Monday, April 27, 2009

Check This Out

Just a little something I came across on a trip to Cokeville, WY last weekend. This is a sign that could only be encountered in Wyoming. It makes me think though ... maybe I need to re-calibrate my computer. I could have sworn I was only doing 24 when I encountered the antelope last week.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


I believe that it is ironic the way the I ended my last post. "Regardless, we'll keep on running and looking out for what's right up ahead." The irony came last Sunday afternoon as I was out for a two hour bike ride. It was my first time taking the tri bike out this Spring and the day was beautiful. Temperatures in the mid 60's and not a cloud in sight. I was really excited to spend some time in the aerobars, since up till now most of my seat time had been spent on the trainer or commuting around town.

Everything was so peaceful and warm, I couldn't help but let my self fall in to a meditative state. That's when things went very wrong.

I was cruising along in the aeros; counting the number of chew cans along the side of the highway. To my best guess I was doing around 22-25 mph when I found myself airborne. I quickly returned to earth though and began sliding down the shoulder of the road. Once I finally stopped and unattached myself from the bike, my first thought went to the condition of my full carbon Specialized Transition Pro. It faired amazingly well, with only some cosmetic scrapes. My body did what it was supposed to do. It sacrificed itself for the bike. Once the bike was OK, I had to figure out what had caused this. As I looked 25 feet back from my current position, I realized that I had ramped over the very same dead antelope that I noticed from the other side of the road on the way out. The very same inanimate hazard that I had seen less than a half hour before. After comprehending what I had just done, I finally checked my body out. I wiped off the gravel and bemoaned the destruction to my kit. All damage was confined to my left side, with most of the focus on my elbow and knee. (I will spare everyone the gory pics, but if you are interested in checking out the damage.) My next thought was... this is going to hurt tomorrow! I straightened out my handlebars, phoned a friend for a ride and headed towards town.

My pride was hurt more than anything. I took me two days before I visited the doctor. I actually did a 9 mile run yesterday and the knee felt great. I'll get through this; it's only a minor setback. The term we use to describe this situation in wildland firefighting is situational awareness (SA) and my SA was definitely lacking that day. So for now I'm not going to make any promises, because you never know what might come back to bite you.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Going Down the Road

On most days when I'm running, I see one thing out ahead of me…the backside of my dog Winnie.

OK, that's not the only thing I see. It's actually pretty amazing all the things I observe while running. A couple weeks ago while in Mexico, I couldn't help but noticing all the similarities between Mexico and Wyoming. The thing is, no matter where I run, I always get the same funny looks. They are trying to figure out what exactly this tall, scrawny white guy and his dog are doing and why this runner can't find somewhere else to run. Most of the roads I run on were not designed for cohabitation between bipeds and motorists. While running on the roads and highways provides lots of observations; I am finding a lots of things to see on the local paths. Worland has only had a running/biking path for about nine months now. It is quickly becoming my favorite spot to people watch.

I use to come home from a workout and be excited that I saw someone else running. Now I can visit the local path and find people and dogs out exercising at about any time of day. I have seen folks running, walking, cycling and kids skateboarding, I've even seen people driving "rascal" scooters down the path. I was almost tempted to run home, grab my long board and really show those kids how to ride. It's encouraging to see people outside doing things. It makes me feel like part of a greater community. Someday, maybe Winnie and I won't be looked at with such bewilderment. People might just smile and wave. Regardless, we'll keep on running and looking out for what's right up ahead.