Bud and Sue’s Excellent Adventure – Part 1
This is installment #1 of chronicling a five week adventure I (Sue) have embarked upon, with my husband graciously agreeing to tag along. In the few short months since starting this running journey, I have quickly realized I am getting infinitely more out of it than I am putting in. Raising awareness of and funds to combat ALS will always be the most rewarding, but it never occurred to me the scope of adventure and personal growth that would be a byproduct.
On Wednesday June 8, hubby and I hooked up our year old RV trailer and hit the road. Understand, we are not campers and have only used this trailer three times so far. Now we were committing to over a month of travel and living out of it. After three full days of driving and two nights in campgrounds along the road, we arrived at our first destination in Golden, Colorado – just outside of Denver. All in all, it was a good trip with only a few minor issues; like relentless crosswinds all through Iowa and Nebraska on Day 2.
Bright and early the next morning, I was up and getting ready to head out for my first race of the trip; Summer Breeze HM in Arvada. This was a small race with only around 60 participants, yet it was fun and well-run with great volunteers and a lot of extras: breakfast burritos at the finish, prizes (I won a pizza), music, free pictures, and announcements as we crossed the finish line “Sue from Michigan is running to raise awareness and funds for ALS!” Since it was such a small race, I managed to place second in my age group; but yeah, there were only three of us. The only negative I would say about this one is the course has a lot of concrete, and concrete really messes with my joints.
That afternoon, we found a Walmart to pick up a few necessary supplies and some food next door at the King Sooper grocery store; where I also managed to smash a huge bottle of dill pickles. EEKK! (All I really wanted was the juice to drink to combat the cramping I anticipate in these hot runs.) After a quiet evening, it was time to get rest before the next morning’s early wake time of 2:45.
And I was off! This time to Morrison where we would be bussed to the start line in Evergreen for Revel Rockies Half Marathon. All I can say is WOW! It’s hard to beat the majestic beauty of running through the mountains and canyons alongside Bear Creek. This was hands down the most beautiful, scenic race I have ever participated in. Yes, the constant pounding from the steep decline took its toll on me (starting elevation was around 7,500 ft. descending to 5,800 ft. at the finish); not to mention the thin air at this altitude had me wishing for an oxygen mask more than once in the past couple days. But with that kind of beauty to look at around me, it wasn’t difficult to slow down, walk more, breathe easier and just enjoy.
Back at Clear Creek RV Park, it was now time to get organized, relax, and explore, which we have been doing for the week since. We took a perilous drive up Mount Evans Scenic Byway, a trip to Red Rocks Park, and several walks, hikes, and runs around Golden. We are also managing to spend a little time with my nephew, Jon, who lives in Denver. It is beautiful here, although quite hot right now. So far, it is proving to be an EXCELLENT ADVENTURE. Just one more week until my next race.