Tuesday, March 18, 2008

3/18/08 Green Mountain via Bear Canyon

~9.5 miles/~3,350 vertical

1:17 up (154bpm ave on the ascent)/42 down

Listened to some great Phil Liggett interviews today on the mp3 player that I downloaded from the Competitors I never thought I would be one of "those guys" who would do such a thing, but after downloading something like 50 podcasts from the Competitors, I am hooked like crack. It is so cool listening to friends/acquaintences such as Andy Hampsten, Tyler Hamilton, Greg Lemond, Matt Reed, Hunter Kemper and others who I have raced with, or met in the past (like Phil Liggett, Dave Scott, Alexi Grewal, Lance etc...), the list goes on and on.

The mp3 player makes 2 hours of running go by in a flash and I am wishing for more time so I can run another 2 hours and listen to more shows. I enjoy the entertainment while I run, but I have noticed a few things. 1st, I get so distracted, I have trouble focusing on maintaining a steady effort and truly focusing on the task at hand and my surroundings. I also tend to not pay close attention to my body's needs, whether I need food, water etc....

Oh yeah, I also had a bit of a taxing run today up Green. Parked at Chautauqua and on a whim decided to go up Green via Bear Canyon. The Mesa trail is a complete mess, mud, slush, packed snow, loose snow.... you name it. Once I turned into Bear Canyon, there were a few sets of old footprints for a short ways, but soon I was breaking trail in shin deep snow. Knowing the trail well was quite helpful, as it would have been easy to stray. I did not see another person from NCAR to the Gregory TH, and the only tracks I saw on the ascent were a rather large set of tracks made by a huge cat, maybe a few hours old. This had me turning down the volume and looking over my shoulder a few times. I was going an OK pace on the ascent, nothing too demanding, but the trail breaking made things slow and a bit tiring. Made it to the top in a very slow 1:17. The descent was even more of a mess. The studs on my shoes were of little help and I took it slow and cautious (42 minutes back to the car). For some reason, my quads were really cramping toward the end, must have been the deep snow.

3/17/08 Sanitas

5 miles/1,800 vertical (including 2 mile warmup)
20:30 up (159bpm for the ascent)

Had a nice warmup over red rocks to Canyon and back. Not sure what I was really warming up for, but I guess I was not too eager to get to the steepness of Sanitas.

The trail was slushy and slippery with the fresh snow and I kind of lollygagged as I was listening to my new mp3 player.

3/15/08 Ski Train to Winter Park

Jim Creek
~8.5 miles/1,500 vertical

Kevin got Allison and I free tickets for the ski train as his company Whiting Petro rented 2 cars. We wanted to ski, but $65 per lift ticket was a bit stiff (not to mention Spring Break/weekend crowds). We just figured we would go and enjoy the train ride, free breakfast/dinner and enjoy a day of snowshoeing. We headed up Jim Creek toward James Peak. We briefly entertained the idea of climbing up to the divide, but we were a bit ill-prepared for above tree-line travel, not to mention we could not afford to miss the train. We just went up the valley, and wallowed in the deep snow for a while until we came to a nice sunny clearing with great views. We lingered for some time, then took our time getting back. The return trip seemed long, as there was hardly any vertical gain on the way up, and now gravity was of little help on the return trip.