Wednesday, March 04, 2009

A Weekend of Surprises

Our Saturday run was supposed to go along the trails in the Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve. It's a beautiful location, complete with a waterfall and lots of wildlife. I was really looking forward to it, even though I'm not much of a trail runner. Unfortunately, when we got there both entrances to the trail were flooded. (How exactly? This is the desert.) With the trails a no-go, we ended up running up (and by that I mean uphill) Black Mountain Road to the Highway 56 bike path. It was a route chock full of hilly glory. It was a pretty tough 8 miles - hot with no shade and extra heat reflecting off the asphalt. Again, my hydration wasn't the best and I had leg cramps on the hills. Must drink more water.

Sunday Steve and Donna rode the Grandfondo Century Ride. I met them at mile 60 with comfy chairs situated in the one shady spot available, lunch, sports drinks, sunscreen and 20 pounds of ice. As I was waiting for Donna and Steve, I got some strong clues that the Grandfondo was a tough ride. Relatively few riders made it to mile 60. The riders who made it in were all exhausted and this was only a bit past the midpoint of the ride. Plus, I saw a number of riders stop and phone for rides home. My last clue was that Steve and Donna were almost an hour later than they'd planned. Since they are both strong climbers, I knew it was tough out there. When they arrived, Steve checked his cycle GPS. The Grandfondo was supposed to have 4800 ft of climbing, a tough ride by any standard. However, at mile 60 they'd already climbed over 6,000 feet. Whew. Glad it was them and not me.

That's endurance racing in all it glory - you plan, you prepare and sometimes the course laughs at you.

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