How high? In the first six months of 2010--a relevant training block punctuated with the coda of Western States--I ran:
in 502h 03min,
with 596,500' of vertical climbing.
And some other dude still beat me by six minutes. That's how it goes some times.
(This dude, actually.)
The last three weeks have been far different. The two days after Western States, I didn't run a step (the first days I took off all year), mostly because I really couldn't. I drove back to Boulder, CO, got in a couple extremely short and laughably slow runs, and then drove home to Nebraska for a 4th of July family reunion in South Dakota. Other than offering a very good excuse for taking it very easy getting back into running, it provided an in-my-face reminder of how miserable wind, heat/humidity, and mosquitos can be. There are some things I don't miss about my Great Plains roots.
After that it was another big road trip back to Boulder where life became complicated yet again (but, in a fantastic way) with Jocelyn's return to Colorado, a tight hamstring, and a three-day video shoot in Boulder's Mountain Parks for the forthcoming New Balance Minimus line. During this time I also had the pleasure of spending some time hanging out with fellow WS-competitor Kilian Jornet and other friends here in Boulder (his English has significantly improved even since race day) as he took a whirlwind tour of the western US before heading back home to Europe.
(jLu tests out her Polaroid camera b-day gift.)
So, after two weeks of 34 miles and 79 miles and a couple of key visits to Allison Suddard for acupuncture, I've been spending this week just trying to transition back into a more routine and familiar lifestyle that will hopefully involve a lot more running and frequent trips to the high country both to appreciate its rare snow-free state and to prepare for end-of-the-summer races. I'm confident it will all come together again soon.