The North Face 50M: Week 8

You know those weeks where you just feel overwhelmed by everything?  This was one of those weeks.  I was tired, stressed and anxiously trying to stay on top of everything on my to do list.  I had to say no to a couple things, re-prioritize and just stop being so dramatic in my head.  By the end of the week I felt so much better and not sure why I felt so overwhelmed. 

I have to remind myself that it’s ok to say no, and that what needs to get done will get done, the rest can wait.  I also have to remind myself that rest and sleep are very much at the top of my priority list when running a lot so I can recover and not dig myself into some hole of exhaustion.  Plus, the end is very near to a lot of the craziness (Chris’s academy) in my house!  Life will start resembling our new normal very soon and I can’t wait.    

8 mile trail run
1 hour yoga

Alyssa was hanging out in the Easy Bay for a couple days, so I was so excited when she said she would run with me Monday morning.  I picked her up and we headed for the hills.  It was really dark when we started, but the sun started peaking through the trees so we could see our footing.  It’s always a pleasure to run with this girl.

8.3 miles/1:35:29/11:31 avg/948’ gain

7 mile road run

Work run straight to coffee.

7.0 miles/1:07:16/9:38 avg

11 mile road run

Early run with my early morning friend.  We always have a lot to discuss which makes the miles fly by.

11.1 miles/1:41:48/9:11 avg

am: 7 mile trail run
pm: 6 mile trail run

Ahhh double day of trail runs.  Exactly what I needed this day. 

I met up with Sima and Kim for an early trail run turned venting/therapy session.  Some runs you just need to release all the stress and anxiety from the week, and running through the hills with friends is the best way to do that.

7.1 miles/1:16:27/10:47 avg/937’ gain

That evening I went for my 2nd run in the hills.  It was one of those runs that I just let go of all the stress I had been feeling during the week and enjoyed the beauty that was happening around me.

(Sorry if you have seen all these pics on Instagram already, but I couldn’t help but posting them!  It was a beautiful week on the trails.) 


My legs felt strong and my mind felt clear.


When I was done, I felt completely calm and happy, and all those things that were creating anxiety during the week didn’t matter so much any more. 


6.0 miles/6:00:35/10:05 avg/696’ gain


Rest day prepping for a big weekend of running!


20 mile trail run

This weekend was my first set of back to back 20(+) mile runs of the training cycle.  I was very much looking forward to spending a lot of time in the hills.

Jessica met up with me for the first one and I took her on my standard loop in the Diablo foothills, but we extended further to get the mileage in.  I hadn’t taken parts of this route since last November and it was fun to be changing up the trails a bit.

We talked the whole way, never pushing too hard and made it through a pretty warm last couple miles.  These trails can get pretty exposed at times, and when you are running along through the dirt and direct sun, it feels like you might melt.  

09.22 elev 

20.2 miles/3:49:24/11:22 avg/2960’ gain


20 mile trail run

This was a big test for me.  Not only was it another 20 mile run, but I had planned out a pretty tough route and I was going solo.  I was really excited though because I have wanted to do a point to point run and this day I was going to do it! 


I started on one side of Mt. Diablo and run up (not to the summit) and around the mountain.  I took some new trails I have been wanting to try out and connected them to my old favorite trails as well.  I am really starting to know the trail system on this mountain well!

I ended up on the other side in the foothills.  I stopped to refill my pack and check in with Chris, then did a very familiar loop.  It was getting really warm by this point and I recognized that and made sure to take it easy.  Hills I usually run up, I walked part of and just made sure to drink enough water and keep up on my salt caps and other fuel.  It was cooking! 

I made it to the end of my run and Chris picked me up and brought me back to my car.  I spent the rest of the afternoon on the couch, except for going to get pizza.  I was wiped!  

09.23 elev

This also ended up being the run where I ran my 10,000th mile.

20.5 miles/4:00:25/11:43 avg/3501’ gain

Totals for Week 8
Miles: 80.1 (62 on trails)
Time: 14:31:23 (+ 1 hour yoga)
Elevation Gain: 9,548’

Next week is more of the same!  Building up my long runs and mileage bit by bit.

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9 Responses to The North Face 50M: Week 8

  1. Lauren @ Sassy Molassy September 28, 2012 at 11:45 am #

    Your running pics lately have been some epic ones! I mean that sky is amazing!

  2. Lisa September 28, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

    Wow, you’re a machine!!! I get the “running the stress away” mentality. I had that run on Thursday…a solid 9.5 mile run in the middle of the day. Even skipped a meeting (kinda knew I wasn’t key to it) to take care of me. And boy did it work.

    Great training :)

  3. Cathryn September 28, 2012 at 9:55 pm #

    Those photos are amazing!! The sky one especially!!

    I’ve signed up for my first trail race (Woodside Ramble)…you got me in the end :)

    • Aron October 2, 2012 at 9:45 am #

      Yessssssss! Woodside is SO gorgeous!

  4. Stuart September 29, 2012 at 6:43 am #

    Congrats on the 10k; that’s a hella pile of old shoes!

    Congrats on the big double, thems the miles that count!

  5. Christine October 1, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

    You have the best trail pictures in the world. Please don’t tell me you take those with your phone! They are way to good for a phone shot! Btw, I start thinking about 50k’s. Your blog and pictures inspire me!

    • Aron October 2, 2012 at 9:44 am #

      All taken with my iPhone and a little help from instagram ;)

  6. Michaela October 4, 2012 at 5:07 pm #

    Gorgeous photos!

  7. Beth (@RunTraveler) November 18, 2012 at 1:22 pm #

    You make running an ultra sound like a walk in the park! Glad you had a great race. :)

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