High in Colorado

High in Colorado
Photo: Mandy Lea Photo

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

2011 Year End Running Wrap-Up

Here it is, ten days into 2012, and I’m just now starting to put my thoughts on the previous year’s running down on paper. As I look back at 2011 I’m rather pleased by my accomplishments:

·         I did my first trail run on January 2, 2011 (and subsequently became a trail running addict)
·         Completed my second marathon, a trail marathon, and placed 8th
·         Completed my first ultra, a trail 50K, and placed 7th
·         Ran the 27.5 mile Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in Peru
·         Ran the Grand Canyon Rim2Rim2Rim

These accomplishments are made more satisfying by the fact that this was my first year for both ultrarunning and trail running. I’ve been a runner my entire life. However, I tended to run the shorter, faster races and never exceeded the 400 meter. The previous year has been a tremendous learning experience for me as I’ve learned how to adapt my body, diet, training, running style, and recovery to handle running longer distances on sometimes very technical trails that cover lots of vertical. While I can’t say that I have these all figured out yet, I will say that I am always seeking out new ways to learn from my training, my injuries, and what my body is trying to tell me.

I closed out 2011 with my weekly running totals being about 90 miles with 25,000 feet of vertical gain. Considering the numerous setbacks I experienced throughout the year due to injury, recovery, moving to Colorado and acclimating, etc. I am relatively happy with how my year ended. In the coming year I hope to build upon this mileage and vertical base and get to about 125-175 miles/week and 30,000-40,000 vertical feet/week.

Below is a list of my running totals for the year 2011. I’m very excited to continue this transition into ultrarunning through 2012 strive to improve upon these numbers. In a future post I’ll list goals for my 2012 running totals as well as a tentative race calendar for the year.

2011 Running Totals
Miles: 1,840
Time: 331 hours 26 minutes
Elevation Gain: 245,900 feet

Here’s a look back at my 2011 running through pictures (I stole this from you, JV)…
Finishing my first ultra, the Hogs Hunt 50K
Sunset the night before Hogs Hunt
Hogs Hunt Preliminary Results
A nice run on South Beach in Miami
First visit to Boulder (little did I know it would become my home a few months later)
Ran uphill to Cristo Blanco in Cuzco, Peru. For some reason little kids kept pointing at me and saying "Cristo Blanco!"
Ruins at Chincero, Peru
Running by the Salt Mines of Maras in Peru
Pretty sweet finish to a nice run in Peru
Hitting the trails behind my hotel in Peru
View on my run to Llactapata
Running from Ollantaytambo to Llactapata
Shady bridge going over some pretty rough rapids on my run to Llactapata
Camping at Llactapata the night before running the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.
Heading up the second major pass on the Inca Trail
At the Sun Gate for Machu Picchu. Almost done with my run.
Postcard view of Machu Picchu. Not a bad finish line for a 27 mile run.
Standing atop Machu Picchu mountain...With Machu Picchu about 1,500 feet below.
Coming up the Grand Canyon north rim
Halfway point of the Grand Canyon R2R2R
Looking back on the ~47 miles I just ran in the Grand Canyon
Aftermath of the Grand Canyon R2R2R

Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park

Green Mountain summit on the first snow of the year.
The Flatirons. Not bad to have in your backyard.
Alpines at the south Mesa trailhead
Coming up the Mesa Trail from the south trailhead.
Took a little fall in the Boulder Basic. Resulted in 19 days off from running.
Heading up Viewpoint trail, which is where ~95% of my runs begin. It's a nice warm-up.
Snow on the Flatties
An icy beard after a run in ~ 0 degree temps
Cat tracks???
Friday night jaunt up Green with JV, Rob, and Joey
Sunrise coming down Flagstaff
A shot of whiskey on Green summit. Great way to start the weekend.
Early morning run up Flagstaff in Boulder
Running around Columbia, MO
Running on gravel roads, railroad access roads, fields, pastures, levees, and anything else I can find in rural Missouri
My new kicks...Can't be beat...
Obligatory Green summit shot
Playing in the snow :)

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