On the Trail: Summer fun | AspenTimes.com

On the Trail: Summer fun

It’s Aug. 21 and my summer is just about to begin in many ways.For some reason, a couple of friends and I got a wild hair about being competitive athletes this summer. Well, not really competitive. But we did enter a few races, including two triathlons. So what that meant was a change in my summertime sports regime of hiking, mountain biking and beer drinking. This year, my time was spent running, road riding and swimming (OK, and beer drinking). I admit it was good to have a goal; it kept me going, especially on those days when all I really wanted to do was sit on my deck and enjoy the summer sun. And I’m in better physical shape than I’ve been in for years.It also taught me a few things – I have never been much of a jogger, but can now easily run four miles at altitude; I don’t like road biking nearly as much as mountain biking; and open-water swimming is nothing like swimming laps in a pool.And the respect I have for serious athletes, especially those who balance training with work, family and life in general, has grown tenfold. But I have to confess, I’m glad it’s over. I can’t wait to bike the Hunter Creek loop with my husband, hike over to Crested Butte with friends, stroll down the Rio Grande with my kids, and splash around in the pool just for the fun of it. I relish the thought of not having to swim laps and run tomorrow because I couldn’t find the time to do either today. So I guess I’m not going to be a competitive athlete. Oh well, it was fun pretending.And Mother Nature willing, there will still be plenty of summer to enjoy – the real way.