Sunday, June 8, 2008

S. Boulder and Bear

11.5 miles
4,000 vertical feet

My legs felt pretty zippy this morning and it was cool out, so I immidiately thought of running S. Boulder and trying to PR.

Got to the TH around 10:15am and the lot was full, so we parked on the other side of the road and I got in a bit of a casual warmup going up the Homestead Trail with Allison and Sierra. My legs felt AWESOME and I knew that I could potentially have a great day. The only problem was that my "cool" day was quickly turning hot and I was feeling a bit dehydrated already.

I grabbed the key from Allison and ran back down Homestead to the car and guzzled almost a liter of water. Ran back down to the TH and my gut was now feeling bloated and sloshy and I was beginning to question my reasoning a bit.

I started my watch on the cement bridge and began running with quick strides, but keeping it fairly conservative. My plan was to keep the tempo fast, but quite sustainable on the section to the mouth of Shadow and save a bit for the steeper sections. I was moving fairly well, but felt very much within myself and made the first junction at 12:20, then the mouth of Shadow at 18:50 (about 30 seconds off PR pace as I usually look at my watch at the creek vs. the next junction as I have been using as of late). Not bad, this is what I was planning, now I'll rip it up the canyon and make up that time and then some..... Not quite.

Not that it was that hot, but the sun was strong and the heat was starting to wear on me a bit. The crowds of people and dogs were also a touch bothersome. I did a good job making my presence known, most people cleared the way, but some were slow to react and caused some interruption in pace.

I ran most of Shadow, but powerhiked the steepest stretchs, often times going on all 4's. I was hoping to get to the saddle in 40 flat, but the watch does funny things in times like these. I realized I would be nowhere close, but still kept up the effort and made it there in 41:26. I felt like I moved fast on the upper stretch to the summit, but my time indicated otherwise and I was disappointed to stop my watch at 46:55. Guess I was not feeling as great as I had hoped...???

I did an immidiate u-turn and headed down to meet Allison and Sierra about a minute below the saddle and I then had trouble staying on Allison's heels back up to the summit as she was hauling and I had not fully pulled it together yet. We then boogied over to Bear, then back down to the car.

Overall I felt pretty good. Had I gone a few hours earlier when it was cooler and there were no people, I may have come a bit closer to my goal, but I really have no excuses. I went hard tempo, but never really redlined it along the way, except for MAYBE the final 2 minutes, but even that effort was stifled a bit by terrain. Better luck next time. Gotta go when it is a little cooler and be willing to dig a little deeper.


  1. Sounds like it was a good push, particularly since you were worked on the re-summit effort.

    22:40 for a Shadow ascent in those conditions ... pretty damn good. Keep in mind there are often a spread of times on a route before busting to the next level.

  2. Thanks George. On the plus side, I don't feel it one bit today, so I guess I did not go that hard.