It has been an eventful few weeks. I've got to get back in the rhythm of writing here; since the fire, the words don't flow like they used to. It put things in perspective. Nature doesn't care about human life. (Actually, anyone who has hiked the upper reaches of Barr Trail knows that nature doesn't care about humans. But that's for later in the post.) This past Sunday, I drove past the burn scar on U.S. 24 for the first time since the fire, and it was pretty stunning. It's going to take a long time to rebuild, but I know we can do it.
We made it home from our 1,800-mile road trip in time for the Summer Roundup, which was good. Even completely exhausted and with tight legs from sitting in a car for so many hours, I was able to take about 5 minutes off last year's time. Makes me wonder what I could have done at full capacity, since I'm a much stronger hill runner this year, but oh well. My only goal was to finish it, given my ridiculous schedule.
The bad thing about the places we visited in the week prior to the race was they were all at lower altitudes. The good thing about them is most of them were humid. When race morning dawned overcast and a little soupy, I didn't mind as much as normal.
It was great to see everyone from the PikesPeakSports.us Triple Crown Runners and the Attack Pack after being away and to reconnect with the running community. I am glad the event went on, despite everything. Most of my people did quite well.
The week after the race, I settled back into my routine: running with the Pack, eating vegetables and food that didn't come out of windows, cutting back on the coffee, going to yoga. A few members of the Pack and I planned to hike up to Barr Camp on Friday, July 13, camp for the night, then run to the summit early Saturday before coming all the way down. I was looking forward to it, because I've never attempted the whole mountain at once, up and down.
Thursday morning, I was getting ready to blend up one of my beloved post-run (and pre-run, and pretty much any time) Vega, banana, and almond milk smoothies with a beloved kitchen tool when tragedy struck.
Four to six stitches later (I lost count), I was out for the camping trip. However, the doctor only instructed me to take 48 hours off exercise. I made it about 46 before going on a 12-mile run in my neighborhood with a friend. Sunday, of course, needed to be a peak day. I drove to the top with another friend and her coworker for an improvisation on the 3-2-1 that we made up when we got to A-Frame: down 3, up 2, down 1, up 2 for a total of 8 miles. I was dragging pretty badly on the uphills, partially because of the longish run the day before. The workout was a good one, though, and we avoided the mental hangup inherent in the 3-2-1: once you get to the top, where your car and the coffee and the donuts are, you have to go back down two more times before you can use any of these things.
I've never completed the 3-2-1, mostly for that reason. I hope to in a couple of weeks, though.
This weekend I hope to hike up to A-Frame and run down on Saturday, then hike a 14er with friends on Sunday. I get my stitches out on Monday, which I am beyond excited about. (Even simple tasks are made difficult by the loss of the use of a finger -- even an insignificant finger.)
Now it's really time to buckle down and make these weekends count! I'm feeling good, overall. I'm going to increase my mileage over the next few weeks and make the Incline a weekly routine.
Oh, and I'm going to stop trying to cut off body parts with a blender. That's not in the training plan.