Friday, August 29, 2014

Epic Camp Day 11: In Lake Louise

Once again, I'll cut right to the chase: The race for yellow is on.  Adam Bardsley has the lead over me by a single point.  As it stands, I have not done my second 200k ride, so if/when I make it to Calgary tomorrow (assuming by bike,) I will get those two points.  So in virtual standings, I'm ahead by one point.  I know this; Adam knows this; everyone knows this.  I told Adam B exactly what my plan is for tomorrow, so if he can somehow beat that, then he deserves yellow.
And now the recap of the day.  We rolled out this morning at 9am.  The plan was to ride 15k uphill to Lake Moraine, run up Sentinel Pass, and bike down.  The ride up was super mellow.  It wasn't a race of any kind, and we knew the run was going to be a doozy.  Once we got to the top, we tossed our bikes in the truck and headed to the trail.
The run was 5.8k long and 2400 feet up to Sentinel Pass.  The way up was brutal.  We tried to run at first, but eventually we resorted to power walking.  When the trail leveled out a bit, we'd try to run, but it always pitched up too steep to climb.  At first we were running through a cloud, so the views were crappy.  But once we got above the cloud, the vistas were spectacular.  In fact, they were better than anything I've ever seen before.  Once the internet is good again, I'll post pictures, but for now, you'll have to take my word for it.  The run back down was nice.  Zach and I were running quickly, but I was trying to be cautious to avoid the ankle traps everywhere.  Once we got down to Lake Moraine, we took a quick dip to ice our legs.  Damn that felt good.
After we biked down, lunch was served.  I have to hand it to Michelle, she can make anything taste good with whatever materials she has.  Today we had a Mexican rice dish and pasta with sausage.  Both were amazing.  Sadly, I went light on lunch because I had other plans...
After lunch, I went for a 20k run.  The plan was to run out 10k as a warmup and then do the 7x1k under 3:50 with one minute rest on the way back.  This was a really difficult run, but if I made it under 3:50, it would be worth mega points.  I got it done, so that 20k run alone was worth five points - huge.
Next up was a 90k ride.  I originally planned on riding 120k, but it was getting a little late.  I didn't get out there until 4pm.  My plan was to go out super easy since my legs were a little sore from the 20k run.  I had a nice tailwind, and it was downhill.  I was mentally preparing myself for a grind on the way back.  After the 45k mark, I had some good luck.  The winds had somehow magically changed, and I had a tailwind going back too!  Booyah (or so I thought.)  Around the 65k mark, my luck went to shit.  I saw the clouds off in the distance, and at 65k I finally reached them.  The rain started to come down pretty heavy, and it was back to a stiff headwind.  It wasn't too cold, so I was actually pretty happy about the rain.  If you know me at all, the biggest thing I miss about Chicago is the thunderstorms.  If it's not cold, rain is such a joy for me.  Today though, the rain was ok for about 20 minutes, but the temperature dropped just past my comfort level for the last 20.  When I got back, I was shaking quite a bit, but I did indeed make it back.  This 90k ride netted me another three points.
I met up with the group just a bit late for dinner, but I still had my delicious pulled pork sandwich, all of my fries, the communal salad, and most of Mark's fries as well.  I think I'm starting to get a reputation around here.  I don't know how these guys don't eat more!
When it was all said and done, I was one point behind Adam B.  My eight points didn't quite close the gap.  His early morning 10k run and 150k on the bike was big (I only anticipated him doing 120k.)  But as I said, he knows what I'm going to do tomorrow, so the ball is in his court.  Good luck.

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