Eight years ago doctors advised Katie Steinberg to quit running. Her badly injured ankle couldn’t tolerate the stress that running put on it. Instead of letting it get in the way, Katie pushed on through the miles. The Bighorn 50k is a big win. Congratulations, Katie, for staying psyched on the trail!
How many miles was it?
50K is 32.4 miles! Fortunately, it was all on beautiful (although muddy) trails. (Wow)!!!
What was your training schedule like?
Unlike in past races, this year I added specific strength training to my program. I worked out with Wright Training doing a running specific strength training twice per week, and went to TRX twice per week. In terms of running, I wasn’t as focused on how much I ran as I was on the quality of the runs. I did a hill workout mid week, a mid-distance faster run on Fridays, and a long, slow run on Saturdays. As long as I got in one long run, I was happy substituting biking or skiing for other running days. Cross training really helped me stay injury free and made sure that I didn’t burn out from running.
What kept you motivated to keep training?
For the first few months I was psyched to get out for a run. After such a long ski season it was nice to switch up my activities. Near the end of training I did lose motivation to get out for my long runs. Especially when it meant I had to skip out on some late-night beverages or lazy days with friends. But I had been training so hard that I was determined to see it through.
What was your ‘low’ point?
My low point came the week before my race. It was day six of having the stomach flu. Feeling weak and dehydrated, I finally caved and saw a doctor. Fortunately, I was able to keep down some food and hydrate heavily for the few days preceding the race.
Was the high point the journey or the win at this event?
While winning is fun, it definitely is not the high point. The high point came on days when I was out enjoying a run in the mountains. Having the race in June puts me in shape to enjoy fun, long adventure runs in the Tetons all summer! I can also feel great running in the Alps where I am headed in a week!
There is a 64K race in Lake Como, Italy that I am running while in Europe this summer. I will do another 50K in Park City in October, and a trail marathon in Moab in November. The Bighorn 50 miler did look a little enticing, so I might consider that for next year.
Bighorn Races:: http://www.bighorntrailrun.com/50K/
Lake Como, Italy:: http://goitaly.about.com/od/lakecomolagodicomo/p/lake_como.htm
Park City Race:: http://parkcity.tv/the-wasatch-speedgoat-50k/
Moab Trail Marathon:: http://www.moabtrailmarathon.com
What kinds of food do you eat while you’re training? Do you stick to a strict diet?
I have a terrible sweet tooth, so I tried to amp up my protein intake. I think it helped me cut back on my gummy bear/milk dud addiction. I have Celiacs, so I already eat a gluten free diet. Beyond that, I try to eat a lot of meat and veggies. While probably not recommended, I am not afraid of the nightly ice cream consumption. Oh, and I always drink a beer or two the night before the race, just to loosen up!
What were you thinking mile to mile?
I knew that I was out in front at the beginning. I tried not to be concerned about where I was and focus on running my own race. It is a long race. I knew that anything could happen over the course of almost 33 miles. I felt lucky to look over the beautiful mountain scenery. The wildflowers were in full bloom throughout the race. The last five miles were tough. They were on rolling dirt road which felt extremely hot.
Which classes at Wright Training were helpful?
I was lucky in that Wright Training designed a running specific training for me. I think that all of her classes truly help strengthen and condition one for any race or athletic goal. All the staff at Wright Training were also great about keeping a close eye on my form, making sure I wasn’t going to injure myself. I have weak VMO’s, so that was something the staff at Wright Training helped me specifically strengthen.
Personal training @ Wright:: http://jhwrighttraining.com/?page_id=985
Is there any advice you would give someone with a similar goal?
My advice is that you can do anything if you train smart and take care of your body. It is important to include giving it plenty of time to rest and recover. Two years ago I never thought I would be running again. At that time a 50k would have sounded impossible! I truly believe with some hard work and patience you can train your body to do almost anything!