Monday, February 28, 2011

The start of 2011 - the view from the front

2010 ended with me offering to help out my friend Shannon on her quest for awesomeness at Freedom Park 24hr race on New Year's Eve. After going around a couple of the one mile loops with Shannon, I figured, I may as well enter the thing, so promptly signed up for the 12 hr race.

This would be so cool to "go across the years". What was actually cooler was taking the lead pretty much on the stroke of midnight. Yep, first place male. I ain't telling you no lies. First male, second overall. After a little while in front, I even found myself opening up a one lap gap! Holy crap this is weird.

Then the strange stuff starts to happen. Like paranoia. Best not eat - what happens if he catches me while I am having a snack? Oh no, I need the Porta John..... best make it quick... no, just keep going, next loop.... crap, I wish I had stopped last lap. It is a different set of problems when you are winning. I did keep on looking at the print outs and did see that the number 2 male was slowly catching me up - 9 minutes behind, 7 minutes behind, 3 minutes... I am being worn down. This point I have 40 miles in about 8 hours, easily on course for a 50 mile PR. Then of course I fell apart; I couldn't handle the pressure of winning. I saw he was a minute behind, and that was it. 44 laps, 43.38 miles, somewhere a little before 5 am, I checked the printout, and figured out that the number 3 male wouldn't catch me - and I stopped, happy with second, after being in the lead for 5 hours, and chatted to Jonathan Savage who was certain to win the 24hr race - he had also stopped a little before me, but he was safe in the knowledge that he had won the 24 hr race with 116 miles.

Now of course I am kicking myself, I coulda just kept going - maybe a 10 minute break, then it would be my turn to wear him down, less pressure I think. But I didn't. Oh well, second is not too shabby.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Bringing a Dead Blog back to life.

Jimbo you have been a bad blogger, a bad bad blogger. No excuses but laziness. And Facebook -- which is probably also laziness, because through social media, it seems perfectly acceptable to write something like "ran 50k, got PR" -- 20 people will tell you how awesome and brilliant you are (and one person will ask how far 50k is, a few will tell me how I lied about "that one hill"™ ), and whether it's blogging or Facebook, it is all about my own personal [perceived] awesomeness.......... or is it? see, here's a quick story; I am sitting on the ground a few minutes after finishing the Pilot Mountain Payback Marathon on Saturday, and bunch of people were talking about the race (specifically about how wonderful "that one hill"™ is), somebody asks me if I am "Jim from Sanford"; "Yes I am" I reply -- I am then told how much he appreciated my write up and photos of last year's inaugaral Marathon on the same course, and how it helped him decide to sign up for the race. Are you kidding me? Someone makes life altering decisions based on the musings of someone who can't count hills and enjoys beer a little too much? (Actually, can you enjoy beer too much?) So, now I know that there are people who actually read this thing, I am going to make a bigger and better effort at keeping it up to date. Honest.

So, let us talk about the latter half of 2010.

Medoc Meltdown Fat Ass (50K/marathon) - A good fun freebie run put on by my buddy Frank and the Rocky Mountain Endurance Club. I didn't do the full 50k, and stopped at a marathon distance, as I hadn't been training for a while (I broke my toe in July). And it was hot. But I didn't whine.

Long Cane 55 Miler - Originally billed as a 50 miler, it became apparent (after about 45 miles) that this was quite a bit longer than anticipated. It was a very strange feeling to learn that I had 10 miles left, when I thought I had 5. Those additional 5 miles were really dragged! The RD, Terri Hayes very kindly submitted the results as a 55 mile race! It was good to see my friend Psyche who much like me had been fully embracing her ultrarunning mid-life crisis. ;-)

New River Trail 50K - I had no goals other than to pace my friend, pacer and training partner, Connie to a finish in her first 50k, under the 7 hour cut off. Mission accomplished. Saw some friends,and made some new ones.

Hinson Lake 24 Hour. Did OK - really wish I could have done better though. Dehydration messed me up, at one point I was down close to 10lbs in weight. Even though I rehydrated, I couldn't really get going again. Saw some friends,and made some new ones. Managed 100k. Easy decision to run again in 2011.

Javelina Jundred. Did OK - really wish I could have done better though. Dehydration messed me up, at one point I was down close to 10lbs in weight. Even though I rehydrated, I couldn't really get going again. Saw some friends,and made some new ones. Managed 100k. Easy decision to run again in 2011. I wore a skirt.

Derby 50k. Did well, "ran 50k, got PR" --20 people on FB told me how awesome I was, one person asked me how far 50k was, and some others told me how I lied about "that one hill"™. My time for that was 5:35 ish, which was a PR by around 49 minutes, and a course PR by 53 minutes. I had a good day. I wore a skirt. Saw some friends, and made some new ones.

and finally.......

Ancient Oaks 100. 29 laps of a 3.46 mile course. This was my toughest 100 yet. What made it particularly tough was the amount of sand, the amount of rain, and the amount of darkness. I didn't think the 13-14 hours of darkness would bother me, but wow, it really did, the night just dragged and dragged. Then there was the rain, I think it rained for about 12 hrs straight (thankfully it wasn't cold), but, it got old. Then there was the sand - easily over a mile per loop so at a guess, 35-40 miles of sand? I was a wreck by the finish - but finish I did, in 29:43. During the run, I passed 2010 total miles for the year, this was one of my goals. Saw some friends, and made some new ones.

So, to wrap up 2010 - I managed an ultra or marathon in every month. I did about 2100 miles total for the year. I broke a finger and a toe. I had my first ever surgery. Saw some friends, and made some new ones. I was a bad blogger.

But I am back....... (for now)

Javelina - told ya I wore a skirt......