Skip to main content

reset.

"What do you have coming up next?"
I had no answer. There are things I've wanted to do, things I've felt like I must do. But I couldn't plan them, not yet.
sunrise

Friday morning I woke to a 3:20am alarm. I quickly wiggled into my white thrift store sundress, excited to "gear test" it on an alpine ridge on a "run" in the 4-5 hour range. I had told the guys that I'd be 'dress'ed for the occasion.

I grabbed my pre-packed bags and was out the door before 3:40. Off to the Little Cottonwood Canyon park-n-ride. We were to do Hidden Peak, the AF Twins, Red Stack, and Red Baldy. Only minor 3-4th class scrambling but a lot of ridge work. I was excited to get onto the ridge.

Craig and Scott leaving Hidden towards AF Twins
The usual morning banter put me at ease. Then, between Hidden and the AF Twins, a sunrise. With smoke and particles in the air from nearby fires, the sun glared red and across a painted sky. I couldn't get enough of it. I resorted to stopping to stare, run/scramble a bit to catch back up, then stopping again.

Craig taking in the sunrise
Once on the summit ridge for the AF Twins Scott tried to take a jumping picture of me. 30+ pictures later... the best one was still the first. We laughed and hurried to get to the summit.

jump!

Along the ridge between Red Stack and Red Baldy I had time to sit and think. It was a beautiful morning. I was happy. I knew I still hadn't forgiven myself for Bighorn. I've felt that, had I respected myself more, I would've stopped. Any sane person would've stopped. I've promised myself I would never go there again, a promise based on a crippling fear. But I still hadn't forgiven myself. I knew that I hadn't finished as a form of self-abuse... but I still hadn't come to terms with pushing through that.

Craig after Red Stack

And on the way to Red Baldy, I forgave myself. I remembered why I run at all... This was what I loved. The summits, the scrambles, the ridges, the sunrises. The laughter of friends, the goofing off.


I owe it to myself to push my limits. I owe it to myself to try again. Perhaps I found a limit at Bighorn. But I owe to these mountains to train again, to push again, to try.

an accidental photo of me laughing at the guys

On an early weekday morning, being silly in a sundress at 11,000+, I had found my reset button.
moving on
Saturday I watched the Speedgoat finish. Due to extenuating circumstances, I was unable to watch Sage's incredible finish. I did make it in time to watch the top 10 women run in. Each of them I knew by name and knew just a bit of their beautiful stories.

photo(c) www.facebook.com/jordisaragossa
Was this what I wanted? Competitive races and media and medals? People smiling and clapping?

No, not really. There is a part of me that will always want the positive affimation that I'm doing ok, and that in someway I can help encourage or inspire others find the peace the mountains offer. To discover a "reset" button in their own lives and fitness journeys. But my joy comes from challenges that most races don't offer. The time I'd have to sacrifice to train to race at a more competitive level would pull away from my time spent on ridges and high mountains.
with my husband Ben scouting the Cottonwood Ridge Traverse for WURL

"Why don't you do speedgoat?" A final question was asked to me before I left. Again, I had no answer other than to say one year I would.

Then I turned my back on the race and looked up. Monte Cristo seemed tall and powerful as it gleamed in the sun. It took my breath away. I scanned the entire cottonwood ridge. I resolved to take 2 hours off my time from Ferguson Canyon to the ridge to Superior. I felt inspired, in awe.
on Monte Cristo last week

Perhaps there is a balancing act I have yet to discover and perfect. A balancing act that still allows me long ridges and occasional bush-whacks while still having me do speedwork and tempo runs on a weekly basis. A training regime that enhances my mountain running ability rather than relying solely on mountain running.

Scott approaching the saddle between Red Stack and Red Baldy
So, I've registered for races, shorter distances that I've never raced before. I've put dates on some of my other goals. The plans for summer and fall are beginining to take shape. New goals are set and I am finally ready to move on. I want to try the Jupiter Peak Steeplechase simply because I've never done a race that short... (oh, ok and it summits two peaks). I also signed up for the TNF EC 50.


I'd like to try to run a fast 50, something I haven't tried before. It's local and while I know the permitting drama has probably prevented the RD from posting the elevayion and race maps, he seems like a good guy and the races have a solid reputation. He also sent me a discount code for anyone else who wants to register: JEATON15 takes 15% off an entry.

So, here's to the reset.
finding inspiration in the little things. Mountain columbine above 10k

Comments

  1. I love your posts! I love your attitude and your zest for life! I love you and miss you!!!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

the runner's low

The runner's high - that sought after, beautiful feeling of flow, fulfillment, contentment, and even pleasure - is so present in running media and culture, it seems as if the runner's low doesn't exist.
...Yet it's presence is continually there. It shows up in different ways - the post race blues with the unbalance of hormones and exhaustion and lack of routine. It can slide in at envy of others runs, their training schedule and ability, their social fun. It is deep in sultry pains of an ultra, when we question ourselves, who we are, why we are doing this. It's fierce when we are injured and unable to run at all. It sneaks in as a "NEED" to have another adventure, another high, and the low feeling when we can't satisfy that craving. It seems part of an addictive solution for our brain to feel happy and alive. It exists -  we remember a particularly fun run/adventure/race, and we want it - again. Even right after a race, blisters still oozing on our f…

that WEIGHTY issue

It's been said to us climbers that what we do is dangerous, and irresponsible. How could we risk our lives like this? And distance trail running, if it compromises our health why do it? How dare we take that time away from our families? And yet, to even make mention about a different lifestyle, one of weight, obesity, and all of the very dangerous and risky components it involves is socially disgraceful, insensitive, and cruel. I bring this up only to show how much weight, in general, is not "ok" to talk about. It's a sensitive subject, even, no, especially, for those of us already at a healthy weight who use our bodies to their fullest daily...

Now, this blog is about running, ain't it? Yep. So while there's a lot of "weight" we could cover in this "weighty" area, we'll just go over one. Running.
Running and weight are intertwined. I'd like to say that this post is primarily for the ladies, because we typically store more weight t…

standhope 60k

it seems like the last few years I've aged, and I've grown. I lost my identity as a runner. if I didn't run frequently, if I wasn't in the mountains, if I wasn't pushing my own limits, what was I? 
I'd retained the identity as a mother, daughter, sibling, friend, student of literature and wilderness. this was a shift - less time, less comments, less messages with the running community that I didn't know well, a deepening of friendships and relationships with those closest to me.
it felt odd, going into standhope. I didn't have goals, I wasn't sure where I was at with running, I wasn't in shape for racing. I had this idealism, that if I raced hard, I could inspire others, not to run, but to pursue life with passion. but, what about when I can't race hard? when life is racing too hard for me to train?
earlier this year my Dad was diagnosed with mantle cell lymphoma. visits to the hunstman increased, my mileage decreased. when looking at anoth…