Early morning group run around the full complement of trails in JeffCo's Mt. Falcon Open Space park.
Distance: 14 miles
Rolled into the Mt. Falcon parking lot at 7:02 a.m. and found motley group of runners standing around...waiting. Glad the the Two Minute Rule wasn't in effect, or I would have been running alone most of the morning.
The group, which consisted of me, TG, PG, JY WA and BF started out together, but soon spread out as the Turkey Trot Trail turned upwards. Mt. Falcon starts in a pretty unforgiving fashion, with the steepest climbs in the park appearing within the first three minutes of starting out.
The plan for the day was to run a route known as v1 (version one). Not sure why it's called that, but it works. This was my second time running this route. The first was a humbling experience back in October with Scott J.
We quickly spread out as we each found our warm-up paces. We climbed steadily up to the picnic shelter with TG and BF setting a solid pace. I hit the shelter in 34:30. I was not feeling it...no pep this morning.
After regrouping, we made quick work of a couple short out-and-backs on the left and right side of the trail before climbing up to near the park's apex and running a series of looping trails to the south and east.
I never found my legs this morning. I think I may have left them on Green Mountain yesterday. Felt this morning like I was suffering pretty much the whole time, save for the final 2.5 mile descent down the Castle Trail.
Beautiful morning with the warm temps. Trail conditions were fair. There was quite a bit of ice on the upper portions of Turkey Trot and on the loop trails towards the east. Still, a great run with a solid group of friends.
Even though I felt sluggish today, I had the most solid week of running since October. The left heel is definitely feeling better, making running much more appealing (and possible). For the last three nights, I've worn a night splint. That seems to be making a significant difference.
Also, on Friday morning I had my first-ever acupuncture treatment. The therapist did a whole mess o' needle insertions in areas on my left calf, aimed at getting all the stuff that's tight in there to let go. The calf muscles seem to be pulling on the heel, leading to all the pain I've been having there. She also did a bunch of work on my right ab to see about easing the muscle tear/discomfort that's been plaguing me in that area. I ended up with a lot of new soreness in my calf, which she told me to expect (and which eased a lot overnight). Not sure yet if it's helping the heel pain or not. I'm going to go back another time or two to let it play out. I'm really keen to get past this seemingly chronic injury. Would be very nice to run pain free. Starting to see some daylight now.
2,878 feet of elevation gain.