Doyle's Emerald Necklace

Doyle's Emerald Necklace

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

2017 Mansfield Double Up

Baldface Circle Trail
This was a much better week for me for the most part as far as feeling better. I still got little sleep Monday and Wednesday nights, unfortunately, but other than that, I didn't really feel fatigued. I did have some major issues with my plantar fasciitis (PF) all week, though, and it ended up hurting my race on Sunday, where I finished a frustrating 3rd female. The PF would just be the start for that one, followed by a fatal mistake that cost me the win by less than a minute when I stopped for over a minute in the last mile, but I'll get to that later. It was really the PF, though, that I suffered through on every downhill and slowed me down. It sucked to feel so strong otherwise but then have to step gingerly and move slower on the downs when those are normally my strength! Totally amazing race, though, and I loved every minute of it. The weather was absolutely perfect. You honestly couldn't get a more amazing day in New England the last weekend of July. More on the race at the end of the blog. So...far...away!! Haha.

Rounded out the week with 51.2 miles and 9,396ft of elevation gain. All of my runs were pretty good (even if painful) except the track workout on Friday...which was my worst track workout ever and probably a dumb idea to do two days before the Mansfield Double Up. Haha. Maybe I subconsciously sabotaged myself so I'd have a bag full of excuses. Don't get me wrong, I lost fair and square, but between the foot and a dumb decision, I'm really disappointed in myself, for my body failing me and my brain in its never-ending fog. Haha. I'm pretty sure I didn't have any drama this week to write about so I'll cut to the chase with the daily crap. So boring! I know! :)

Monday, July 24, 2017- As with every week, I set my alarm for 4:15am, shut it off and then slept until 5:15am. I need to face the fact that it's just never going to happen. I'm in denial every Sunday night, though. Haha. Work was surprisingly very slow...until the night time. Middle of the night call that just sets the week off on the wrong foot with sleep deprivation. And it doesn't help to have a family member who is absolutely clueless. (PSA- if you have any medical history and/or you're on any medications, have it ALL listed on a piece of paper (typed preferably) and in a handy location for emergency services. Your family members cannot be trusted to have any clue. If I hear the words, "I don't know," I'm not a happy camper.)

Got in a 2 mile walk on the treadmill during the day. Way too hot outside to walk in thick pants and a teflon-coated shirt in the sun. Lied down on my bed the rest of the time to avoid sitting and to rest my foot.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017- I've basically returned Tuesdays to a mid-length run on the road for the most part. Obviously not last week, but I did a road run on Friday instead. Like I said, my road speed was lacking so I decided to bump up the road stuff...against my better judgement. I left right from the base this morning. The weather was actually cool and cloudy which was a good thing because I brought dark-colored running clothes and had to opt for my cotton t-shirt instead. It was still too hot and drenched in sweat when I finished, but it was worth it to be visible on Ossipee Lake Rd. My PF was present, but not that bad, so I was able to run at a quick pace. This isn't an overly hilly run, but it's not flat either. Only came out to 332ft of elevation gain (which is flatish for me haha). I ran 11 miles, and the turnaround point was exactly at the Ossipee Lake Rd/Bennett Rd split. I ended up running the second half faster than the first which never happens, so I was pleased. 1:18:59. 7:11/mi avg pace. I did have to work harder than I used to for that pace, and I've run the full 15 mile on Ossipee Lake Rd much faster than that, so it looks good if you take it out of context. Still not bad, and, like I said, I was very happy with it, but it still makes me cringe to compare it to a previous run.

Right after I stopped my run. You can see the shirt I was wearing.

It was much prettier in person.
Got in my upper body and abs workout after I got home. John and I had errands to run and then we took the dogs on a walk on the Conway Rec Path. It was bug hell which is basically what this whole place is ALL SUMMER LONG, so we just walked to the bridge and back. When we got home, I had a few beers on my "new" table on the big deck. That's when I noticed the ice damage to my roof. It isn't really visible except from this vantage point so I didn't see it until now. It's the same damage we had repaired when we moved in so it's obviously a design flaw. The roof sucks since the previous owners did the work themselves and didn't make the pitch steep enough, and where two slopes meet, ice builds up all winter and just bent up all of the metal roofing in this spot. Not sure what to do about it because it almost seems pointless to replace the metal sheets again since it will be destroyed in 2-3 years. The entire roof design is really needs to be redone. I might have to hit up the mortgage company for another home improvement loan for this one since I can't afford to have it done out-of-pocket right now. We'll see.

The ever present audience

It was Tuesday so that meant Whitaker Woods! Haha. Yeah, I know. I had beer before every race. Plenty of time in between, though. My friend/teammate, Jen Graves, from CMS was vacationing with her family and asked if we had any group runs, so I told her about Whitaker Woods so they came to do this week's race. John became friends with her son, Andrew, when they worked the water stop at Wachusett together this year. I was bummed they wouldn't get to hang out since Andrew was doing the race and then we had to leave right after to get to ninja class.

I warmed up with a mile shuffle when we got there. I was really feeling the morning's run since I ran it pretty hard and hoped I could follow through on running slower tonight, but, of course, someone showed up that I had to compete with. I debated just letting her go and kept my pace on the slower side for the first mile as I ran close behind her. I SO didn't want to push any harder, but as soon as we hit the hill in the second mile, she was easy to pass. I kept the pace quick until the downhill when I coasted a bit, and then kept the pace quick again for the last flat section to the finish. Slower than my fastest times this summer, but still way too fast in 21:11 so really less than 20 seconds slower. Not what I wanted to run tonight because I was so beat, but competition always drives me to do stupid things. Haha.

As soon as I walked out of the finish line, I got water and walked to my car. John was at the playground with his friends so I snagged him, and we went to ninja class.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017- Totally beat from lack of sleep and from running hard for both runs on Tuesday kept me from dragging myself out of bed for an early morning run. And OW, my PF was on fire. Ugh. Decided to just bring clothes to run in at work and then shower after. I was working with Michelle again which was awesome since we have fun working together. Went shopping at Walmart haha. Browsed. Just fun girl things that I don't get to do with my male partners. I wish Michelle was still my Wednesday partner.

I did end up running on the trail out back. I intended 5 miles, but my foot just hurt way too much, and I had to stop at 3 miles. No sense in going on in such pain. I showered after. Not a crazy busy day. A few calls and then of course one overnight one. Ugh. No sleep!!

Thursday, July 27, 2017- It was nice having a Thursday when I had nowhere to be so I could take my time. The weather was iffy with storms predicted around noon, but I decided to make attempt #2 on my yearly Baldface Loop. I LOVE this loop because South and North Baldface are two of the best summits in the whites. They are never crowded, and you're above treeline for a long period of time on the ridge. It's just so beautiful. As I was leaving, a sad little face was watching me about to leave her behind again, and I just couldn't stand it, so I decided to bring Phoenix along. She actually ended up being really good without the other dogs around!

There was only one car in the lot when we got there, but of course two vans full of kids pulled in just as I got my shoes on! They were just going to Emerald Pool, but I didn't want to be caught in their group so I hurried Phoenix out of there before they started hiking. I actually felt great today (except my foot). The weather was cool so that helped. I took my usual route up by taking the Slippery Brook Trail up to the Baldface Knob Trail. I usually end up walking a lot of this towards the end where it's steep, but today, I felt good enough to run almost all of it and ran the last mile about a minute faster than last year. The rest was nearly the same. So the uphill felt good and didn't hurt my foot at all. Phoenix kept right up, too. When we got to Baldface Knob, the views were stunning. In and out of the clouds. Just amazing. I was so glad I chose this for today. We stopped a few times to pick blueberries on the last stretch up to South Baldface, then we took a good 5 minute break up there like I always do.

From here the trail goes downhill on the open ridge, and this is where I began to slow since my foot was hurting. It was still enjoyable, though, and all I had to do was slow it down and take it easy. I was relieved to hit the uphill to the top of North Baldface for a break on the foot and actually ran this uphill segment faster than I ever have. We stopped on the summit of North Baldface for a few minutes.

There was a lot of downhill from here on out so it was very easy going. Phoenix was needing water, and I knew of two small brooks coming up so I stopped at the first one, and she climbed right in and sat down. Haha.

Just as we hit the turnoff for the steep downhill on the Baldface Circle Trail, I got a text from Bryan asking if John could stay with me for the night so he could work. I had no plans whatsoever and just happened to be getting home in time for him to leave John so it worked out well. The rest of the run down wasn't too bad. The pain in my foot seemed to subside enough that I could move at a good clip. Phoenix started barking at one point as we ran so I knew we were going to catch up to someone soon and sure enough, we did. She was the only person we had seen up to this point. After we passed her, though, we began to run into the masses of people headed to Emerald Pool. Why people like to be in nature in huge crowds I'll never understand. They all smell of soap and one person was even smoking a cigarette while he walked on the trail. Thanks for that, buddy. How considerate of you! *sarcasm*
Finished up the 10.2 mile loop in 2:36:46 for moving time which is really slow for me, but I just can't bomb down the hills right now. 3,588ft of elevation gain.

The weather ended up being crappy the rest of the day so we didn't do anything. Lack of sleep caught up with me which kind of sucks for John when he's with me on some Thursdays. I'm usually like go, go, go, but if I haven't slept much in 4 or 5 days, I tend to use the second half of Thursday as a lazy bum on the couch. After my upper body and abs workout, that's pretty much what I did. I was beat. I did have a good beer to go with the cooler weather, though.

Friday, July 28, 2017- Not a good decision to hit the track this morning, but I'm really good at making bad decisions. Haha. I slept in late first, and then John went with Bryan for his usual half of Friday. I really wasn't feeling a trail run or a road run, so I think that's mainly why I chose the track for today, but it just ended up not going well. My foot did hurt the whole time, so I'm sure that was a factor, even though I tend to get more on the forefoot when I do a track workout. I wore my Hoka Hupana's to see how they would fair as track shoes. That could also have been a factor in the slower speed since I didn't have spikes, but I was too worried about the spikes really hurting my foot. Besides that, though, I felt very heavy and sluggish. Started with a 2 mile trail run on the Conway Rec Path to warm up. Also slow.

The original plan was 6x800, but I didn't want to do that and decided on 3x800, 3x400, 3x200. Don't ask. I just made it up. To sum it up my splits were I:suck, I:suck:more, I:suck:badly, etc. Haha. Ok, I guess I'll share my real times, even though they're embarrassing.
3x800- 3:01, 3:01, 3:03. Wish I could blame the neighbor backing out of his driveway for the last one.
3x400- 89, 89, 89. Slow, but at least consistent.
3x200- 40, 42, 43. I think the 200s got longer with each one. Only explanation for that. :)

Not to make an excuse, but the black top track is hot as balls in the sun.
Ran the two miles on the Conway Rec Path back to my car even slower. Just crumminess all around. I should never have done this workout to begin with, not only because I sucked, but because my plantar fasciitis was on fire after this.

I had to make time for kayaking so I drove over to Conway Lake right after the run to get in an hour of paddling. It was kind of hot without much wind so I was sweating. Just did an out-and-back on the lake for 3.3 miles. On the way back into the cove which is super narrow, I started to hear screaming near one of the docks so I looked over to see a water spout forming. WTF! There wasn't any wind out on the lake, so I was shocked to see this thing swirling around as it crossed the narrow cove. I have never seen anything like it, but the thing had ripped off the awning of the boat where I heard the screaming and then made its way across before slamming into a boat with a really loud exploding noise. It then hit the land and was gone! Only lasted less than 10 seconds, but it was wild! If I had been in that it would have flipped me over. I think we've all seen the wind get swirling mildly before with leaves or snow, but this was the biggest one I've ever seen and it got huge with water quickly. Had the cove not been so narrow that thing would have picked up and been a full on water spout in no time. I SO wish I had had my phone in my hand to get a video, but it was just the most insane thing to watch.

Kayaking pre-water spout
I went straight home after to find John already there. We went back to Conway Lake at the beach so John could swim for a few hours. It was really warm day so I got in a few times myself. Then it was off to the store to buy more food! Payday! Woohoo! Haha. We spent the rest of the evening at home since I was dragging John to camp again the next day in Vermont.

Saturday, July 29, 2017- Lazy morning. I got on the treadmill for 3 FLAT miles. With the Mansfield Double Up, I didn't want to do any hills this morning. The weather was beautiful outside so it kind of hurt to be on the treadmill. Well, it hurt in two ways, actually. My fucking foot was killing me. UGH. This made me super nervous about the next day's race. 3 miles in 21:58. Not too fast, but not too slow. Other than the foot, it felt good.

I woke John up so he'd have time to do John things before we left. I love the surprise, "What?!" when I told him what time we had to leave. I only told him 6 or 7 times that we were going to Vermont to camp, but then he says he didn't know! Ugh. My voice really is Charlie Brown's teacher 95% of the time. Haha. He still had about 3 hours to do whatever before we left.

Funny hair when he woke up
We had to bring all 3 dogs with us this time. It was going to be cool enough, and I already had Bryan taking care of them the following two weekends, so I decided to just bring them. The only problem is that it's nearly impossible to fit everything in my hamster car. 3 dogs, John and all of our camping stuff. Good thing Phoenix is small. The other two dogs are up close and personal in the way back, and our stuff is piled high next to John and in the passenger seat. As organized as I try to make it, it's still not easy to get to everything easily. I used to think Suburbans were stupid cars. Now, I want one. Haha. Oh how I wish I still had my Toyota Previa. AWD minivan. Coolest minivan evah! So I just searched for a photo of it, and since I'm on the work computer all I could look through was my old Photobucket account. This photo from 2005 was the ONLY one of the van I could find. Haha. Ignore the pregnant cow blocking the view. ;)

This is proof that I did once have boobs and a HUGE ass. Haha
So, anyway, we left around 1ish headed for Stowe, stopping briefly on the Kanc at FS Rd 511 to walk a mile with the dogs before continuing on. It's not a bad drive, and we got to take roads I'd never been on before so that helped make it better. As we got near Stowe, we passed a few breweries. Lost Nation, Rock Art and one other I can't remember. I wanted to stop so badly, but I couldn't afford to do more than my plan of hitting The Alchemist, where you can have as many free 2oz samples you could want. I got two 4-packs of beer. I wanted more, but that was all the budget would allow, then John and I hung out while I had few samples.

John's love for breweries is reflected in his face. Haha.

We drove out of rich person's mecca. I mean Stowe. I had booked us a campsite at Smuggler's Notch Campground so we stopped there first to check in and pitch our tents before heading over to the ski lodge to pick up my race packet. Although they took cards to pay for firewood, I was so psyched that I paid cash instead. $6 for firewood got me $14 back. Four of those dollars came in the form of two $2 bills!! John had never seen one before so he was psyched when I gave him one. (Of course, now 3 weeks later, he just wants to spend it on Roblox bucks haha. I won't let him.). These were fresh, crisp $2 bills that the campground gives back as change to guests because of Thomas Jefferson's Embargo Act of 1807. Vermonters used Smuggler's Notch to continue illegal trade with Canada.

I had to drive around twice to find our campsite since the sign was completely hidden until after you passed it. When I got back around, I realized we had to share parking and a trail with two other campsites. The two other campsites had three cars total all spaced apart and at an angle so that I could barely fit my car in without blocking the next campsite over; I was literally on the line of where the other campsite's parking was. I felt like an asshole, but I had to ask the other people camping if they could move their cars so that we could all fit. But, seriously, they should never have parked like that in the first place. There was room for 6 cars if they had parked right. They obliged, but I don't think the one guy cared for me much. He was one of those campers who comes there every year to the same site and just assumed we weren't coming since we weren't there Friday night (it was a 2-night minimum that I had to pay for).

There was a nice brook behind the campsite so I got the dogs out and took them in the woods to use the bathroom and get some water. I set up my tent and was about to set up John's when he said he would prefer to just sleep in the car. At first I said no, but when I thought about it, it made sense. We had to leave there by 5:45am so I wouldn't have to wake him up, drag him to the car, then take down the tent. It was actually a great idea.

We went over to the ski area and I got my first up close look at Mt Mansfield. Wow! I knew right away this was going to be a tough race. I ran into Hilary McCloy whose a friend of mine from home. She had signed up, too, and was the only person I knew there. I talked to her and a guy who did the race the previous year for awhile and then went inside to get my bib. Then it was back to the campsite. I was starving!

I made us spaghetti and opened up one of my Beelzebubs from The Alchemist. I didn't have to keep it too stealth since we were way back in the woods. While I cooked John took the dogs back to the brook for awhile which was really helpful. I also made a fire, but this one would not get going. When it finally did, the wood would not burn; it was too new and not dried out enough. Took forever to have a nice fire, but it finally happened. John and I had good conversation during dinner which was nice since we don't actually sit down for dinner otherwise. The cell signal was terrible, so that made him stay off of his phone and talk to me. Haha.

He has always loved to climb trees.

The dogs were very upset to be on leashes. The atrocity!
After dinner, we made s'mores, then John went to the car to go to bed. I packed up everything and put it in the car then went to my tent for bed. Spot and Phoenix slept in the car with John, and I kept Chill tied up at the campsite with me.

Sunday, July 30, 2017- Mansfield Double Up-

Although I had taped my foot and worn my Strassburg Sock to bed, my PF was still bad when I woke up. I didn't know how I was going to do this. The ups would be fine, but the downs. Ugh. I just had to hope for the best.

I made coffee for me and hot chocolate for John, then ate a bagel with cream cheese and got the dogs out to use the bathroom then I took down my tent then loaded up the car. We drove 5 minutes up the road to the start of the race. The weather was unbelievable. Clear, blue skies, cool and low humidity. You honestly couldn't ask for better weather the last weekend of July. The morning was gorgeous. I parked in a marked space where I thought there would be decent shade for Chill to sit in outside of the car. I'm not sure what planet everyone else was from, but every car but mine ended up parked at an angle in this row, as in, not in the marked parking spaces. Hmm. Angled parking at the campground the night before. Now this. Is this a Vermont thing?? Haha. Of course I'm the one who looked like the oddball if you looked over from distance, but I didn't care since I was the only one actually doing it right. Haha. I meant to get a photo of this and forgot.

This race started in waves of 10 people each, starting 10 minutes apart, and I was in the 2nd wave with a 6:40am start. I only did a short warm up then went over to the line when they called wave 2. I was pretty bummed to be the only woman in the wave. Hilary was in the one behind me with one other woman and the rest were mixed in other waves. I don't typically race men, so I had a really hard time actually "racing". I never felt I was ever in race mode really since I was never around any women the whole way. I did end up around one guy in my wave basically the entire race, though, so I at least I had someone nearby. Most of the wave was way too fast for us right from the start, and I was in the last of the 10 in wave 2 within minutes. I was able to hang with that guy I would do the whole race with somewhat, at least.

The race started off with a long climb up Mansfield. The first 1.5 miles was steep, rugged single track. I power hiked a lot of this section. It opened up onto a grassy ski slope that was nearly the grade of Upper Walking Boss. I laughed as we hit this. This was my thing, though, so I was able to pass the guy in front of me and somewhat catch up to the next guys before we hit a parking area. Across the parking area, the course entered more single track that was rolling and technical before coming out to a view that nearly took my breath away. I can't even describe how beautiful it was, but the first thing I thought of was how it was the perfect spot for a photographer to take shots of runners from behind (there was no photographer, but it would have really made for some amazing shots haha). The sun was at the back and we ran across the wide open ledges of Mansfield with Burlington, Lake Champlain and the Adirondacks sprawled out in front of us. I definitely took a moment to slow down here and take it in. I had to. It was just too amazing. Fortunately, this descent down the backside of Mansfield was constant views of this. The descent was mostly down steep rock slabs similar to the White Mountain granite, but not quite; it was slightly smoother, but I was able to move down this at a decent speed. My foot had been ok for the ascent, but I did have to start stepping more gently on some of this section. Nothing crazy because it wasn't a lot of hard pounding. The guy I had passed on the way up (and this is the same guy I would be with the whole way) still came flying past me on the slabs, but once we dropped into the woods, the rock slabs were slippery and wet in a lot of places. I passed him back since I have no problem with this terrain, and he said he wasn't very confident on this stuff.

The descent was long, but we finally came out to a double track road called Maple Ridge that basically cut right to go across the mountainside. I actually was relieved to find us going back up to give my foot a slight break, but it only went up for maybe 1/10 of a mile before it began a very long, approximately 1300ft descent down for about a mile. My race buddy would pass me quickly and end up ahead of me by a couple of minutes by the end of it. I was pretty bummed out because this is my thing! Where I can FLY on the downhill! But my fucking foot!!! This is what hurt it the most. I had to slow way up for this section. I just couldn't run fast on it at all. I was so frustrated but decided to use this time to eat a gel and drink some water since it was easy on the breathing. I knew this was messing up my race and just hoped it would end quickly and start climbing again.

I passed the aid station without stopping, crossed a bridge and finally started the climb up Sunset Ridge for our second ascent of Mansfield. This was nearly all power hiking for me after the first quarter mile probably. I ran off and on, but it was so steep that power hiking was faster. I passed a guy from wave 1 who was really hurting, but didn't see my buddy until we got out onto the amazing open ridge that took us up. This was called Sunset Ridge, and I could see why with open view west toward Lake Champlain. I didn't catch up to him until we took a right and made our way up to the top of the ridge for a brief stint on the Long Trail. (One thing I learned for next year was to bring a hat and sunglasses for the climb up Sunset. The sun was in my face blinding me the whole way.) The Long Trail segment quickly ended as we descended onto some of the most technical trail I've ever been on. And they weren't kidding when they said treacherous because there were literally a few places where there was the trail and a drop off on the other side. This was the Canyon Trail that would often remind of Mahoosic Notch as we wound our around and through boulder caves. It was absolutely nuts, but I absolutely loved it. The whole time I was thinking just how awesome this was. It was slow going for sure and never seemed to end, but wow, amazing. Seriously. (I'll add in some pics at the end of this). I ended up passing my buddy and catching up to another guy along the way. I was really good at moving through this section, even if it was slow. Some dude from wave 4 ended up flying past us. THAT was impressive. He gave me a fist bump on his way by which was cool.

We finally hit the other side of the ridge near the summit and popped out on a service road for a very short 2/10 or so. This was extremely runnable...except it wasn't! My legs were trashed. I passed the guy in front of me who was walking, but I was barely moving much faster. We turned back onto the single track and connected back to the trail we had started on for the rolling section in the woods. The guy I had just passed passed me right back, and my race buddy was close behind. My foot was killing me again, but I was able to move through this section ok knowing that we only had about 2 miles to go to the finish. Once off the single track, we crossed the same parking lot and descended on the same ski slope we had run up (the one I said was like Upper Walking Boss). I passed the guy in front of me here because I wanted to just bound down this section. Screw my foot pain. I was almost done. At the bottom of the slope where we had exited the single track in the beginning, we were steered onto a different section for the descent to the finish. This section as wet and overgrown, but the cold water felt good and the squishiness eased the foot pain. I flew so fast down this that my buddy and the other guy weren't even in sight. As I came out to another slope I looked at my watch which read 2:55:something and thought there was a chance I could break 3 hours! There was a race arrow pointing to the right across this slope, so I turned right and came right out to a service road. And this is where I made a fatal mistake. It STILL bugs me so much. My gut told me the course went down this road, but this was the ONLY intersection without a course marker.  WHY???? I KNEW it had to go down, but then I thought what if it goes up here and then down another slope?? So I stopped. I took off my pack. I pulled out my map and then waited for those guys to show up just to be sure. We realized I had been heading the right way all along. I was pissed. My watch now read 2:57:something. FUCK. And I actually thought that if this stop cost me the win, I'll be so pissed. But I ran as hard as I could even though it hurt like a mofo. One of the guys passed me, and my buddy stayed right behind. 3 hours came and went. My map flew out of my pack and on the ground behind me. I had to stop and go back for it then continue on. I came through the finish in 3:02:40. 10.6 miles on my watch so probably closer to 11 miles in reality. 4891ft of elevation gain. Now I just had to wait and then be crushed to first lose to Hilary by 8 seconds and then to the eventual first woman by 52 seconds. I was so bummed out. If I had run slow, then whatever, but my stop is what cost me that win. A stop I knew in my gut I didn't have to make. It hurt. Haha. I'll admit that was a tough loss for sure. But I got over it. You have to. You can't beat yourself up over the what-ifs. The fact that we top 3 women finished within less than a minute of each other without actually ever physically racing is pretty crazy. I would end up talking to Hilary about that after the race, and we both agreed that it would have been pretty cool for us to have actually raced each other. All 3 of us probably would have run it faster, and the competition would have made it feel more like a race. I did end up emailing the race director with the suggestion of having a women's only wave like 7 Sisters. He wasn't really into it, but maybe we'll at least have more women in the same wave next year.
Full Results

Now, for the photos! These are just a sample of the awesome photos that Greg Maino took on the course. None of me, but you'll see some of the other racers. It's pretty amazing, and they don't even cover the whole thing.

He also made a cool video...

After I finished I found John in the lodge just as we had planned. He was good so I went to my car and took the dogs out briefly then changed clothes. I went back up to the lodge where I hung out with Hilary and her parents while the racers continued to finish. Super awesome pizza was delivered and I had a Focal Banger while sitting out in the sun.

I couldn't drink the Focal Banger from the can. It wasn't allowed. Haha.
As soon as John and I had our fill of pizza, we left. Awards weren't for another hour, and I promised John we wouldn't stay. He had already been a trooper without a single complaint for a race that took me longer than a marathon. There was no way I could make him stay. Plus, his friend was coming over for a sleepover when we got home.

The day heated up fast, but for some reason I don't understand, we were only a few miles down the road when my a/c blower decided to work!!! The dogs stopped panting, and we stopped sweating to death. Unfortunately, it goes back out again once I turn the car off so I waited until my tank was almost on empty before stopping for gas. We made it to Littleton, so that wasn't bad. While getting gas, I cashed in two lottery tickets I accidentally bought when I thought I could get change from one of those scratch ticket machines and ended up having to spend $20 on lottery tickets! Haha. Guess I should have read the sign that was literally above where you insert the cash that said, "This machine does not make change." Hahaha. I won $6 back. What the hell. It bought me a coffee and John a blizzard at Dairy Queen so at least it was something.

Once we got home, I walked the dogs up Heavenly Hill, and John's friend came over. They had fun, and I let them stay up really late. Tough loss, but an awesome day nonetheless. I already can't wait to do this race again next year.

An old favorite...


  1. dude, you're an animal! PF sucks so much, I don't know how you do it. Nice work

    1. Thanks, John! It definitely has taken the fun out of running most days.

  2. PF does suck. The sock and lots of stretching pretty much nixed mine, took a while but I slept in a boot for about 4 months until I found about that sock and used that for a few more. The boot velcro and padding was so full of dog fur it was gross and didn't hold tight enough. ANd I LOVE $2 bills, I used to get them in birthday cards from my grandparents, when I get them I stash them away so I can send one to my nephew every couple months.

    Sorry about the race, that does suck... As always an impressive week of accomplishments!

  3. It's been so weird. Coming and going. Pins and needles to nothing. Ugh. Thanks, Beth!