Yay! Something For Me to Talk About!

(FIRST: This has been written over the course of 3 weeks, so there will be parts that are a bit outdated.  So sorry).

If the internet was an accurate representation of activity, then it appears that I have almost completely ceased to exist over the last month and a half. Luckily, there are pictures to prove that I haven’t been completely void of activity.

We have gone kayaking.

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We liked kayaking so much, we bought our own kayaks.

We have run along Lady Bird Lake in Austin, TX (which is really an amazing running trail).

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We quacked on a Duck Tour of Austin, Tx.

We went hiking.

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We saw some ancient ruins.

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And I got called up to Jury Duty.

(We also saw MUMFORD, but I respect them enough to give them their own post…one of these days…).

But this is a running blog, and I haven’t been doing very much running which creates a bit of an existential crisis for this little piece of the internet.

Ever since I started training for my first half marathon two years ago, there hasn’t been a time where I wasn’t signed up for a race or training for something, so my life as I have come to know it has felt pretty off for the last month and a half.

The Garmin has been left uncharged, sitting dead now for probably 4 weeks on my dresser (UPDATE: The Garmin has been recharged).  Runs have been sporadic and short, and untimed.  And the laundry situation.  I never realized how much less laundry I have when I’m not running all the time.  And the hamper smells much better for it.

After the Boston Marathon, my main goal has been to completely heal and get myself back to those pre-marathon days where nothing ever hurt. As a result, I’ve run once, maybe twice a week  (last week 3 times!) since Mid-April. It has been interesting.  I haven’t run so little in more than two years, and I’ve realized how much I rely on running for so many aspects of life.  I’ve gained weight (thank you, marathon training for making my body so dang efficient with the whole fuel storage thing), I’ve felt sluggish, and I really think that my overall disposition isn’t as happy as it was.

But my amount of free time has grown exponentially! (and sleeping in on Saturday is pretty cool).

But, even stranger was not having a single race to look forward to.  Despite our best wishing and hoping efforts (and maybe some attempts at “eliminating” other lottery pool members…), neither Aaron or I were drawn for the New York City Marathon (curses upon all of you lucky people who stole our spots), so that possibility has been thrown out the window.

So, we went in a different direction and signed up for The Imogene Pass Run.  This race is a 17.1 mile run starting in Ouray, Colorado that ascends up a 13,000+ mountain and goes almost all the way back down to end in Telluride.

This race has really become popular in recent years.  Registration opened at 6:00 am on June 1st and was full less than 2.5 hours later (I think they accept 1500 participants).  While I’m definitely excited to be running in what looks to be a beautiful and challenging race, I’m scared.  I hate hills (I don’t know if I’ve emphasized that enough on this blog during my dramatic laments over Heartbreak Hill!), and the whole purpose of this race is to get up a really big one.

We haven’t quite started our training yet (Coach Aaron is making me a bit nervous with his timeline…), so I don’t know what it will look like exactly.  There will be some long runs to get our endurance back up to the 17 mile range.  There will be hill repeats because there will be lots and lots of uphill.  We will hopefully get up to Colorado a few times this summer to train at elevation (and put our kayaks to use!).  And Aaron said there will be “step-mill” sessions which makes me sad because I typically poke jokes at those people and their inability to walk up stairs without leaning all the way over onto the handle bars.

Suddenly, this is making my 10 baton-carrying miles through the middle of nowhere New Mexico on Saturday look easy.  Luckily, so much has happened since I last discussed the One Run for Boston relay.  We’ll now have a support crew, I’m picking up someone from Maine at the airport and driving him up with us so he can contribute FORTY FIVE miles to the relay, and our measly 90+ forecast is looking mighty cool compared the 114 that some runners faced in the  Death Valley desert of California. Currently, the baton is somewhere near the Arizona/ New Mexico border, so our time is coming up soon! (I am hoping to post more about this on Friday, but considering my recent history, who knows!).

So, that is where we currently stand both in non-internet life and running. As you can see, you haven’t missed much!

So, now please tell me (because my blog reading has matched my blog writing), what has been your favorite life (or running) experience in the last month and a half?  

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34 thoughts on “Yay! Something For Me to Talk About!

  1. Welcome back slacker! I thought about you guys the other day and the ONE RUN for BOSTON while driving through the desert in 110+ degree heat knowing that someone was running for the cause at that moment made me ill for them. Hopefully they documented those individuals running because that will show the people the seriousness of the cause and dedication runners have, hopefully they split the legs up into shorter sections.

    Good luck on Saturday and you two are insane, 5k of vertical climb at elevation, I am going to say that will be twice as hard as a normal marathon but it should make for an awesome race recap and a killer bod.

    • There are so many pictures of the Death Valley Runners. Actually, if you go to the website, they have a live picture feed under the “live” tab. http://onerunforboston.org/live.asp. I actually feel pretty bad for complaining at all because we’ll have it pretty easy compared to some of these people!

      And I’m pretty excited for this race. I agree that it’ll be way harder than a normal marathon, but I think we were due for something a little bit different.

  2. I’ve run the IPR a couple of times. You should be scared. But you can do it. The 10 miles up hill is really more of a shuffle than a run. You walk when everyone in front of you walks and you run when they run. All determined by grade after 3 or 4 miles. The 7 mile downhill is harder because you’re so fatigued and it is steep. Take a nice break on top of the pass, drink some soup, and recover before tumbling into Telluride.

    • I actually think I found your blog looking into Imogene, but this is the first year I’ve paid attention enough to actually register in time! My husband actually did it a few years ago and it is one of his favorite races. I’ve seen some of the pictures on the facebook page, and it looks amazing if not incredibly steep and scary!

  3. I was wondering about you and your blogging today…. 🙂

    That hill race looks intense, and this is coming from a lover of hill running. Good luck with it, when is it? And best of luck with your Boston relay as well.

    I’ve gone and entered a half marathon for this October (!!!!!!!), and I’m in the middle of new training program, which helped me break some PR’s as well.

    Looking forward to more posts!

    • WOOHOO!!! Half marathons!!! I’m very very excited for you, and will be cheering for you the whole time!

      The race is in September, so we have about 3 months to turn ourselves into mountain goats.

    • Thanks! I switch between being really pumped about it and then remembering that I normally get sad during a 500 foot elevation gain, so this race should be extra sad. Fun times.

    • We’re pretty excited about the kayaks! I just wish we actually had water in this state. And training will definitely be an exciting if not painful challenge!

    • I’ve never even hiked higher than about 10,000 feet, so we’ll see how this goes. But, I’ve been looking at the pictures, and it looks like the scenery will be amazing enough to hopefully distract a bit from the elevation sickness.

  4. That is one of the most insane elevation profiles I’ve ever seen! I think as long as you go in with the right attitude and plenty of training, you’ll be OK. My limited hill experience tells me that while the uphills are hard on your lungs and heart, it’s the downhill portions that can be really challenging. I’m sure Coach Aaron will have plenty of elevation gains and losses for you to work on. 🙂 Anyway, good luck with your training!

    As for me, I’m running the SF half marathon on Sunday!! Weather looks great and I’m feeling good. Hoping the stars align for a sub-2!

    • I’ll be stalking your results on Sunday! You can do it!

      Yeah, I think this downhill isn’t only going to be challenging, but also scary because I don’t want to tumble down the mountain. I’m typically a pretty strong downhill runner, but I think this course will require some extra training.

  5. Ahhhhh, yes, the laundry. Always a perfect proxy for mileage! Since destroying my leg 3 weeks ago (NOT my favorite running experience as of late), it’s kind of disturbing how little I have.

    • Ewe. Leg destruction is never good. Hope it heals soon!

      I started running more last week, and I could already see a difference in the size of my loads!

  6. There I was thinking I was the only one who isn’t blogging and running much. Since running the Edinburgh Marathon I am really sluggish … so running has been replaced by yoga till the legs are back to normal (apparently this should take 6 weeks – its been 3 already). No real excuse for not blogging tho (I’m about half way through my Edinburgh Marathon post….still)

    • AHHH!!! I can’t believe I forgot about your marathon! I’ll be so very excited to see the recap. Did you get to meet Danielle and Rachel? THIS is why I can’t take breaks from the internet.

      Anyway, no, you aren’t the only one.

  7. Guiseppe loves the kayak!

    Oh MAN that elevation chart is intense! But if anyone can handle it, it’s you! Good luck — and welcome back! 🙂

  8. I have a buddy from Denver who has run Imogene in recent years. He definitely says it’s a challenge and quite a spectacle — in fact, he saw a guy pin his bib through his skin at that race. What a nutjob.

    Anyway, best running life experience of the last month? Running my first trail 50k. Owned it but paid for it in the weeks that followed. Still, quite the testament to living life I suppose.

    Welcome back 🙂

    • Awesome about owning the 50K! Congratulations! I’ll have to go back and read that race recap.

      Just based on the facebook group for the race, it looks like mountain racers are a little bit different than regular road runners. I really hope I don’t see the pin guy because I might throw up.

  9. I am jealous of both the fact that you have kayaks and that you are doing the Imogene Pass run! I have wanted to do that run for awhile. I run (mostly hike) up to Tomboy every time we go to Telluride. I LOVE it there!

    • It looks beautiful up in that part of Colorado! We’ve never actually been. And we’re hoping to try out the kayaks this weekend. Hopefully there will at least be a little bit of water at the lake!

    • ME TOO! Though truthfully, if Aaron wasn’t able to be with me, I wouldn’t have volunteered. I also did a pretty thorough stalking effort on him beforehand too!

  10. hi! I have been in the same boat as you when it comes to blog reading and writing. That race looks pretty fun!! That area is one of my faves in CO. Looks like a hard course too! My favorite running or life moment in the last month in a half??? hmm..well, you know about my marathon, but I did also do Tough Mudder last weekend. That was a blast! Other than that, haven’t missed much because I’ve been busy with school.

    • Good luck with your end of school stuff! Very excited to hopefully see your Marathon AND Tough Mudder recaps! (They cancelled the New Mexico Tough Mudder, so I don’t know if I’ll ever get my chance to run up slippery walls and get electrocuted…).

      • What!? they cancelled it!? why? lol you should try and find another mud run to do, OR better yet, come up for Colorado’s next year! I have 6 more days left of school and then I will finish up my marathon and tough mudder posts!

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