So… we got to have our first Fruita trip of the “season” if you will. Taylor ran the Desert RATS 25 mile race. I gotta say, I LOVE FRUITA. I can’t really say if it’s the place or the time of year, or the invariable beautiful weather that greets us, but I love it. I saw a bumper sticker in town that read “WTF -Welcome to Fruita” and I think I was even more in love. Even when I believe a guy called me “jerk” from his road bike as I was driving my gas-hogging-anti-Earth-loving vehicle (SLOWLY!) down the road from the CO National Monument for the 2nd time that day. Oh well, you try getting everything all packed up by 5:30 AM, ya jerk… WTF. Welcome to Fruita, I guess.
Anyhow, I love that race, and I was psyched to go and see the finish (of which we made it about 5 minutes before Taylor came in), dig in the sand/dirt, etc. Going to an ultra marathon race always puts your personal fitness in perspective, and Desert RATS was no different from any other race. I texted Christine to tell her that going to the race packet pickup was like being the fat chick at the frat party. I pretty much had to be the only lady above a size 4 there. Oh well. WTF. Welcome to Fruita.
Taylor rocked it in his goal of 5 hours or less. He did it in “or less”- not sure how much less, since they count that stuff IN HOURS and I wasn’t paying attention to the clock.
After the race, Taylor was a good sport and let me stop at Highline State Park on the way back to Fruita to get “acclimatized” to the water. It was a BALMY 52 degrees. After reading all these open water swimming books, I was CERTAIN I would be SO AWESOME at swimming in the open water. I totally wasn’t. It was pretty sad. All those same feelings I have always had in open water re-surfaced and were twice as bad because the water was murky. I thought I had open water swimming down pat, but I realize that I have not swum in anything but clear open water, so I kinda freaked. But I did several hundred yards, even if it was fifty yards out and back several times. I haven’t ever swam in a wetsuit, so it was good to know what that would feel like before my race in Las Vegas in a couple of weeks.
I am glad I went swimming there, since my goal is to complete an Olympic distance triathlon in that same water in October. That’s right, I signed up for the Desert’s Edge Triathlon in October at Highline State Park. It will be my first Olympic length triathlon, if I make it that far. I sure hope I do, since it will look weird if we just happen to be camping there for the weekend and not doing the race.
I am pretty excited to end our race season in Fruita as well, since I pretty much love the place. Mostly because of its proximity to Kohl’s in Grand Junction. And they remodeled the City Market in GJ, so it has a very large natural beauty products section which smells a lot like Whole Foods Market, which I imagine is the closest the Western Slope will ever get to having a Whole Foods. I could have stayed in that section of the City Market for the day it smelled so good. As it was, I walked in for a toothbrush and to let my kids pee (since the city parks don’t open their public restrooms until 7:30 AM) and walked out with $30-plus of natural products. Plus, in Fruita, they have awesome food, camping, and a dinosaur museum, which Sarah thinks is the best thing since macaroni and cheese. Which she consumed at least 3 times in our 36 hour trip. WTF, you might say? I say, Welcome to Fruita. And welcome to racing season. Pretty psyched for what’s ahead.