Thursday, June 13, 2013
Back to the East
On Monday, I met up with Ankur and ran the streets of Santa Monica down towards UCLA and circled the campus. My legs were quite tired/heavy as a result the recent surge of miles, so I did my best to keep the pace slow.
On Tuesday, I ran again with Ankur, his brother visiting from out of town, and a guy names Nils from Peet's Coffee in Brentwood. There were a couple fast miles thrown in there and, when all was said and done, we averaged just shy of 6:30 pace for the 12.5 distance. Things are starting to click.
On Wednesday, I met 5 other dudes for a run from Peet's, which seems to be the usual meeting spot for the folks around here. Like yesterday, things got started quick and, at one point, we were running in the 5:30s. Again, we averaged sub-6:30 pace for the duration of the run...this time about 11.5 miles.
That evening I participated in a "Soul Cycle" class with Emily. Essentially, it's a spin class and night club combined. The jacked instructor marches around the dimly lit room barking out orders to the beat of the latest/greatest hip hop tunes. Candles and black lights flicker in the background. All the while I perspired. I haven't biked that much/that fast since I was a teenager sans automobile and I can't remember the last time I perspired so much. My endurance was fine, but my calves definitely felt the effects from the non-stop pedaling. Bradley Cooper from The Hangover fame was in attendance, which gave the class even more of an LA-like feel.
On Thursday, Ankur and I left the coffee shop at 5:40am for a hellacious run up towards the San Vicente Mountains. The first 2.5 miles were flat, but then we started to climb. It was gradual at first, but the last 1/2 mile or so to the trail head was downright brutal. By mile 6 we had reached the entrance to the Westridge Trail, which is essentially a fire road that hugs the ridge line of the mountain range, and from there we still had another 3.5 mile climb to the turn-around point at the top! We were surrounded in clouds, or fog, or both (?) and the moisture gave me a chill. In fact, there were puffs of white (cloud? humidity? moisture?) in the hair on the top of our heads. Very strange. We lumbered up the hill passing other runners (who had started at the entrance) as we climbed. I thanked God when my eyes finally fell upon the turn-around. My legs were toasted from climbing. The pace (naturally) quickened as we descended the ridge line, but thankfully we were only running back to the start of the trail head, which would still be a 13 mile trek. As we descended we linked up with a couple of ultra guys, one of which is going after the course record at the upcoming Angeles Crest 100 Miler.
Because 13 miles wasn't enough for a Thursday (actually it was - it most certainly was), that afternoon I met my old college teammate PhillyK for an easy 4.5 mile run around the Brentwood Country Club. We talked about olden times and the like. 17.5 for the day, just shy of 80 for the past 7-days. That's quite a jump so I'll need to chillax in the coming days.
On Friday, I ran just 4.5 miles before flying back east.
On Saturday, I met the team at the store in Georgetown and ran the 9.5 mile Ernst Loop.
On Sunday, I ran the 13-mile version of the Zoo Loop with Sam and Charlie. I was very tired throughout the run - a result of traveling, the uptick in mileage, or a little of both. I pushed my last 2 miles (6:00 and 5:45), but wasn't interested in going much faster. That said, it felt as if I was running a lot faster.
It was a 78-mile week.