Thursday, December 22, 2011

2011 Recap

Ahh, the time of year that beckons reflection. Hot coffee, good beer, and slow runs abound. My family had our first Christmas with 4.

Sometimes folks look back at a year and say, "I could have done better here, here, and here." I know I'm guilty of it. Not this year though, I essentially did everything I wanted to and had a lot of fun in the process. I'll shoot to fulfill the same process this year with similar goals.

I'm embracing the snow for all it's worth, trying to be smarter about my training and scheduling of races. My main goal races are widely spaced, and I'm gonna train specifically for each. Bighorn is gonna be tough, really tough. Compared to Leadville, the race is a MAN sized 100. An area of mountainous terrain on the cusp of the Wyoming/Montana border, this isn't flashy. You'd more likely see Jesus' second coming than a Prius in Dayton, WY. I'll likely be going most of the night solo, no crew or pacer until mile 80. I'm rather excited about this actually, self sufficiency in a 100 is a tough thing to get right.

I've recently given some thought to racing the Devil Mountain 50 in October for the incredible run of Silverton > Steamboat > Pagosa all in a row. I think that would be a bit better than running Deadman Peaks both financially and logistically with what I've got planned for the run up to Hellgate.

In any case, let us look back on the year that was 2011. Some highlights:

Fourth of July Weekend:

My family was in California and I was able to sneak in a LOAD of training in a short amount of time. Two of the greatest people in the world agreed (each in their own way :)) to let me drag them along on a "fun" training weekend which included record setting vertical on all three fronts. Nevertheless we did manage that incredible fun that i'd promised. The fact that we literally almost drove my car off the mountain and died is an afterthought in that weekend which speaks to how great it really was.

Bighorn weekend:
Wyoming. Mountains. Family. First win. Enough said.

How quickly life goes from this:

To this:

Xavier's first day of Preschool:

So, hopefully, there'll be more runs like these to share our "year in review":


Scotty K. said...

I did the Devil Mountain 50K in 2010 when it was still being held in July. Phenomenal course, organization, all of it is great. Sounds like a great year ahead.. Good Luck!

Gangels said...

First few pics look familiar.

PatrickGarcia said...

Thanks Scotty.

Todd- They should, it's your backyard, but I got lost on some of the snow drifts. Ended up at the base of the first summit and decided to go straight up the side of it since I couldn't find the trail. Great workout, but not much of a run.

Gangels said...

yeah, with the recent freeze/thaw its been post hole heaven. I followed your tracks straight up the hill to the top of Baldy. You'll have to come back after the melt, I bet we could nail close to 10k of climbing in 20ish miles.

PatrickGarcia said...

You can count me in, from what I can tell, that trail system is the best/most extensive in the entire Denver front range area.

Jeremy said...

Bighorn 2010 was my first 100 mile finish. After an aborted 100 mile attempt in Moab earlier that year, I had made a pact with myself that I would finish Bighorn at all costs. I had no idea how treacherous the course conditions would be – made Moab seem like a walk in the park. It took me a slogged-out 29 and half hours to finish. No crew, wet feet, and no caffeine made for an unnecessarily difficult race. Needless to say, I learned a lot about racing mountain ultras from that experience. The thing I was least prepared for was the amount of mud and snow on the course and how much that would slow me down. In the end, of course, I was very satisfied with the accomplishment. Good luck to you – I'm sure you'll do great. Sounds like you've got a good idea about what to expect out there.

Keith B. Ives said...

PJ! Thanks for bringing me into the fun this year. I am looking forward to a "fun" weekend or two this year as well. Great job this season-I am crazy proud of you & brag about you to most everyone I meet (we all know that I am kinda a dork like that). Keep it up bro! Happy Birthday!

PatrickGarcia said...

Jeremy- I'm fully aware of the nastiness, which is a good part of the reason why I signed up. The Bighorns are a special place. That was a ballsy first 100 finish!

Keith- I don't know anyone who would voluntarily (well mostly voluntarily :)) sign up for 26 miles on Pikes Peak as their first run past 10 miles... let alone keep up, and keep up in style. Keith = Tough MOFO.

GZ said...

PG - good seeing you last night. Sorry I won't make your 23rd birthday party run. I have a date with my gerontologist. You keep your head on straight like you have man ... good stuff.

PatrickGarcia said...

No worries GZ, I'll get up there sometime soon. If not maybe PP50K?

GZ said...

Negatory on the PP50k for me. Off winter camping with the boy.