The intent for this weekend was to get reacquainted with my old friend triathlon...so to speak.
I headed down to the Pass to hang with my good friend Julie and to do some swimming, running, biking and mass quanities of chatting.
I arrived on Friday and after three hours straight of non stop talking, we hit the hay to get a good night's rest before today's activities. As I'm not on a training program at the moment I was going to follow along with Julie and what she had going on. I knew we were going to go for a run in the morning, but what I didn't know was that Julie does 15 minutes of core beforehand.
This is where the inner tri geek in me emerged after a long hibernation...
For those of us old enough - think back to a Looney Tunes cartoon where there is a small terrier type dog who is very excited and chatty hopping back and forth over the ultra cool bulldog, Chester. I think the chatty dog is going on about getting that cat, Sylvester. Anyways, when Julie mentioned doing some core I became the little terrier and the dialogue went something like this, quite rapidly and with much enthusiasm...
'You're going to do core??? I'll do core with you!! How long are you going do to core??? I love core!!! I haven't done core in forever!! Oh this is going to be fun!! Can I do core with you??? Here's something I've done before!! What exercises are you going to do???'
Julie's core got a workout as she laughed at me. She then commented that it was too bad her hubby wasn't there to see this scene on the kitchen floor as he wouldn't believe her when she told him that there is someone else on this planet that can get as excited about working out as her! That's when I realized it - I really was a tri geek.
I'd tried to bury that side of my personality for a while because I like variety and wanted to do some other things in the 'off season'. Plus, sometimes I think people think that's all I'm about. Really though, it's never gone. Once a tri geek, always a tri geek no matter if you are training in swim/bike/run or going out for a xcountry ski or even studying Buddhism. Time to just accept this fact I think!
After our BRILLIANT core session, we headed out for a run. I'd like to take this moment to say how thankful I am to have such thoughtful friends such as Julie and Trudy. The past two weekends I've been blessed to have friends who have invited me to their mountain homes then shared places to go running or hiking because they knew how much I'd love to see it. So thank you, thank you!
Julie took me to a dirt road that meandered, ever so gradually, up into the mountains. Well, and to a Shell plant or something. However, the part we were in was gorgeous as I had incredible views of the mountains, including Crows Nest mountain, as well as being surrounded by wonderful, glorious trees. Even the wee bit of snow that was falling like bits of styrofoam weren't a concern.
I don't have much of an ego so it was easy to let go any Idid have and tell Julie to do her own thing and run ahead. She has a faster pace than I and I really didn't want to try and keep up. I was happy keeping my heart rate down and being mindful of how my legs and IT band were feeling.
As I ran up the road I was greeted by a raven flying overhead and cawing a sweet hello to me. I kept looking around where I was running and was in awe of the view. You couldn't see any buildings and it was almost as if it was back in the early 1900's when the towns below were just starting out with the mines. At one point I heard the far off sound of a train horn honking and could almost picture the old style trains that chug-a-lugged through there.
The nearby valley was lush with dark green pine tress save for one lone golden tree that popped out above all the rest. Aaaah. This was peace.
Of course in any area of peace where I happen to be, there has to be some minor issue. Mine was a stuffy, yet runny nose. I did my best to blow some snot rockets but my boogers were that sticky viscous type so really I was only managing to blow a big snot bubble and have it hang in my nostril. Ew. I did my best to wipe it off all over my jacket sleeves while also trying to inhale it back into my sinuses. Needless to say, it was a bit messy. Ah well, it's not like there are any cute dudes up here I'm trying to impress, right?? So I kept running on.
I was having a great run and was suprised to see that 35 minutes had gone by and it was time to turn around. I touched a tree at my turnaround point and thanked it for being there. (I do not kid when I say I'm a tree hugger!) I then started making my way back.
I was about to round a corner when I realized something was coming towards me - and quickly. My thoughts went quickly to, 'Shite! I can't remember if this is bear area?! Then again, I'm in the friggin trees in the Pass, of course it's bear territory!'. This train of thought only took a few milliseconds when it finally registered that it was actually a dog running towards me. Huh, where's the owner?
That's when I saw the car. Needless to say the dog came straight towards me, no doubt already having sensed from a mile away that I would be the type of sucker to stop running and give some good behind the ear scritches. Which of course I did. The owner of said dog stopped his car to say hello and comment on my energy level being out there running. I believe he was implying he didn't have the energy to run with dog, who admittedly was quite speedy. Oh, remember that comment about no cute dudes being in the area....yup, you guessed it. He was cute. It SO figures... After a very brief conversation and wishing each other a good morning I continued on my way, checking for crusty boogers as I went, of course.
The remainder of my run was sheer bliss. I felt fabulous. It felt so great to be out there, having a lot of energy and running strong. Granted there was a slight decline, but also on the little hill I tackled I still felt great. A realization of why I love the sport of triathlon came over me. I love it because of training days like this when you are so grateful for the ability to run, your health and your fitness. I was running on sunshine!
As I neared the car I realized I'd had a negative split so still had about 8 minutes to make up. I turned around and started to run back up the hill. That's when I saw Julie. She called out she had more time to run and took a sharp left along another little road. I decided to give chase, as best I could, just for a little 'fartlek' at the end of the run.
It was great running through all the puddles and dips in the road, not to mention running around old abandoned mining buildings. I wasn't able to catch up, but thankfully I was able to keep the same distance between us. When we got back out to the main road we were both all smiles and giggles. It turned into a beautiful morning and we'd both felt great.
Later on we went for a short swim at the local kidney shaped pool. At least they had lane markers! I hadn't been in the pool in forever so wasn't sure what was going to happen. Thankfully I still remember how to swim and my breathing wasn't too bad. It will take some time to build back the endurance, but that's ok.
To celebrate our brilliant day we chowed down on some amazing curry. Really, you can't get much better than today!
Peace out my friends.