Sunday I did my last long run before race day… I decided to head out towards Planoise, close actually, to the start line of the race, but in fact my real target was the last hill around here that’s in my range (maybe). I’ve been thinking of running out to it for a few weeks now, but was too scared. I’ve done several runs out in that direction and they were hard, and not quite as far. Well, I decided that it was more important to just have a good run than to make a destination, so I resolved to turn around at 45 minutes, but I have weak discipline when I’m out for a long run. I hit the base of the hill at 42 minutes and told myself I could make it the rest of the way in 3 more minutes, and I didn’t look at my watch any more. Yet the path didn’t go straight up the hill. It didn’t even do switchbacks. It was just one, great big, 2-kilometer straight ascent. So much for my 45 minute turn around point. I was reduced to a very slow jog, even a few walking steps here and there because the trail was so rugged. Still, I figured I’d just push hard on the way down and make better time because it was all downhill. At the top I got these great views and discovered that this fort has been turned into some sort of a thrift store (named Emmanuel). My return trip was not faster at all, because now I had to deal with a rocky, muddy slope, and I definitely didn’t want a sprained ankle this close to my race! My favorite part of running is getting these extraordinary views… it’s sad most of my runs are in the dark, but they build up my strength so I can make it up here on the weekends.