my kids are back east for 2 weeks. I am supposed to be tapering for a 50 mile run. my stress level has been at an all time high. I hate tapering, but in particular I hate it when my life is such a mess that the only way for me to stay sane involves running.
Monday, I worked 8 hours then met my friend Greg for a run on the Tahoe Rim Trail at Brockway Summit. It was a record-breaking 96 degrees in Truckee and the humidity was high. We ran 7 miles, an out and back towards Mt Baldy. On the way back to the car, I thought out loud, “I think I’ll just run in the opposite direction and finish at my house”. Greg agreed it was a good idea “You have plenty of daylight!”
Fortunately someone had left a huge container of water in the middle of the trail. Greg was skeptical, but I insisted that if whomever had left it did not want to share, they would not have left it in the middle of the trail. He filled me up and I took off, about 6:30 p.m. I guessed it was 17 miles to the house.
It was a pretty mellow 7 miles or so to Watson Lake, the temps were still in the 80s, and I had to be careful to conserve my water as I only had a hydration pack. I met one thru hiker on the way who was both ecstatic to 1) see another human being and 2) calculate he only had 20 miles left to finish.
Once I left the TRT at Watson Lake, I dropped down to the 06 road. I have a love/hate relationship with the 06. Things I love about it: FAST running, it’s quiet, the views are nice, the trees are nice. non-technical. close to my house. Things I hate: it’s a road and it’s NEVER ENDING.
I was pretty regularly checking my watch now, with about 6 miles to go, as the sun was quickly descending behind the trees.
Although I had an extremely stressful and emotional past 24 hours, I didn’t feel the urge to cry until I came around a corner and saw a brilliant pink and orange sunset, and the tears started to flow.
With about 3 miles to go, the 06 had become too dark to see my footing, so I flipped on the flashlight app on my iphone. I was tired, my feet hurt, my phone/light had little battery life remaining, I couldn’t stop crying, I was thirsty and I knew one long sip and the hydration pack would be empty. I managed to suck up the pain, fight the tears, and power through until I made it safely into my neighborhood.
I was relieved to get home, around 9:30pm, shower, and go to bed. It had been a total of 25.1 miles, with 3,100 feet of climbing and slightly more descent.
Since I decided I should probably take the next 4 days off before the race, I have enjoyed sleeping in until 7 a.m. and discovered the joys in walking to work.
My office is just under 2 miles from my house, and yesterday, I realized I didn’t have to take the roads the entire way- there is a trail that cuts out about 1 mile of road right in the middle. So now, it’s just a short jaunt through my neighborhood to the secret trail, which is simply lovely in the morning, and today, it was blanketed in mist and the forest after the rain smelled heavenly. After I return to the road, it’s just a short walk across the Truckee River on Bridge Street, a left on Donner Pass Road through Downtown Historic Truckee, and to my office.
Lucky to live in this place.