Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Blistering Pace

Well - - - - - - - Mother Road 100 (Part 2) is now behind me & I have learned a lot from my experience. Taking off at 9 AM on a beautiful Saturday morning gafe no hint of what was ahead of me. As the miles clicked on, I met & talked to many, many wonderful people from all different places. I had a warm feeling inside that I was not alone in my crazy, off kilter world of ultra running and that there are actually other beings who share in this love.

The countryside was beautiful & many passer byers (hmmm, is that a word?) honked or waved. The small towns that we ran through were great. They obviously had no idea of our lunitic tendencies. My friend & neighbor (Craig J.) was a life saver as we played leap frog all day with me running & him keeping all of my needs (E.g. Powerbars, drinks, pretzels, gloves, headlights, etc.) in his car. One thing that mere mortal runners NEVER think of when running is "the call of the wild". Needless to say, toilet paper was not one of the things in my goodie bag & restrooms are defintely not conveniently located. You can imagine (maybe you can't) how difficult it is to run with your legs crossed. Anyway, you can use some of your imagination for the rest of this story.

Most of the day I was about an hour ahead of my drop dead time. This went on pratically all day & into the night. The strange thing though, is that sometime between 9 AM Saturday morning & sundown, I must have overlooked that warming feeling on the bottom of my left foot. By the time I got to the 1/2 way point at the aid station in Weatherford, OK, I realized that a blister was a stong probability. Luckily there was a doctor there (a marathoner as well) who took a look. He asked me to sit down & take off my shoe (this was very funny as I could not even come close to bending over & removing a shoe). The look on his face when he looked at the bottom of "mi pies" was enough. A HUGE blister over most of the ball of my left foot. He did what he could, taped me up & wished me luck. In addition to this, I have strange shaped toenails as well from all the pounding mileage.

Getting back outside (after my body temperature dropped from sitting inside) caues me to shiver uncontrollably. I could not recall ever having been so cold. I jumped in the car & cranked the heat. "This was going to be tough" I told myself. Eventually, I got myself out & going but by now, everyone was gone, it was still dark as it was now after midnight & my foot was toast. Craig informed me that I was no longer ahead of schedule but was "right on schedule" That meant that I could not slack any more & had to keep a pretty steady pace the remainder of the race (50 more miles). After another mile, I realized that this was not to happen today & that it was time to have a reality check.

Although I chose to pull out here, I did best my previus 50 mile time by an hour!

Looking back now & talking to others, I am taking notes as to what I need to change in my training & planning. Different socks for one, & possibly changing out shoes a few times throughout the day.

I am now taking some needed rest for the ole' tootsies but am scouring the internet for another 100 mile with which to redeem myself & once again, push outside one's boundaries.

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