In 2005, I got pulled from Western States at mile 93.5, after missing the cut-off. I missed it by a fair amount, but mostly because once I knew I couldn't make it, I really backed off on the big hill to the aid station. My training could have been a lot better in 2005 and yet, I almost finished WS. Of course, despite the high snow levels early in the race, conditions that year were very nice overall, with lower-than-average temperatures. Plus, the easy way around Duncan Canyon was still in use. So, I clearly need to be in better shape this year than I was that year. I also need to avoid running a 50 miler three weeks before WS, which I stupidly did in 2005. Late in the race in 2005, the fatigue of the 50 really caught up to me, causing me to slow dramatically more than I have in any other 100.
I was looking at my training log from 2005 yesterday, to compare where I was at this time that year, to where I am right now. I took a look at 2005 mostly because I know I'm lagging a bit on my training from last year, and I wanted to compare this year to another year I was entered in WS. Maybe I just wanted to make myself feel better about this year's training.
I had a few training issues in 2005. I broke a rib while skiing that year, on 3/12, which cost me some miles in March. I skied about the same number of days that year that I'll end up with this year - 50 or so. I lifted less that year, although I did some Nautilus work that in retrospect didn't do much for me. I cross-trained more that year, using elliptical machines, bikes, and stair climbers.
My first run of 20 or more miles in 2005 came at the DRB50K in mid-April. I've done two runs of 20 or longer already this year and I'll do one more before I run DRB next month.
I had my annual week off of running because I got sick that year, and it happened again this year.
Overall, my training pace is significantly faster this year than it was in 2005. I attribute that to my marathon training last fall and my continued interval work, even though there isn't a lot of it recently.
I was lighter at this point in time in 2005 than I am right now, although my BF% is probably lower right now.
I am obviously 4 years older.
So, what does any of that mean? Probably not too much. I think that there's no way I can even think about sub-24 at WS. I'm just not close to fit enough to consider it. I simply want to finish the race this year, something that's eluded me for so long. And, I want to have fun with my training and racing.
Last night, I ran an easy, uphill 9 miler. Tonight, I'll run a mostly flat 12 miler, although the first mile is all downhill and the last mile all uphill, with 10 flat miles in the middle.