Between work, volunteer, personal and junk I receive on average 200 emails a day. Few subjects will catch my attention and cause me to skip ahead and read before all of the rest. My good friend Sonya and trusty early morning “sweat sister” cleverly (likely without knowing) titles her emails so they are always the first things I read. In training for this Summer Roundup, this nearly 1,000 foot elevation gain over 3.7 miles second leg of the triple crown, there is a certain level of added motivation I need to get out of bed at FOUR O’CLOCK in the morning to run uphill the whole way (or so it seems). Sometimes it is my dog staring at me and breathing his awful dog breath right in my face as I lay in bed trying to cheat the clock, or it is the fact that only Dave will be waiting on me and I don’t want to be the one to plan the run and dictate the freakishly early start and then bail, or maybe it's giving Brandon a high five as we pass each other on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, but so often it is just plain excitement to see the smiles on the faces of the other runners that I am so lucky to be able to run with day in and day out. We finish the run, recruit anyone around and do a “flash mob” style party plank in the park while sometimes listening to a bit of music on my phone, laughing and joking as the dogs lick our faces. In training for this Summer Roundup we have done high drive repeats (sufferfest), Bear Creek to Palmer to Section 16 (more times than I can count), Barr Trail, the Incline, FIBArk Trail Race in Salida, Williams Canyon, Rampart Reservoir, Sante Fe Trail, Falcon Trail, the Tough Mudder in Beaver Creek with my DPW’s, and I am thrilled to report only one day on the DREADMILL. One thing these Triple Crown races will do is get you out exploring this beautiful state and these amazing trails we are lucky to have in our back yards. It is easy to become quite protective of the trails, irritated when you find trash along the way and quite worried when you hear that there are wild fires in the same area that you plan to run the very next day. Shout out to the firefighters for nipping that one in the bud.
Sunday will be tough for me, mostly mentally because the training has been done. I don’t like to suffer, I don’t race well, I like to breathe and give little kids high five’s along the way. I also like to do well. Seems I’m a bit conflicted. I will leave my inner cupcake at home and show up ready to run hard and do my best. I will give Brandon and the other Pikespeaksports.us teammates a high five (or a head nod) as we all pass each other. I will look forward to Dave not letting me give up on high drive. I will be thrilled to see my girls with their pom poms cheering their hearts out for everyone (including me) at random surprise locations! A great big thank you to all who have helped me train for this race. As Sonya says, "I love, love, love my running friends.”
As I write this it looks like there are just a few more registrations available for this year’s race. Sign up now and look for me on race day; I’ll be the one with the ponytail giving out high-fives as I “race”! UPANDOVER! It’s just one big hill, right?!
The faster I run, the faster I’m done! – Michelle Blessing
“The Truth is that Running Hurts. No one gets faster without meeting their personal pain barrier straight on. No amount of junk miles, fun runs or affirmations are going to get you over the hill at the five mile mark in a 10k. However, what will pull you through is solid prep with hard hill runs and interval work.”
- Manciata's explanation of the Truth about Running