I worked so damn hard to reach that goal that I stopped blogging most of the summer! If I went back and told you all about my training, it would turn into a 100 page dissertation on the ups and downs of training for an ultra marathon in the south. In summary, I trained in the heat and the rain. I ran late at night, and I ran at 4am. The training run I remember best was the one that started around 4:30am on game day morning here in Greenville, North Carolina. I was running long before people started tailgating for the football game. Around mile 11, I met up with a group from Fleet Feet that was running 3, 7, and 10 mile routes. I was planning to run/walk 50k (31 miles) that morning, so I ran all the routes and added on here and there. I drank pickle juice out of the back of my car. I reapplied sunscreen a dozen times. I ran around tailgaters who must have thought "Haven't I seen this girl out for the last 6 hours?" The heat index was over 100 degrees for many hours of this run/walk. I don't drink beer, but I sure would have taken one if someone offered it to me that day just for something cold to drink. At the time, it was the hardest training day of the whole plan, but it was the one that made me see how strong I had become.
The thing is, it's those training runs that show you who you are, what you're made of, and how hard you are willing to work for something you want. I remember that day thinking, "Is this really what I want?" Then thinking, "Of course this is what I want!" Later thinking, "Who's idea was this anyway?" And then, "Oh yeah, it was mine."
Maybe over the Thanksgiving break I will do a long blog about this years race, but here is what you need to know:
1. I accomplished my goal of 50 miles (I actually did 51.2129)
2. Adam did 27 miles with me
3. I didn't cry until mile 48
4. I got a HUGE blister on my right foot at mile 36ish. Popped it and kept going because an IronWoman doesn't have time for that. In fact I was so delusional I remember telling my foot, "You are NOT going to f*** this up for me! I worked too hard for this!"
5. I'm signing up again next year with an "easy" goal of 50k.
So there you have it. I survived my second attempt at 50 miles and I felt like I was on top of the world. I can now say "I have done 51.2 miles." Instead of "My goal was 50 miles and I only did 43.5." I know that sounds silly, but that really bothered me that I felt like I had to admit defeat every time I talked about my race. Next year Adam and I are planning to do a 50k at the Hinson Lake 24 Hour Ultra Classic.
You know...Because how can you say no to a t-shirt and pint glass? Not us! Until next time...