Final Week: Getting Ready for 100 Miles
Next Sunday by this time (11 AM) I hope I will have already finished, or perhaps will be shuffling through the last couple of miles of the Lean Horse Hundred. I've started two previous 100 mile races but never made it past 64 or 66 miles.
I hope this year will be my year!
I'm putting together my drop bags and making sure my foot care/first aid box is fully stocked. My family will be crewing for me. Haliku is coming up from Denver to pace me. He's doing this even though he knows that by the time he does, my running/shuffling pace will be his walking pace.
There will be no reason for me to fail other than myself, my mind and my own mistakes.
As the ultramarathon saying goes: "If you have done 26.2 miles, then you can do 50 miles… if you have done 50 miles, than you can do 100 miles!"
Having done several 50-60 mile runs, I am beyond ready to move up to doing… er, FINISHING…. 100 mile races.
Barring unforeseen circumstances such as coming down with an acute illness this week, or doing something dumb during race day, like not eating or drinking enough- there is no reason why I will not be able to do it.
Of course, being able to and actually doing are two vastly different things.
I am less nervous than I have ever been before. Actually, I'm eagerly looking forward to this adventure.. and it will certainly be a grand adventure. Bring it on! Let's git 'er done!
I know that unexpected things can occur, indeed I expect that unexpected things will occur, but no matter what happens I will keep moving forward. There will be times when I will be exhausted, completely dejected and will want to stop. I know to expect them so I will be ready for them- but won't let them make me give up.
Before every DNF, I try to ask myself, "How will you feel about this in an hour after you've stopped and are riding in the car back to the hotel? You'll probably feel much better and as if you could've kept going. You'll regret DNFing all year until you get another chance next summer."
Although I might be happy simply going further than ever before, I am not going to even think about that. If I start telling myself, "Going at least 70 or 80 miles would be OK," then it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy and that will be as far as I get.
NO! I will go the entire 100 miles this year! Not 70 or 80….
I know all about starting 100 mile races, now I just need to be confident that I can do the entire race. I have deep foundation of endurance built from all my previous races and training runs. I have run over 50 miles several times and know what to expect. The real challenge of finishing 100 miles will be continuing through that second 50 miles.
However, as another saying goes: "When you think you have gone as far as you can possibly go, you're actually only half as far as you could get." The mind is weaker than the body.
I've got my pacing chart put together to let me know when I am going too fast or to slow (and when the cut-offs are). I am already planning on walking the entire last 2 1/2 miles up the hill before Crazy Horse Monument so I don't bonk like last year. It's only 2 1/2 out of 100, I can afford to do that.
After about 1 mile south of mile 64.5 aid station in Harbach Park in Custer, it's almost completely downhill until the finish.
The cut-offs for Lean Horse are soft- if you look like you're going to make it, then they'll let you go. They'll be packing up all afternoon in Hot Springs and won't pull you unless you need to be pulled because of safety or medical issues. This year, Jerry Dunn the Race Director is making a special effort so that all 25 first time 100 mile attemptors will finish. I will be among them.
As long as I don't do any avoidable mistakes, or simply give up, I can do it. After all, to finish 100 miles by the final cut-off of 30 hours, you only need to average 18 min/miles. That's only a easy walk for most of us!
This time, my third time will be the charm! I CAN and I WILL do this!!!
What will it be? ONE HUNDRED MILES……or DNF?
NOT! NO DNFs for me!!!