Sunday, June 5, 2011

Weekly exercise/adventure log: 5/30-6/5

As I slowly get into a pattern here in Boulder, I realize that some things have changed and other things haven't.
 a-I'm still not a morning person. As much as I want to get up before work and get a run or ride in, I just can't seem to make myself do it. I know I feel better when I do, but rather than getting up and getting moving, I lay in bed, angry at myself for each second I waste.
-I still don't sleep. I toss and turn all night, every night. Waking each hour to wonder why I can't rest a whole night through.
- I have excess endurance, but lack the power to continuously climb the mountains. The ability to run for 7-12 hours continuously is still there, but I require rest periods after only minutes of climbing. After a short rest, I'm able to climb again, repeating the process for 2 hours or more so far. I'll take it as a sign that the potential is there, as long as patience can accompany it.
- Solo runs are starting to feel more comfortable. After 2 years of always having a running partner(typically one that's faster than I), I'm learning to push my own pace without being dragged along. This is a positive, since I'm slow to find a group to run with.

Monday- 12+hour day at work. Volunteered at the paralympic race at the BolderBoulder 10k. In a sea of 50,000 runners, I got to help out the dozen or so athletes in the wheelchair division. I can say without a doubt that this is an event I'll remember forever. The group, just like any random sample of 10k competitors, has elites, recreational, and in between. Our group, the EXPAND program at Boulder, had a great showing. Our fastest male took 3rd overall(to collegiate racers- no shame it that whatsoever). One of our women took second in the female race, even after a crash. Another woman, a gold medal paralympic basketball player, had a great showing after being in a race chair for less than a month! Athletes take many forms, but the heart shows through every time.

My view of the finish following the wheelchair event. I got to watch
 50,000 people finish the race in the stadium
The man who stepped in my shot with his ice cream? Mr. Frank Shorter. No shit.

The rest of the day was spent at the Boulder Creek Festival, where I helped the EXPAND program with the Duck Race Fundraiser. By the time I rode my bike home, I was exhausted. Sam and I  rode our bikes to Chipotle because we were too lazy to cook.

Don't worry. I, along with my 2 fellow interns, have to account for all the ducks.

Tuesday - 1hr 40m - Finally got to the top of Green Mountain. Left from Chautauqua Park and made it to the summit in just under 50 minutes, then took a longer route down. The view was great and I held a chipmunk as I sat there a minute. Wish I had my camera. round trip, according the the Garmin, was 8 miles. Damn, that's weird to run a 45 minute 5k!

Wednesday -  2 hours - Slower ascent of Green when I got lost. The trail vanished on me (I'm not known for my directional sense). I ended up climbing rocks until I crossed the trail again, somehow jumping from the Greenman trail to the Ranger trail by way of scree covered rocks. I have to admit, it was a blast, but I don't want to damage the land any more than I do by simply running on it. Talked with a couple fellows at the top, then headed down to Gregory Canyon, then back to Chatauqua where I was parked. Another nice jog, but I'm starting to get the itch to run more miles. That means getting up early and going before work...oh shit. Finally starting to feel more comfortable climbing for sustained periods, but I have a long way to go before the threat of being passed by an old lady with trekking poles doesn't enter my mind.

Thursday - Oh Goodness. A double.
AM - 3 miles on the Goose Creek Greenway. I can see it from my bathroom window, no excuse not to run on it. a flat-ish, paved path. 1.5 miles out, then back. Just as with my pre-MTD taper, I've lost the ability to run slower. About 7:00-7:30 minute miles is where I feel comfortable, even when I'm sweating and working my ass off. Oh well, it seemed to yield good results, so I'll just do whatever is fun.

PM - 9 miles - Ran to Mount Sanitas with Sam biking alongside me. We found a different way in, a trail called Goat Path. 2 miles there, 5 of hiking/running, then 2 home. The run was particularly difficult since it was over 90 degrees here, but its much more bearable than 90 degrees in Michigan. Humidity is lower. I'm still a terrible mountain runner, but I'm learning as I go. I'm feeling stronger and my times are getting quicker as I climb the peaks. I expect a plateau effect to take place after a few weeks, but I'm walking less and running more now. Can't complain

7.5 miles - Gregory Canyon, then Long Canyon to Flagstaff road. Sat at the top of Green Mountain for a few minutes, looking at the mountains in the distance with snow on them. 1:40 minutes ish.
My feet as I sit in between two rocks, taking in the view.
Sorry for the crappy camera phone quality.

Saturday - For reasons unbeknownst to me, I'm exhausted. This may have been a mental exhaustion rather than physical from the day at the swim meet. The Special Olympics state swim meet was quite fun. Our small group had great performances made some memories. I love this program and am glad to be doing my internship here. After returning home, Sam and I went for a walk looked around a little, then rode our bikes downtown to walk the mall and grab some ice cream. One of those life-affirming days, proving to me that I don't need to run to feel normal person. Until I get better at managing my time and building my life around training in a way that doesn't harm my mind or my relationships, these days will be savored and made the best of.

Sunday - 3.5 hours - First attempt at a "long" run since my move. I drove to Chatauqua, where I went up Gregory Canyon, then taking the Ranger trail to the Summit of Green. I was wondering why there were so many cars in the parking lot. Every car at the bottom had its passengers sitting at the top. For every hiker, there were about 50 flies. I focus on the view for a few minutes, talked to some people, dropped my phone off a rock and smashed it, put it back together, then took off down Green Man. Once I got the the trail crossing, I realized I went the wrong way. It's my favorite trail to descend Green Mountain on, so I wasn't heartbroken. Back up the the summit, thinking of as many different courteous ways as I could to say, "Hello! Excuse me please, thank you!"
 I didn't stop this time, just went back down and descended down Green Bear to Bear Canyon, then up the ridge. Some ladies told me that it was a nice trek that would take me up to the top and be challenging. The route up there is an amazing, very runable trail until one gets close to the summit. I pressed on and joined a gaggle of hikers at the top for some bullshitting and view taking. Bagged my first Bear Summit. The view from Bear is phenomenal. The South side of Boulder is amazing, but turning around gives an even better view of the mountains. This view came at a bit of a cost.What I did to get up there doesn't quite fall into my loose definition of "running," at least not in this piss poor condition I find myself in currently. I'll keep at it to make this 12-13 mile loop a more regular, less difficult experience.
On a positive note, I did climb two mountains in one day. I learned that I'm going to have to at least be double fisting water bottles if I want to be more comfortable this summer. I ran out of water on my way down Green Mountain. I filled up in a creek and also dumped several bottles on my head. After crossing Bear Canyon Creek again, I casually asked some passers by if the water was safe to drink. They laughed and said, "It is if you want diarrhea!" I could feel my heartbeat in my eyes, so I was desperate. I was coming up on my 3rd hour in 90ish degree heat, so gastrointestinal parasites became the secondary concern. (kind of like the "Jenn and Billy" story in Born to Run...except I'm closer to matching drinking abilities than running abilities). It looked fine anyway, and besides, I filtered it through my fingers!
I saw the same ladies that directed me up Bear after I came through Fern Canyon. They were suprised that I made it up and back down in time to catch them, so I'll take that as a sign that I'm not the slug I perceived myself to be.
Bombing down the bluebell trail back the car wound out the day. I finally opened the stride up and hit a speedy mile(probably my first one that wasn't in the double digits all day). Stopped at the gas station and bought a big ass bottle of Gatorade and drained it in the store while the cashier rang me up. The creek water didn't tear my guts up, but the Gatorade sure did. that's what's goin on with me.
48 miles of "running" in about 10 hours. back in the day(3 weeks ago), I could run twice that many. gettin' lazy in my old age.

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