Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Race Tapering and Fermentation: Get Out of the Way

All the planning, hard work, and execution is over. While some things worked out better than expected, some other things didn't. There's nothing left to do but let nature take it's course. I could be talking about tapering for The Santa Cruz Half-Marathon this weekend. Or, I could be talking about the collaborative Biscuits and Honey Amber Ale I brewed up with a friend.

Everything in my limited home brewing experience tells me once the yeast is pitched, best get out of the yeasts' way and let them do their thing. Maybe some subtle additions can be made, but the yeasts are really calling the shots, and as long as you take good care of them, they will reward you.

Tapering in the final days before a half-marathon, the only thing to do now in is allow the muscles heal and get stronger from weeks of training, so the mind has the most strength to call upon on race day. Of course, there is the temptation to get in one last big workout to take things to a higher level a few days before race day. Too often, this backfires into a tired performance on the big day. Trust me, I know.

Successful racing and brewing is a lot about getting out of the way of nature, so it will take the best course.

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