Mon - AM: 9 miles (2,100') easy. Falls - Spring Creek - Stout - Loggers - Carey Springs - Towers - Herrington - Spring Creek - Soderberg - home long. Felt some good flow on a windy day.
PM: 5 miles (1,000') easy. Falls long. Took a pretty nasty spill half way around in the fading light. Caught a rock on a short stretch of techy downhill, tried to save it but ended up taking a rock squarely to my right lower back with secondary abrasions to my elbow and lower leg. Had to stop and gather there for a bit.
Tues - Noon: 5 miles (1,000') easy. Falls long. My lower back was thankfully not to sore from yesterday's digger. Run felt good.
PM: 8 miles track with Eric, Brian S and Slush. 5 x 1 mile with quarter mile jog between reps. Mile w-u, then 5:35, 5:25, 5:26, 5:28, 5:26, mile c-d. Ran all of these with Eric, working harder than I would have liked, but pleased to at least run consistently under 5:30.
Weds - noon: 8.5 miles (2,100') easy. Falls - Spring Creek - Stout - Herrington - Spring Creek - Wathen - Rock Trail - Soderberg - home long. Beautiful and calm fall weather. The running felt effortless today, especially the climbs, with nary a niggle to be felt. Wish they could all be like this.
Thurs - AM: 10 miles hill tempo (1,400'). The HTH5MO&B - or Horsetooth Half 5 Mile Out & Back - was a staple workout last winter, and is now back in the rotation for our little Thursday morning group. For this workout, we typically go out to the 5 mile point of the HTH course at a relatively easy pace and then come back at a half marathon type effort. Centennial, which is the road that rides the east side of the reservoir is perhaps the most scenic paved road in Fort Collins, but what really makes the workout are the hills, which vary from very steep to long and drawn out. The turnaround point is about a half mile north of the north dam, so the return trip at tempo begins with a big, steep climb over the dam, and is followed by a mixture of shorter climbs and descents, a couple of big descents and some longer grinding stuff, with not a whole lot in between. One of the best workouts in town.
Anyway, this morning for the first one of the season we had Pete, Sarah, Eric, Brian, Nicole, Slush and Celeste in attendance. Went out at a social pace with Sarah, Eric and Pete in 39:15 and then came back with Eric in 30:50 (6:10): 7:19, 6:14, 6:32, 5:34, 5:14. I normally come back solo on these workouts, so it was good to have Eric there to keep me honest. I think this is the fastest I've done the return five, but then it's also about as hard as I've worked for them.
PM: 8.5 miles (1,700') easy. Towers in 37:50 with Ryan and Pete. A little gimpy in the right calf from the morning, so just jogged out the climb. Beautiful evening. A total of 16 FCTR on the hill tonight.
Fri - PM: 7 miles (1,600'). Falls - Spring Creek - Stout - Herrington - Spring Creek - Soderberg - home long. Another gorgeous evening. Still kind of sore in the lower legs from the Centennial workout Thursday morning. Deer everywhere.
Sat - AM: 19.5 miles (2,700'). Runners Without Borders fundraiser for Doctors Without Borders' work in drought- and famine-stricken Somalia. I pledged .01 per foot of accumulated gain and while my $27 donation was but a drop in the ocean, the combined drops of the 100 or so runners out on the trails of Horsetooth/Lory on Saturday added up to a total of roughly $4,000 (a figure that will be doubled by a matching donation from a wealthy and generous lady who is currently challenging people to give). Consider pledging yourselves if you happen to read this and think you can spare a few dollars to help save lives in the Horn of Africa where literally tens of thousand of people are currently in danger of dying, a fact that for whatever reason is getting zero coverage in today's insane age of 24 hour news. It's not sexy and it's not clever, but it is very real. Scott, thanks for making us think beyond our safe and very comfortable borders!
Sun - 25.5 miles (5,500'). 4:05. AM run with Dakota. Sold this one as a 25 miler at 50-mile pace, but I think we got kinda lazy as the morning rolled on. From my house we went: Rock Trail - Soderberg - Spring Creek - Towers - Stout - Sawmill - Valley - Visitors Center - Timber - Westridge (Lory) - Howard - Mill Creek - Towers - Westridge (H'tooth) - Rock - home. Took a huge digger a few miles in on Stout and ripped up my right side pretty good. I wasn't sure I could continue there for a couple of minutes, thinking that I done damage to my rib cage, but finally got my bearings and headed on. My hip, which took the brunt of the fall was throbbing pretty badly towards the end of the run, so I had to soft step the last few descents and let Dakota take off. This route times two would make for an 11,000 foot 50 miler. Mark your calendars for mid April, it's gonna be a beast (permits pending).
Total: 106 miles (19,300').
Two big falls this week has me all bloodied up, but I'm still running. Despite the skids, I got some good work done, which has me feeling a little like I'm gaining some fitness. Still not sure if I'm going to get to run the NF50 race in December as I'm still on the wait list, but I guess I'll continue to train as if I am. In the meantime, I'm looking forward to pounding out a few road races, including a half marathon down in Loveland in a couple of weeks.
Think there is a little running action down in Boulder this Saturday, but it's looking somewhat doubtful that I'll be able to make it, which is a shame as it's been a while since I've run down in The Republic. Ah well, next time. Anyway, this is but the first in a three-part series of trail-run gatherings. In December, we'll be bringing the Front Range Fat Ass series up to The Fort for the second annual Chubasaurus Maxamaurus. Full details on that to come in a few weeks, but really all you need to know is that it will feature 27 miles of glorious singletrack, 4 miles of dirt road, 100 meters of asphalt, two summits of local peaks, 7,500 feet of vertical gain and even some Pearl Izumi giveaways. Just bring beer!