Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Brain Sundries

The alarm went off at 4:15 yesterday morning. I had a stack of school work to get done, and I'm starting to think my hours of productivity are somehow tied to the sun. Perhaps I am solar-powered, but these short days seem to leave me with too much to do, and not enough time. By some miracle, I plowed through an enormous amount of work between 4:15 and 6:00 am, and I'm starting to think these may become the golden hours of my day. I've never, ever been a morning person, but I'm realizing that some things change with age.

Lately, I've been plagued with a million writing topics, and not enough time to write. And when I say "plagued," I do mean that my own medley of thoughts is keeping me up at night. You'd think an avalanche of inspiration would be a good thing. If you're a backcountry skier though, you know how deadly an avalanche can be. Yes, I'm feeling buried alive under the sundries of my own brain. Strange, no?

So, perhaps the early mornings will help me sort it out. Perhaps not. In the meantime, here's a small purging of thoughts from the frightening inner-workings.

I'm cooking up a series on the best trips of my life. Now that we're done with "The Aughts," and well into...what are we calling this decade? Someone get back to me on that one. Anyway, it's giving me pause to think about the last ten (or fifteen) years. My brain is definitely marinating something along the lines of "Five Epic Trips," only with a more creative title. (Hopefully.) As a little preview I can tell you that it involves crazy road-trips, the search for the Gobi Bear in Mongolia, and, of course, everything in between. I think it is these ghosts of adventures-past that are haunting me the most right now. Truthfully, I've done some pretty amazing shit in my life.

I'm also cooking up my race schedule for 2010. At the moment I've committed (as in - put my money where my mouth is) to only two races: AR50 in April, and TRT 100 in July. The biggest constraint I've put on myself this year is to cut the cash I'm spending on races. I loved my '09 race schedule, but those entry fees really add up. Here's a possible/probable schedule:

Tahoe Rim Tour 13 mile Snowshoe Race - January
The Great Ski Race - March
AR 50 - April
Diablo Marathon - April
Silver State 50M - May
TRT 100M - July
Where's Waldo 100K - August
Tahoe Marathon - September

I'm a little bummed because I really loved all the shorter races I ran last year. I'll probably throw in a few of those, depending on my personal schedule at the time, but they'll have to be limited. I also don't have any new races except Waldo, which may or may not happen - again, depending on other life plans. I've been wanting to do this race for a few years now though, and I'm really looking forward to it.

I can't seem to wrap my brain around a reflection post on my 2009 season. I promise you that one is coming. It's just that...there's so much. Personal reflection is possibly my favorite kind of writing to do, (narcissism, anyone?) so I can't figure out why this one is coming so tough for me.

I have at least three more gear reviews on deck. These do come tough for me, even when I love the gear. Actually, I think that's why I do them. Personal challenge. (Seriously!)

And speaking of gear, you should be reminded of the upcoming deadline of January 15. This will mark the end of Wilderness Running Company's Nathan sale. If you want to take advantage of the sale, use coupon code nathan20 at checkout on the WRC site to get 20% off. You can read someone's sweet review of the Nathan Intensity and HPL here. The 15th is also the date by which you need to subscribe to the WRC blog in order to get in the drawing for a free Garmin 405. Even if you don't need a Garmin, Stacy writes a very compelling blog. Subscribe already! And, as if you needed any more incentive to roll with the WRC posse, you can also follow them on Twitter. Doing so will get you into another drawing, this time for a Garmin 405 with heart rate monitor. Sweet! (This is like, the second chance drawing for all the losers! I mean, not that you're a loser or anything...)

And in the tradition of saving the best (and/or worst, depending on your perspective) for last, there are the thoughts of the upcoming TRT 100 miler keeping me up at night. Is it really possible to be this preoccupied by something that is still over six months away? I did see, just today, the current list of entrants. I have to confess, I was completely thrilled at the number of familiar names on the list, at all distances. There were a few notably absent names as well (you know who you are), but the race isn't full quite yet, and I have my fingers crossed for you guys. I am so excited to see everyone, I almost wish I could be present for the 50M/50K start just to see you all off! But looking at my own name on the 100 miler list, well, it evokes a feeling that can only be described as nausea.

And it occurs to me that now might be a good time to start running again.

Fun times with friends at Tahoe Rim Trail!


  1. Tick tock, chica. July will be here before you know it!

    I'll plan to see you at Diablo - if they ever schedule the thing, that is.

  2. Marc is seriously considering Waldo so I may be there cheering!

    Looking forward to reading about your adventures!

  3. Donald - No joke, putting down the money for TRT has me training all of a sudden! Fear is such a good motivator.

    Sarah - Oh, that would be so cool to see/meet you at Waldo! It's still the biggest question mark on my schedule, but I really hope that one pans out for me.

  4. Hey...your schedule is missing your 'training trip' to Banff for some pre 100 miler epic distance training runs with Les ans I...! ?

    ...and we never charge entry fees for training camps! :)

  5. Actually Kieth I have been thinking about exactly that, and how it will fit in to the schedule! May have to be "post-100 miler" rather than "pre." But I'll definitely be checking in with you guys about when will be a good time for a visit! :)

  6. Keith is like the Banff tourism department marketer or something for his night job, I'm convinced! ;)

  7. I'm not a morning person either but changes in the horizon may change this. Yeah, those races really do add up don't they, my goodness. Diablo.... that's all I'm going to say about that ...and this... it's the devil's race. F that stinking beautifully hot race. So sweet yet so brutal, it's almost sinful. Almost as bad as TRT. That race...so amazing yet it strikes a fear deep inside of me. TRT 08 left it's mark on me and its gonna be at least another year before I face up to it. I finished that race but I got my butt handed to me. Maybe next year after WS100, I have a guaranteed entry for 11 for WS. WS and then TRT for a possible Tahoe sweep. Maybe.

    I see that you've been commenting on Meghan's site. Funny thing is that back in 2008, when I was running behind you at TRT, I told her that you reminded me of her when I was running behind her in KM100, and now you guys are friends. Small world.

  8. Ohhhh, how I am also haunted by writing projects. It's a wonderful/ awful feeling.

    Kinda like sending in dough to run a 100, right?

  9. Oh, and eff the mornings.

  10. Meghan - Yes, and he does a great job! Doesn't he?

    Rick - Uh, you're planning to get you're redemption at TRT on a year where you're running States too? Interesting plan. :) I'll be at States in '11 as well. Yay for the 2-time losers! Looking forward to it! Aw, and that's a huge compliment to be compared to Meghan!

    Russ - Perfect analogy. Total love/hate. Glad to know I'm not the only one haunted by my own unwritten pages.