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A New Standard.

23 April 2018

This weekend was a good one for fitness. Saturday, I took my niece out for her first ever race. She’s 14, and a natural athlete. She hadn’t trained assiduously, but she was determined and dogged. I was impressed with how much grit she showed. We ran 10km around Lake Union, in Seattle, in the Oiselle Tenacious Ten. We ran step for step, and she WON her age group. I was so proud of her.

I was also super proud of BB, who set a new PR, under 52 minutes. So she’s now beaten my PR at that distance by 1:10. She’s been training hard, as have I, and it’s exciting to see it all pay off. I ran a 55:14, which makes me quite happy. It’s not near my PR, but it was an 8:53 pace, which is a really stellar performance as far as I’m concerned. I was moving hard the whole way while talking to my niece and encouraging her.

Then, Sunday, we did something rather stupid. We went out for a 10.7 mile hike/run on Tiger Mountain with more than 4200′ of gain. There was one 2.4 mile stretch where the MEAN incline was like 16.5%. It took us a long time. It was painful, especially after the hard run the day before. And it was beyond anything we’d done before by 2000′.

In the not-quite-a-month since I signed up for the ultramarathon, I’ve run 108 miles with 15,000′ of gain. That’s halfway up Mt. Everest. The actual race itself is 31.1 miles and 7,500′. I’ve run 87 miles in April and hope to make it 100. Though I have a trip next week that may make that a touch more challenging.

Trails are without doubt an entirely different world from road running. Slower, harder. More of a run/hike combo than actually running. The vertical distance we are doing is a genuine challenge that’s changing my body and my fitness dramatically. I have discovered little muscles in my butt and legs that I never knew I had. Everything hurts. But this is going to be a massive accomplishment and I’m excited to take it on.

My goal is to finish a Mount Everest (29,029′) by the end of June, which right now feels very, very doable. I’m getting there. Eventually, I’m getting there.

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