My long run this weekend was actually two back-to-back medium runs. The first was 15mi on a familiar trail close to home, and the second was 10mi on an even more familiar route even closer to home. The idea behind back-to-back runs like these is to get used to running on tired and sore legs, which I will be doing a lot of in the upcoming 80k race. This is the first time I attempted this, so I figured that it made sense to start with some lower mileage to see how it goes, and also to run a much more flat route on the second day.
The first run was tough. I found some new sidetrails off the main path of the regular route, which took me up to a couple of different peaks and then spit me out on to farmlands with no return trail, leaving me to scramble back up the mountain face.
I then somehow came upon a piece of the E4 trail, which was a nice surprise. At least by finding that I knew I’d be able to run along a somewhat maintained trail for a while. I followed it for a couple more miles until reaching a little village, then I turned around and made my way back to the car.
Even though it was “only” 15 miles, this run took a lot out of me. It was brutally hot and humid, which zapped my energy. I had to take a couple breaks along the way, which looked a lot like this:
I also collected another bit of trail trash, this time the focus seemed to be on caffeine:
Anyway, here’s the map. I’m glad I found some new trails!
This was a nice and long week of training. I got in all my workouts and pumped out what was probably my highest weekly mileage yet. My legs are shot and I’ll be taking a rest day tomorrow, but it felt good to break myself down a little so that I can come back stronger.
Until next week!
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Brandon Chase is a writer, endurance athlete, and guide based in Maine. He is a former Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State and spent nearly a decade overseas serving at embassies in Egypt, Cyprus, and Pakistan.
Along with a 98-day thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail, he has summited Mt. Kilimanjaro, hiked the West Highland Way, fastpacked in the Himalayas, and trekked around New Zealand and South Africa. He also regularly competes in ultramarathons at the 50k, 50-mile, and 100-mile distances. He is a Lead Guide for Andrew Skurka Adventures and the New England Outdoor Center.