Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Amanda, the adult update

The word "adult" in the post title does not imply a PG-13 rating to this post, no worries. I just figured you are probably tired of hearing about early childhood development and seeing adorable photos of adorable children (yeah right!).  If you are, this post is for you. If you've been wondering, gosh, "does Amanda have any gray hair?" "Does she ever get out of the house?" Things like that there, this is your post.

When the weather turned warm this spring (read: middle of June), I started running again. I have been an on-again-off-again runner since high school. A few years ago, I tore my meniscus and started biking regularly to rehab the knee. That summer, I decided to ride the Alpine Loop as an end-of-summer goal. Christian and I made the 55 mile mountainous, high altitude trip together on fine September day. I thought after I was done have babies, I would try to run a marathon (with the "before I'm 35" goal in the back of my mind). I was actually considering building up over the winter and trying for one in the late spring of 2013, when I read that one of my Lake City buddies wanted to do the Denver Rock and Roll Marathon in...wait for it...September of 2012. Over the summer, we came together as a little running pack, four of us in all, and began training together. This has been so wonderful for me in so many ways. The other women are Christians as well and we spend our long runs encouraging each other and praying for one another and our families and our little town. One of the ladies has run Denver before and Chicago once as well. The other three of us will be running our first marathon (Gasp: in 3 weeks). Overall, the training has been easier than I imagined. I have learned so much about shoes, glucose, blisters under my toenails, pace, etc. We'll do our 20 mile run together this weekend and then taper down on miles before the big race on the 22nd.

Is this how anyone should feel after running that far?
Our pack took last weekend off of running the long run together (two girls we're busy on Sat). I, however, decided Friday night over diner to do a NUTSO mountain race the next morning. This was a 22 mile trail race in Creede, CO. You can read more about the course at creedemountainrun.com. Basically, we ran from 8,850 ft, straight up to 12,5000 ft and then straight back down. This is apparently one of Colorado's toughest "up and over" courses. With a 25 dollar entrance fee and a beautiful Labor Day weekend...it enticed me. So, I gave it a go. I wasn't out to race or win, just to enjoy the day and do something different. After 5 hours and 2 minutes, I was back at the finish line and came in second overall for the women (7 minutes after the top female). I could have shaved about 30 or more minutes if I was really hammering, but I wanted to save my knees for the marathon (and the rest of my life). I only saw two other people after mile 6. one guy in a bright yellow shirt came from behind me on the steepest part of the climb and we ran together for a little and then took turns passing each other for a while before he took off at mile 17. We passed anther dude who looked like he was really hurting. Mr. Yellow T-Shirt and I were both of the "sturdy-built" variety, but we finished way in front of Mr. Tall and Lanky, who looked like he should have kicked our butts. I had not done hardly any hiking or trail running at all this year, so I was pretty happy just to finish the thing. But since I did pretty well on little training...I'm thinking of doing something like that again. I think running in the mountains is more agreeable to my soul than running with 7500 people in Downtown Denver, but we shall see. We have a 50 mile race in our town on the Solstice every year that a lot of top notch ultra-marathon folks use for training for the Hardrock 100 and the Leadville 100.  I might consider doing the San Juan Solstice, if the family can handle the training schedule and if my body holds up. We shall see...that is another summer.

There were a few other Lake City people who ran the race. Lydia and I before running the beast.

Wish we could have camped more this year,
between fire season and bear season and
Christian working so much, we just didn't have many opportunities. 
Oh, and for those of you who only read this blog because you love precious children...we'll be back to that topic next time around.