Saturday morning found Tom and I packing the last of those necessary things into the truck, meeting up with our friends in another matching truck, and heading out into the wilds of the Nevada desert. We've spent quite a bit of time traipsing around Nevada, looking for petroglyphs and hot springs, and I always feel a great sense of relaxation settle in once we pass through the outskirts of Reno and into the wide open expanse. The weekend's objective? My fave, some new hot springs.
We arrived at our destination, smack in the middle of a lovely valley, and not a soul around, and set up camp.
So I headed on my way with no particular objective in mind other than running 14 miles. I had the vague idea to keep my pace around 12:xx, just to keep from getting too lazy. The scenery was just breathtaking -- I didn't get any decent photos, and this video really doesn't do it justice, but I was playing around with the video functions of my phone, so here's what I got:
The google earth image from within Garmin Connect is kinda stunning in and of itself (this is around Kyle Hot Springs):
I fiddled and dwadled, as usual, the first couple of miles, then settled in and really enjoyed to view and the relatively flat road. Other than stopping to pee (and, for some reason, I had to pee about every 2 miles. I hope this does NOT happen for my race -- I'm just conditioned to drup trou when necessary, I dunno what you citified runners do . . . ), I ran pretty steady the whole way. I slowed as the road slowly rose from the valley to the foothills, and was happy to turn around and pick up the pace at the 7 mile mark. Overall, 14 miles at 2:55, pace 12:37.
The weather was a fluid, constantly changing event all weekend. In the wee hours of this morning, we actually got a little dusting of snow, perhaps an inch or so. The skies were looking kinda alien:
and the towels left out were a little tricky to use after the first morning soak.
It melted off pretty quickly as the sun rose, though. I have to say, it's quite nice to watch the snow melt from a pool of 104F.
And tomorrow, my 20-miler. Oooo, wheee!
So, on a different note, I need to throw a question out there. I have been running, fairly consistently, for about 4 years. I've participated in plenty of races, from 10Ks to tri's to half marathons. I'm slow and always take it pretty easy. Ultimately, I don't give a rat's ass what my times are. I live at 6000'. My first marathon, for which I am almost adequately trained for at best, is in May. Would I be crazy to be thinking about doing a 20 mile trail race (at altitude, w/ 2000' elevation gain) just 2 weeks later?
I would really like to run this, but don't want to do anything stupid. It seems to me that this wouldn't cause any undue harm, though. What do YOU think??