Sunday, October 16, 2011

Week Summary: Oct 10 - 16

First Flatiron.
Mon-AM: 1:15, 2500' ~ Green Mt.
Up and down front. Hiking the whole way.
PM: 1:27, 2600' ~ Green Mt.
Up and down 3rd access route. Hiking.  Great moonrise.

Tue-AM: 1:26, 2600' ~ Green Mt. 
Up 3rd access, down front mellow with Gavin. Massage with Jeff Staron.
PM: 1:27, 2600' ~ Green Mt.
Up 3rd access, down front. Unfortunately, the full moonrise was obscured by clouds on the horizon.

Wed-AM: 1:26, 2600' ~ Green Mt. 
Up 3rd access and down front again with Gavin. Tired.
PM: 1:27, 2500' ~ Green Mt.
Up and down front. Cranked out a 32:58 hiking PR ascent. In the dark w/o a headlamp on the way down, so it was slow going.

Thu-AM: 1:58, 2800' ~ 3rd Flatiron+Green.
Climbed the 3rd with Buzz. He belayed me on the downclimb (SW Chimney), which wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be, and then I continued on to tag the summit of Green. Can't believe the time change doesn't happen for another three weeks, I'm tired of the dark mornings.

Fri-AM: 2:19, 3000' ~ Green Mt.
Up the front and then exploring out towards the south summit of Green and down to Dinosaur Mountain.  Involved more awkward 4th Class downclimbing than I'd hoped, but the summit of Dinosaur above Mallory Cave is quite unique.
PM: 1:15, 2500' ~ Green Mt.
Up and down the front totally in the dark. My legs felt great on the 33:20 ascent and I spent a lot of time on top watching the orange harvest moon rise.

Sat-AM: 1:43, 3600' ~ Green Mt.
Via Skunk Canyon.  After biking over to the base of Skunk Canyon I actually ran the entire 17min approach to the Mesa Trail and the climber's trail that takes off up from there. The shin was surprisingly pain-free (first running steps I've taken on it since last Saturday), so on the way back down I ran all of this same section of trail for a total of ~30min of running on this outing.
PM: 1:18, 2500' ~ Green Mt.
Up and down front with a hiking PR 32:05 ascent. Legs felt great tonight and I'm not sure it's possible for me to hike this route any faster. This is only 1:21 off of my absolute PR on the mountain (on a slightly different route), which leads me to believe that my heart/lungs are actually in fairly decent shape but I'm just held back by mechanics right now.

Sun-AM: 1:37, 2800' ~ Green Mt.
Up and down front. For the first time in weeks I ran the 16min from my doorstep to the base of Amphitheater and then the 13min from the base back home. The shin felt basically fine, but my running stride felt awkward on the pavement. All of my travel on the actual mountain was hiking.  The uphill because I can hike it nearly as quickly as running with way less stress on my lower legs; the downhill because the steep downhill is more shock than I'm willing to impart on my shin just yet. Baby steps. I'll be psyched if I can maintain this 30min/day of running (with copious hiking) through the next week.
PM: 1:22, 2600' ~ Green Mt.
Up 3rd access and down 1st access. Legs were very solid tonight and I was happy to sneak this outing in before it was fully dark.

Hours: 20hr (1hr of running)
Vert: 35,200'

I was rather disheartened earlier in the week when my shin seemed to have regressed several steps, but by the end of the week things had seemed to calm down a bit again.  I think I just have to be very careful now to not get too excited and limit any running to just one outing per day, and keep it in the 30min range for at least the next week.

In the meantime, this:

and the impossibly catchy "Don't Move" off of Phantogram's soon-to-be-released new EP have me very excited for their show at the Marquis Theater in Denver at the end of the month.

What I've been doing, instead of running, for the past two months. From Monday morning 10/17/2011. Cloudy morning, so it was a little dark at first, before the sun made it's way over the horizon. I cheat a little at the end.


Jason said...

I can't imagine what hiking at that pace even looks like. Are you taking huge steps or hiking with just a really high cadence? Maybe some combination of both? It would be cool to see some video of that. Out of curiosity, what was your split from the bottom of Amphitheater to that first outcropping where it meets the Saddle Rock trail?

Also, it was very nice to meet and chat with you at the Boulder Outdoor Coalition event a couple weeks ago.

Anton said...

Jason - I think it probably only looks goofy on flatter terrain (at least that's only where it feels goofy). Most of the time it's just an ugly hunched-over, hands-on-knees technique with very deliberate and steady strides. On sufficiently steep stuff I'll have my hands out on rocks/logs in front of me taking as much weight as possible off my legs. I've been tempted to try out the trekking pole technique but have never gotten around to it. My split at the Amphitheater/Saddle Rock Junction was 7-flat when I went 32:05. 7:30 is pretty standard for me there these days.

Jason said...

Sorry, I didn't mean to imply that it would look goofy. So do you start with your hands on your knees or do you reserve that just for when you start to feel tired and do you use that technique on the flat areas too? Compared to your running stride do you take longer or shorter steps and is your cadence slower or close to the same? I'm just trying to figure out what to work on to get faster.

Chris Cawley said...

I know it is probably not your bag, and I'm sure I'm not the first person to say this to you, but have you ever considered cycling as a means of cross training when trying to defeat an overuse condition? I am hooked on mountain running and training for ultras these days, but I often hop on my road bike in the fall when temps in SLC are dropping. Even at peak running fitness, doing a long climb(or two, or three) on a road bike always leaves me feeling humbled. For a guy in your situation, I bet your heart and lungs would get all the attention they need on a bike, and that your shin "issues" might be a thing of the past by now.

carlusjove said...

Hi Anton. It's very inspiring for me to read all of these latest posts. I started trail running about one year ago (never done it before), and I pulled too far, so I've had shin problems ever since. I've been very frustrated, because it was the first time I felt cool with physical exercise, and it was hard for me to assimilate that maybe I wasn't made for that. But with patience and some cycling as a cross training, but also by reading your weekly posts, I'm being able to run again. Only 2k for session, three days a week, but I'm so happy that I can do it again, and painless!

So well, thanx for your blogging, 'cause it keeps me motivated and plenty of will.

Carles (València)

Lee said...

Anton, this injury must be really frustrating you! I know the feeling, there is nothing worse than wanting to get out and put some miles in, with an injury stopping you. I know that this has been going on for a while with you but as with everything there is light at the end of the tunnel man. It's just a little hard to see right now. In any case, this is something to be put done to experience and these things always make you stronger!

The picture that you took at First Flatiron looks awesome! Here in the UK there are some great mountains, particularly in the north of England (Lake District) and Scotland.

Kendrick said...


I just recently moved to Boulder and have been running trails primarily in my MT10's. I've noticed that the ball of my right foot feels as though it's bruised (likely from wearing too minimal a shoe on some rocky terrain that I'm not accustomed to). This pain is alleviated when I wear my MT101's. Just curious what local trails you run in your MT10's?



Brandon Fuller said...

I get the feeling that WE are not managing the injury anymore. WE are adapting to it.

Anton said...

Jason - Just posted this from my trip up the mountain this morning (sorry it was still dark for the first parts). Pushing on your knees isn't a result of being tired; it's simply much more efficient. You're using your upper body to help your leg muscles overcome gravity/maintain momentum with each step. on flatter areas I'm not as hunched over and am pushing higher up on my legs. I would say in general the cadence of hiking is quite a bit slower than running, and this is part of why it's so difficult to switch gears between the two over variable terrain. I think my cadence is a bit higher on steeper terrain than it is hiking on flatter ground (and, obviously, the stride length changes accordingly, too). But, like anything, I think your body finds its own way the more you practice something.

Christopher - I used to do quite a bit of (road) biking back in college and actually enjoyed it (but never as much as running). I had a tibial stress fracture my sophomore year where I ended up putting 3-5hr in on the bike every day (I've had "ultra" tendencies for a long time :-) and once biked from Aspen to Colorado Springs (~160mi) in eight and a half hours on water and four granola bars. A couple years later my bike was stolen and I lost the bug pretty quickly. Now I get very little joy from dealing with the traffic, wind, gear, mechanicals, etc. so though I bike-commute every day I've sort of disregarded it as an exercise option or way of being in the mountains. Every now and then I'm re-inspired by the idea of self-powered long trips, but, unfortunately, until it's my only option I probably won't put any real commitment into it.

Kendrick - Boulder trails are very dry, rocky, and hard. There are basically no mountain trails in the immediate area on which I'm comfortable wearing the MT10s. When I'm healthy, I would do my second-run-of-the-day, flat, creek-path-type runs in the MT10 (30-40mpw). I've always used the MT10 as more of a training/strengthening tool--barefoot simulation--than a go-to running shoe because of the forefoot protection issues you speak of. I like that it's more substantial than a pair of FiveFingers but is still minimal enough as to make my feet work. Don't think that your feet simply "aren't tough enough" to handle the rocks in the don't want to end up with a neuroma or worse. My usage of them would be completely different if I lived in California or the Pacific Northwest, or even back in Colorado Springs (the trails there are much smoother and more gravelly). Most Boulder mountain trails just aren't cushy enough for me to use them all the time. There's a reason the 100s/101s/110s have a rock plate in the forefoot!

Brandon - Ha. Yeah, I know I've definitely been adapting...hopefully not for much longer, though...

Brandon said...

Though opinion varies it may offer some positive benefit to your shin to sport a compression sleeve for the immediate time being...


trang le said...

Soooo.. I think you're amazing. O__O

Rick said...

You are going to be sick fit doing what you're doing. Once that injury gives up it will be great to watch what you do with the fitness you've gained!

Pete said...

It was fun to see your speed hiking.

I am speed hiking as I heal up a lower leg injury. The first time I observed the speed hike, was with a pro mountain guide and I was flabbergasted at how fast he could move.

Any thoughts on being more upright? I naturally stoop while moving, but was recently reading that being more upright and straight can quickly help with many form issues. I have tried it, and had good initial results. Less stiffness in a squeaky hip joint, etc.

Jason said...

Thank you very much for that video. That wasn't really what I was picturing even though you described it accurately. I can see how you can go so fast now although you make it look pretty effortless. It certainly looks more hunched over than I thought but I will definitely be using that technique tomorrow.

I have to agree with you on the cycling thing. I ride to work but I always pick hiking or running over going for a ride. (maybe because I have to work on bikes all day ha ha)

GZ said...

Holy crow that is some impressive looking hiking. I was doing none of that on my res walks last night.

R. Logan Brooks said...


I just wanted to take a second to look back into the not-so-recent past and comment on your magnum opus, your 2009 Leadville 100 race report. I had read that piece quite a while back when I was first drawn and inspired by your exploits, but tonight I revisited it with curiosity and with a more educated knowledge of your favorite past time and all I can say is thank you for such a humble, blunt, and raw breakdown of the absolute breakdown of your being both physically and mentally. We as readers can and have gained from this and other insights from your fingertips and in some cases your lips. But what I find impossible to ignore, impossible to not absorb, is what comes so naturally to you, your humbling selflessness and honesty of both your ridiculous endeavors and more importantly your failures.

Keep healin', enjoy the peaks.

trailrutger said...

Your hiking pace looks very impressive. It looks like i have to train at this as well. I am greatly inspired by al your doing.
I am curio how this will translate into your race pace.


Barry Bliss said...

Running in NYC is so different.
Sometimes their are so many people, cars, etc. that you can barely keep up a good pace.

Juoksentelija said...

Impressive scenery, great photos, overall vey calm and peaceful feeling.

G. Anthony Kunkel said...

until watching that video, my heart went out to you for being injured and still walking, but dang, i didn't realize what exactly you were doing out there! the last time i ran on the Flatirons, i actualy thought to myself "it be a hard enough workout just to walk fast up this." you're gona come back super stong man! see you on the trails man.

Tom said...

Winter Running: Hobnails or Yaktrax? Other?

Ryan said...


I was just recently in Bozeman for a bit, and then remembered reading somewhere that you had lived there for a short time. I went back and read your posts from your Bozeman days. It seemed that you struggled a bit with injury while living there and kept mostly to the flatter trails around town, but have you ever run in the Bridgers or south of Bozeman, in the Gallatin Range? Anything you can recommend there?

Best of luck on the comeback trail,

Freebird said...

Hey Tony -

There is an interesting conversation going on over at Inside Trail on their Skyrunner SuperCup post. It would be interesting to get your thoughts on the race, hiking vs. running, and possible US participation in the race and the Skyrunner series in general.
Looks like an awesome race!

Eli M said...

Hi, Anton
I am a runner from IA and I wanted to thank you for being a beutiful person (I ment mentally) and also thank you for running and living in a truck because that is like my dream

Eazyebeneezer said...

Thank you for posting that video, Tony. Very instructive for those of us learning to integrate some pow hiking into steep sections of trail runs. Your blog never fails to provide some new tidbit to help solve the ultrarunning puzzle.

The Latest News said...

Genuinely satisfied! Things are all extremely, specific, wide open is a outline of the Cheap WOW Gold dilemma. It includes the World Of Warcraft Gold information.