Monday, April 02, 2007

Trail Marathon?

Well, in preparation for the TRT 50k, I would really like to do marathon distance on trails to get a feel for what it feels like to be on a trail for a serious amount of time. As I'm doing a road marathon on June 3rd, timing works best to possibly fit a marathon in sometime this month. The 30k that I did last weekend went very well despite some stomach issued resulting from poor eating the prior week, and I felt like, at that pace (lots of walking!) I could have kept going for a while longer. Even after that race and a good 6.2 run sunday, I was still able to get my highest mileage week ever with:

monday- cross-training
tuesday- 6.25 miles
wednesday- 8.5 miles
thursday- 6 miles
friday- off
saturday- 11 miles w/ dad, 5 miles solo (total: 16)
sunday- 6.25 miles
For 43 miles this week!

I'm feeling great at this mileage and would like to do a 20ish mile run this weekend, time permitting.

With this in mind then, I've been eyeing the Diablo Trail Marathon on April 29th, put on by PCTR.

Now, the marathon is incredibly challenging with a wopping 7, 950 ft of elevation gain during the race. However, on the plus side, there's a 50 mile race being run concurrently, meaning that I would have 16 hours to complete the race! That's a 36 min/mile pace. I feel like I could hold that kind of pace for 26 miles :)

So my question is, is this sensible to attempt, or too much? I'm not planning to 'race' the June marathon and am fine being 'slow' at it, as the 50k is much more important. Also, since I'd have such a generous amount of time to be out there, I'd plan on doing lots of walking at Diablo (much like I'm guessing I'll have to do at Tahoe?)

I just feel like this might give me an idea of how I'd handle being out on a trail for that long and on a tough course.

So, opinions please!!!! I don't want to bite off more than I can chew and become injured, but I'd love to attempt this if it sounds like it'd be helpful for my training :)

Thanks everyone!!!



Journey to a Centum said...


Looks like you have a good base so just listen to your body. You may find yourself dropping the next race if you end up with some sort of nagging injury. Trail runs are much less punishing than road marathons. I highly reccomend a very cold if not icebath after these long runs to let your legs recover faster. The best solution is to wade into a nearby lake or sit in a stream or river for about 20 min. right after the run. If you can't do that then as soon as you get to your home or hotel jump in the tub.

If you have the time, money, and inspiration you should go for it!


Sarah said...

I say give it a shot! It fits in nicely with your schedule, will make a great training run and you'll still have a solid month to recover for your next marathon.

Happy Trails! : )

mtnrunR said...

yea, use diablo as a training run. practice what you want to do at TRT. practice, practice, practice. eating, drinking, taking salt, etc. with all that time it would be a great training run. plus, it is nice to have aid stations out there instead of carrying 8-10 lbs of fluids and food for long runs.

Eric is spot on with the ice baths. i can't do it but he is totally right. reduces inflammation and really helps the mucles recover.

heck on a run like that you could carry a camera and take some pics because you will be out there just enjoying the day.

have fun.

Josh said...

I think you will be ready for this race and you should do it if you feel healthy, but with the elevation change it would probably be more difficult than the TRT 50K.

RSD_Terry said...

Addy, that's all great advice. I'm running that one, too. Well, I'm planning to walk most of it. I'm not interested in a specific time for that run, being two weeks after American River 50 mile. I just wanted to participate to say that I've run Diablo. ;-)

I'll work with you on this one, if you like. We can take it easy and have fun.


Addy said...

Well, with the positive responses, I'm thinking the race is a go! Thanks so much guys :)

Eric- I'm definitely in agreement w/ you on the icebaths. I did those fairly religiously for my 1st marathon, and for the last one used the san Francisco bay as my 'bath', since my run finished right by the ocean. Was very nice indeed :)

Sarah- Thanks for the positivity!

tom- camera is a great idea. I'll have to make sure to bring mine

Josh- I am a little worried about how hard it will be, but I'm hoping with lots of walking it won't be too bad. Never thought I'd spur of the moment decide to run a marathon in less than a month though. Funny how things change :)

Terry- That'd be amazing! I'm still afraid I'd be too slow for you, but since you'll be recovering from AM50, maybe I'll have a chance ;). I figure it'll be great hill work for TRT and give me a chance to work out kinks

Mike said...

If your July calendar isn't full then you should think about, perhaps, coming out to Utah to try the new 50K at Snowbird in July. The elevation might be intimidating, but it's an excellent excuse to enjoy the Wasatch mountains for a few extra days. In order to acclimate, yeah, that's it... Here's some additional info on the race:

If you come out, there are plenty of trail runners here who can show you the ropes. :]

Addy said...

mike- thanks for the invite, but I'm actually already running the Tahoe Rim Trail 50k on July 21st. Its a bit closer, and I've already paid :)