I didn't get to write yesterday due to too many things on my plate so here's a quick recap of Saturday: I ran 8 miles, middle 6 at a slowed tempo (that's slightly above race pace but not quite at tempo pace: about 8:19 for first 4, 8:08 for mile #5 and 8:00 for last). Didn't feel that well at first; legs tired and stiff but as the miles went on, I felt a lot better. Did I stretch before or during? No. My glute is screaming at me again so I need to get back at the stretching again. I'm not sure why I think that just because things are feeling good that it's a ticket to stop stretching. Obviously, it's telling me it's not cuz it's been hurting for over a week now and it is pretty bad again today. Anyway, did my running on the treadmill. I know, what? It was like one of the nicest days this summer, ideal for running outdoors and here I am indoors on a stinking treadmill. Well, there's a valid reason for this: I wanted to get on a set pace and not deviate from that pace by going to fast (or too slow) and obsessing over my watch. I did a few weights later in the day but not as much as I was suppose to and I did not get in a swim that I longed to. End of the month writing deadline are killing me right now.
Today: 5am alarm went off and I didn't want to get up; the lack of sleep this week has drained me so much - but once I got up and going, all was good. Dennis picked me up at 6 and we headed up to the mountains. Last year, in preparation for the downhill course for the St. George marathon, we mapped out a section in the mountains that would closely emulate the StG course. I had a lot of major stomach issues on that run; I think it got too warm, I ran it too fast, and I was dehydrated -- let's just say I had to stop frequently and use whatever would suffice for a "facility." It's a very pretty run starting in the woods on the trails, turning to paved bike path, and then onto the frontage road - the vast majority of it along Clear Creek creek. Since I'm not doing StG this year and since I just ran 26 last weekend, I didn't do this entire 23 mile point to point mostly downhill course but I dropped off Denise at the top, near Loveland Ski area and then drove the car down to the ending point in Idaho Springs.
I ran 6.5 uphills miles and then 6.5 down on the frontage road that Denise would soon be on. I dunno...my legs just didn't want to run after I turned around. They felt okay going up and I thought I had a good pace for all 900' elevation gain but after I turned around, I ran about another mile to the Conoco station, refilled my water bottle and headed back on road...but suddenly having no strength in the legs. I was shocked at times when I was on some good downhills sections that my pace was no better than 9 minutes/mile. I wasn't dead by any means, I could just feel the ole quads not really wanting to run hard. I think that's okay, they were still tired from Park City and it wasn't the goal to run "fast." More deflating than the tight quads producing slow movement was the fact that my glute started misbehaving and it was worse going down. I'm also experiencing some heel tightness; I think it's time to replace my insoles with some better ones. I wish I could have worn my new shoes, but they have a hole in them on the outside that is about the size of a nickle. I got them online so now I got to deal with getting them returned and new ones here soon so that I can get them broken in. ugh. I reached the town of Idaho Springs, which is where the gold rush began January 7, 1859, and is filled with a lot of history (obviously). It's now kinda touristy (but not overly so, like Estes Park) but it has some pretty cool old Victorian houses that line the main street in town; I really enjoyed walking past and admiring many. I didn't care that I was a few tenths short of 13 miles, that wasn't important to me unlike say.....Dennis whom had to run around the parking lot to get his .2 extra miles in to make it a solid 23 for him. I'm still calling my portion 13, though I stopped at 12.7. I did walk the last .3 :). We had a nice lunch in town and headed home where I indulged in a nice ice bath, a very short 10 minute nap, talked to a friend for awhile on the phone about a condo in Vail for the CO relay (she owns a 3-bedroom and has offered to let us use it. Yes!!!), and now I need to get some dinner and get some writing down. A very nice weekend....though way too short :(
The pic above is of this old gold mine; you run past this about a mile into Idaho Springs. I love these things; they remind me of when I was a kid at my grandmother's house in northeastern Iowa and I'd go spend hours exploring the old abandoned schoolhouse and general store (which she owned). Plus the geologist in me can't not like this!
21 miles total for the weekend