With the Portland Marathon just one month from tomorrow (!!!), Eryn and I are reaching our peak training distances.
Eryn is the camping planner of the family, and she picked us a Labor Day spot at Stub Stewart so we could do our long run on the Banks-Vernonia Trail.
So the two of us got up Saturday before the sun and did our run prep (campstove oatmeal!) by headlamp and campfire while everyone else was asleep. It was actually really peaceful and fun :)
It was overcast but warmish (for 6 a.m.) as we slathered on the sunscreen for our 4 hours on the trail. And just as we were about to leave, we both felt a sprinkle. Well, the show must go on, so I grabbed my hat and we headed out in the drizzle.
Because no water was available on the trail, we asked Mom and Dad to meet us for a refill at the Beaver Creek Trail Head, about 7 miles in to our trek. After a quick pit stop, we waved goodbye to our faithful parents and continued toward Vernonia.
We turned around about 8.5 miles in and headed back to camp. By then, the rain had stopped and the sun peeked through the clouds a bit.
At the 16-mile mark, Eryn took off up the side trail to the campground for a cool-down walk and I kept going down the Banks-Vernonia path. With the slight downhill, I flew for the next 1.5 miles or so. Then I turned around and worked my way back to our campsite, getting 18.17 miles in all.Mom and Dad had a campfire going to keep us warm as our sweat-soaked bodies cooled. And as we took not-so-hot campground showers, Mom laid out a burrito bar to refuel our calorie-starved stomachs - YUMMO!!!!
I loved running in the woods, but Eryn, who'd never been to the trail, said it was just one step above the treadmill :( The monotony really got to her as she struggled to run her farthest ever! Still, she did great, sticking to her run/walk intervals and keeping a positive attitude.
She will run 18 this weekend and then we'll run 20 together next weekend... then it's taper time!
Portland Marathon, here we come :)