|The snow in Aspen this morning.
The drive up was okay until Independence Pass of course. Due to the Government Shutdown, the shitters at the top of the pass are closed. No kidding. It is funny is a sad sort of way... Asia and I made due with the bushes.
Driving on the Aspen side of the pass was a bit dicey. Ice mostly the first few miles down, then snow, then clear roads. Slid a few times which caused a bit of involuntary puckering. But past that still a good drive.
Woke up this morning to snow and cold temps in the lower 20's. Made the decision straight up that I was not going to wear shorts. The Chuck Severy Cross Country Challenge is a race put on by the Aspen High School Cross Country team as a fundraiser. The course starts at the High School and meanders up towards Aspen Highlands for a bit then drops back down and loops back around. The majority of the course was ran across snow covered fields it seemed which were mowed. A real cross country course. The snow was not slippery so traction was not a problem but it was deep enough that it felt like running in sand the entire time.
I wasn't sure how I was going to run this race. The past month has been committed 100% to MAF training but I really wanted to race this one. When we got to the high school I spent about 20 minutes running at MAF to warm up then when the race started I just tried to keep my HR in the 160 - 165 range and just see if I could hang on for the three + miles. and whatever speed I had was the speed that I had. I basically looked at it as one of the tempo runs that Lucho seemed to love making me do this past summer. Ended up running a touch hotter than that with an average HR of 167 so I know my HR was in the 170's for a good part of it. Finished 5th overall and 1st in my age group. Good thing I know how to run in snow!
Tomorrow will just be a bike ride. I think I am going to ride to Basalt and back. Next week my mileages start ramping up training for the JFK 50. All of my training between now and then will be back exclusively at MAF again.
Put in for the HR100 this past week too. Four tickets now. Guess we will know how that plays out in a couple of months. 35 slots for the never started peeps and I bet there are at least 1000 who apply who fall into that category... those odds have me buying lottery tickets again as I feel I have a better chance matching the six numbers and winning than ever getting to start at the line in Silverton.
In other news... the book is selling which is kind of surreal to me. It has me pondering about starting another project. Knowing it is out there though is weird. It is hard to explain but there is a certain amount of vulnerability to it.
Taking the Gondola to the top of Aspen Mountain today. With all of the snow and changing trees I bet it is going to be mind blowing beautiful! I am so ready to be here 100% of the time.