Monday, December 1, 2014

November 2014 Mileage: In which I finally put the stress fracture/tendon injury behind me, again. Maybe. Also, snow.

November 2014.

Sometimes you can’t tell the sky from the reservoir.

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The blue skies got a little bit colder this month.

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It snowed.

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Then it got a lot colder.

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I didn’t even mind the cold and the snow because for the first time in a long time, my possible stress fracture/tendon injury/ankle/calf did not hurt.

 Rob made my old Altras into Screw Shoes so I wouldn’t slip on the ice.

IMG 4390Why did I wait 35 years to do this?

Right after that first snowfall, Rob and I went on an impromptu lunch-break trail run at Horsetooth Mountain.  

IMG 4352Snowy mountains on the way to the trail.

I have never liked snow, which is why I was surprised that I thought this was so beautiful.

Meli on South Ridge Blue dot = me.

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In the past 6 months I’ve run dozens and dozens (maybe hundreds?) of miles on the surrounding valley trails at Lory State Park and Horsetooth Mountain Open Space, but I had never actually run up Horsetooth itself.

It was so beautiful I decided I wanted to do this run every day.

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I didn’t go all the way to the top, though. At this point in my life, I am fine not having rock climbing be a part of my trail runs.  The terrain and footing are difficult enough for me as-is.

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While I love, love, love, love, love running uphill, flying down that mountain (with my screw shoes) and reaching (for me) break-necking pace, was hell of fun.

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I went back to Horsetooth myself as soon as I had a chance, on a day that was even more spectacularly beautiful than when I’d been there with Rob.


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I saw this guy, which was a surprise.

IMG 4406Luckily he was friendly.  And not a mountain lion or bear.

People here say that we do get a lot of snow in the winter (60 inches is the average), but it’s not that bad because it’s a powdery snow, and it doesn’t linger.

Two weeks after our first snowfall, there was still ice on the ground though.  I’d call that lingering.

Thank goodness for the screw shoes.

Rob took the whole week of Thanksgiving off from work.  On Monday, while Will was in school, Rob and I drove out to Greyrock Mountain in Poudre Canyon to “run.” The trail was so icy that even with the screw shoes, it was impossible to run in a lot of places. And also: rocks.  They don’t call these mountains “rocky” for nothing.  The most I was capable of was kind of a glorified hike.

Meli at Grayrock

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IMG 4434 Trail running with @ragfield is not for the faint of heart.

Near the top of Greyrock, it got even more dicey, and we even lost the trail a couple times.  The clock was ticking.  We had to make it back to town in time to pick up Will from school.  We didn’t have cell reception, so I couldn’t even call one of my emergency contacts to see if they could take care of him for a while.

Frozen Poudre

We made it, with 2 minutes to spare.

Soon, it was time for Thanksgiving.

I knew that a busy day of cooking was ahead of me, so I got up early and went back to Horsetooth.  I was not disappointed.

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I finished out the month with a slightly longer run (my first double-digit run since my back to back ultras in October) at Horsetooth again, this time connecting some of the other trails I had never been on.  The sunrise was really pretty that day.

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132.61 miles run in November. 1328.47 year to date.  So tantalizingly close to the arbitrary figure of 1500, which when I started keeping track of miles (before I had an injury), seemed like it should be no problem for me to reach.

That would mean running 171.5 miles in December.

Not completely out of the realm of possibility.  I ran 200 miles in July, after all.  But when I look back at this year, I find that going 150 or above is what triggers my tibia to start hurting again.  

But that 1500 milestone is hanging in front of me.  It would mean 5 miles every day in December, or 38 miles (plus a little change) every week.  It might mean that I carry this tibia injury into 2015.  

I probably need someone to talk me out of it.  1450 would be okay.  There’s always next year, right?  

Thanks for reading.

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Anonymous said...

Would you listen to,anything I said?? Guess you can continue to push your luck! With running and hoping for NO injury!! or. Be,thankful for the MILLION , Miles you have run so far!! Instead of RUNNING. I would fall over the edge Just staring at the absolutely awesome scenery!! WOW! O MY GOODNESS! Put,those pictures to good use! make them make you some $$$$". they are incredible!!! Thanks for sharing! NOW go have. A cup of joe and chill!! Luv and hugs mama

Anna Schafer said...

While I love, love, love, love, love running uphill, flying down that mountain (with my screw shoes) and reaching (for me) break-necking pace, was hell of

Anonymous said...