Tuesday, May 1, 2012

A Mini-Week, So To Speak

Noon - 13 miles - Left home and ran to Chatauqua, then took the trail to the Saddle Rock Trail, up Greenman to the Summit. Why was I so obsessed with reaching this summit last year? Bugs everywhere. Long grind of a climb with mostly high heart rate hiking, just trying to get there as efficiently as possible. About halfway up, I realized it was hot and I had no water. My eyes were rattling in my head and I was a bit dizzy. Still, the fastest way home would be to hit the summit and make it back down to Gregory. The heat made me all too aware that I'm still a novice who makes novice mistakes. Took the Long Canyon trail back to the canyon and jogged it in. Drank copious amounts of water for hours afterward, and still pissed dark yellow until bed time. I can't believe I thought I could get by with no water. I should have been double fisting bottles on that route in that heat. Lesson learned.

Afternoon: The typical 40 minutes worth of bike commuting and teaching water aerobics. It doesn't count as mileage, but it serves as my shakeout for the day.

Morning commute to work for leading an exercise class. I sort of underestimated the adaptation to returning to a physically active lifestyle. Having to commute under my own power once or twice daily has been a blessing. It's a little tiring, but it keeps my body loose and gives little "mini workouts" throught the day. It makes me realize that no matter where I end up living, I'd like a situation where a car is a luxury and not a necessity.

PM - 6 miles - Quality over quantity today. Sporadic work schedule and some errands to run kept me off my usual routes in the morning, but a group tempo run after work was just what I needed. A new(to me) mountain trail and some strangers helped me keep pushing despite wanting to give up and walk up HogBack Ridge, or whatever it's called. The fastest guys(some are 2:40ish marathoners, from what I understand) in the group run the 3ish mile loop in about 30 minutes. I was a couple minutes slower, but had no watch. 11-12min/mile tempo run up rocks, right through a mountain covered in wildflowers and a few deer? Well, I could get used to that. I'm fairly sure I was still wrecked from my dehydration the previous day, but it was still an enjoyable effort...and by that I mean it sucked really bad until it was over. Long ride home from the North end of town.

15 miles - ..ish. No watch. Ran to Chatauqua to meet Ely and Archie for a Bear Mtn. summit. My goal for the next month is to actually do a running type motion all the way to the top of Fern Canyon. I definitely had a series of bonks on this run. The route was quite enjoyable, but I really had to embrace the "runner's low" while Ely glided away from me. I was dizzy and disoriented for much of the descent, but didn't eat gravel, so I guess I'm okay. As much as I wish I had a slow metabolism, I might have to up the calories on these 2-4 hour efforts. Still a great run on a route I haven't taken since last Summer. Just have to keep on keepin' on and experiment with things like calories, hydration, volume and pace to get the most out of my work. I don't want to take it too easy on myself, but I've only been here for 3 weeks. Last year I showed up in much better shape. This year I showed up a borderline depressed hasbeen.

7 miles - I had enough of the concentrated ass whoopins of the last three days, so I jogged to work and back, nice and easy. Well, as easy as one could run with a full backpack on.

The rest of the week was a whirlwind trip back to Michigan with no running(unless you count airport jogging to catch a plane. Up at 5am to fly home, attend Samantha's graduation, throw a little celebration, and then get up at 6am Sunday for the drive back. We stayed in a small cabin in Gretna, Nebraska for a few hours Sunday night, but it was mostly a fast drive back to Boulder so I could get to work Monday.

Our sleeping place on the return trip to CO.
My dream house. A single room cabin. I'll start collecting sticks and logs.

Total: 41 miles in 4 days. I seem to have a curse of a ~10mile average, in spite of some long days.

A rather short, concentrated week of running, but it had some speedier stuff thrown in and a long mountain grind, so it just is what it is. Bigger things planned for this week. Life will resume some sort of normalcy for me now that Sam's back.

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