Monday, January 9, 2012

My Failed Attempt To Be A Hippie

"Running is a big question mark that's there each and every day. It asks you 'Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?'" ~ Peter Maher

I was off work on Monday, January 2nd and got in an early 10 miler @ 13:17 per mile that morning. I found an off-shoot of the Jem Trail that I had never run before. The views were beyond words. I got goosebumps. I can't wait to go back here.

Later in the day I took the offspring to the park. We had a blast playing Monster Tag (I know, I hadn't heard of it before either). I laughed so hard that my stomach hurt and my eyes were watering. We had so much fun. As we were leaving we took a picture together. Correction: we took 3 pictures together. The first time we were all on the ground. But on the third try I got one of my favorite pictures ever:

I also shaved after my failed attempt to become a granola-loving, tree-hugging, hippie with a long flowing beard. Don't you know? To become an elite ultra runner, you must have a long beard and long, flowing hair similar to Jesus. (Just kidding. Mostly.) I think I've come to terms with the fact that I'm not meant to have a Burt Reynolds moustache. (Pardon me while I go cry in the corner for a minute.)

On Wednesday, January 4th I did 12 miles @ 12:37 minutes per mile on the Prospector Trail in the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve. I had never run here before and the scenery was so beautiful.

My favorite part was when I turned off Prospector to the Church Rocks Trail. The trail was moderately technical and I climbed a total of 2048 feet during the run. I had a bit of difficulty finding my way on some slick rock sections so I added my contribution to the other trail markers out there.

In the month of October I ran 270 miles. I could do a 12 miler in my sleep. But after taking it easy the last few months I have lost some fitness and endurance so now a 12 miler has me crying Uncle.

Friday, January 6th I woke up early and ran 3 miles on the road before work. After work Mel took the kids shopping so I figured I'd take advantage of a few free hours to head out again. It was starting to get dark so I packed my headlight and headed back to an area near Sheep's Bridge.

I finished 8 miles and 1050 feet ascent @ 11:59 per mile. I had so much fun. When the sun is setting it really lights up the red rocks. I had to keep stopping to get pictures of the moon.

My knees are starting to feel much better, but endurance still leaves a little to be desired. I think I'm moving in the right direction though.

I must admit, even though the sunset was beautiful, I wasn't very excited to have the sun go down.

I'm not a huge fan of trail running in the dark with all the twists and turns, rocks, and uneven surfaces. I also get a little creeped out being in the middle of nowhere by myself, worried that I am going to become dinner for a jaguar.

But I made it home safe. A jaguar didn't eat me. Heck, a jaguar didn't even lick me.

Have you ever gotten lost while running?
I've gotten twisted around on trails a few times but nothing too major.

Anybody else had failed attempts at growing facial hair?
I wish I could grow a fat handlebar 'stache.


  1. My son is a facial hair growing fiend. I guess he has good genes. Thanks god I don't have the problem!

    I love the pic of you and your kids. AWESOME! Of course all the other pix are great too!

  2. I love weekly recaps; it's so interesting to see how different all of us runners attack our running weeks. I have a brother in law that looks like a hippie with a big old bear and free flowing hair- my kids totally think he looks like Jesus. I fail at growing facial hair ALL THE TIME. ;)

  3. I freaking love that all of your runs are like an adventure. You really really make me want to start trail running.

    Yes I have gotten lost while my own neighborhood. I am one very smart cookie!

  4. I have never gotten lost while running, but if I did, I would probably just call my husband crying. :)

    I heard having long Jesus hair lets you recover faster from ultras and be cooler all around :)

  5. the pic of you and your kids is incredible!!!! love love love it!

    we got lost running on saturday. my first ever "real" trail run. but i still loved it. every single second.

  6. I'm perfectly happy to be lacking in the facial hair dept. My 17 year old son, on the other hand, has a beard that any man (who wanted a beard) would envy. He's regularly mistaken for someone college-age or beyond.

    I've never been LOST lost, but the singletrack trails at our local university are so twisty that it's very hard to keep track of where you are. If you keep going, eventually you come out where you can figure it out, though.

  7. I got lost on the Mesa Trail here in Boulder not just once but twice. Finally the third time I did it I took the correct turn. But getting lost was sort of fun, since I too managed to avoid being eaten.

    It's true about the Jesus thing. I got passed by a guy like that in my relay last summer. I thought I was hallucinating. :^)

  8. beautiful pics as always, and never heard of monster tag but it sounds like a hoot!

    the ball and chain grew a beard over the holiday, then last week decided to shave it down to some weird looking nascar driving mustache. it was scary. there were moments where the facial hair made him look like he was going to chop my body up in little pieces and dump them in lake michigan. but i lucked out, he shaved it all off and i'm still alive. for now...

  9. I hope I never grow facial hair. I remember having a little giggle at some of the ladies in church who had moustaches when I was young and I don't want to have to be one of those women bleaching their mo's.

    Some gorgeous pictures there - especially the one of your family.

  10. Darwin, #1 looking at the picture I think you CAN grow a stache, you just need to be patient! Rome wasn't built in a day and great mustaches can't be grown in a week! # 2 you could always buy these fake ones just for special occasions , read the reviews!

  11. Great pictures, as usual! I'm lovin' the facial hair. Nice work!

  12. I've been trying to grow facial hair my entire life and have been failing miserably. I'm pretty much disappointed in myself. Don't try and console me over it either.

    Those pictures are beautiful! The one with the moon peaking out from the rocks is amazing!

  13. The jumping picture with your kids is amazing! I love it!