...and when I run I feel his pleasure.
-Eric Liddell, Chariots of Fire.
Musings of a family that sometimes run together
Sep 27, 2010
Pine 2 Palm
Pam dropped me off in the little town of Williams on a Saturday before sunlight. 22 1/2 hrs later she picked me up in Ashland long after dark.
In between, I traveled 103 miles on trails, dirt roads, and a little pavement while climbing and descending a total of 20,000'. I felt great at the start, and didn't give up the lead until 10 miles. That was on the first of 3 long, remote, beautiful trails over 7,000' mountains that I had never before traveled. I made good time on a flat section of dirt road, averaging about 7:20 pace until I got back on trails and hills. The light rain and cool temperature was fine at low elevations while I was moving well. Later, when I wasn't moving so well and the wind was driving rain sideways it wasn't so fun. I borrowed a jacket from a friend, fleece pants from a stranger, a garbage bag from an aid station, and a hat and gloves that I had sent ahead in a drop-bag.
About mile 60, I started having a deep ache in my legs with each step. I had experienced this once before at my first Where's Waldo. It was torturous, but self induced, so I asked myself why I was doing it. I didn't have a good answer. But I was at least going to get to the next aid station, at mile 66. I spent 30 minutes there in a chair sipping chicken-noodle soup by the heater. I decided I was going to at least go to the top of the peak since it was only another 1/2 mile. I felt better once I left, so I kept going. I knew my friend, David Jordan, was waiting for me at mile 83. The leg pain didn't come back until mile 81. I spent another 1/2 hour in a chair and again had relief. We walked about 7 miles to the top of the last peak, then jogged the steep down-hill, ran the dirt road, and limped in to the finish. I hadn't much cared earlier when they were passing me, but I worked hard to pass people back, and caught everyone that had passed me after mile 60 to finish 4th.
This was my 2nd 100 mile finish. 100 milers cause a high level of physical and mental stress. If I ever do another, I need to train longer miles for it ahead of time. Which is another challenge- they take a huge amount of preparation.
My legs were very sore for 3 days. I was able to do 800m repeats with Esther on the 4th day, but then a couple of spots on my feet really hurt. I went for a bike ride Saturday, but haven't run again. Yet.
Next on the schedule is the Ashland loop trail marathon, but it's the same day as state xc.