Outside, the slushy footprints on the trails have frozen rock hard so it's an ankle twister's paradise. I fired up the treadmill and watched the mini-film festival I put together yesterday - mostly trail running-related with a dash of ski-mo and John Cleese. My favourite moment was Kilian Jornet holding his skis with a big smile, saying something like, "Running is fine in the summer but when there's snow, I'm not going to run." It seems to work just fine for him.
It's not official yet but for those who have been asking, there is a strong chance that Wilderness Traverse will be on the Aug. 24 weekend.
I hoped to get out snowshoeing after the dishwasher repairman came during his generous 5-hour window. He arrived toward the end of that time, shortly after his company texted me a photo of him and his truck so I’d know who was coming to the door. (Nice.) He stayed longer to get things working, which I can hardly complain about. By that time, it was dark with cold drizzle and the wind was howling so I put together a 1-hour set of short videos for the treadmill. And then the power went out. So I didn't get to run, and I had to eat freeze-dried spaghetti for dinner. The End.
P.S. It could have been worse. I could have been 'Bent in the middle of doing a filling on a patient when the power went out tonight. Now *that* was an adventure!
More from the scientists who brought us the One Minute Workout: McMaster researchers have found that aerobic fitness improves after an intense 20-second workout. Well obviously, it's not that simple. You need to do it three times a week for six weeks. Yes, you'll need to exercise six whole minutes in a month and a half. Better start drawing up a training schedule.
Running (Trail) 1:04:00  8.03 km (7:58 / km) +177m7:11 / km slept:7.0 shoes: Salomon Snowcross1 2nd pair
AdventureDog and I went for a run around Palgrave West in 5-10 cm of snow. The forest was beautiful although it felt like running in sand. That's OK - I need the extra workout. 'Bent skied to work today but said it wasn't quite enough snow to qualify as a *good* ski.
The sun set partway through our run and we arrived home just as it was getting dark. AdventureDog kept stopping with one paw raised, looking into the woods with concern. I guess some animals were watching us.
Another creative course design by Bob! This year he managed to prevent anyone from clearing the course although Chad Spence and Greg Critchley came close.
We received Map 1 at race check-in. It showed a subset of the race controls worth about 2/3 of the points available. After one hour, we could pick up Map 2 at the Aid Station. It showed the same area as Map 1 with all the controls, including the ones shown on Map 1. If we stumbled onto a Map 2 control in the 1st hour before we allowed to see Map 2, we couldn't punch it.
Denise and I teamed up once again. She is dealing with a glute-hamstring injury that causes pain on uphills but she's so tough that it didn't affect our race until the final 30 minutes. She is always a rock star when it comes to race strategy. She had to give me a polite, much-needed reminder to stay back to help when a teammate is slowing down. I don't have much experience being strong enough to help a teammate, and I usually have my face buried in the map so I was glad she pointed it out.
Snowshoes weren't recommended so I used spiked Snowcross shoes with Kahtoola microspikes. This was perfect for the conditions. It would have been slow and slippery bushwhacking on hillsides and open fields either way but we were able to move quickly on packed trails. The forecast was frigid - about -15C, feeling like -23C with wind chill - but it didn't feel as cold as last year's race. I overdressed.
We followed our plan almost exactly, including the hurried plan we made at the Aid Station after receiving Map 2. As always, I look at our plan now and see ways to adjust it to get another 50-150 points. (We got 925 of the 1650 available.) But that's true of every team in the race and hindsight is enhanced by things we could only learn during the race. I was happy with what we were able to do.
The top Female team was AdventureGirl! and Hermes. Nicole and Mrs. Gally were the top Female Masters, and we were 2nd of 19. 'Bent and Mick were 5th overall and 2nd Male Masters behind Mr. Gally and Storm. Great performances by a number of friends and a fun post-race dinner at the Gallys' place. Always an excellent day. :)
Snowshoeing50:00  2.85 km (17:33 / km) +133m14:13 / km slept:6.5 shoes: Salomon XA Pro GTX - Black
Snow testing in Loree Forest with ‘Bent and the pooches. This wasn’t all snowshoeing; we were trying to decide what to wear on our feet for tomorrow’s Snowshoe Raid. Conditions are tricky.
On the way back, we all went to Yappy Hour at the Sidelaunch Brewery - a dog-friendly fundraiser for the local animal shelter. Lots of dogs and dog lovers showed up including Heather Arnold and Cait Foisy. There were some snacks and live music. They do this a couple of times a year. Fun!