The Last Hurrah of Training!

This past weekend was my last big weekend of training prior to the Boston 3 Day for the Cure which kicks off in less than two weeks!

While this weekend wasn't quite as intense as the 18/15 walks I documented in this post, it was still a lot of walking.  The 24 week training schedule recommended walking 18 miles on Saturday and 8 miles on Sunday.  However, because I can't seem to calculate my route mileage accurately and because I was a little behind on my weekly training miles, I ended up walking 21 miles on Saturday and another 12 miles on Sunday. 

For my 18/15 weekend (which was actually 18/18), I spent the first day walking on a peaceful trail outside of town and I spent the second day on my own personal walking tour of Atlanta.  This weekend, I flipped the plans a little bit.  On Saturday, I completed part 2 of Kristen's Epic Walking Tour of Atlanta and on Sunday, I headed out to my other favorite out of town place to walk, Stone Mountain.  And of course, I wouldn't be me if I didn't bring my camera along with me!

During Part 1 of Kristen's Epic Walking Tour of Atlanta, I walked through Downtown Atlanta, Pemberton Place, Centennial Olympic Park, Midtown Atlanta, Piedmont Park, the Virginia Highlands neighborhood, Atlantic Station and Georgia Tech.  While I certainly covered a lot of the city on that walk, I still had a lot more to see, especially over on the East Side of the metro Atlanta area.  So for Part 2 of Kristen's Epic Walking Tour of Atlanta, I decided to start and finish my walk at Candler Park, a small park near the neighborhood of the same name.  From there, I headed north on Clifton Road through the Candler Park and Druid Hills neighborhoods on my way up to the Emory University campus.  Even though I've been a graduate student at Emory for far too many years, this was the first time I've ever taken pictures around campus.  And it really is a beautiful campus, as you can see from my pictures.  I also took a short detour up to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) which is right next door to Emory.  Unfortunately, taking pictures of the CDC is apparently a major no-no, which I learned from a rather irate security guard.

Following my trek through Emory, I headed back south down Clairemont Ave and into the City of Decatur.  Decatur is the county seat for Dekalb County.  It used to be it's own city but as Atlanta as grown and spread from Fulton County into Dekalb, Decatur has sort of been swallowed up.  So now it stands as something of a small city within a city, full of great shops, restaurants and historical sites.  I had a lot of fun wandering through Decatur since I don't get over there nearly enough.  After I left Decatur, I headed back west along Ponce de Leon Road (the primary East - West road that connects Atlanta to Decatur and beyond) until I hit the PATH, a series of paved paths throughout Atlanta.  From there, I followed the PATH back into Candler Park for a much needed rest.

After a quick sock change, a water bottle swap and some lunch, I was ready to head out again, this time heading west along the PATH.  This portion of the PATH connects Candler Park with Freedom Park, a long park that stretches through some of Emory's best historical sites.  Along the way, I got to stop by both The Carter Center (the home of Jimmy Carter's Presidential Library) and The Martin Luther King Jr Center.  I was also able to detour through the Inman Park and Little 5 Points neighborhoods before returning back to my car at Candler Park.  I particularly enjoyed walking through Little 5 Points, one of the most eclectic neighborhoods in Atlanta since it reminds me very much of Ithaca, New York where I went to college.

All told, this walk encompassed 21 miles and covered a huge swath of Atlanta.  My feet were sore, but I really enjoyed getting to play tourist in my own city for a day.  You can see my photos from this walk here:

For Day 2 of my 21/12 weekend, I headed out to Stone Mountain Park to walk.  Stone Mountain Park is a park around the base of what looks like a giant rock that fell out of the sky.  The mountain itself features a carving of three Confederate heroes of the Civil War: Confederate President Jefferson Davis, General Robert E. Lee and Lt. General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson.  The park itself is something of a tribute to Confederate pride (which is always a bit disconcerting for this Yankee), especially within the small village at the foot of the mountain.  For me, though, the best part about the park are the walking and hiking trails that wind around the mountain and the nearby lakes.  For the cost of parking in the park, you can access miles and miles of peaceful trails in a relatively safe setting.  The paved sidewalk around the base of the mountain is a particularly nice walk, stretching just shy of six miles.  Two laps around the mountain this weekend and I was done with my twelve miles!

You can see my photos from my walk at Stone Mountain here:

My feet were pretty darn tired after my walk on Saturday, but I felt great after my shorter walk on Sunday.  No new blisters to report, although I did have my first sunblock fail on Saturday which left me with one sizzled shoulder.  All in all, though, I think I am in really good shape for the Boston 3 Day in less than two weeks time!  I can't wait!

If you would like to see my pictures from this past weekend in non-slide show form (and maybe even leave some comments!), please visit the following albums on my Picasa page:

As always, if you are impressed with my training weekend or just moved by this great cause, please consider making a fully tax deductible donation to Susan G. Komen for the Cure by clicking on the link at the top right hand side of the page or by visiting my personal page on the 3 Day website, here.

1 comment:

MustBeNuts said...

Way to go on the training! It's so pretty where you live and walk! I am jealous - all I can think to do is walk along the beach. You have inspired me to find fun and different places to explore =)