this post is self serving. I had the idea on my long run last weekend that if I write about my writer's block then it will go away.