The Sugar House Track Club ran in spikes on the track last Tuesday, that may have been a mistake. Four days later my calves were still a little sore. The start of the MMM went out in a fairly conservative fashion, a group of five or six of us chatted as we ran the first paved loop and hit the trail. After about a mile I figured I better go for it a little and see if anyone would follow. Unfortunately no one did and I ran the next 25 alone wondering if my calves would hold on.
Over the past few months we've been hiking various peaks as fast as we can and then running back down. I've been able to run down pretty well regardless of how tired I've been after reaching the top. Since the last six miles of the MMM are mostly down I figured all I had to do was run the first 20 hard and, just like all summer, I'd be able to cruise the down the last six no matter how tired I was. That was close to being another mistake.
The first 20 miles went well, I pushed the downs figuring no one else would want to run 5:45-6:00 miles on the down and then ran the ups as relaxed as possible. Turns out running hard down hill on rocky terrain with sore calves adds up after two hours. On the last climb heading towards the six mile down hill finish my calves started cramping. I slowed to a shuffle and every mini up hill from there on out forced me to either walk or cramp. Lets just say I looked back more than once during those last couple miles fully expecting someone to blow my doors off as I crawled up the few short hills. Coming down the last hill and onto the pavement (last 400 meters) it took all I had to keep my claves from locking. Luckily they held out and I didn't have to walk it in.
Cramping seems to be a recurring theme these days. I guess going out hard and trying to hold it for longer then I'm prepared for has also been a theme. Maybe the two are related.