Prior to moving to Colorado I loved running. I did it everyday, down to the beach and along the boardwalk. It was my stress relief during a very rough period of my life, my confidence builder during times I was shaken and one of the only things keeping me healthy. I channeled that love in to training for half marathons, excited to move to a town that was a running mecca.
This was all before I learned what elevation did to my lungs. My first day here I burst out the door on my first run and barely made it half a mile without gasping for air. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I am very sensitive to altitude and moving a mile up into the sky wrecked my endurance. Instead of pushing through it, I allowed myself to make excuses for not training and running fell to the wayside.
About 8 months after moving, I decided to try to pick it up again now that I was adjusted to the altitude, but then I broke my ankle and was benched for 5 months. Ever since then, I would sporadically get the urge to run, strap on my shoes to pound the pavement and find myself so discouraged that my mile splits were almost two minutes slower per mile then when I left LA that I would stop.
Recently I’ve gotten the itch to get back into running and searching for races online. The past week I ran everyday, trying to focus on enjoying the run and not constantly staring at my watch to see what my pace was. Today I went for a trail run, forgetting until I arrived at the trail that it had recently snowed meaning the trail would be icey and muddy.
This meant that there were portions where I had to tread lightly, balancing over icy rocks and splashing through mud to get to the free space where I could stretch my legs and burst through the woods. My mind was focused on my steps and enjoying the beautiful snowy landscape around me.
I loved it. I didn’t care about my time, I didn’t care about the distance. I was running for the pure joy of running, for probably the first time in over 2 years. Sometimes its good to leave the watches and measures behind and remember why you love doing something in the first place. Simply because it makes you feel alive.
Confession: I have never seen one episode of Game of Thrones… but I am still familiar with way too many of the phrases/characters due to nerdy friends and coworkers. This morning I woke up to a brisk 35 degrees. I was going to go do CrossFit, but I checked the WOD and it consisted of a lot of hand stand push ups. I don’t have too much interest in that type of CrossFitting, so I decided to hit the trails instead.
It was grey and chilly, so I bundled up. I usually only wear long pants and gloves unless its under 40 degrees, so it just barely qualified today. Especially since I’m not used to this cold weather. Winter is right around the corner. I’m sure it will snow soon enough.
You could definitely see how the floods that racked Boulder a month ago had eroded the parts of the trail that went by the creek.
Some of them had been closed completely and were closed to the public.
I’m sure most of this will take a year or more to even begin to be repaired, especially with winter on its way. I usually love trail running during the winter, so I’ll have to be on the look out for trails that haven’t been destroyed so I can enjoy some winter wonderland trail action when the snow hits.
How did you spend your Tuesday?
A couple friends of mine recently signed up to attempt a 50 mile trail run in Fort Collins in May. I randomly ran into them this past saturday on the trail as they stormed past me and my dog and my roommate, jumping over rocks with ease.
They inspired me with their wildman ways, so for todays 6 miler I decided to hit the trails for at least part of it. Luckily, I live 2 miles from trails leading up into the Rocky Mountains, so I ran over there and was off!
I was cruising for the first 1/4 mile or so, and then we started the steep ascent into the mountain and I died. My pace slowed, my lungs began to burn and I was hurting.
This does not even begin to convey the steepness. Or maybe it does, and I’m just a pansy. Either way, I texted my trail running friend when I got back and told him he was even more crazy (and inspiring) for signing up for 50 miles of that. He reminded me that you have to approach trail running with a different mentality. You are going to go slower, especially when avoiding rocks and running up steep hills and just to stay calm, enjoy the scenery and the challenge
Hope you all had nice Wednesdays!