Red Rock Canyon

28 02 2011

Funny how we change and morph through life into who we are………i think no matter how we act or where we live or what we do we always will become who we are supposed to be or who we were all along……………………………i was born in Montreal but grew up in a small town in South Shore Nova Scotia.  

We speant our days hiking, fishing hunting, running through the woods.  we lived on the edge of a woods that went for miles.

Some how i became a city boy, and lost all of that love for nature and tried to be a differant person……………..after years of that ACT, i am slowly returning to who i am.   I absolutely LOVE being in the woods, or dessert, or anywhere in nature….

Today i landed in Vegas at noon.   There was a point in my life that i would have had a few drinks on the plane and probably went from the check in at the hotel to the bar…………………….today flying in i could see Red Rock Canyon.  I knew that this was only 20 miles from the STRIP.  I knew i had to get there.   I rented a small crappy car ( the old days i would have rented a Ferrari or Porsche) and got a map and headed out there.  I was there by 230 pm.

Im trying to behave and follow a very carefully crafted training regim this year so i have a hope of arriving at the starting line of the CDR without an injury…..BUT…………today was supposed to be a very easy 20 km on flat terrain……instead it turned into a 25 km run up the side of a canyon and down the other…….OMG….at times in the beginning i kept thinking…”man my legs are sore and tired” “perhaps i should run 8 km or so and turn back!”  Yeah right!   Not exactly my personality

I couldnt stop thinking of Badwater and the incrediable hardship the runners endure to finish that monster…..i thought man if i cant handle a little run like this i dont even deserve to think of a run like that.

yesterday i put in a fairly fast 43 km and my legs are a bit tired after getting up at 430 and flying down here.   As i ran it got easier and easier as the beauty was so amazing i stopped thinking of my legs.  I had an ipod with some new songs that i never switched on once…..i just listened to my breathing and my foot steps and ran in solitude….perfect.  Occassionally the scream of a hawk.   A bike passing me on a down hill.

I was a bit nervous about how long it would take as the climb up the 1800 feet or so over the first 5 miles took longer than i thought.  Coming down was much faster than i thought and was able to throw a few sub 7 minute miles in there!   At 19 km i was definately feeling some fatigue and was glad to catch a runner coming off a side trail and join him.  Mark McCallum a super cool guy from Australia, running in a pair of homemade sandels.  His stride was perfect.  We ran together chatting easily at a 5:05 per km pace and in no time i was back to the car.   What a great run.   

i know now that the person Stefan, needs to have time in the wilderness……solitude……quiet and calm nature surrounding me. 

Yesterday and today total 69 km of good running.  I am NOT a great runner, nor will i ever be an elite runner, but i can run!  I love to run and the further from civalization the better.

Not sure where the next part of my life will take me but i can bet it will have alot of time speant in nature…………..




2 responses

28 02 2011
Joan Czapalay

Vegas is at 2014ft above sea level; might that make a difference in running almost as soon as you arrived, Stefan?
I completely relate to how you respond to nature. If I don’t get to the woods, or the barren lands, or the beach and rocky shore often, I feel as if I am starving for something. Nature is definitely my religion. I celebrate it!

3 03 2011

Hey Mom, was wondering that but when i researched elevation it appears there is really not much effect until 4000 feet. That being said when iwas climbing to 4800 feet from the canyon base i was breathing hard and HR was elevated. Also the dessert creates a mirage and you dont think you are running up hill until you look behind you!

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