Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Morning Sunrise

Life is finally starting to settle down as we get settled into our new house and Dan gets settled into his new job. With his new job they start a bit later so we decided to start running in the mornings together. I love it! I totally miss running in the mornings and it beats the heat! We got in some solid runs during the week. Thursday was a super busy day at work so I mistakenly pushed back my run to the afternoon. At about 3:30 I hit up Mt Flacon for a big hill climb. It was a struggle! I forget how quickly that kind of heat can just take it out of you.

Over the weekend we took it easy with the marathon only a week away. I did a couple loops at Flying J and felt really good. Except I completely tore my feet apart. I realized with only a week to the marathon I need knew shoes. My pure grits haven't broken in and anything over 8 miles is destroying my left foot and my cascadia's are a hare too small and my toes are getting super jammed on downhills. Lets hope the Pearl Izumi Trail M2s I just ordered are going to save the day!
James enjoying his fruit smoothie!
James finally got his first two teeth! One right after the other. They're only just barely poking through, but they're definitely there! My little baby is getting to be such a little boy! He's also getting the hang of the straw cup. I think he was just being stubborn waiting for us to put something better in it. As soon as we tried a fruit smoothie (yogurt, blueberries, blackberries, pears and breastmilk) he started drinking a bit. He would suck on the straw before, but get bored before he'd really consumed anything.

Saturday is going to hard and its going to hurt, both physically and mentally. But I'm stronger now than I was a year ago, in both of these departments. The training is done all I can do now is take it easy this week, eat right and come Saturday do what I do best...RUN!

"6,300+ ft of vertical over 3 climbs? Maxing out at 13,200 ft? All miles over 10,000 ft ? Hardest marathon in the US? You know what I call that...Saturday." -Brandon Fuller
Week June 17 - 23

Miles Running: 37.1
Hours Hiking and Running: 8

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Believe in Yourself

Half the battle is believing in yourself, maybe more than half the battle is believing in yourself. As I was watching the trailer for the new movie coming out, Transcend, it made me think even more about how the only way you're truly going to achieve a slightly loft goal is to believe in it. One guy says "I have to believe I'm going to run a 2:10 marathon, even if my training doesn't point that way. There's no way I'll run a 2:10 if I don't at least believe it." So I'm believing in the Leadville finish. I have to.

Its the same way Dan has consistently believed James would heal his heart. For the past year nothing could sway Dan from believing this. Heart failure? No, he's a champion, healing his heart! And despite the fact that odds were not in James' favor, look what's happening!

I am also believing that we can change the current underfunding of Ds cognitive research. Belief that we can increase funding is the first step and we're certainly on a path to increase funding and awareness.

And so I'm believing in myself, that this year I'm going to run across that red carpet on 6th and Harrison. And I'm believing that in 10 days when I race the Leadville marathon I will have a great race. I'm believing in that sub-4:40 time. I'm not sure if my training is saying 4:40 or not, but I'm going for it!

And I'm believing that a low mileage week won't destory my training and that it's all about quality. This week we finally moved, so needless to say getting in miles early on was tough. But I kept the quality high and managed some back to back training over the weekend. Friday I hit up my 19 mile loop at Pine Valley. I felt sluggish on the uphills and overall not like I was having the best day. Funny thing is I ended up PRing by over 4 minutes! Maybe that was due to the black, fury creature, otherwise known as a black bear, I saw trotting away about 2 miles into the run. Seeing a bear always gets me moving a bit faster! I got in another 15 miles Sunday and actually felt surprisingly good. Certainly a good sign for my fitness level.

Week June 10 - 16

Miles Running: 45.6
Hours Hiking and Running: 8
Awesome views at Pine Valley

James got a big boy haircut this week 

Monday, June 10, 2013

A perfect smile!
Lately it seems I keep hearing people talk about their "perfect" baby. Whether it's because their child is in the 50th percentile or a chromosomal disorder was suspected, but ended up not being the case. I know at least most people making these statements don't mean anything by it, but sometimes I just want to shake these people and say "my child was born with Ds and is in the <1 percentile and yep, he's pretty darn
perfect!" It's just something that's been irking me lately. I think James is perfectly James. And really I'm pretty sure none of us are perfect. All these other so called "perfect" kids will end up having some sort of "imperfection".

I've been watching "Unbreakable" while running on the treadmill quite a bit lately. Seriously this film never gets old. Without fail every time I watch Geoff Roes come back from bonking to take the lead at mile 93 I can't help grin from ear to ear and start charging the pace. Kilian Jornet makes the statement "in winning its not always good because its just perfect, but in losing is when you learn". I apparently have done a lot of learning. But it makes me realize that maybe perfection isn't the goal. Maybe we celebrate our imperfections and learn more about ourselves.

I certainly learned about myself last year when I DNFd at Leadville. Far from a perfect race! I learned more about how to train better, better nutrition during a race and mostly how to be stronger mentally. I'm still working on this mental part, but since I haven't run a perfect race yet that means I'm still learning and growing.

Pssh...of course I've got this heart healing thing!
James' heart imperfection has forced us both to learn and grow. Even though James not be aware of it yet, he's learning to be a fighter, to not give up. This week we went back to the cardiologist for another follow-up. And this little champion has been hard at work trying to fix his imperfection. His VSD is closing and they suspect he will not need open heart surgery. Now that would be perfect! He will likely still need to have a stent placed in his pulmonary artery at some point, but I'll take that over open heart any day!

This week my running was far from perfect. I got in some good hill repeats and was really feeling good, but with moving my long run fell way short. With two more hard weeks of training before the Leadville marathon it's time to step it up. I may be living in a far from perfect house for awhile so I can train, but so are the choices in life right?

Week June 3 - 9

Miles Running: 17.5
Hours Running and Hiking: 3.5

Perfectly mischievous

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Carry The Torch

Rob practicing pacing me out of Twin,
he apparently thought I would still be
running uphill!
With the Leadville marathon just around the corner it's hard not to think about Rob on every training run. I am so determined to go out there this year and race hard.
I remember one afternoon last summer waiting in the parking lot at Apex for Rob so we could run together for the first time. I was mindlessly eating white cheddar popcorn in the hopes that it would help me keep up with the climbing legend! I always get nervous running with new people, no matter how well I know them and the stories about Rob's climbing abilities were legendary. I just get nervous I won't be able to keep up and I'll let them down. About 2 seconds into the run I remembered this was Rob, the guy who'd make the kid finishing last feel like he'd just won the race. And so a great running partnership was built!

Rob challenged me on the uphills and I challenged him on the downs. We both liked to chat through out the whole run. We swapped stories about family, climbing, traveling, research, geology, our next great adventures, just whatever came to mind. The Leadville marathon was one of Rob's favorite races and was a constant topic of conversation. He was so excited for this years race. To push himself harder, to see how much faster he could go. These are all things I've learned from Rob, oh and to do it with a smile. I will run the Leadville marathon this year as if this is the only chance I get.

"Sometimes life only gives you one chance"  - Gordy Ainsleigh
Climb on Rob! I'll be raising a Dales to you
at the LTM finish!
This year when I take off across the starting line I know there will be a tear in my eye, but I also know when I cross the finish line I will be smiling ear to ear. I've read Rob's race report every day lately, getting motivated and formulating my game plan. It's exactly what he did this time last year.

Hanging out in Leadville!
The last time I ran with Rob was over Hope Pass at the Leadville 100 last year. I still relive that night, the jokes we told each other, the stories we chatted about and mostly how he made me feel like I was pretty darn good, despite the fact that most of the way down I had my hands on my knees, head between my legs and was worrying about drowning in the river we still had to cross. I still feel guilty about not having made it to the finish. Like somehow I owed it to Rob to finish. I know he will be there this year when I cross the finish, but until that day comes it will continue to gnaw at me.

I thought about Rob and channeled my "Rob legs" on Saturday as I tested my speed at Meyers. I wanted to check my fitness and see where I was at in my training. So I charged uphill in the way Rob taught me. Then I charged downhill with everything I had. I PRd by nearly 2 min! I know Rob's still here watching over all of us, helping James heal his heart and helping me charge my climbs.

Rob I miss you. You will forever be my trail running hero. And I hope to always keep up with the pace you set.

Week May 27 - June 2

Miles Running: 31.5
Hours Running and Hiking: 7