Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Week in Review (July 17 - July 23)

Tuesday (11,381 steps) - Barre Express with Gabi!
Wednesday (21,026 steps) - Runners Roost Boulder! It was approximately one zillion degrees, and yet I actually had a pretty great run.

After the beer & pizza we went to JT's house and played croquet. So random, yet so fun!
Thursday (15,927 step) - By the way, I am finally canceling my barre membership. After two years, it's just not as fun as it was. With that said, I joined Planet Fitness because there is a location only a few blocks from my office. I went for the first time during lunch and enjoyed doing one of the "Express" workouts.
Belmar run club! We arrived late (again) and had to run to catch up with Ang so that we could walk. Another billion degree night. (Getting pretty sick of summer).
Friday (13,373 steps) - Barre with Gabi. After work I picked up groceries at Target and pizza for dinner. A got invited to a sleepover, so I spent the remainder of my night packing.
Saturday (16,814 steps) - Runners Edge. FINALLY at the point in my training schedule where I only had FOUR (yes, 4) miles to run.
I was insanely hot when I finished, which doesn't leave me feeling warm and fuzzy for my race. Did some shopping, picked up my aid station and then had breakfast with Kristin, Sheila, Janet & Pete. I got a text to pick up A later, so I took a nap. After I got A we watched some TV and were in bed early.
Sunday(18,843 steps) - Black Hawk trail 10K!
A had an afternoon meeting, and I don't remember leaving the couch.
Monday (8,171 steps) - Um. Nothing. Went to Culver's for dinner. Made peanut butter & chocolate chip cookies for a work potluck.

Stats:
  • 105,535 steps
  • 18.6 miles run
  • 2 barre classes, 1 PF Express

Monday, July 30, 2018

Black Hawk 10K (Race Recap)

I love, love, love this event. I have run the half marathon a few times, but since my big race was coming up I decided to do the "smart" thing and just sign up for the 10K. A and I had some volunteer hours to cash in, so we both got comp entries, (so if you want to volunteer for Endurance Race Series events, know that for every event you volunteer, you get to run one for free!)

Maureen was also running, so we planned on meeting at her place at 5:45 for the drive to Golden Gate State Park. We left the house before 5:30, and got to her house right on time. The drive was somewhat uneventful, until we started the drive into the mountains. We saw a car on the side of the road with the hood up and I noticed there was a Runners Roost sticker in the back window, so I told Maureen she should turn around as I was sure it was a runner.

Sure enough, the guy was heading to our same race, so we offered him a ride. He was very nice (and not a murderer). We arrived at about 6:30, with our race not starting until 7:30, so we had plenty of time. We saw TONS of people that we knew, so the time flew by with talking and visiting.

We saw the half marathoners off around 7:10 (a bit of a late start, they were supposed to begin at 7), and then we lined up.

I planned to start in the back and run by "feel," meaning that I hoped to run well on the flats and downhills.

I can definitely feel/see a difference in my running with the last year that I've been doing so much more trail running. I was able to run the whole section until the first bit of single track without walking. I saw A ahead of me, but I was nowhere near the back of the pack. Even once we got onto the single track, I was able to still run quite a bit. Then we moved onto the wider ATV trails.



Coming into the first aid station at mile 1.5
The faster half marathon runners were already coming towards us, and I clocked a pretty fast second mile.

I saw A and Tom coming toward me, and I was just a few steps behind Mary. There was the grueling climb that I remembered from running the half in the past, and then before I knew it, time to turn around!
Apparently the only picture I took!
The glorious downhill was then followed by a somewhat tough climb back through the aid station around mile 4. It was great to see Dan and Susan volunteering!
Ariel and Tom
Then we ran back to the finish, turning off just before the chute for an out and back to get us to the right mileage. This section was tough because the faster half marathon runners were coming into the finish (yes, already) and then the 10K people in front of us were coming back down. The trail was narrow in this section, so not my favorite.

I was really really pleased with how fast I actually ran this!

Garmin time - 1:14:57
Garmin distance - 6.05 miles (hard to tell if it was short or if the trees/mountains screwed up gps)
Garmin pace - 12:23
Elevation gain - 1,145'
Mile 1 - 13:48
Mile 2 - 9:37
Mile 3 - 14:35
Mile 4 - 13:07
Mile 5 - 11:59
Mile 6 - 11:26
Mile 6.05 - 7:44 (haha)
I liked their finish picture a lot more than mine :)


Maureen & A were both age group winners!


Lots of teammates here! (And a few missing, including A)
We stuck around at the finish until almost everyone was done. On the drive back down we dropped Dan off at his car, and it started, but as we were following him down the hill it died again. I ended up driving him home and he was going to get a ride back later to deal with it.
Thoughts:
  • While I haven't been racing much, I will definitely run this one again. It's a beautiful location and I really enjoy this one (Heather, I'm talking to you)
  • Definitely the most challenging course in the series.
  • Great post-race after party, like always.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Week in Review (July 10 - July 16)

Tuesday (16,949 steps) - Barre Express with Gabi! Best class in a while, I was actually able to get through most of it. After work I met up with Lisa and Lucky for a walk around Sloan's Lake. We hit up Joyride for beers. They had the best food truck ever, I got a delicious burger and truffle sweet potato fries. Yum, yum, yum!
Wednesday (15,179 steps) - Work was "exciting." Our firm has moved to doing "group" annual reviews. Even though I have not been here for a full year yet (one year is next month), and I just had a review in February, I got another raise! Pretty sweet! That's where the "good" things stop for the day. I was in a fender bender on the drive to pick up A at her friend's house in Thornton. Thankfully there was no damage to the other vehicle, so no police or insurance. Lucy is a bit sad, however. We still went to run club, although we were late. A didn't want to run, and I had already missed the group so I drove to the trail head and planned to run the route in reverse to meet up (which I did!). Turns out, the one time I wasn't with the group is the one time they saw B E A R S!!!

Went to Southern Sun after and had an entertaining evening listening to JT retell his Silver Rush experience.
Thursday (23,627 steps) - Surprise, barre with Gabi! (I have no idea why I signed up for a Thursday). Belmar run club, we walked with Ang.
Completely not on purpose matchy matchy with Mo!

A in her first "adult" sparkle skirt!
THEN, we drove down to Highlands Ranch to meet up with RER for a night trail run on the Chase the Moon course! To be fair, most of the run wasn't in the dark. Once the sun set it was actually very pleasant. Had a pretty great run, although we didn't get home until almost 10:30.


Friday (10,266 steps) - Nothing?
Saturday (38,509 steps) - Long run with Runners Edge. Was NOT looking forward to this one at all. It's been stupid hot and I had 16 on schedule. Lisa dropped down to my pace group again and we ran the first 8 together. I ran the back half with Alexa and Paul. It wasn't "as horrible" as I thought it would be, although I was fairly nauseous for most of the last few miles.
Stopped at Phil's shop on the way home for their anniversary party. Home to shower, met up with Lisa for our farewell lunch date. :( We hit up Tony P's for pizza slices and then over to Zuni Street for a new brewery. No dark beers, which was sad, but they had a nice patio with misters. We played giant Jenga and Scrabble before heading home so Lisa could clean :(
Back over to Berkeley in time for the beer mile. I had no desire to run and was put in charge of taking pictures. Fun night, including burros and a BBQ!


Sunday (28,722 steps) - No alarm set and I manged to sleep until 8:30. Headed out for my last double digit run. I was super pleased that it was overcast and "chilly" in the upper 60's. However, my first 5 miles were in a headwind (which is always miserable), and then somehow miles in the middle were also into the wind. Blech. 12 miles done.
Sat around at home before heading to barre with A, Maureen & Ben. Went to Denver Beer after, and got caught in a torrential rain storm. Colorado weather, you so crazy!
Monday (17,691 steps) - New Terrain run club! We hadn't been in a few weeks and it was a pretty pathetic showing. We started with the group and then at the top of Lithic we saw Paula, John & Mara, so we stopped to wait for them. I actually had a pretty great run! Stuck around for a drink before heading home.

Stats:
  • 150,943 steps
  • 43.8 miles run
  • 3 barre classes & walking

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Week in Review (July 3 - July 9)

Tuesday (10,505 steps) - No barre class, the schedule was bleak for the 4th of July. I had been optimistic that we would have time to get to Runners Roost in Boulder for the weekly trail run, but A didn't get home from camp until after the run started and it seemed silly to drive that far for a burger.
They both had a great time, another successful year at camp!
Wednesday (30,058 steps) - Wake up at 2:50 am (ugh) to get ready and drive to Lisa's house for a 3:30 departure for another 14er! With Lisa moving in a few weeks, this was going to be our last one together for a LONG time (if ever again, womp). Shockingly, there was no traffic at that hour. We arrived at the trail head just before 6, and it was PACKED. Like, we barely got a spot? Crazy, we didn't think it would be that busy, and we assumed we would be safe with that "early" of a start. Mt. Elbert is the tallest peak in Colorado at 14,439 feet. There were two different routes listed, and we picked the shorter, more popular one. With that said, we estimated it was going to be close to 10 miles round trip and probably would take about 10 hours to complete.
The first mile or so were lovely. Not a lot of climbing and not technical at all. I think that is because it merges with the Colorado trail? Unsure, but it sure was nice. However, we of course realized that the less climbing we did in the beginning would surely mean more heart attack inducing climbing later.
As we should have expected from how full the parking lot was, there were a LOT of people on the trail. I think that this was the most crowded I have seen a 14er, other then Bierstadt (which is typically known as the most popular & beginner friendly 14er. Plus, it's pretty close to the metro area).
Maybe 1.25 miles in we arrived at the split in the trail. To the left the Colorado Trail continued - we of course were going to the right, up the Mt. Elbert trail.
It was already pretty warm, we had all shed our layers/jackets in the first 20 minutes. The first few miles were pretty great thought, the trees kept everything cool. We remained below tree line until about 2.75 miles up. Thanks to our research, we knew that there were not one, but two, false summits. Sky was blue as could be and the moon was still setting. One of my favorite shots from the hike was as we were approaching the first bit of tough incline.
We stopped to ask a few people (knowing we still had a few miles to go) if we were there yet (kind of as a joke). A few guys told us that the section we could see was the steepest, and then it got better after that. That actually was a big mental boost for us. And, turns out, the steep section really wasn't that bad!
We got to the summit a lot earlier than we expected, AND, it was super nice at the top. There were lots of people at the summit, but the weather was just awesome. I have never been at the top when it hasn't been windy and miserable, so we stayed up there for close to 45 minutes. We had lunch and enjoyed the views.
Nature's cup holder 
Pizza with a view
Lucky was kinda looking!
Lucky needs some shades!


It's always "better" going down, at least in terms of breathing. We took very few stops on the way down. First was to take off our long sleeves and reapply sunscreen. We tried to stop every mile or so to give Lucky more water.

I was REALLY looking forward to the lower section that wasn't as steep. For whatever reason, my feet/toes were not happy with the descent, specifically my big toes. I wonder if that was a lacing issue as well.
Stream crossing just before getting back to the car
Our calculations were "correct," at least in terms of distance. The route we took was supposed to be 9.1 miles, and my watch had us at 10 round trip. Overall, we did the whole hike quicker than we expected, finishing in under 8 hours.

We weren't sure what would be open because of the holiday, but thankfully, High Mountain Pies was open! I had heard about this pizza place from all our Leadville regulars, and it did NOT disappoint. The pizza was fantastic, and we enjoyed sitting on the patio.
Ariel and I split a San Luis (green chili, pork, avocado & cilantro!)
The drive home was uneventful. I don't think I've ever seen the highway so barren, especially on a holiday! A and I were home by 6. Did a load of laundry and managed to stay up until 8. Not even sure how many years it has been since I watched fireworks.
Thursday (12,730 steps) - Nothing! My sister-in-law,  Lisa, and my niece were in town! We went out to dinner and then for a walk to the lake.
Friday (15,075) - Barre with Hanna. Out to dinner for Greek food with the fam, then we took another walk to the lake. It was a really great (but short) visit.

Me, with two tweens that are taller than I am
Saturday (32,869 steps) - Runners Edge. Thankfully, we didn't have an aid station AND it was close, so we got to "sleep in." Legs felt ok, but the rest of me did NOT. One of the worst runs I've had in ages, stomach just felt off. Happy I only had 12 on schedule.
Dropped A off at her friend's house for a few days of camping. Did some shopping, then worked on my DVD project until it was time to meet up with Lisa.
Goodbye shelving unit & bulky cases!
We went to Alamo Draft House to see Jurassic World (which I really liked!) and then had a beer at her place.
Sunday (22,201 steps) - Drove down to Lakewood for the July RMRR race. It was "only" two miles, so I was cautiously optimistic it wouldn't be too bad. Last year I had run the day after Chase the Moon and was painfully slow, so I at least knew I would PR. I started out way too fast the first mile, and then with only a half mile to go (or maybe less) had to walk. Eh, at least I managed to finish under 20 minutes, which is an accomplishment in itself.

Love my teammates!
After awards, Maureen & Colfax joined me for another three sweltering miles in the park.
We then drove into Morrison for a late breakfast, and it was phenomenal. Tortilla-less burrito, hashbrowns and a side of french toast. A walk with Colfax by the river rounded out the day. Too hot to do anything else, I finally finished my DVD project. Man, I really love to get rid of stuff. I even did a video! Well, "part" of a video. It was two sets, and I only did one.
Monday (21,231 steps) - I had plans to run at North Table, like usual, but then Lisa said she wasn't going to be able to make it and I didn't really want to be dead last yet again. Especially in the heat (it was mid 90's out). I had plans to run at Bear Creek, but on the way made the decision to stop and run at Green Mountain instead. I had not run out there in over three years. In my head, I was convinced that I didn't run out there because of the propensity for car break-ins (I've known more than a few victims), but in reality, it was my amnesia of how ROCKY the trail is. I compared my time to three years ago and was MUCH faster this time around, even IN the ridiculous heat. 7 miles done (which is more than I would have done at North Table anyway).




Stopped at Panera on my way home for a 1/2 salad, 1/2 sandwich. So good.

Stats:
  • 144,669 steps
  • 21.2 miles run
  • Hiking, 1 barre class, 1 video, lots of walks

Week in Review (January 15 - January 22)

Tuesday  (15,914 steps) - Strength class during lunch. Headed over to a new run club - Sunnyside at Factotum Brewhouse. The route was kinda ...