Geting serious

Since my trip through the wild Entlebuch I made some progress in somehow long distance running.It’s now no longer a question of doing a Marathon. The question is when I knock off the 100 miles (not the 100 km). It will not happen tomorrow and I have still a lot to learn. But I can now run a Marathon for breakfast.

Since my trip to the Entlebuch I did three different running expeditions. The first happened with the Altra Lone Peak shoes. Unfortunately, these shoes have not enough cushion for my needs when running in the terrain we have here. Or I am simply too heavy and not able to get a smooth stride. Compared to Galen Rupp I carry 17 kilos or 37.4 pounds more. Mr. Rupp is part of the Oregon project of Nike. His normal weight is 62 kg and he does a Marathon in 2:10 (Boston 2017). I however don’t know if going down to this weight level is really healthy for me. And I don’t know if the Oregon project is healthy anyway. You can read a story from the German Magazine Der Spiegel here. (And the only Nike products I own I got giftet ten years ago). However, I do address my weight situation not only by extensive running. For the 100 miles I think I need to lose another 7 kg. The first expeditions ended after only 18 miles or 28 km. I don’t want to run for hours with pain in my knees.

Compared to the Altra shoes the Brooks Cascadias are too stiff. So I did the other two outings in the Hoka One One ATR 2. They offer much better cushion. And it paid off. Suddenly I could do 42 miles without poles (2000 m or 6,700 ft of height included). I was really happy about this result. One year ago I needed the same time riding my bike over a shorter distance…. There was a problem with calories intake. 6 powerbars fed me during the day. They are sweet. Number 6 wasn’t easy to swallow. So I need something salty for longer outings as I used 7 liters of hydration (and did loose 2 kg of weight anyways). I didn’t get sore muscles at all. Seriously, the next day I felt relaxed. So there must be more. I even got headache during this expedition because of the sun. The weather was somehow dramatic.

A view from the Bätzimatt. One of the most remote parts of the Lake of Zurich.

Dramatic was also the sight of these Scottish highland cattle. They are there in a nature reservation area for nature protection reasons. They keep this area open and marshy.

During expedition number 2 I also went up to the Etzel. This is the highest mountain in the vicinity of the lake.

I did pass in front of the Etzel this time also. This is just from the opposite side of the lake and above the golden coast. 

Had to do some extra miles on the way to Schmerikon. No bridge for pedestrians. Bunkers from the second world war all over the place.

The end of the lake of Zurich is somehow famous in Switzerland. Read here why.

Expedition number 3 happened last Saturday (20 may 2017). I did 35 miles. However, I took poles with me. The coordination between the legs and your arms isn’t easy. Walking with poles and running isn’t the same. And of course my back isn’t used to this amount of pushing. I used the Leki carbon micro. These are z-poles. While they are not really wobbly they still vibrate. They weigh 456 g or a good pound together. Which isn’t that much for poles. Why can’t somebody produce poles with the weight of Gossamer Gear LT4 an adjustment/looking system like Speed Lock 2 from Leki (just one adjustment point) and a strap system like trigger shark also from Leki? I would buy them.

Which brings us to the next point: Long distance running isn’t cheap. I did not eat enough on expedition 3 during my approach Marathon down the gold coast of the lake here. You can bake your own bars. I did it. But I doubt that you can achieve the same texture as for example Powerbar. Which isn’t a problem when you take a break for eating all the time. Otherwise it is life threatening. Powerbars are sticky for a reason. No matter how hard you are breathing, they will never get sucked towards your lungs. Therefore you can eat strategically. When you are slow anyways because you are climbing nearly vertically you may use the time to stuff your face. When going downwards you may need your arms to balance carefully over tree roots and stones.