May is just around the corner and as a monthly ritual, I curated this upcoming month's running playlist. Compared to the typical head thrashing, heart pumping beats, I decided to throw some chill down tempo tracks as well. It really came in handy especially since it's been a hectic week down at my nine to five.
This past week's theme was mostly all about trail running! I fell in love with last Sunday's trail run at Seaton Hiking Trail so much that I went back this past weekend yet again but not so lost this time around (after learning how to read the trail markings properly from my brother ?...) This kept the drive and momentum going for me leading up to the MEC Trail Race ONE from this morning. All in all, it was a good week with a massive (at least for me) 430m elevation accumulated.
Going into this race, I had no expectations but with the attitude of a surprised child going to a candy store and have all the surprises reveal before my eyes. It was refreshing considering that the pressure to attain a stellar performance was lifted off my shoulders - especially since I come to accept that I am more so built for road running rather than power grinding through the trails and mountains. In the end, that sustained pace and strategic slow downs on elevated roads got me a decent 5:20/km pace and still managed to rank in the top 10 for the male gender. Fun and all, but the harsh reality for me is that I still have significantly more training to go in anticipation for the ultra 50K up in Blue Mountains come July. To put things in perspective, my Seaton run yesterday of 20km and today's MEC 15.2 km run only tally up to 35km and I still have to somehow managed to grind out an extra some odd 15km within a set hard cut-off mark of 10 hours.
One thing that was in mind while running today was:
"Respect the hills"
Regretfully, I was somewhat ignorant about it beforehand as I looked up the elevation metric on the Strava segments thinking that "it's only 15 km and it doesn't look that bad." I was wrong. No trails are necessarily easy and today's thunderstorm when I left the house certainly did not make the muddy grounds any easier to run while running up.
This week, I will be back on the hard concrete and asphalt so that I can take it easy on the legs and not have it take on a heavy toll for consecutive weeks.