It’s 2020 now, and with a new year often comes new resolutions and goals. For the past few years, January is a time for me to think about what I want to accomplish as an endurance athlete.
In the fall I’m moving to start grad school, so this will be my last year in Colorado… at least for a while. Because of this, the races and goals that I’ve picked are connected to the state and the mountains. I feel like it will be a way to celebrate this phase of life and this place that has come to mean so much to me.
With that theme in mind, I signed up for a spring marathon that bares the name of this state. The Colorado Marathon starts in Poudre Canyon just a few miles from my in-laws’ idyllic cabin and winds its way along the river into Fort Collins, with a finish in historic Old Town. It’s a fast net downhill course, and I’m excited to train hard to run it fast.
After that, I want to shift gears back to trail running. I’m planning on racing the Last Call 50 Miler in July. It’s an overnight race that starts at midnight in Fairplay, CO with an average elevation around 10,000 ft and a peak elevation of over 12,000 ft. It will be a while before I can run at altitude again, and I want to truly embrace that intoxicating hypoxic state one more time.
The last endurance goal I have for this year is one I have been thinking about for a while. Ever since I was a kid watching the NBC coverage of the Ironman World Championships in Kona, I dreamed of one day racing in an Ironman Triathlon. Now that I’m an adult, I have realized that Ironman culture isn’t really for me. I’m not going to spend $800 on race registration or $6,000 on a bike. Plus, I’d rather be on a mountain anyway, and there aren’t any Ironmans staged in the mountains. Thus I came up with and idea for my own DIY Ironman Distance Triathlon that takes place on Pikes Peak consisting of a 2.4 swim in North Catamount Reservoir, a 112 mile bike ride that crests the summit of Pikes and heads back down looping the communities around Colorado Springs, and finishing with a 26.2 mile run up and down Barr Trail. I haven’t fully worked out the logistics of the race, but I have a couple friends interested in doing legs of it with me and a supportive wife who has offered to be crew chief, so I’m sure together we could pull it off. The “Pikesman” would be a perfect way to say goodbye to Colorado Springs and pay homage to the mountain that I’ve been calling “my mountain” for the past 4 years.
So those are my goals for 2020. Now I have to get out and start training.