Thanks to Dave Clifford for the great photo
The last race on my schedule this summer was the Golden Leaf Half Marathon in Aspen this past Saturday. Only a week after the MTB marathon nationals, I had no idea how I’d feel come race morning. What I did know is that last year’s winner, Stevie Kremer, would be missing but that many other strong ladies were registered including Lindsay Krause. As a sure sign that this race season is over (at least for a few weeks), the battery in my heart rate monitor strap died as I was warming up. I was a little bummed because the first climb up Snowmass always produces a high heart rate, but I was also secretly relieved to run free of the numbers and data.
With fast men in the group like Rickey Gates, Karl Remson and Lance Armstrong, the field quickly spread apart in the two miles of steep dirt road climbing before we hit the singletrack. I started on the yellow brick road, aka The Government Trail, right where I wanted to be– in first for the women. I took a quick glance behind me and didn’t see any women coming, but I knew I needed to push the pace the entire race. I think Lindsay Krause is probably faster than I am on the flats so I needed to have a lead coming into the last few miles of bike path into Aspen.
I caught myself enjoying the beautiful scenery and changing leaves a few times, and my feet felt great in my La Sportiva Vertical K’s. But I tried to keep pushing myself and ended up finishing in 1 hour 42 minutes 45 seconds. Good enough to cut just over five minutes off my time from last year and over three minutes ahead of Lindsay Krause. It was really nice to finish the summer knowing that my hard training sessions thanks to Lindsay Hyman at Carmichael Training Systems had paid off. And since my heart rate monitor strap battery is taking a break, I figure it’s time to enjoy a small off season, especially since I have not had one since Axel was born two and a half years ago. But, I have the feeling I will find another race soon.
Full results can be found here.