Sunday, May 19, 2013

Things That No One Will Know About and No One Will Care About

It’s Friday.  You work 12.5 hours.  You bicycle commute 9 miles.  At about 9:30pm you begin to pack everything you’ll need in order to move fast through the mountains all night on no sleep.  A couple of hydration packs, gels, baby food, sweets, caffeine, a couple of headlamps and you are off!
Start 10:30pm.  JMP runs the entire Mesa Trail w/ you.  She’s never ran trails in the dark so it’s a new experience for her.  You are both slowed down a lot but the slow pace is nice.  No pressure.  You see lots of eyeballs out there, reflecting off both of your high beams.  Mostly deer.  After 13 miles, JMP is done for the night.  It’s nearly 2am.  When she takes off, you head back out to the hills.  You grind up Green Mountain for a 2am summit.  You actually see one other runner out there.  He is geared up in Hokas and compression w/ a fancy headlight.
I’m not the only crazy one out here in the middle of the night? / you say.
Ahaha / is all he says, seriously.  He’s focused on his run and feeling good. 
Know what comes after Green?  Bear.  You take the Green / Bear trail and start to feel pretty good.  You gain some energy and run.  And climb.  And run.  Your mind is clear and uninhibited.  You are thinking about everything and nothing.  It’s going on 3am and you are climbing another mountain.  Why?  B/c it makes you feel alive.  More alive than ever.  More alive than all the sleeping people in the city down below.  You are willing to stay up all night and do dangerous things by yourself.  Things that no one will know about and no one will care about. 
When you make Bear Peak summit, it’s 4:30am.  Roxy is tired.  It’s really tricky for her to make it up to the tippy top but she’s getting better.  Once she does, she lays down, curls up and goes right to sleep.  You sit down and enjoy the view of Boulder.  You’ve never been up here at night.  You eat.  You thank whoever is watching out for you.  And after about 20 minutes, you and Rox head down, down, down into the morning.  You wonder how long it’ll take b/f you see the early bird runners on their way up.  It takes a while but b/f long, one guy is still sleepy eyed and on his way up.  Then a woman.  You wonder if they can smell it on you.  The all night mountain adventure, coming to a close. 
You get back to the truck at 6am.  The sun is up and the day is happy.  You are wired.  There’s no way you’ll be able to sleep.  You drive home and shower and eat and make some fresh beet and carrot juice and lay down on the couch.  You put the compression on and your feet up.  And then you find yourself w/ a big cheesy grin, smiling at the ceiling…
Work: 12.5 hrs.
Bike: 9 miles.
Lunch break:  100 push ups, 100 jumping squats, 100 crunches.
After work:  32 miles, 5,400 feet of elevation gain and descent, 7.5 hours, 2 summits.

Your day off.  You spend hours cleaning and setting up the new digs.  Comcast guys come over.  Trips to laundry, grocery, hardware etc.  It feels good to have a home again.  You can breathe this air comfortably and relax.  And smile.  Even Roxy smiles at more now…

You slept on the floor of your new apartment.  The air here is much nicer, less toxic.  Goodbye B #2.
You run from the new apt.  You find some flat trails that you know Roxy and you will be frequenting regularly. 
Later that night you finish moving everything over.  You are exhausted from a LONG day at work and three days of moving.  Your diet has been bad.  You haven’t logged many miles.  At 2am, you find yourself in your new apartment w/ your things scattered everywhere.  You finally have it all here.  You are falling asleep w/ a glass of wine in your hand.  Exhausted.  Old chapter closes, new chapter begins.

You are out in Evergreen for work today.  You stop at Lair O the Bear and run a quick 5 miles w/ approx. 800 ft.  You do your push ups and squats barefoot in the dirt.  Perfect break in the middle of a LONG day. 
Move more stuff. 

You get the keys to your new place a couple of days early.  Exercise and mileage for the week will be primarily carrying heavy boxes down 3 floors, driving them 20 minutes and carrying them up a different 3 flights of stairs. 

You and JMP drive up to Wild Basin in Rocky Mountain National Park.  The trail starts at about 8,000 feet and there is still snow up there.  You are running in short shorts and running shoes, so you both decide to just run leisurely up until there’s too much snow.  W/ the up and down, you come out to about 8 miles and some nice vert. 
You and Roxy head out to NCAR w/ hopes for vertical miles.  Shouldn’t be a problem.  You are feeling tired and almost having some trepidation about the run.  But as soon as you get going, things begin to feel fantastic!  You climb Bear Peak and descend the other side and head over for Green Mountain for a double!  You run down and have to run the Mesa trail for a few miles to make it back to your truck.  You make it back to your truck just b/f dark.  You are dehydrated, starvin marvin and happier than ever.  Today just became a 20 mile day w/ 5,000 feet! 

Bike an uninspiring and uneventful 37 miles back and forth from work.  You have some friends racing today and you love hearing about how well they did.  It makes you jealous.  Your running season is not starting the way you would have liked it to.
You drive out to Chatauqua hoping to get some miles in but just as you are headed out there, it begins to rain.  Rain hard.  Not such a big deal but d/t your transitory living situation, you have no place to bath Roxy if she gets muddy.  You can see which way the storm came from and which way it’s going and so you imagine Sanitas is fairly dry.  You drive over there and do a loop.  3.2 miles, 1,240 feet up for the first 1.5 miles.  Short but beautiful!

Today is a long work day so you are only able to run a quick 4.5 in the dark after work. 

8 miles in the rain.
Gym.  Ride the bike a little for a warm up.  Then weights, core, stretch. 
Later on, you meet John at White Ranch.  Some beautiful trails out there.  He only has about an hour, so you push it up at a pretty good pace.  Then bomb down.  6.5 miles w/ 1,600 feet of gain.

You get up at about 6am and run up to the top of Mount Sanitas and back from your apartment.  Legs are feeling pretty sluggish.  Once you make it to the big climb, it’s mostly a hike.  You do it just in time too b/c it rains most of the rest of the day. 
1 hr 40 min
9.4 miles
1,355 feet

Run Lair O’ The Bear.  Only four miles of the trail.  Just a break from work.
D and J and you all had limited time so you went right for the vertical.  Green Mountain.
When you did your dishes this morning at 3:30 am b/f work, you must have forgotten to wash two of your spoons b/c they still dirty and on your bed when you got home today.  Courtesy of the grown child you currently live w/.  It’s all you can do…

Hike Mount Sanitas.  1,250 feet.
Run Mount Sanitas 2X.  2,500 feet.  First time was at dusk, second time you needed a head torch.  You saw the reflections of hundreds of eyes on your way down.  They were deer, presumably.  You run fast just in case…