and another one
I took a few minutes to get going. Tammy runs ahead, and Frankie and I run together for 2.5 to 3 miles or so. We were both struggling with the mental arithmetic to calculate the pace I needed in order to finish in under 12 hours. I guess the brain gets fried too. I was beat, physically and mentally. Eventually we figured a 15 minute/mile pace would get me to the finish at 11:54. Easier said than done at this point. I was boosted by passing through 40 miles - 80% done had a great ring to it, as did only having a single digit number of miles to go.
Dave James lapped us again; he was on 65 miles, 25 miles ahead of me. What an amazing athlete.
Frankie had to make a pitstop, so the next mile or so I was on my own, until she caught up with me on the long hill between mile 4 and 5. There was no way at this point I could keep up with her. I didn’t see her again other than a brief “hello” in AS#2 until after the race.
The chafing was getting worse, but I had a plan. I had these little packets of “First Aid Cream, with Pain Relief”. That’ll do, I thought. Except the pain relief doesn’t kick in until after several minutes of agonizing stinging. At least it took my mind off of my quads for a while I suppose.
I needed to pee – I noticed on Tammy’s blog that she wrote, “appropriately far from the race course was inversely proportional to the time I spent on the course!” Isn’t that the truth, I found the nearest tree, and let it all hang out (actually that is not strictly true, because it would appear that running 40+ miles has a very similar effect on men as ice baths, so “all” maybe a slight exaggeration.
There’s the dog pile again. This lap’s 30 seconds were wasted thinking, “Hey, I see you’re surrounded by flies now you piece of crap you. Oh, and good riddance, I will never see you again. See ya turd!”
Into AS#2, did the usual with the water bottles, lubed up one more time. I had some potato soup which really helped pick me up, and I was off again
As I was leaving, Tammy was having a conversation with her husband, and as I was passing, she told me that I was entering, “the victory five miles”, and I should enjoy it. That was all I needed to hear. I got a huge lift. 5 miles left, just 5 lousy miles. I can run 5 miles in my sleep.
The sawtooth 79 hurt even more now, more on the downs. But that was just physical – mentally, I was strong now.
I figured at 4 miles to go, if I maintained a 15 minute pace, I would get in less than 12 hours with 10 minutes to spare, and I called Jess with my prediction, she asked how I was feeling, “on top of the world”.
Before I know it, I was at Graylin for the last time – 3 miles to go, and at least one mile of it is a nice gentle downhill slope.
Tammy caught up with me when I had a mile left, we chatted briefly as she was passing, more words of encouragement, and this time words of congratulations now. I was on an unbelievable high.
Turning right onto the Jeep trail for the last time, I started to get emotional, and I am not ashamed to admit that there were more than a few tears as people were clapping me home. Good job I was wearing sunglasses! Just before the finish line I caught sight of Jess and our friends Shelly and Duane with their cameras at the ready.
I even had enough energy to put in a little sprint to the finish.
“214 IS DONE”, I shouted as I crossed the line. The people at the finish line congratulated me, and I was on top of the world. My time (according to the Garmin) was 11:48:40. Absolutely thrilled with the time, and thrilled with the whole experience
My name is Jim, and I am an Ultramarathoner.