We came home from our little trip to New Mexico last night, a day early. A massive storm was predicted, which accuracy for once, to hit Denver last night and I didn't want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere. I was a little bummed that we never made it to the 4-corners and Mesa Verde, which was on the original schedule; we haven't been there in ages and I know the boys would have enjoyed that immensely. But we had a great time in Albuquerque and got a good three days of quality time exploring the area!
A few firsts for me while on vacation (don't worry, they aren't some life-altering occurrences where I'm going to get deep and heavy here ... just plain ole simple firsts that stuck with me):
-I ran my first longer-than-12-mile run in Albuquerque in the 22 years I've frequented there. I've been in the midst of training for a marathon or two (or 3 or 4 even...) while I've visited there and have had to arrange my runs around whatever was going on, as we runners do, but I can't recall ever going over 12 before. So 17 was a pretty big milestone.
- I did this 17-miler on the Bosque Trail that runs along the Rio Grande River. I've never run on this trail on my own; the only other time I've been on this trail was when I ran about 10 or so miles of the Duke City Marathon about 10 years ago. I knew to get in more than 10 miles in city neighborhoods, I'd have to venture on this trail for something new. The leaves were turning vibrant gold, plentiful, and I really enjoyed this really flat bike trail. A kids' Halloween bike ride was going on and I loved watching them zip past me in their costumes; a great distraction to the monotony of the continuous miles I was running.
- I didn't have a sucky long run - for once. Granted, it was only 17 vs. 21-23 like I was doing this past summer but still....the run went well and I could do "race pace" in the middle, whereas I haven't been able to all summer.
- I actually lost a lb on vacation vs. gaining 7. Sweet!- I ran speed work on vacation. Which is just kinda weird. And I didn't do 400's on a track; I thought about that but kids were still in school here (I think) and I'm not exactly sure where the nearest high school is anyway so I ran about a mile, found a fairly flat side street and ran quarter mile repeats. Fast one way, slow and recovered the other way. Repeat x 10. At an average of 1:33. That'd be a 6:12 pace, baby! Pretty happy about that! I had negotiated with Rob about doing 12 instead of 8 that he wanted me to do but I ended them at 10 because I got a late start an wanted to get out of town....and also because my annoying glute pain was acting up. Again. I'm happy with the 10 I got in; I worked them hard and felt great so I'll take it!
- The boys and I hiked the 5 volcanoes, cinder cones, that border the western edge of the city. Always wanted hike around them, beings the geologist and all, but never did for whatever reasons. They were awesome!
- I read an entire Runners World magazine from cover to cover in one sitting. Usually, it takes me about 3 weeks to read about half before I give up. I need more hours in my life...
- As to the subject of this blog: Thoughts of a 50-miler next year entered my mind. Thanks, in part, to the magazine (above) I read. As Tish Hamilton wrote in the article, "I was going to run just one ultra, and I didn't want to have to explain that 50-K was 31 miles." That's not really my exact reason....I'm sort of going with the: I'm going to run just one ultra and I don't think I'd run 50 miles if I know how painful 50-K is so I may as well enter the ultra world with a big bang, and just end it right then and there. Me, doing a 50-miler!! I think I'm ready mentally!!! Now...which to pick. And how to even go about training. Here's an article on ultras I found pretty interesting: http://www.angelfire.com/ultra2/teamslug/50miletraining.html.html
- I bought my first lightweight trainers: Nike LunarGlide. They're super ugly; I got the dk gray/yellow color (oh sorry, their official color is: Anthracite/Reflective Silver-Voltage Yellow) but wow, I ran just a half mile on them today (forced rest day due to the irritating glute) and they just feel so light on the ole legs! They are apparently the latest crave so I'm excited to see how they work. And if they DO work, I need a different color!
That's it, I think!
Denver is getting bombarded with major snow today (so glad I came home early). I like snow, for about 3 days....and then I'm overly done with it. Gonna be a long, looooonnnngg, winter - ugh. It's totally screwing up my long run plans this weekend of heading up to the mountains to run a long downhill course that would be great training for Tucson. If I postpone my long mountain run to next weekend, then I'm out of the half marathon I wanted to do; I don't now how'll I'll squeeze everything in. As it is, I'm going to have to run about 10 on my treadmill. Not fun, but I'll head over to the gym and do it vs. my basement where I get so easily distracted. Charlie, old massage therapist, worked on my glute today and he said all is good...I just need to stretch the ga-gee-
bees outta it. Ok, I'm gonna make the effort. Really! Picture is from my backyard deck. Another 10" predicted before this beast moves out!