First runs in Albuquerque

Albuquerque is a running mecca it seems – Derek has mentioned that he has seen the Japanese women’s (marathon?) team training here as well as several very fast looking African men.  And everyone is outdoors running, biking, walking, etc.  To make some friends and get to know the area, we joined the Albuquerque Road Runners.  Derek signed us both up in October and he has joined several of their group runs as well as attended the monthly meetings.  Plus – Albuquerque is sunny 310+ days of the year – so great running weather.  Of course – lots of people train here because of the altitude!  So that makes adjusting to running here a bit harder :).

We threw ourselves right into it – joining the group run on Sunday.  We ran about 4.7 miles – and I definitely felt the altitude, especially on the uphill section!  Whew!  We met with 5-7 folks from ABQRR and, after the run, we went to Whole Foods for breakfast.  Very friendly and fun!

Derek and I went out for an “easy” 4 miles on Monday.  We ran from our apartment then headed north on Tramway.  Albuquerque is about a mile up in elevation, and our apartment is another thousand feet or so.  That extra thousand feet makes a ton of difference.  We ran uphill to Tramway and then a gradual uphill as we headed north.  I felt slow and ungainly – and so out of shape!  I guess it’s the altitude – and it was kicking my a**!  Derek kept going on about how beautiful the view was (and it is) and I was just trying not to hack up a lung…

Our next run was New Year’s Day!  ABQRR organizes a fun run – the Egg Nog Jog – on New Year’s Day.  It’s an untimed, casual 5k.  The weather was picture perfect – 50 degrees, bright and sunny.  It seemed like a couple hundred people showed up.  The start was incredibly casual and the course was run on dirt paths – a flagman at every turn.  At the end of the race – they had chocolate milk, egg nog, and some pizza from Dion’s (a local pizza chain).  We hung out for awhile chatting with folks – it was a really nice time.

We have lots of running planned for January – so I’m looking forward to it.  I’m also hoping that I adapt to this altitude and start feeling like I know how to run again!

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