"Strong and Steady"- mantra for Day #2
I woke up bright and early on day#2 at 5:15am at the KOA Campground in Steamboat Springs. I had fallen asleep the night before by 8:30, so I felt fully rested! I woke up to several texts from past relay runners with motivational quotes and "you got this" messages - those really brought a smile to my face! I was excited to head out there for another day of exploring. Tayler was my crew for the day while Rob moved the RV to the next spot along our route, so she laid out coffee/ creamer, pop tarts, and a banana for me. I added some nuun active (caffeinated) with water to my breakfast. I found my zip-lock bag with todays outfit that along included my mantra for the day "strong and steady" written on the outside of the bag. I was fed and dressed and we were on the road once again leaving Steamboat by 6am! This time as we left town, it felt surreal because the next time I would be back would be after I ran 175 miles TO DENVER! So crazy.
She dropped me off at my starting point and I started with a half mile walk to warm-up by 6:45am. I had originally wanted to walk a mile or so as a warm-up before I started running, but I was just too excited and my music playlist was going, so I just couldn't hold back anymore! I waved at the cows (no real traffic this early in the morning to contend with), but they were actually scared of me (ha)! I found a great bush about 3 miles in that hide me enough to go pee- too much coffee (definitely no porta-potties or gas stations along this section)! Tayler met me 5 miles in and I had some water and a honey stinger caffeinated strawberry-kiwi gel. There was a small section shortly thereafter that she didn't feel comfortable with me running (hidden turns/no shoulder), so she drove me through it (around a mile or so section) and I was on my way for another 5 miles!
Traffic never felt too terrible throughout the day and the temperatures were fantastic (maybe low 60's). It was surreal to be seeing all the same landscapes on foot that we drive by whenever we go to Denver! I was determined to get past Kremmling today to set myself up for success on Day 4 (conquer Loveland Pass). Around 5 miles outside of Kremmling (mile 18ish for the day), I switched out my socks and sneakers. I did this everyday and this really helped give me a little pep in my step in those later miles.
I had Tayler begin to meet me every 3 miles after mile 18, since it was getting warmer/ more traffic. I liked to make sure I was drinking/eating/ putting on sunscreen every 30ish minutes because otherwise I started to really lose energy fast.
After passing through Kremmling and turning onto 9 towards Silverthorne, I felt so accomplished to get this far and it was still only 11am! I remember texting Alex and he was so impressed at how far I had already traveled. It felt really really fantastic. At mile 24, it started to feel pretty toasty and my energy was deteriorating. I remember thinking that I have just one more 3 mile segment then I can do my cool-down. I channeled my mantra and somehow managed to knock those 3 miles out and then I did 2 miles as my cool down to finish with 29.39 miles for the day and gained 1, 190' ! We were only 10 minutes away from the new campsite (we stayed in Kremmling), so I was able to finish up shortly after 1pm and back to our basecamp by 1:30!
I began stretching/foam rolling and fueled up with a salmon burger and tart cherry extract. I always felt so strong and powerful returning back to the RV after each days run. Today was my *longest* run EVER and my pace was pretty decent (especially with those cool down miles). I tried to nap in the afternoon, but just ended up resting my eyes and geeking out on my book/ Gilmore Girls.
I had soup and 2 grilled cheeses (with avocado and spinach) for dinner. I think this meal I'll always associate it with the relay because it just tasted so.dang.good! In bed once again by 7:30pm and ready to start the next day at 5:15am again!