Aaron’s Real Opinions:

Aaron’s Crazy Race Diary – 2008 Day 8

The temperature was a nippy 25°F when I arose and got ready to meet Angela for our now almost regular Saturday morning run. After taking the dogs for a walk at 5:00 am and doing some work, I headed out. I had weighed in at 208 so I had missed my target of 205 by three pounds. It already was light out and the sun hadn’t risen when I arrived at the trailhead. Angela was tired from her workout yesterday and the fact her young son had been wakening her almost every night all week. I was tired due to a lack of sleep and the food overconsumption late at night at Wendy’s where I knocked off multiple burgers, French fries, and a giant chocolate Frosty. The latter was especially good. You might as well have painted all the food on my waist because, as I ran, I could feel every extra ounce. The resulting indigestion also hadn’t helped me get much sleep but, hey, I made those choices and knew better at the time so I’ll shut up. Today I was wearing a hooded sweatshirt and sweatpants instead of my parachute running suit. It was a heavier combination but kept me warm. Only my hands and face froze today. We didn’t see much wildlife this time but we talked the entire way. Because we didn’t take any major breaks, as I had required last week, I knew our time would be better than previous embarrassing total of 94 minutes. My goal today was to break 85 minutes but it didn’t happen – we ended up at 87 minutes. Nevertheless, that was a seven-minute improvement and breaking 80 minutes next week seemed to still be within reach. All I had to do was eat better, eat less, and get more sleep. I was beginning to doubt, however, my ability to run the Bolder Boulder in less than 70 minutes. I started to be convinced this year would be my worst time ever. There were surprisingly few people on the trail today. We saw only a couple of cyclists when we were almost half done and then saw them returning on our way back. There may have been one or two other runners but the trail was sparsely populated today despite the clear albeit chilly weather, the dry trail, and the high level of ambient light early in the day. The moon and sun were out at the same time so that was fun to see. Angela told me she was leaving the YMCA and had joined the Erie Recreation Center. She wanted me to do the same or at least join the Erie Rec Center so we could run there in inclement weather. I had just visited the Erie facility and thought it was fantastic – one of the best recreation centers I ever had seen. Erie is my community so I told her it was likely I would join. I had been thinking about it for some time but she was really putting the pressure on and was a good salesperson. I would remain a member of the YMCA, however, although I was disappointed they never decided to open officially at 5:00 am rather than 5:30 am. The Y’s staff was great, however, and usually opened the facility on weekdays at 5:15 am but that extra 15 or 30 minutes meant a lot to those of us who have to return home to somehow get a teenager to wake up. These days every minute counted. Once I got home, I felt tired but was glad I had done the run. I worked the rest of the day doing laundry (it’s amazing how much laundry two people can generate each week). I had heard President Bush was coming to Colorado in May so I tried to reach a contact at the White House to see if there might be any way the President would grant an interview. I knew Josh’s likely answer was “No” because the White House’s perspective about granting me an interview in the past was, “And Mr Harber, what exactly is the upside for us?” But that didn’t stop me from trying. I called too late and just missed my contact but the gentleman in the Situation Room who answered the call promised to give Josh my message. After dinner, at nighttime, I had to drive to Denver to pick up some tapes for the U.S. Senate television show from my producer, Chuck. I didn’t get back home until 9:45 pm and decided to call it a day. The run had made me tired and I needed a break.