Sunday, February 15, 2009


The sun is shining, snow is on the hills, and the air is blue blue blue. I'm still under the weather, but I've managed to represent on the trails the last couple days. Yesterday I got up early and went from Larrabee up to Fragrance, then Chinscraper, and then back down. Then I did a repeat. Total of about three hours, with plenty of hiking. I think it's about 2000 feet up each time, maybe a little more. I wanted a threepeat, but common sense won out, as I wasn't feeling well. I'm officially calling this my chinup workout, and I expect the number to grow. My theory is I need to do a lot of hills for Hardrock. (You think?) Onefriend went as far as to say marathons and anything flat is worthless for prep. I don't know about that--in fact, I disagree with Onefriend, but I think the gist of what he says is right. Hills, hills, hills.
I have lots of mantras for hills. "Why must I always ascend?" I said for three weeks, all the time, when I trekked to Everest Basecamp--not a lot of down on the way up. I've found myself reaching back to that adventure, to help me prepare mentally for HR. Another one I say to myself sometimes is, "Updown girl, you've been living in a flat earth world." And then there is "I am able," which somehow naturally stuck with me during Wasatch. I was saying "I am able, I am able" for hours, as I'd chug up hills. The trouble with "I am able" was--- somehow, in the middle of the night when my thoughts were drifting and slightly delusional, I paired Able with Cain. Of course, in Genesis, Cain kills Able, and so I started thinking about this, and Springsteen's "Adam Raised A Cain," and this totally messed with my mantra, as I started wondering what my personal Cain was. This is why folks do ultras--they take us to interesting places, outside and in.
Anyway, today I ran up to Fragrance again, this time with a friend. The lake is still a bit iced, and then we made it up to a perch above the lake, and then out the back side with some top notch island views. (Which, when I see, at some point I usually think, Island girl.....Elton John.) I would say my weekend effort was rather pedestrian overall, but considering that I'm still sick, it was about right. You can tell it's February on the hills---a lot of Chuckanutters were out there both days, most of them looking much more prepared than me. Also, there are lots of eagles in the Skagit flats right now. I saw a bunch of them playing catch with a mouse yesterday, kind of like seagulls down at Ivars. Circle of life.

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