In the weeks since I've been back from Badwater I've heard from so many people congratulating me on my finish. I appreciate all the kind words, support and enthusiasm coming from people in the community, the PVH system, and the runners and ultrarunners both locally and out of town.
I've decided to extend my fundraising for the Cancer Care Fund to my future races, like Across the Years and other ultras I'll be doing in the future. The people at the Foundation have been so fantastic to work with. My support for this program doesn't end with Badwater. I hope everyone reading this will consider donating to the PVHS Foundation Cancer Care Fund, the information is on the main blog page to the right. Even a small amount makes a difference for someone in need.
I've been asked to speak to two different groups about my Badwater experience. Each talk is focused on different aspects of the event but have in common self-discipline, teamwork, goal setting, staying focused on the end result, and how it applies to the business world or the world outside of running. I never thought I'd be doing motivational speaking but I think it's easy to talk about something you have so much passion for.
I went back to work this week. It wasn't bad being on my feet the first two days but my feet ached on my last day of work.
I'm back to walking the Buffaloes every day, we're up to 2 miles. Went out for my first run yesterday, five minutes. My feet are still peeling, along with the skin around my ankles from the asphalt burns. My feet are delaminating! Here's a progression of how they look, from last week to this week:
The generous people of Drymax sent me an assortment of socks this week and I'm going to wear them and give them feedback. Here are just a few.
I already wore the sport socks riding my bike, and the running crew socks on my walks and short runs. I have been riding 20 to 35 miles a day this week and those sport socks did keep my feet dry inside my cleats. It's been hot in Fort Collins this week, temperatures around 100 degrees. Everyone is complaining, but I'm more comfortable outside than in the house.
I discovered the bike path in Loveland the other day, which added another 10 miles to my ride. After two hours on the bike my feet were screaming in my cleats. I had to stop and loosen my laces and let my feet out of the box for a while to stretch my toes before I could ride all the way home. My left foot is wider than my right one and always gives me more problems.
As I increase my mileage over the next few weeks, I'll be trying the Drymax trail running, hot weather running, and at least a half dozen other varieties of socks. I plan to wear them at work too, since I'm on my feet running around for twelve plus hours.
I sent my entry into Across the Years for the 48 hour run. If I get a spot in the race, that will be my next big race. They select runners in a lottery since there's so much demand for running the race. It's on a 500 meter track at a small private facility so they can't have open entry.
I can't wait to get back to trail running. I'm thinking about signing up for something around 100 miles this fall. Probably 24 Hours of Boulder. Heartland 100 is already closed, and the other ultras are getting too late in the season, I want some good training time before Across the Years at the end of December.
Hopefully this year the weather will be better at 24 Hours of Boulder. Last year was nasty, running by the light of my headlamp in a garbage bag at 2 in the morning in driving sleet with the wind whipping my face coming off the reservoir, not my idea of a good time. Personally I'd prefer 130 degrees with blazing sunshine anyday.
It's only been two weeks since I finished Badwater but I still have my Death Valley National Park permit on my windshield. I can't let go of it yet. I come home on my days off and sit downstairs where it's quiet and cool, and close my eyes and go back to the race. I have a feeling it's going to be hard to NOT do it next year.
I feel so slow and sluggish on my feet. I have to learn how to run again. This year I trained to finish Badwater, and nothing else. I spent so much time moving slowly that I have to retrain myself to move at a decent pace. By New Years I should be able to work some real running into my schedule!
Between getting back into training, wrapping up some work-related goals this year, public speaking, and sock-testing, it's no small feat!