Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Running, Running, and Running

Well it has been well over one month getting closer to two since we have been home, not that I am keeping track or anything. I have not had the best track record for updating this blog, so for the 3 of you who look at it, sorry. This past month has had it's ups and downs. It was harder than I thought adjusting to being home. It seems like we are only now feeling that we are adjusting to being back home and trying to find a rythem to our schedule. That might have something to do with our crazy busy Aug-Sep schedule of running, running, traveling, birthdays, weddings, school, and running...

Let me explain.

Our first stop, even before getting home to Pocatello was in Star Valley (Afton), Wy to run our favorite race the El Vaquero Loco (50K and 25K). Luke did awesome again, and was able to win the race for the 4th time in a row. I was glad that I also had the opportunity to run it this year, last year being pregnant kind of put a damper on running, but it made it all the more exciting this year to be back in the game. I felt much better and actually ran way more of the course than I had done previously, but I was kind of sad to see that my time was not that much better. Besides that it was great to be back in familiar territory, seeing northwestern mountains and good friends.

Groups of friends ready to run the race

Jenny and I stopped for a photo, we really just wanted to rest from hiking up from the lake you see below.

Celebrating my Birthday with a good ol' fashioned ride on the tube.

After getting home we began setteling in, I unfortunately got a year older. We knew that summer would shortly come to an end so we hurried and tried to do a lot of the things that you do in Pocatello for summer, and then came more running. Luke has had a goal to run to the top of the Grand Teton for awhile now. Last year he ran to the top of Mt. Borah and set a running speed record there, so he hoped that he could have some success on the Grand. The day he ran the Grand was beautiful, he did an amazing job and set a time of 3:33:02! Yes, he ran to the top of the Grand and back down in 3 hours, 33 min, and .02 seconds. While it was an awesome effort, and the fastest time in the past 20 something years that we know of, the record was set 28 years ago with a time of 3:07. Now we'll have a new goal for next year.

Driving early in the morning...anticipating the run.

Great view of the tetons.

brynlee playing on bunk beds at the "hostel" in Jackson where we stayed.

Off to run..

And back 3:33:02 later.

Catching his breath. Well done Luke.

A family photo we had taken after Luke ran the Grand Teton.

And who could start off September without going to the fair. Grandma and Grandpa Nelson came into town just in time and took us to the fair. Brynlee and Chlöe enjoyed walking around, but Brynlee still doesn't like feeding the animals, she is willing to get closer now. Grandpa was very patient with her and spoiled us a lot at the fair, Thanks again.

Following the Grand, Luke ran the Wasatch 100 trail race. Luke's parents were able to help out with the race while they were here, which made it so nice. We were all able to be there and cheer him on. With trail races you can only see the runners when they go into aid stations so there are usually several hour in between when you see the runners. Luke was at the front of the pack and moved between 2nd and 3rd position through the 100 mile race. Each time we saw him he looked great and was feeling great, 2 things which usually don't happen when most people run for 100 miles. Luke felt like he had run the perfect race, his training and nurtition were where they needed to be and he ended up finishing 2nd overall. He ran 100 miles in under 20 hours. A time for the Wasatch that is incredible. There have only been 6 people in 32 years to run the race in under 20 hours. We were really happy for him! Plus it was fun to watch him do so well. If you are interested he has a race report on his blog, which you can read here.

After the race we came home, Chlöe turned One! I can't believe that she has turned one already. She had a fun little birthday party and did not dissapoint in getting attention. She was quite entertaining as she was opening her gifts and attempting to eat her cake.

Luke also became a year older after Chlöe, but we didn't really mention that too much.
Later that weekend, Nakita, Luke's sister got married in Twin Falls and it was a great opportunity for Luke's family to all be together. It was good to see a lot of people who we had not seen in awhile, but sad because Luke's parents headed back to NM after the wedding.

Nakita and Brandon

Chlöe and Grandma


Brynlee then started Pre-School, which was a good thing because she could not wait any longer. She loves school and was so excited to get back into pre-school again. She started this fall with a new school, we are having her go to a montessori program and so far we have loved it for her. It is a great fit for her and I am excited to watch her grow and learn.

We rounded out the month with another session of running. This past weekend was the Bear 100, which starts in Logan, Ut and ends in Bear Lake. This time both Luke and I Paced runners that were running the course. It was the first time that I had the chance to pace a runner so I was a little nervous, but I think it turned out ok. I ran 17 miles, we'll hiked, from 8:30 pm to 4:15 am. It was dark the entire time so we used our headlamps and tried to have warm layers on because it got really dark. Overall it was a great learning experience on seeing what goes on at night in a 100 mile race, but it didn't convience me that it's for me. Who knows, maybe one day.

Car camping at it's best. In a parking lot making pasta. Better yet, Luke was cooking!

Chlöe hanging out in her "play-area"

The only thing that is left now is for me to enjoy a quiet conference weekend and to be inspired and Luke will finish off the month running down the Middle Fork of the Salmon River with his friend Ty. They will be running around 120 miles in 2 days and will be raising awareness for Salmon (the fish not the town- haha). You can also follow his run on his blog....
(So I got this up a little later than I had planned. You can read Luke's Epic adventure of 130+ miles running for 52 hours on his blog. I am just glad he made it home with out a rescue story)

This next month I am looking forward to changing colors, the smells of baking many goodies, and halloween!