This marks my 11th ultra marathon this year (I’m including training runs that also are of ultra distances) and this one I was most honored to do for a couple of reasons. One reason was to be a mentor (even if I was second choice ;)) and the other to show our support for an awesome friend who is the “ultimate badass”.
This year, this race was billed for 1st time ultra marathoners and their mentors (if they chose to have one). One of my close friends, Doug (remember Doug? He bloodied my nose during one of our training runs? Yeah, him) asked me to help mentor him. He first asked JT, but the date for this run was changed from 11/10 to 11/17 and JT’ was already supporting his own badass son who qualified for the “World’s Toughest Mudder” which was on 11/17, so Doug asked if I would help. Of course my response was “Hell ya!”
So after hooking up for some great training runs through CVNP and our beloved NC, the day finally came. Unfortunately for “the Bills” (race directors Wild Bill Wagner and Chef Bill), the weather couldn’t be more perfect. Sooner or later they will get the crappy weather that this race deserves.
We arrived at Everett Road Covered Bridge and DAMN was it cold! The weather was supposed to warm up today so my usual rule of thumb applied — above 30deg F. wear shorts, short sleeve shirt and compression sleeves.
After a quick debriefing by “The Bills” we toed the “line”, or lack thereof, and we were off! This race consisted of running a 5 mile loop, 6 times and then after completing your sixth lap, a “run” up “Candy Ass Hill” where you had to run up half a mile, grab a piece of candy to prove you went the distance and then back down to the start finish.
Thinking about the training that was done for this run, I originally told Doug that I thought we would finish in about 7 hours. He was thinking more along the lines of 6 to 6-1/2 hours. So I was really hoping that we would come closer to his goal. I planned on following my usual refueling/hydration plans, eating about a 1/4 PB&J, some chips and some coke at every pass of the aid station, as well as drinking at least 20oz of water, having a GU and two S-Caps every hour — unfortunately I had to add in 2 Advil at the start and then at the 3hr mark. Doug was going to follow the same GU/S-Cap/Water plan, I think it worked out pretty well for him — aside from the excess salt that dried on his skin from his sweat after the race. Doug make note — after an ultra and using S-Caps do NOT rub your eye while driving!
Loop one and two were spent pretty much running, chatting and really just goofing off — hence the pictures of us posing for the camera 🙂 and we were still about 20min ahead of schedule for finishing by 6hrs30min.
Loop three and four were a bit more difficult and we dropped off pace a little bit. Doug was dealing with some pains but muscled through it like a champ. The flatter sections didn’t seem too bad but there was much more profanity coming from people’s mouths as we made the climb up some of the hills!
Loop 5 had to be the worst of them all but once we started loop 6 and got a taste of the end, it was like a whole new race! By the end of loop 6 we were already passed the 6hr45min mark, now the goal was keeping it under 7hrs. We dashed across the road and made the “run” up Candyass Hill, grabbed our “Atomic Fireball” and raced back down, finishing this mother to the tone of 6hrs 54min. Check out our data here. Hell of a Job Doug, Hell.of.a.JOB!!!
The other amazing thing about this race? A close friend of ours and “the ultimate badass”, Mike , was diagnosed with cancer back in September/October. He began chemo at the end of October and has been showing us all just how badass he is! His wife Beth was running this as her first ultra and almost opted out of it. Neither Mike, nor any other of us, was having it! Mike was still going to run this race and we were all going to be there to support the two of them. Mike and Beth both rocked this race. What an amazing job and such an inspiration they are. So blessed to call them my friends.
I wish could single out every one of my friends that participated in this race, but there were just too many. It’s an amazing thing to run in an event and know, or know of, more than 75% of all the runners there.
Upcoming posts? Kids are running more trails, they also ran another 5k race Thanksgiving morning (spoiler – Jeremy finished in 29min and Emily in 32min — so proud!) and snow is starting to fall making for some beautiful trail runs.
As far as my race schedule for 2013 goes? I unfortunately won’t be doing the Buckeye Trail this year – not enough time to plan for it – although I do have access to all the maps now. I have Winter Run for Regis 50k in January, another Bills Badass Fatass 50k (this same course but hoping for crappy weather) in February, 024 (Outrun 24hr endurance run) in April, Burning River 100miler in July (have to shave 30sec off last year’s time), Bike MS 175mile ride in August, Yo Mommas 100miler in September, Run with Scissors double marathon in October, find someone else to mentor for BBA50k in November and try to squeeze in a few triathlons somewhere in there 🙂
Have fun my friends!!!