Ole's Assault. At seven miles, Ole's Assault is mile for mile the toughest race around, and one of my favorites. A mile up starts the race, a mile down finishes it, and in-between you have miles of tree-hurdling trail in wet forest: real training-in-Dagobah-type stuff. In addition, there are several man-made obstacles. And, it's unique. That's one reason I can say with confidence that Ole's Assault is tougher, and more fun, than all these cookie-cutter, wanna-be, corporate races.
So how to train? Mostly running longer miles, with some trail races and scrambles thrown in. Personally, I'm a little stronger at 60+ miles a week, so that's where I started. I'll throw in some hill work and do most of my mileage on the trail.
My first race of the year was the Havoc at the Hideout in May, a 5-mile trail run. It was also my first race in a pair of INOV-8s, which I had been running in for about a month or two prior. I got 19th overall, which was a fairly decent start to the season. With trail and hills, it's tough to gauge how well you're doing from one course to another, but if I know a lot of the runners around me, I have a general idea how I should be doing if I'm fit.
My second race, after directing the Pine Hollow Tri, was the Mt Hood Scramble in June. Again, there's a good many fast runners, plus just a lot more people at this one, which in many ways is the original adventure race. I finished 41st, which means I'm already getting a bit faster. I also switched to La Sportiva, and they're a much better fit.
I started running with Oregon Active, joining in on their weekly run, the Urban Trail Series, and I'm finally over 60 miles a week. It's summer, and my next race is McCubbin's Gulch in July. I can't do the Timberline Mt Run because I'm the RD, but I will race in August at the Tillamook Burn. I might even race the Sagebrush Skedaddle and the Wildwood Trail Trial. That, I think, is all I need to properly prepare for September 16.