Yvonne Carpenter

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Yvonne Carpenter - Kyla and I at  Disney's Typhoon Lagoon in Orlando one week before 2012 PPM!
Kyla and I at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon in Orlando one week before 2012 PPM!

“Life is too short - I highly recommend having as much fun as you can cram in!”

City: Manitou Springs State: CO

Favorite Shoe: Saucony Kinvara Size: 8.5

Age: 55.6 years old

Marital Status: Married

Family members:
Husband Matt
Daughter Kyla

What I do for work:
I took early retirement on July 2018.

Places I’ve called home and why I like where I am now:
Campinas, SP, Brazil - Born and raised here until I was 25 years old (1990).
Washington D.C, USA - Lived here for 4 years, from 1990 until Novemebr 1993.
Colorado Springs, CO, USA - Lived here from 1993 until I moved in with my husband in 1999 (boyfriend at the time) who lived/lives in Manitou Springs.
Manitou Springs, CO, USA - current place of residence since 1999 - I really like Manitou. There are several trails real close to home so you can run right out of your front step. It is considerably safer to run here alone than running in Brazil or even Washington DC!

When I started running and what got me started:
I started running in junior high. I liked strenuous exercise - but I was the only one. All other girls in my class did not want to sweat so I was never in a team or anything. The whole school only had about 4 or 5 girls that wanted to run (can you believe that?) I never competed with girls my age (there weren't any!) They were always older. I never won anything while in school. I just liked to compete!

What does running mean to me:
The first 20 minutes of any run for me always suck! But then it starts flowing and feeling more natural and I forget the running and start thinking about stuff. It can be anything. It can be a problem I am trying to solve at work, or a family problem, or an injury or something good that happened. It's a time to think! And sometimes, a time to just watch the surroundings and hear yourself breath. I love it because you need to stop doing other things to run. You can't do the dishes and run and the same time! The only thing you are allowed to do while running is think or look around! I need those breaks badly sometimes...

Running accomplishments: View my Pikes Peak Ascent/Marathon results
I wouldn't call them "accomplishments", but they were worth the try. I never regret being on any race I took part (well, just one), but some did remain in my memory. My first flat land marathon (Marine Corp Marathon - 1998) is one of those that I will never forget. I really wanted to run Boston, but you have to qualify first. I needed 3:49 to qualify, so I shot for that. For the first time in my life I actually "trained" for a race! I ended up finishing in 3 hours 11 minutes and still had some gas in the tank. That was soooo much fun and got me sooooo sore afterwards! The other memorable race was the Pikes Peak Marathon in 2001. I had ran the PPM before, in 1995, after an incredible training season of exactly 3 runs, including all surfaces, and I almost died during the race (~7 hours 30 minutes of agony). I thought I could do better than that if I actually trained for it. And I was right. After a whole season of training with the IC, I was able to get 10th on PPM (~5 hours 28 minutes). And how could I leave out the 2012 PPM...I got totally out of shape after 2009 PPA. I took 2 years off from running to pursue another (sedentary) hobby and gained a bunch of weight! Then Matt reminded me that if I were to skip the 2012 races, I would have to get qualified before racing the Peak again. Thanks for the reminder Matt! So the weight came off, the training resumed mid 2011 and I was ready for the 2012 season. A LOT of training went on, along with many setbacks. But at the end it was a very rewarding experience as on race day I was able NOT to let my head ruin all the training put in :-) I had a plan, a set of splits written on my bottle to keep me honest, and the determination not to let anyone or myself ruin my effort. It all worked perfectly - I was finally able to ascend the peak faster than Matt's record on the Marathon! LOL! Don't laugh - it sounds almost impossible that he could run 10.5 (TEN AND A HALF!) miles downhill faster than I can run 2.5 (TWO AND A HALF!) miles uphill as we always cross path with me around the Inestine Memorial sign :-) DONE. And out of my "bucket list"!

What I like about trail/mountain running:
The terrain changes a lot and makes it interesting. You have to be paying attention all the time. Unlike running on streets where you just put it on automatic pilot, if you do that on a trail, you will get hurt sooner or later! I have several sprained ankles to show for :-( In a way you need to stop thinking about other stuff and concentrate on reading the terrain, breathing, foot placement, etc, so you get in a "fun zone". I can't get that on the streets! I almost got run over once trying!!

Favorite running trail and why:
I have to say it is Waldo (without all the dog poop!), but Section 16 is pretty out there too. The only reason I don't name Elk Park as a favorite trail is because you can't do Elk Park and then get in your car and drive home! You have to run up or down PP and that hurts a lot!!

Favorite trail/mountain race and why:
BTMR (and it's not because I am in the committee!)- I think that is the perfect length. It has a steep section and a fast section going up. There is still plenty of O2 so the normal person can still breath. Then you have the blister-making-nipple-chaffing downhill which is downright scary at times! Now if I could just manage to be uninjured to race it again!

Best running experience:
The Marine Corp Marathon (1998)(my first flatland marathon). That is because I had a plan and it unrolled so well. I did everything I planned to do, except that I ran faster than I thought I was capable of. It was a long day and I had to be patient, and carry out each part of the plan at the right time. It was like a chess game. But I had never "played" before!

Worst running experience:
Tucson Marathon (1998)(6 weeks after the Marine Corp Marathon). I got cocky. I had no plan. I was injured but in denial. I hurt the whole way. I started limp-running at mile 16. I got really, really hurt from it (tibia stress fracture). It took me 2 years to recover from that screw up. Because of this race, 1999 and 2000 were a waste of log book paper!

Neatest thing found on a run:
My husband!

Running related bathroom stop story:
I have been lucky in this area, but I did witness a bathroom stop of another runner that still brings tears to my eyes!
Location: Germany, 2000 World Mountain Running Championship site
"Peeing" Runner: member of the Women USA team (will not mention names to protect the innocent!) Let's call her "Runner".
The Runner was obviously part of the USA team so she wanted to learn the course. I had entered the citizen's race on the same course so I also wanted to learn the course. It was 2 days before the race so we did not want to run the whole thing. We decided to take the Gondola to the halfway point (the course was on a ski resort) and then hike to the top taking the Gondola back down. There were lots of tourists and a ton of runners from all over the world that would be defending their countries. Everyone was wearing these uniforms, like the Olympics, so you know what country they are from. After getting off the Gondola we started the hike up the mountain along with several other tourists and runners (there is another Gondola that takes you to the top, but the point was to hike that top part so we could see the course). We were all scattered in this mountain road that turned into trail later on. It was getting very cloudy because we were high in the mountain. Runner, who had been hydrating properly in preparation for the race, just HAD to go. We kept waiting for the right moment because of the other people on the trail and not a tree in sight. We finally got to a point where I stood off the trail on a turn so I could see in both directions and gave her the "clear". She drops her pants and starts to "dehydrate. Do you know that moment in this process after which you can no longer decide you will not pee? That is where she was. She looked so peaceful. The trail was still clear and everything was working great if it wasn't for the upper section Gondola (PACKED with tourists and runners) that broke thru the clouds and literally traversed right on top of us! It looked so close that it seemed we could almost touch it! Runner was facing me, so she never saw it coming! I almost died of laughing when I saw the Gondola and the people's faces pointing at Runner! She kept asking "What? What? What are you laughing at? Is someone coming?" I could barely speak! Then she saw it and tried to keep turning so they could not see her face. It would have worked great if it wasn't for the H-U-G-E red and blue USA on the back of her team uniform jacket!

Running pet peeves:
I hate running on deep snow that has foot steps from previous runners with legs waaaayyyyy longer than mine!

Something non running related that no one would guess about me:
I collect and build model kits. Mostly motorcycles and F1 race cars, but I also enjoy figure painting.

Other hobbies and interests:
The model building thing is a big one...takes a lot of my time. Matt jokes that there is very little building going on, but a lot of collecting happening! To his credit, I do have over 3,000 models stored at home, only a handful of which are built! I plan to build my favorites before I die - I know, I know, I should probably build faster!

Other stuff:
Foods: I am a sucker for ice-cream and bread. Pistachio, Mint Chocolate Chip, Rocky Road, but thre is really not a flavor that I do not like! With our new business endeavor, I have fallen in love with frozen custard which is sooooooo much silkier than ice cream. So I am doomed! Got to put in a lot of miles to deserve a full serving of frozen custard on sundays!
Kids: Keeping up with Kyla is a challenge these days. Between playdates and sleepovers, homework and chores, everything is a constant negotiation with her! I think I understand now what my mom meant when she used to tell me: "I hope you have a daughter just like you!"
Favorite movie: "The Italian Job" (old and new)
Goals: I would like to finish the PP Ascent or finish the Ascent portion of the PP Marathon under 3 hours and 16 minutes. I ought to be able to run up that mountain before Matt is back in town !!! I personally find it pathetic that I have been unable to do that so far - come on!

Page last modified: 4/14/2020

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