Since I decided I wanted to run Ultrabirken, I've been busily trying to run (relatively) big milage (for me). I've been running 60-70 km a week for the last 6 weeks, and I definitely feel good progression in my durability and speed. This week I've had an extra special running partner: Ralph, the family dog, who is staying with us while my parents are in Belize (long story).
|Ralph digs the view on Årvollåsen, Friday|
|Ralph throughly enjoying the snow|
|Optimistic, early in the run selfie.|
|Through the forest|
After reaching the end of the lake, I headed up the trail towards Fagervann, a smaller lake on top of one of the larger rolling hills that fill the Oslo forest. I indulged in my first raspberry walnut brownie, a result of my experimentations with what to eat while out for long runs. I'm not a fan of 'fake' foods like gels, so I been trying baked goods like brownies in scones with success so far.
I power-hiked and jogged the climb up to Fagervann to save my legs. Towards the top of the climb, I hit snow. This wasn't unexpected, because there was lots of snow when I ran the same trail last weekend.
|Happy brownie selfie|
|Hitting the snow pack|
What I didn't expect, however, was to posthole. You see, last weekend the snow on the trail had been compacted to a nice, runable consistency by other hikers. Today, I was alone on the trail, and clearly nobody had been there all week as the warm weather made the snow increasingly rotten.
I was postholing up to my knees if I wasn't careful, and working hard to maintain a fast walking pace (on Strava afterward I saw that all the kilometers in this section took like 10 minutes). There's so sort of a hilarious irony to moving so slowly on a run.
|Sick, twisted fun|
And then, of course, it started to snow. Big, slushy flakes. When I had finally traversed across the top of the hill to Kamphaug, and headed down off the snow pack, I realised that all the melting snow was feeding directly onto the downhill trail, creating a lovely, cold river for me to run in.
As I descended further, the snow turned to rain, and the whole experience was becoming increasingly cold and wet. Luckily I hit the dirt road and it was smooth sailing, no more technical trail or uphill to speak of. I could start putting in some faster kilometer times.
|No longer awesome. Wet. Wet. Wet.|
Stats: 26.7 km, moving time 3:06 (all of that snow!), vertical meters 695
- The Wild Bazilchuk