I have waited for this day for 7 years

Today was a big day in our family. We did something I have envisioned since I first thought about having kids. We ran up Waterton Canyon with the kids on their bikes! The kids have been to Waterton before, but not since I used to push them in the double jogger when they were about one year old.

Image

The old days

Waterton has been closed for a public works project for about a year and a half – pretty much the whole time that my kids have been riding their bikes without training wheels. I have missed running there so much. It is definitely my favorite place to run long. The scenery is beautiful and there are bathrooms.  Just about all a girl could ask for.

We enjoyed some unseasonably warm weather in Denver this past weekend, and everyone was out all weekend enjoying it. The parking lot at Waterton was about as full as I have ever seen it. Apparently I am not the only one who has been eagerly awaiting its reopening. There were bikers, hikers, walkers, runners, and fishermen all over the place. The kids were super excited for their first “mountain bike.” Kendall had said in the morning that she didn’t want to ride, but once we got going, she kept saying things like, “mom, this is so much fun! I had no idea it was going to be like this!” My heart was filled with joy.

Image

All smiles

Image

We got lucky and spotted a lone bighorn sheep

Mark is a bit of a task master, so he encouraged them to ride all the way up to the 4.3 mile picnic area before we even stopped for water. Mark ran ahead until his Garmin showed 5 miles while the kids and I enjoyed the view.

Image

Family photo at the turnaround

On the way back down, we had a bit of a challenge – Jack’s rear wheel flatted with 3 miles left. Having never done this before, we were unprepared and didn’t have any extra tubes or air. He was a great sport about it though and alternated between walking, running, and throwing rocks into the river.

The kids ride at a perfect long run pace now and I am hoping to have them as company for some runs this spring and summer, before they get too big to ride alongside mom.

Image

Just a really awesome day.

R.I.P. Treadmill

Sad day here yesterday. I broke our (second) True treadmill. Instead of rushing out to replace or fix it, I am thinking of…..running outside!  I am not big on running outside during the winter. It was much easier for me to hop on the treadmill at any hour of the day (or evening) and crank out my workout all while entertaining myself with most of Bravo’s line-up mixed with some occasional “news” like the Today Show or The View. Yes, I watch all of that crap, but only when working out or folding laundry, which makes it ok in my mind.

We have owned a treadmill for a long time. About a year and a half ago, Mark was doing a rare interval session on our old treadmill when it gave out on him. The repairs were going to be expensive, so we instead decided to buy a comparable machine from Craigslist. Machine two was not quite as nice as machine one, but it was very serviceable.

Yesterday was not a great day for outdoor running for a fair weather runner like me, so I decided to do my longish run on the treadmill. Halfway between Real Housewives of Orange County and Tabitha’s Salon Takeover, I had a bad feeling about the ‘mill. Something clearly wasn’t quite right with the belt and I was running on borrowed time, so to speak.

I kept plugging away with the run and 1:15 into it, I cranked up the speed for the tempo portion. This is where the situation became more serious. The belt was definitely not right, and I knew the inevitable was coming. The treadmill and I held on for 15 minutes of tempo and then I shut it off and inspected the damage.

Image

It also appeared that the basement was filled with smoke. Or maybe it was fumes?

So that was our last run together and it was a pretty good one. Thanks True 550 for the memories and all of the miles we logged together. Now it’s time for me to hit the open road, and not a minute too soon since racing season is upon us.

See you on the roads!