Desert Vibes

Desert Vibes
Photo: Ben Clark

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Week(s) in Review: April 9-22


Monday, April 9th   
AM—None
PM—6 Miles—0:58—1,650’—Flagstaff
All-around horrible run. My legs felt like crap and I couldn’t get my breathing under control for the first 12 minutes or so. Justin and I rested at Panorama Point for a few minutes then he headed home and I headed up to Flagstaff. Finally, my legs started to get a little pep in them and I cruised up to the top. Given how questionable my legs felt, I took the descent SLOW.

Tuesday, April 10th    
AM—5 Miles—0:41—150’—Creek Path
For some reason my legs just felt crappy this morning. I decided to get in a quick shakeout run on the Creek Path to bring some life into them. Didn’t really seem to work…
PM—18 Miles—3:18—3,150’—Viewpoint/Mesa Out-and-Back/Roads
This was the second day in a row of my legs feeling blah. I hit the climb up to Panorama Point in about 11:45 or so, which isn’t terrible, but it felt like I had to work much harder than usual. The descent down to Baseline/Chautauqua made me feel like a drunk idiot and immediately let me know that it was going to be a long run. Ran into Alex at the parking lot and did the out-and-back with him. Eventually my legs started feeling strong on the climbs, but I restrained myself and kept from taking off on these sections. We had a fox come within 5-10 feet of us on the next-to-last switchback heading up from the South Mesa trailhead (of course I didn’t have my camera). We rode out the rest of the run at a pretty mellow pace.

Wednesday, April 11th  
AM—None—Tired
PM—None—Acupuncture Recovery

Thursday, April 12th    
AM—None—Acupuncture Recovery
PM—None—Acupuncture Recovery

Friday, April 13th  
AM—None—Acupuncture Recovery
PM—7 Miles—1:14—1,700’—Flagstaff Summit and Rangeview
After a few days off I decided to take an easy run up Flagstaff to shakeout my legs a little before Saturday’s long run. Nothing particularly special about this run. I took the descent really easy at almost a snail pace.

Saturday, April 14th   
AM—30 Miles—4:40—1,950’—Creek Path/Bobolink/South Boulder Creek Out-and-Back, Flagstaff
I went into this run wanting to cover 40-60 miles, but some pain in my left ankle told me I better cut it short at 30 miles when I stopped to refuel at the apartment. The first 21 miles were an out-and-back on the Creek Path, roads, Bobolink, and South Boulder Creek Path (all of which are flat and unbelievably boring). Most of my upcoming race is flat or a gradual descent with two climbs (from the elevation profile it appears that one is about like Green Mountain spread out over a few more miles and the other is similar to Sanitas). For the last 9 miles I headed up Flagstaff to get in a little climb. On the way up I ran into my roommate at Panorama Point and chatted for a bit. About 5 minutes or so later I ran into Jenny (Scott’s girlfriend) coming down Flagstaff and talked to her for a while. I eventually hit the four-way at the top and made my way down Rangeview with some surprisingly energetic legs. The last five miles or so was all downhill via the Tenderfoot loop jeep road to Red Lion and the Creek Path. I could have kept going since the pain in my ankle subsided after about 5-10 minutes of moving, but I didn’t see any point to risking long-term injury. My pace was really slow since I ran with the intent of covering a lot more miles.
PM—None

Sunday, April 15th
AM—None—Resting Left Ankle
PM—None—Resting Left Ankle


Miles— 66
Time—10hours 52minutes
Elevation Gain— 8,600 feet                        

                                                                                                                                                  

Monday, April 16th   
AM—None—Resting Left Ankle
PM—None—Resting Left Ankle

Tuesday, April 17th    
AM—None—Resting Left Ankle
PM—None—Resting Left Ankle

Wednesday, April 18th  
AM—None—Resting Left Ankle
PM—None—Resting Left Ankle

Thursday, April 19th    
AM—None—Resting Left Ankle
PM—None—Resting Left Ankle

Friday, April 20th  
AM—None—Resting Left Ankle
PM—5 Miles—1:06—1,650’—Sanitas via Red Rocks/Dakota Ridge/East Ridge
After taking way too much time off over the last week or so I decided to get back out on the trails and see how my left ankle/foot was feeling. As I made my way to Settlers Park I veered up through the Red Rocks area rather than staying on the Creek Path for a flat run as I had planned. It felt a little weird to be running after taking five days off in a row, but once I got to the Sanitas TH my body/legs felt pretty good. I didn’t intend to run to the top of Sanitas, but my legs felt great so I continued onward at a casual pace and topped out in 35:06 from my apartment. While at the top I felt as though Green Mountain was calling me from a distance. To my surprise, I was able to exercise a little self-control and not push on towards Green. The left ankle felt pretty good throughout the run today. I’ll just have to see how it feels tomorrow morning before hitting the trails.

Saturday, April 21st    
AM—20 Miles—3:20—3,000’—Marshall Mesa TH to Eldorado Canyon, Old Mesa/Mesa
Not knowing how my legs would feel after all of the off days I decided to keep the run fairly flat and headed out to Marshall Mesa with my roommate. Even with the mellow pace it seemed to take me forever to get my breathing in check. When we hit Goshawk I finally started to feel in rhythm. The hike up Old Mesa was horrendous because I have the hiking skills of an overweight weekend warrior hiker. The running on the Mesa Trail back to Chautauqua was pretty effortless.
PM—None

Sunday, April 22nd  
AM—16 Miles—3:36—3,100—Sanitas, Wonderland, Hogback, North Foothills
This morning I ran up-and-over Red Rocks to the Sanitas TH to meet Jason Schlarb and Dane Mitchell for run. We started off with a quick climb up the backside (they topped out in 19-something and I topped out in 20-something), which trashed my legs for the rest of the climbs on the run. Eventually, on a few mile out-and-back on North Foothills I began experience some stomach issues (likely from being severely dehydrated) and told them to go on without waiting for me. The issues subsided in about 20 minutes or so and I began running again. Not long after the dehydration/lack of calories really set in and I bonked pretty hard. So began the death march back to my apartment…
PM—None


Miles— 41
Time—8hours 3minutes
Elevation Gain— 7,750 feet                        

                                                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                               

Obviously the last two weeks weren’t too pleasing. After my Mesa Trail out-and-back on the 10th I started experiencing swelling and pain in my left ankle. I didn’t recall any specific incident that may have contributed to this, which left me even more confused about things. After an acupuncture session and a few days off I hit the trails again only to experience the same pain to a slightly lesser extent. This led to five days in a row with no running as a preventative measure. After the off days and a few decent runs this past weekend my body is feeling pretty good for once. This coming week will be my last big push before I begin a voluntary reduction in mileage leading up to my 100 miler on May 11th
Community Ditch Trail heading towards Eldorado Canyon

Looking back towards Eldorado Canyon from the top of Old Mesa

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