So I’ve been living at altitude for 5 days now – the first few days were horrible but it seems like I’m getting used to it.
Yesterday I drove from Leadville back to Denver to pick up Elliot. After my experience running in the ‘two-mile high’ city on the first day I suggested that we run in Denver. We stopped just on the out-skirts of town and did a quick 11k run. It felt SO MUCH better to run at 2,000m than 3,200m I’m really excited to get back to sea level.
Generally the feeling I had running in Leadville was just lack of energy – any extra movement was not going to happen. It’s just so hard to do anything that you have to do the minimum possible. Running at the lower elevation I felt able to run around a bit and get my leg speed up on the downhill again. Phew! I was beginning to worry that maybe it was just me!
After heading back to Leadville I did another run along the Mineral Belt trail in the evening which was still hard but at least I could do it without feeling like I was going to die.
This morning (Friday) we took the truck up towards Mosquito Pass - I wanted to try a different trail other than the Mineral Belt. About 1/2 way up we saw a trail heading off so we stopped and I took that. After a few hundred metres the trail went off to one side and I decided to just head straight up Prospect Mountain. The going was slow but I was obviously feeling a lot better. I managed the summit (3,820m) in about 25 mins – about 400m of climbing in 1.5km. The ‘run’ was short and heading straight down the mountain was hard but it was a lot of fun and there were some great views from the peak. More importantly I felt like I had really started to adapt to the elevation and now I’m feeling a lot more confident about heading to Buena Vista (only 7,900 ft / 2,400m) before the race.
In the afternoon Elliot and I went for a run around Turquoise Lake - this was his first run at altitude so he lead and we went by his heartrate – keeping it under 145… just like my first run that meant we were going pretty slow, but it was a nice way to see the lake and the thunderstorm in the distance!
Now we’re at Breckenridge since the Leadville 100 MTB race is tomorrow and there were no more rooms in Leadville. Breckenridge is at 9,600ft so a little lower but not significant really. Tomorrow we’ll do a trail run early before transferring over to Buena Vista with the Transrockies shuttle.