Sunday, May 12, 2013

Training in Leadville Part 1

I had a smooth travel day yesterday, and made it to Denver in time to have lunch with my Uncle and Aunt. It was great to see them. It's been a couple of years since we've been able to hang out, and it's always great to see my Godfather. We talked some baseball and football (he's a Broncos fan, so I had to bring up the Ravens ha ha ha). After lunch, I made the trek from Denver to Leadville. I was pretty tired when I rolled into the Super 8, so I made taking a quick nap a pretty high priority. Then, I took a little walk downtown to see the sights and start getting used to being at 10, 200 feet.

All in all, I felt pretty good. I had a little headache when I got to town, but that could easily be explained by not sleeping well Thursday night and getting up at the crack of dawn to get to the airport. Either way, a little Vitamin I, a lot of water, and a nap took care of it.

I woke up this morning and hit the continental breakfast (The Super 8 needs to tighten up its breakfast game), and took a walk downtown in search of some maps to plan my run for the day. Cookies with Altitude in Leadville has their coffee and donut game in solid order. I was stoked to get some good coffee and chomp a couple of tasty donuts to get the day rolling. After that, I did a little more sightseeing before lacing up the Hokas.

The views from town are incredible. Mt. Elbert, Mt. Hope, and Mt. Massive dominate the skyline. Looking up at Mt. Hope is a little daunting. I'll have to climb that sucka twice. Shiver! It'll be a nice little sufferfest. But the key will be not to think about that. The only step that matters is the next one- not the one you have to take in 10 hours or the one you took 4 hours ago. Little chunks. Like we used to say in Boot Camp: "Just take it Chow to Chow and Sunday to Sunday." Breaking things in to little parts and being in the moment will get you through.

For today's jaunt, I decided to run from town and check out the first leg of the course. I cruised down 6th Street, hit McWethy, and then wandered my way to the Boulevard. I wasn't sure I was on the right track, so I stopped and asked some nice folks who were putting up some firewood for next winter. Side note: winter isn't over here. They call it Spring, but it's a lot like "Spring" in Boone. Still cold! Hell, it snowed on me twice yesterday, and I woke up to flurries this morning).  People are are really friendly, and they don't look at you like a freak when you're out training for a hundy. People here get it, which is very cool. Anyway, I cruised down the Boulevard heading out of town and enjoyed some slightly downhill miles that I knew wouldn't feel that nice on the way back to town. My legs felt great, and I'm pretty happy with how my lungs were holding up. I keep cruising towards Sugar Loafin' Campground. Once, I got there, I wasn't sure of where the powerline was, so I just wobbled around for a mile or so to be sure that I'd hit 10 miles before I got back to town. I'm hoping to get a better race map from the folks at the Leadville 100 shop in the am. My legs felt great on the return to town. The long uphill grade wasn't steep, but I felt it. I did feel stronger once I was headed back to town though. I was able to maintain pretty close to my normal average pace at a normal effort level, so I'm really pleased with that. Big confidence booster for race day. All in all, it was a good warm up day. If I feel good in the am, I'll push it a little harder and run a longer stretch. I'd like to find the route to the May Queen aid station and be sure I get to run all of that. It'd be great to do an out and back on the first leg tomorrow. That would make for 26ish, which would be a great day. We'll see how I feel- and how the trail looks. It may be snowy. We shall see.

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