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A 50 Mile Race, a 2 Week Road Trip and the Zoo

Hi there!

Before I jump in here, I just wanted to let you know that it snowed here today. So there’s that.

Second, this post contains an overwhelming amount of pictures. Apparently when you have time to jot things down once a month, they build up.

So, let’s talk about how the end of the summer went, shall we?

After the whirlwind that was August, things settled down just a little bit leading into Run Rabbit Run. The night before the race, I found myself sitting at the pre-race meeting listening to the race directors give us a rundown on what to expect. Yes, they were indeed wearing bunny ears. Totally normal.


I went into the race with little expectation. Having trained for 8 weeks (with a week of that missed due to the craziness of the bike race) I was really just aiming to finish. The race started at 6:30 am in the dark and it was pretty chilly. The 4 am wake up call left plenty of time to eat and digest and then drive into town. Having never done anything like it, I started at the back of the pack. Probably next time I would start a bit farther up. I spent the first 1/2 mile passing people in the dark (with a headlamp).

The first 6.4 miles were pretty much straight up the ski mountain (3600 feet of elevation gain-there was about 8,000 total over the course of the day). It was primarily fast hiking and enjoying the incredible moon set/sunrise. People were relaxed and chatty. Nervous energy 😉 Once we reached the top, we actually got to start running! It was gorgeous and some super fun single track. Miles 6.5-18 seemed to fly by! The aid stations and volunteers were amazing.

There was a good amount of “rolling hills” throughout the course, but one of the most exciting climbs happened around mile 24. We hiked up a very steep climb to the Rabbit Ears. And then we climbed ONTO the Rabbit Ear. That was the turn around point and we were headed straight back down! Not sure which was harder-the up or the down on that steep section.

From the turn around point, I felt pretty good! Kept the running up and rolled through mile after mile. Around Mile 36, my right foot started bothering me, but what are you going to do? I stopped and emptied some dirt out of my shoes, but probably could have loosened my shoes a bit. There was a lot of hiking on the way back up intermixed with running on the flats and descents.

My watched died at Mile 47 and just after that myself and a group of guys were stopped by two bull moose on the trail. They were in no hurry to get out of our way either. About 7-8 minutes later, we were finally able to pass and keep heading down the mountain. I rolled through the finish at just over 11 hours and 7 minutes (silly moose-probably could have been in the 10s!). I ran through the finish with a smile on my face and was so happy to have Ken and Brooke cheering there! My expectations were far exceeded for the day! Ended up 4th in my age group, 10th overall female and 33rd overall out of the 148 finishers. And guess what, I LOVED it! It was so much fun!


Post race I expected to need Ken to carry me to the car but I felt surprisingly good! My right foot hurt (and was actually bruised by that evening). Better figure that out for next time 😉 But overall, I was still functioning!


I happily joined the fam in the hot tub afterwards before packing things up to leave the next morning!

We then embarked on a two week road trip! Nothing like jumping in the car right after a race 🙂

First stop was Jackson Lake where we met up with GrandBob and Nene for some camping (we pulled our trailer for the whole trip and it was awesome!).

We had an amazing afternoon on the boat and then fun in some stormy looking weather the next day! Sure made for some pretty pics!




It was so good to sit and relax for a bit! Moving was a bit rough for those 3 days (luckily by Wednesday I could move pretty normally!). My feet were really the part that suffered the most. Shoes were not exactly comfortable so I spent some quality time in flip flops!


Someone is a HUGE fan of camping. And then sleeping it off 😉


After a couple of days in Wyoming, we continued our trip. We exited via Yellowstone and happened to hit Old Faithful right as it was going off! That was a win!



Brooke took this pic of the buffalo in the road.


We ventured through Idaho and into Oregon. They have some awesome clouds there! 😉



Random road snack: Found these at Costco and they were pretty delicious.


Driving along the Columbia River was pretty spectacular.


We spent a day hanging out at Hood River. It was so fun to watch the kite-boarders out on the water. I half expected Ken to jump in and try his hand at it fully clothed.



We then made our way to the coast and spent some time in Tillamook. PS-the Tillamook Forest is amazing and so dense! Very different than the forests of Colorado. A lot more moss, too.

The beaches of Oregon stole my heart. Quiet, dog friendly, moody….loved them!


Brooke got freaked out by all of the Tsunami warning signs along the drive which ended up in some meltdowns about beach safety. We finally convinced her that it wasn’t tsunami season (parenting at its finest) and were pretty good for the rest of the trip.


We had so much fun exploring the Tillamook Factory!



The food was delicious…and I mean, the ice cream. No words.



Soaking up more sand.


And grabbing a nap on the way to visit my sister and brother-in-law!


He made himself right at home.


We had so much fun hanging out with Alle and David. They took us apple picking, wine tasting, Ken went on a salmon fishing trip with David and the girls went bowling (Brooke’s first time!). We fit a ton into a couple of days!




Saw some slugs.


Game face.


Oh, chopped my hair off too.


On Tuesday morning, we headed back for some more time at the beach. We had a gorgeous day!




Even got in a ride (there was very little exercising on the trip and my body was fine with that!)


Brooke found a new favorite shirt.


We convinced Brooke to go on a hike with us. It was 3.6 miles and she did a solid 3 of those (Ken gave her a ride on sections on the way back up). It was GORGEOUS!




Explored the coast and checked out the Cape Meares Lighthouse. Found some amazing fish n chips, too!




And then we went back for more ice cream.


After an amazing trip, we made our way back home! Ken was a rock star and did all the driving. I did all the snack handing. Perfect relationship! Ha.

We arrived home to the colors of Fall. Always spectacular.


Ken had to run down to Denver so we talked him into dropping us at the Zoo while he ran his errands. It was so much fun. We even got to see baby Tatu who was introduced to the public just a couple of days before!





I guess he likes her!


The next day we had a Homeschool Group event and enjoyed an awesome hike with our friends.




And just like that…

IMG_1113 (1)

We woke up to a few inches of snow and it is currently 15 degrees headed to a low of 4 tonight. Thankfully, we are supposed to be back to our regularly scheduled Fall in a day or two! Not quite ready for this!

And there we have it! Practically a book so congratulations if you made it this far!

Workout wise, things have been a bit slow. Still working on getting the tendons on the top of my right foot to come around. Haven’t had much time to fit in rides. BUT we have made it to the gym/pool a few times to get in some good weight workouts! Already plotting plans for 2020 with some new goals. Since I cant choose between running and riding, there is a goal for each. While next year wont be the year for it, I am now 100 mile ultra running curious. Maybe after I check a couple more things off I will dive into that realm in the next couple of years 🙂

Hope you are enjoying a less snowy Fall where you are! See you again soon!


And Just Like That…

It’s Fall. Whhhhhaaaatttt?!?!?!?!

Yes, I pretty much disappeared for the whole Summer. There was a good amount of fun but there was also a HUGE amount of work in there.

Trying to think back (you know, based on cell phone photos) on what we did!

There was a good amount of outdoor eating and enjoying our partially built railing around the deck. Hoping to make more progress there before snow!


Brooke has enjoyed improving on her new bike. She is crushing the gears!


We purchased the lot next to us (because we couldn’t really handle the thought of neighbors). A rancher friend hayed it for us! Was pretty fun to watch! Now we have 10 acres to play on.



The second weekend of July, Ken and I dropped Brooke and Jasper off with Errin and Colin and we headed to Beaver, Utah to race the Crusher in the Tushar. It was about 69 miles with 10,400 feet of climbing. It was hard. Ha! The trip took a crazy turn when we ended up without a hotel room (luckily we could crash on a friend’s floor-ideal race prep). Not sure where the other 25 people who had the same issue ended up.

The race itself was a lot of fun (though also incredibly painful-ha). I have big plans for redemption next year! Ken did great and finished 12th overall. I struggled in the last 20 miles or so with some serious low back cramping and issues with blurry vision-thanks to super dry contacts. Happy to finish 12th out of 36 the 36-49 year old women.


Back home, Brooke kept up the biking and I switched to running for the rest of the summer.


This guy turned 10!


Even though I switched to running, I couldn’t resist a free entry to the 100 mile gravel version of the Tour de Steamboat. I suffered having not recovered from the Crusher a week prior.


We did some Vizsla sitting for some friends. Hi, Penny! She is 3. And a riot.


The two of them get along amazingly well!



Farmer’s Market and Brooke’s first time trying Cotton Candy. She thought it was okay, but only ate half and was done. I was fine with that. 😉


Had some mornings like this. I got to run through that low fog and it was amazing!


Lots of playing.



Outdoor playing and painting.


I jumped into the Stinger Trail Marathon. On 4 weeks of running. And woke up with a cold the morning of. It was great. Okay, it was a struggle, but it was a really good supported long run.

Ken worked a couple of Triathlons.

Then he looked like this.


And then our lives exploded….hahahahaha. But really. SBT GRVL week hit and it got insane.

Thankfully, we had a LOT of help from family.

When parents show up with giant dinos strapped to their roof!?


Someone thought it was the best day ever. Totally normal yard decor.



Did some VIP decor creating.


Stayed up until all hours of the night, er, morning….yes, that is stage building at 10pm.


All in all, the event was incredible. The amount of happiness shared by the participants was out of this world. Social media exploded. It was amazing. No sleep for over a week, but amazing.

So thankful for all of the help from our families and friends. We really couldn’t have done it without them!!

Brooke got to come visit at the expo and just happened to match our sunscreen sponsor!


Ken made all of my podium dreams come true!


A small peek into the race. Ended up with 1200 starters on race morning! That’s a lot of people!


Photo by our SBT GRVL photo team (they were amazing!).

I spent race day at the start/finish doing all sorts of things!

Alle crushed her first 100 mile race (not to mention she came from sea level!) as well as Colin. (And then we put them to work tearing everything down at the end of the day. Not sure why they still like us.


Robert, Rene and Keith all did great in the GREEN course! After they had been put to work for the days before hand!


My cardio involved things like running for finish line fencing that blew down. Always a good time.


Everyone got put to work. Even the kid 😉


She got to ride too, so she was okay with her jobs 😉


Since the race, there has been a lot of work cleaning up, finding places for storage, redesigning the website, responding to social media, etc. Never a dull moment.

Also thrown in there has been training for my first 50 mile ultra running race. It happens to be this Saturday. 8 weeks of training could have been a little on the low side for something like this. I guess we will see! I finished my last speed workout today and just have 2 tiny runs left this week. Excited and equally terrified for Saturday. Just have to figure out what to wear/take/pack….should be about 35 degrees at the start and then warm to 50s-60s. Most is above 9500-10,000 feet so should be perfect running temps!

And I think that is all of the big things! Looking forward to a little down time sometime soon!

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