What's that old saying; "If you keep repeating the same thing and expect to see a different result, that is the definition of insanity," well here's to taking a step away from the insanity :-)
I achieved my goal, I ran further than I ever thought I could (or would). I'm pleased with the accomplishment, just not the execution of it. I was too slow, far beyond how slow I thought I would go. What was the problem? I did my runs, I finished most weeks between 70 and 80 total kilometers. So why wasn't I finishing within the time frame I had expected? After alot of research I can come up with a few areas of improvement. Thankfully, the next big trail race I have planned is a 27km race in October, so distance is not the big obstacle right now and I feel like I can try to work on these issues without compromising a race. So here goes:
1. Get Faster. Duh. To achieve this goal I've jumped into Crossfit Endurance. The short running workouts have me pretty sceptical at the moment, but I do find the drills pretty challenging, so who knows, maybe something is working there. Time will tell. I'm doing the WOD and the SS run program.
2. Get Stronger. The CFE will help with this, especially in my upper body, but I've also started biking to work to help strengthen my quads. With all the hills between my house and work this should have some impact, hopefully making hill repeats a little less hell-like. I had been doing P90X during the middle stages of my Ultra training, but combined with the huge weekly mileage I found I was either always really hungry or cranky. The time commitment to do both Ultra training and P90X was also a bit excessive. It felt like every spare moment was spent working out, which, with a family, isn't something I can sustain long term.
3. Eat Better. I'll keep my one cheat day each week, but overall I can certainly rein in my evening snack visits to the fridge/pantry. I've slowly been moving over to a vegetarian lifestyle, only eating chicken and fish on occasion, and that's been working out pretty well. The options for vegetarians have exploded since I last tried this lifestyle back in the 1990s, so I'm enjoying the food much more. This should not be too difficult as long as I can stay away from my daughter's lunch cookies :-)
So that's it. Three areas to work on and three months before I put them to the test. Here goes!