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Showing posts from July, 2016

A long day - Sheep Mountain Endurance Run

And that was just for the runners, who were out for anywhere between 11 and 16 hours! The volunteers and race crew on the other hand? They faced an equally long day, and in some cases days to prepare for the race and get everything organized so that we as runners were able to focus on one foot in front of the other. While this was my first 50 mile running race, it wasn't my first long distance event  - I've done enough marathons and mountain bike races that I know what I want and what I'm looking for in a race. I don't need the frills - the swag bag of trinkets and advertisements, the pre-race dinner I'm not going to eat anyway; the herds of people and the trash they bring; or the cheap medal for finishing or placing. And I have to say - Sheep Mountain delivered in almost every way. It was hard - with some of the descents as hard to run as the climbs. It was scenic - the views from Sheep Mountain showed off the front range and the Mosquito pass. The wildflowers wer…

Friends with the Monsters..

And the voices inside of my head.  As Saturday approaches, the voices - the demons - have begun talking to me. Sometimes a whisper, sometimes a scream. 54 miles. It's the distance from Colorado Springs to Lake Pueblo State Park. Or the top of Wilkerson Pass... A long bloody way to cover on two wheels, let along two feet! Yet that is my goal. Traverse the trails and roads west and east of Fairplay, covering more then the distance of two marathons. Theoretically, it should be nothing. After all, I've run back to back marathons many times - once getting both under 3:10. Fifty two miles, in just shy of 24 hours at a pace much faster then I'm planning. But in this ventures, I had time to recover between races and took the recovery seriously. Here, nothing but continuous forward movement. One step in front of the other, no breaks between efforts and the the clock doesn't stop ticking. 
As Saturday approaches, those voices are getting louder. Ever doubting, ever questioning - …

New Trail Day

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I love my circle of friends. Most of them are always up for an adventure and willing to try anything I suggest at least once. So when I had the great idea of riding up Crank Case Alley, then a short little jaunt on Pipeline and then up 720 and back down on Jones, I knew just who to ask. The route, inspired by my long run last week and the boy's Solstice Death March ride in June, seemed kinda crazy on paper, but had been just fine on two feet. I knew there would be hike-a-bike, both up Crank Case and then again on 720. I didn't know how bad it would be on 720, but it really hadn't seemed that ugly on my run.

So at 7:30, Amber, Emily and I gathered our gear - our race gloves and our hike-a-bike shoes - and headed up into the canyon. We had a lot of climbing to do just to get to Crank Case and it was supposed to be a rather warm day. Thanks to the dry weather and hot temperatures, the decomposed granite that makes the canyon awesome in the winter was quickly building into de…