Week 31: 50k+ night run in Ohlone Wilderness.

What a week! But let's start at the beginning. Monday off, Tuesday off to Black Mountain. I started strong and when at my first checkpoint, quarter of the way in, I realized I may have a shot at my PB, so I continued even stronger. Some 50+ minutes later, totally tired, I made it to the top. And yes, I did improve my personal best, although as I only realized after uploading the workout, by mere 8 seconds. Still, this being one of my most explored segments, I'll happily take any PB :).

Tuesday and Wednesday just easy, recovery runs and on Thursday I decided to do another workout: steady pace run. I ended up averaging 4:25min/km which, given the fact that didn't do any speed work in a loong time, I considered decent enough.

But the absolute highlight of the week was the long run on Sunday. With Yohann we decided to do the 50k+ in the Ohlone Wilderness, essentially following the route of the Ohlone Wilderness 50k race. We were planning it for a week and given how hot the days were lately we decided to start late and finish by night to avoid the heat and the sun.

We met, grabbed some sandwiches for lunch and drove to Den Valle Regional Park. There we had lunch and drove back, this time in one car, to Mission Peak Regional Park, where we were supposed to start our adventure.

We started running shortly before 5pm. It was great having company and in retrospect I don't think I could have finished this exhausting run on my own. To give you some idea of the effort let me just say that it took us over 8 hours (7:36, excluding breaks) to finish. It wasn't so much the distance, but close to 3000m of total elevation gain... when I think about this being a race and trying to go fast? Boy, that must be a hell of a race.

Not much out of the ordinary happened during our run, maybe except the fact that we met two rattlesnakes. I almost run into one of them; you can see the guy in the photo on the right (photos courtesy of Yohann).

I feel a bit weird compressing 8 hours of running into just those few sentences but if you've ever done something like this, then I'm guessing you can imagine how it was and if not, then no matter what I wrote here you still wouldn't be able to :).

Back on the road, on the final descent back to the car we were approached by a police cruiser. The guy looked at us suspiciously and informed us that the park is closed at night and we should not be there at this hour (it was getting close to 1am). For some strange reason he did not believe that this is not where we were coming from ;).

Finally we reached the car and one hour later, in the middle of the night, were sitting in IHOP eating tasty crepes with french fries and drinking milk shakes. Yes, that's one of the things about such long, exhausting runs; there simply are no other times when food tastes that great!!! :)


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