Categories
running

Day313 – last minute

Nothing much was done today. All that I planned didn’t come into fruition. I’m racing against the clock on many fronts.

FedEx print center, last night I checked they were open late but tonight I went there they were closed. They have the new limited hours from 10-6. So I will have to go there tomorrow to have my turnsheet laminated.

I gave up laminating the map. I looked at it. It was too big. The streets were too tiny. I might as well memorize the path and rely on my phone from time to time and trust my turn sheet.

I tested my GPS. It is a piece of crap. Like previous experience, it didn’t do jack. I should have brought a more expensive model.

I did some shopping today. I think I know what I will eat. I will go light on the calories this time. Just barely enough to get me through. In the past I ate too much and it slowed me down. I need to find the sweet spot.

I was able to read one of the runners most recent race report. He finished it last week. The report was very helpful. He failed to meet the cut off at the Stone mountain before they locked the gate. He got in but couldn’t make it out before the gate closed.

I wouldn’t want that to happen to me. I am not that good in scaling fences in the middle of the night especially when I am half dead after doing 62 miles.

So at least I should push my start an hour earlier so looking at 3 AM start at the latest.

I have been rethinking the start time a bit. I might going to do a night run by pushing the start time even earlier starting at 6-7 PM, so I could make it to Stone Mountain in the morning, 8-9 AM instead of in the evening, the gate should be open by then. This will get to finish around 12-1 midnight the next day.

Doing a night start completely mess up all the gas station stops because likely they will be closed most of the time I am in the city because it will be in the middle of the night. I will be in downtown Atlanta around 2-3 AM when all the eateries are closed. By the time they are open I will be doing the last 40 miles on the Stone Mnt trail. There does not seem to have a lot of places to get food on the trail until I get back into the city and by then it will be 8-9 pm the following day.

The report scared me. I am afraid of pain. I never push myself beyond my pain point. The guy wrote that at mile 80, he felt the pain and blisters and everything including tireness from lack of sleep. I don’t know if I can handle that. I ran 60 miles before. At that time I knew I still had enough in me to push on. However, mile 80 is something I never experience before…and I don’t know if I will be willing to push on. I know it will come…I read many reports about it. No one is an energizer bunny. I am afraid I might break.

conclusion/decision. Start time has me worry. Most likely it will be an early start at 2-3AM. Alternatively I sleep in on Friday, and run at night at 5PM. This is very high risk because who know if I can sleep during the day. If I can’t fall asleep during the day, I will be screwed. To force myself to sleep in the day, then I shouldn’t sleep on Thursday night. This will also hamper my ability. In the end, I am still running out of time. I wish I knew it earlier and readjust my sleep time several days ahead. This is part of ultra learning curve.

Categories
life

Day312 The Crunch

I am feeling the crunch, but things are happening. Wheels started spinning as I am in the final preparation. Final? No, more like finally getting my crap together. Things are taking shape.

I had the maps printed out. 20+ pages of them. These are in addition to the paper map I brought. I have been so spoiled with water proofed maps , ones I used for my hiking (from National Geographic), but my street map for Atlanta is the newspaper quality and really poor stuff, really not for outdoor. I hate using it, especial I know there is a chance of rain. It will just melt when it becomes wet. I plan to go to FedEx tomorrow have it laminated, but then it will make it hard to fold. How I miss the National Geo ones. Those were the best. Will got to do what I have. I am thinking after laminating it to cut out portion I don’t need. Really am out of time for an art work project now and why did I not do it two weeks ago? Shooting my foot here.

I got my map and have looked over it several times. I am at maybe 60-70 percent familiarized with it. There are some pitfalls and I noted those. I still wish to have the whole map memorized. I am out of time so more like will wing it. I do wish use Google map too (street view) to see some of the turns. But no time for that because that will take at least 5-6 hours. I don’t have that much time.

To do: I need to circle out some spots where I can get food/ and bathroom breaks. Google map would help here.

decision. Do I pack my food or do I buy them in Atlanta. What snacks am I taking along? Snacks will be my main source.

to do: I need a list of food I will be eating

To do: I supposed to be packed by now, but not yet.

to do. making a packing list. Two lists, one for the run, and one for the trip. some important things are anti chafe cream and balm – you know certain areas are going to hurt really bad after rubbing it for 50+ miles. We are doing a 100 here. The worse thing is no way to swap gear at mid run. It is a do or die mission.

accomplished. I got my final set of maps and have been going over couple of times. Felt very accomplished when I weeded out half the maps, I think I could do without.

accomplished. I got the map traced out.

accomplished. I got my turned direction printed out in two sided on to sheets of paper. To do need to laminate them because they are the most important thing to get me from start to finish.

accomplished. set a start time for my run. After reading the facebook page of runners comments, I got a good idea of when I should start. Originally I was planning 5:30-6:30 start but people were advising an earlier one. I am moving at a start at 4:30 start. There should be just enough light.

to do: talking about light! I need batteries for my flashlight and headlamp. Need to check all gear. plus spare. I never ran that long in the dark – we are talking from 9 pm to 4 am, good 7-8 hours of darkness.

accomplished. researched the start location and the constraint. There are two main mountains: Kennesaw (the start) and Stone Mountain (the middle/finish at 63 mile). I need to get to Stone mountain before the gate closes. It closes at sundown so 8:30 ish. It takes me about 15.5-16 hrs to run that distance, granted I took a 2 hour lunch break on a previous 63 mile attempt. So looking at 14-15 hours, with no lunch break, I should start no later than 6 am to get to Stone Mountain by 8 pm.

I don’t like taking risk, so I am thinking to start at 4:30. My Hotel is 45 mins away from Kennesaw. So It means waking up at 3 am, with 30 mins prep. I need to leave the hotel by 3:30 latest. Oh be the way, when I get to Kennesaw, I need to climb 1-2 miles up. Race starts at the summit.

If the stars aligned, I hope to finish the next day early in the morning. I never done a 100 mile before…so all the calculation is useless.

On Stone Mountain, I hope to back summit and down before sunset. say 8:30 or 9 pm. Then the next six hours, I hope to run back to the city, hopefully, get to mile 80-85 ish. I hope to see sunrise on my last stetch as I arrive back in downtown Atlanta. That will be the best case scenario. The expected scenerio is I will see sunrise at mile 85/87 on Peach St. I will run/walk the next 15 miles during daylight and arrive downtown at around noon. Got to finish no later 2:30 pm or will be disqualified.

If I can’t reach Stone Mnt before Sunset, the race will be over and the run will be in vain.

Also predicting finishing time is really up in the air. I was thinking of a midnight start, but I wouldn’t want to finish in downtown Atlanta at 2-4 am in the morning. 4-4:30 am starts is only appropriate.

Kennesaw and Stone Mountain is really the two high points for this run.

Tomorrow is really the last day to get all the things together. Thursday will be mostly execution: flying to Atlanta, get to the Hotel, make a pit stop to get supplies. Hit the bed as early as possible. Like 8 pm. Up by 3 am. Then show time.

Decision. I might have to get all that I need at the airport after landing even though it is ridiculously expensive – water, sodas, candies, jerky, bread/sandwiches, and batteries. Then everything else will be picked up at a gas station/store along the run.

Categories
life

Day311 random rambling

Last night I couldn’t fall asleep again. It wasn’t because of worrying but because I was just too excited after a run. Reminded me why I shouldn’t run at night. Adrenaline was pumping through me in the wee hours.

So I wrote the below. It is kind of stupid rambling, which I am embarrassed to post, but it kind of make sense of what I am going through.

The older I am, the slower I become. Time seems to stop, like the last two weeks.

—-

Time moves so fast.

There are so much I want to do. Yet to do each thing takes up so much time.

When I am doing a lot, I feel tired.

When I am tired, I don’t feel like doing anything

There were times when I was not tired and I was also doing a lot. Those times were when I was young.

I tried two weeks without doing anything. I succeeded in doing nothing. I was afraid if I remain like that I could stay like that.

I looked back at all that I did. Some things were really impressive, but in the end I felt still was not enough.

I want to have a hobby, something I do besides work. When you work, you can’t remember what you do. On the day say you can’t work any more, like on your death bed, people won’t think on the day you went to work and put in a normal day of work. Yay, I set up the fax machine this week for my work place and I was proud of that, or I reconfigured the firewall at work, I was very proud of that too. I so much want to tell the whole world how I fixed those problems.

I felt accomplished, but mostly whenever I think back of the last few years, I can only recall one or two highlights of my life and none of them were work related. I remember my trip to the Grand Canyon a few years ago. For the first time in my life I traveled! Paid for with my own money and went and had a good time. My second trip was to Peru and stepped on the Inca Trail, and that was man Amazing! Holy Cow I was standing on an ancient site. My third trip was to Chile. No doubt not anything less. Of course I run and many if not all were marvelous (at least to me). They are like breath to me.

Work is important, but what give meaning to life, is usually the little things or time that I spent outside of work. I need work, but it does not define me. Yet we put so much time into it, especially for guys.

Who care that I solved seemingly impossible things at work? I enjoyed doing those a lot, but it is like normal. Done and forget about it. Move on to the next thing. But when it comes to doing something special outside of work, they are remembered for a lifetime.

When running won’t be fun any more is when I treat running as work. I work toward it to become better and to improve my performance. I hope one day that never happen. Recently though, running has taken a back seat. So reason for this post.

How do I know what I want to do?


This morning though, my muscles were sore. Boy. You always have to pay a price. 6 miles is causing me to limp. Ya, what did I do. Hope ya enjoy reading!

Categories
running

Day310 when you are in a knot

Morning:

I feel the noose tightening so I couldn’t fall asleep last night, thinking about the run coming up in a few days.

A little background. I signed up for this 100 mile ultra (Great southern endurance run, GA,US) I don’t know, maybe at the beginning of summer. It is a virtual run, meaning, I will be running alone, but the course is real (meaning on location). We have 34 hours to finish, which is plenty of time. The good runners could finish under 24 hours, me, maybe looking at 30 hours. 5-6 people already did it. They have been reporting between 29-31 hours. That will be my goal too. I could do a 100k in 13-14 hours, so 26-27-ish hour is a reasonable target.

So with my cellphone I had the turn sheet open and a map spread out on the bed, I traced the route until mile 80. There are twenty more miles to go. And the turn direction gets shorter. There are about 10 more turns left to go. One of the direction was to run 8 miles straight. Sweet. That is probably the longest distance without a turn for this whole route. In comparison, the first 80 miles have about 5 pages of notes. Grr, there are so much information, a turn at every quarter mile.

I need a second study session to get the last 20 miles.

Evening:

I spent the evening looking over the last twenty miles. Apparently there are only two streets I need to know. Stone Mountain Trail and Peach St. Most of the rest of directions is to continue running down the same road.

Afterward, I went out for a 10K. I didn’t have a number in mind, but as I ran, 10K seems good. It was actually quite short. I finished it and felt I have’t really got any work out.

It was so good to have two weeks off running. All my muscles were fresh. Most of my aches were gone. I could run fast again. The feeling of being able to run fast without feeling my heart exploding or head getting dizzy, or just the legs wouldn’t move. They were all gone. I only was running at maybe 65-70% my max, but it felt so good.

I checked the weather down at Atlanta. And it is not looking good for me. 60% of rain on Friday and 30% of rain on Saturday. The plan was to start early on Friday and finish early on Saturday. I could delay the run to Saturday morning, but I got to finish by 10 on Sunday to make it to the airport and fly home on Sunday evening. So I really would not want to delay the run to Saturday, because it is just too much pressure to make the flight. Praying the weather will change.

I feel alive again.

Categories
life

Day309 laying low

I have been off the radar for almost a week after finishing the GVRAT race. It is still on going but I haven’t put much effort into it. The initial goal of running 1000k is done. I could go for the 2000k or even 3000k. Any way.

Last few days have been a low point for me. When I run, I feel high, even when a run is very difficult and I would ask why am I doing this. But when I don’t run, it feels even worse.

I haven’t done much in my personal life or running. Everything seems come to a halt.

I am procastinating. Next week, July 4th weekend I will be heading to Atlanta to do my first 100 miler. It is a virtual race so I will be myself, but I will be running a actual mapped out course. Running aspect is tough. It is an endurance race. On top, it is the logistics, where to get food/drinks/bathroom. Since it is a self supported, I will carry most of stuff on me. There won’t be any place for me to swap out clothes or gear. Yup, lot of stuffs: flash light (s), phone, blinkers, safety reflector vest, socks, batteries, gps, watch, chargers, map, and turn-sheet. Navigation too will be tough, because I am poor at it. Then the stamina to stay awake and keep running. I am scared about the whole thing, so I have been hidding myself.

Instead, I have burried myself in a chinese web novel (translated of course, since I can’t read chinese). I am reading Reverend Insanity. It is quite good apparently, but the ideology behind it is kind of mess up, but still it makes you want to root for the bad guy, like Death Note. It is definitely a Rated R novel, for death, violence and gore.

Categories
life

Day308 weekend

Nothing in mind of what I will post. It is weekend. The race GVRAT is kind* of over. I didn’t run last night, but truly enjoying the night off.

I did my shopping for food and restocked the fridge with some basic stuff. Really wished I would have brought a bottle of Coke :). No I just brought the boring stuff like bread and more cornbread. I don’t even like eating them. For some reason, there was a craving when I saw them. There was not much I want to get afterward. I checked the meat section, prices were normal, nothing were on sale, so I didn’t buy.

After dinner I went to bed early…maybe around 9 pm. First time of having dinner at a normal time. I was too full to run afterward, but I was debating though. I slept like the next 10 hours, didn’t know when I felt asleep – I just did with all my clothes on. The body just crashed, I guess. I could have ran this morning when I woke up. The body is already feeling much better. I am ready for a good long run this weekend, though nothing is planned.

I was thinking of heading to Blacksburg, which is like 5-6 hours away to do a memorial run. Last year, while running in the Eastern Divide Trail Run Race a runner died (I didn’t see it happened but I was the last guy who came to his body before the EMT hauled him away) and the race director had marked the course for anyone (for last weekend and this weekend) who wants to go out there to do a run in honor of the guy. There is a bit of memory I want leave for the guy/myself as a closure. However, it is a bit far…the course is only 8 miles. I was more looking into to run the full course 28-30 miles (50K) I did last year. So I am on the fence about this 8 mile thing.

It will be just myself if I go. I still think it is a neat thing to do. It will take the whole day. 6 hours there, 2 hours for the running, and another 6 hours back. Technically, I can do it. My friend was thinking I might shelter / backpack on AT for the night – which is not a bad idea. However, that is just a lot of work. Do one thing and do it well…

That is on the list. Weatherwise, looks like we will have rain the next 7 days.

GVRAT* – I woke up this morning, and got the email link for signing up the next leg of the Tennessee Race. I knew it was coming. I duly signed up and paid the fee for another go. So I am heading back across Tennessee in the next two months (virtually). So, here we go again! This time my enthusiasm is much subdued.

People were asking when will this race ever gonna end. The answer is never and whenever. Laz, the race director, is having the race across the US continent in the work. It might debut in January. He said 4 months thing with the Tennessee is kind of short. We should do it for a year. Not so sure about that.

I’m going to sleep some more and then get up and put in the run. (grrr, do have to go to work before the run). Let’s go.

Categories
running

Day307 1000k done

Even before I started out for the run I was not sure if I would finish tonight. I had only 16.5 miles left, which is a 0.5 mile less than the previous day, but it was not an easy 16 miler. The original plan was to split the run into two, a morning 5-6 miles and a 10-11 miles at night. However, I did not feel like running in the morning.

I didn’t feel like running either at night. I know I want to finish. 17 miles is not easy to do. I experienced it the night before. You have to push and pull yourself toward finishing. It is a half marathon plus a 5K. That 5K at the end is always a killer.

I was dreading the run. 6:30 came by. I still hadn’t eaten dinner. So I ate, not much in the fridge since I didn’t do my shopping. I had only rice left and yogurt. Mixed everything together. I needed the energy for tonight run. I also wanted to eat light nothing too heavy. I learned, a heavy meal makes it very difficult to run.

After dinner, still didn’t want to go out. In the afternoon, they were forecasting heavy rain. The weather got better by 7. The T-storm didn’t come. I waited a bit. The forecast changed to misty drizzle for the rest of the evening. I was still loitering around.

It was 7:30 now. If I did not go out, finishing the 1022K would not be happening tonight. I had only 4.5 hours left before midnight to run 17 miles. Yes, it was still plenty of time, but I didn’t want the run to be a life and death struggle of beating the clock by midnight. I had nothing in me for that kind of run nowaday.

So off I went. The first half mile was unpleasant. Just like yesterday, my feet lost the feel. Everything was so stiff and robotic. I hated it. You know when you can run and when it is not happening. I couldn’t give up. This was the day I would finish. Luckily the body relaxed and I got into the running feel after half a mile.

My feet were still heavy. I didn’t have the light gait that I like. I took whatever my body was offering to me. It was heavy deliberate steps all night. I felt like a bear stomping about the neighborhood.

I took almost the same route as the day before. Nothing fancy. Tonight was to finish. I was not out for sightseeing. Music came into my mind by mile two and three. I felt better. The rain got a bit heavier too. The forecast is always off. I was wet yet not soaked. That came later. I think mile 4 and 5 the rain became heavier still. I regretted of not wearing a hat. The water made it hard to see through my glasses. I had to take them off.

My speed got better. I reached the Fair Lakes Loop, I decided to do two loops early on because I might be too tired later on to do the loop on my way back. I hate running loops but got to do them tonight. I know my body. It always tries to cheat when it is tired. Sun has set. I am only at mile 8. I continued to press on. Rain had stopped. I hoped I would get back here by mile 12 ish then it would be 5 miles to get home to make 17 miles. So my goal is to get another 4-5 miles before heading back.

I did a quick math in my mind. If I reached the end of the road it would be about 2 miles. I planned to go to a 7-eleven near there, Greenbriar Shopping Center, that would be another mile. So I believed out and back to a 7-eleven might give me a 7 mile.

Tonight since I was heading to 7-eleven, I might just get food. I was hungry by now. Not extremely hungry but I could feel it. Yesterday, I tightened my belly, but not tonight. The night was young. I needed food. I got there and brought a slice of pizza. It was not very good. Dried. Left too long in the heater. But I needed the fuel. I brought also an Aloe drink. Then headed back. I was at mile 10 by now. The distance was less than anticipated.

The return trip was uneventful. I stopped checking on the distance, but my mind was alert and would let me know how far I ran without looking at the watch. My thought was to push for home. I got back to the Fair Lakes Loop and still felt strong. I was at mile 12 now. Finished the loop with an even stronger pace. Just like the previous night, my energy kicked in after mile 13. It was a short burn. Still 3 hours for a half marathon is dismal by my normal standard. I slowed down a bit by mile 14. I knew I was doing this. I got to another 7-eleven. I didn’t need to stop but I did. I brought a Coke. Ran into my roommate as I was heading out. I joked, could you drive me back? Technically, I could call it a night. I checked my watch, I just made 16.5 miles and that could mean a finish.

I was still couple miles from home. So off into the night I went. It was anticlimatic. I struggled here and there. Got to the last mile. Arrived at home. I checked my watch again if it was a little short, I would run to the firestation. Nope, it was 19.1 miles in 4 hours. It was good enough for me tonight.

There 1000K race in 48 days done. The actual distance ran was 1022 km.

GVRAT. I will try to get another 1000K over the summer. For now, I am going to enjoy the moment while it lasts.

The Biggest lesson learned since I first attempted it on May 1st and was telling myself, no way I could do it, was you don’t know what your body is capable until you try. Not only that I did it, but have done it in less than half the time that I had thought. I underestimated myself.

Categories
running

Day306 This is the day

I will try to put in a quick post. This could be the day I finish the first challenge of Running Across Tennessee Virtual Race (GVRAT). I have 17 miles left. It is day 48 of the race.

I said maybe because I am not sure I could do 17 miles today. I know I run 17 miles all the time. But last night 17 miles was hard.

The first couple miles my feet didn’t want to move. Usually I am only like that at the end and not at the beginning. It was like I was not in gear. You could press the pedal as much as you want but I was in neutral. I did shuttle steps until after two miles. At mile three and 4 I started to feel my legs ease up a bit.

Luckily my breathing was alright and the weather was cool. What got me usually is a combination of heat and inability to breath.

So I was running along on pace, not very fast, and miles passing under me until mile 8 I took a fall. I tripped over the unevenness of the sidewalk. Usually this kind of things is rare because I know every nooks and bumps in my neighborhood by now. Also I call myself a trail runner where we do harder terrain than this. Well I was on the ground. My glasses flew away and everything scattered everywhere. I collected myself. Nothing injured. No stratch or bruises. I was OK. I got up again to walk.

The interruption was not too bad. Once my numb was over, I started running again at a reduced pace.

I got to mile 9 and 10. The sun had set. I made a round in a new area I just disccovered recently. It was about a mile or two (Fair Lakes / Walmart). I saw New York Tony Pizza and so wanted to stop for a slice. I was hungry then, and it was about 9 pm. I still got about 5 miles left.

By mile 13 I got my zoom/juice back. I was still hungry but I tightened my belly and ran. I knew sooner I got home the sooner I could eat. I ate before I went for a run at 5:30, I shouldn’t be hungry yet. It was only 4 hours ago. Yet I got my speed. I finally ignited. It felt great to put in the stride.

Miles quickly passed under me. By my watch I was slow. 13 miles is a half marathon. In races I usually cover that under 2 hours, but today, I was almost at the three hours mark, which is quite shocking. I was only this slow last summer when I was sick. Any way, I am watching myself.

I still had some left in me by mile 15. I was no longer running at full speed. I knew when I passed mile 16. Last hill climb and last mile to turn onto my street. I slowed down a lot by now. I know it is the wall. I told myself, almost there. Hit mile 17. Half more mile to go. I found myself walking. Giddy up. Got to break the wall. Ran again, shuttle steps to get to the Firehouse. The watch is not exactly at 17.5 when I got there, so I run and walked some more until it reached it. Done.

I had my second dinner. I had a glass of wine too. My fridge is almost empty, so got to do shopping before the next run.

I just have to repeat the above again one more time, one more night, minus the fall.

Categories
health life

Day305 recharged

I felt a bit better after a day of rest. I didn’t want to take a break but I couldn’t squeeze any more out of my body. It just stopped performing.

Last weekend was the lowest miles I have done since April. Every weekend I want to go out to put up 50-60 miles. The past weekend I only had 14 miles.

On Sunday I didn’t want to run at all. I did want to but my body was not moving. I tried and after a mile couldn’t pick up any pace I came back home.

Last night, it felt great to be back out running. I was in my strides much of the run. I felt tired after 13 miles but still I could pull myself together for the last three miles and made it home, that when I know I still have it in me. 16 ish mile is kind of short for a test.

I have been eating meat like a vampire sucking blood. I would like red meat. Not getting enough from food might be the cause of my low energy. I haven’t had much meat due to higher prices, but I brought a pound of ground pork after my trip and totally devoured it during lunch…yike it was supposed to last for a week! But my run was great last night, that made me feel less guilty.

The trip to Atlanta is on. I committed. I know I committed after signing up the race, but I have been on the fence on choosing the date to go. Ideally I like to go toward the end of the summer, but I also don’t like the heat. Even now, it is crazy hot down there. I picked the July 4 weekend. The flight is booked and hotel too. My two weeks indecisiveness costed me two hundred dollars more for the trip, because my flight has become more expensive — no it is very expensive. I could fly across the nation at that price; hate it, but I don’t have much time to watch the price with only couple weeks left. It would be too risky. Also I looked at the stops of many cheaper fares requiring a stop to Fort Worth, TX before continue on to Atlanta – that’s crazy. I want to go to Atlanta directly. I guess we don’t have a lot of short hops low budget airlines in the US as in Chile. Enough ranting.

My map is on its way. I will soon study the turn by turn for the race. 34 hours of worth of turns is a lot to commit to memory. The next step after that is choosing the start time. I probably will choose the traditional 5 AM start. I have until 3 pm the next day to finish.

Also I decided not to upgrade my watch. I would like a watch that can last more than 35 hours on normal gps, but there are not a lot of choices out there. The price tag is just heavy for me at this point. Watch, flight, hotel, my trip is over a grand. So I stick with my current garmin, which could last for around 12 hours with everything but gps turn off. I just have to bring a charger along and charge it midrun.

Also I hope my body won’t fail on me like last weekend.

Two more weeks to get my body together.

Categories
life

Day304 feeling defeated

I am feeling a bit deflated. Maybe it is just a natural progression after a long weekend trip.

I drove up to PA to meet with couple guys who were running a section of the Laurel Highlands Trail. None of the people in my group was running the whole thing that day but after I got home, I saw on Facebook some other people did do it, the whole 70.5 miles.

The 8 mile section we did was tough. We only did it once when originally we (mostly me) wanted to do it twice and at night with very little of sleep (in a delirious state).

The run was harder than I anticipated. I hiked the trail before and I thought I have improved a lot since then and I could take on running it. How hard can that be? It was hard.

I ran with couple hard core ultra guys. Those guys didn’t even sweat and I was out of breath the first mile. Then came the climb. They could run uphill but I could only run downhill. I got a blister on one of my toes from it. Dang it. Later on at the last three miles I rolled my ankle. Did it twice. Run was over for me. What a disappointing end, as I hobbled back to the car.

One of the guys, he was the fastest in our group, and the guy who invited me to run with him, shared about his DNF (Failed to finish) of his last race at the Black Forest Ultra. He said he tried his best and still could not make it to the last cut off time. He was over by a minute. He shared how he was in a funk since then.

That kind of put things in perspective for me. I don’t want to fail in a race. This guy I thought he is my idol and fast and there is a race out there, and he couldn’t make it. The race he failed was also one I wanted to do.

I am trying to find the motivation in me to run. My past weekend trip helped me to see how much more I must train to get ready for the real thing. The weekend was like a practice run and my wheel came off. The real race will be taken place sometimes in September – the race date hasn’t been set yet due to the coronavirus.