Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Sputter, Sputter

That was the sound echoing from the engine of my trusty 1996 Jeep as I proceeded down the mountain late Sunday afternoon. Coach Z wanted me to complete my long run over hilly terrain and at altitude so I ventured up the canyon to scenic Magnolia Road (well-known among endurance athletes for its challenging terrain & high altitude). Shortly after parking my car and taking a quick leak, my Jeep's radiator took a leak of its own. Hmmm, what are my options...bag run and call for tow service (fortunatley I was in a pocket of good cell phone coverage) or complete run as if nothing happened. I chose the latter. I figured the engine needed to cool down a bit so I might as well get in the work I was there to do. Upon finishing the run I was hoping I could at least get down the canyon and possibly to the shop before blowing the engine. I used all the tricks I knew to keep the engine as cool as possible including blasting the heater to draw heat from the engine & coasting with the car in neutral. As I rolled closer to the outskirts of Boulder the temperature gauge kept moving to the right until it could move no further...it was buried & finally the engine sputtered to a stall. Fastforward to today and I am awaiting the diagnosis, prognosis or some kind of "nosis" from the shop. This has been a great vehicle with 216,000 miles and very few problems outside of the general maintenance.

The work for Kona continues to go well as I enter the final push. As the weather swings towards fall-like temps in Boulder I am hopeful it will hold out for a couple more weeks. The focus will be on quality, rest, recovery, nutrition & staying healthy over the next several weeks. I will have one more hard race effort this Sunday at the Harvest Moon Half IM in Aurora, CO.

Keep it smooth...

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