The taper for North Face 50 is in full effect. An easy run, a Turkey Trot and a couple of hilly miles rounded out the week and left me in a weird limbo of confidence. I'm feeling a little under trained, but healthy.
Monday: Easy 60
Thursday: MEB2 Turkey Trot 10k
Saturday: 120 hilly minutes
Totals: 27.7 miles, avg HR 143
8 minute pace felt good during the Turkey Trot. Twirly ran the 5k, so I hung out with her for a mile or so before getting in the tempo on my schedule. I clipped off 1500' in ten miles over two hours on Saturday, keeping my pace about two minutes faster than this Saturday's race pace. I'm fit, and I feel strong. My endurance is the unknown factor. Can I keep it together long enough to pull out a sub eleven hour finish?
I really want to finish in daylight, and I have about an hour to spare if I miss the eleven hour mark. Smart pacing in the beginning and having the support of Victor Ballesteros as a pacer on the back half should make it pretty straightforward to get across the line before 4 pm.
The final week is rich with opportunities to hang out with the Salomon Team, which is a nice consolation prize. The only time I'll get to see the elites this weekend will be in the dark before the start. They'll be finished long before me, and I doubt I will cross paths with them on the out and back sections; I'm too slow to catch them off Matt Davis Trail, and if I see them in Tennessee Valley, it will be because I dropped at mile 12!
So, Wednesday I'll participate in a community run at San Francisco Running Company, where Kilian Jornet will be leading the run, and Thursday is a meet and greet with Kilian and the rest of the team at Sports Basement. I'll pick up my bib and swag at the North Face store in Union Square before heading to the Presidio for some autographs.
I'm nervously anticipating my biggest race to date. Sharing the trail with so many elites is novel, but won't effect my race at all. I go in with a focus on form and energy conservation. If my nutrition plan works well, I feel like I can put in a decent performance.