Sunday, April 11, 2010

It's all coming together - Traprock 50K!

Check it out!  This is an example of the awards I made for the race this weekend.  I am psyched that they came out so nice!  A couple years ago I was fortunate enough to win my age group at the Pineland Farms 50 miler and I was so impressed with the hand-made awards.  It stuck with me, and I wanted to create something special for our race.  It took most of the weekend, but they are almost finished now.  We will have awards for Top Male and Female for each of the 3 races.  I would be happy to have a "Piece of the Rock" sitting on my mantle!

Tonight, Goat, Batboy, and yours truly went to Walmart and purchased most of the stuff for the Aid Stations.  We have 32 gallons of gatorade and lots of pretzels, fig newtons, candy, and other stuff.  We'll also make some PB sandwiches and get some fruit (of course we need watermelon - my personal aid station favorite).  We'll have lots of water on course as well.

If things work out, we will have a post-race BBQ courtesy of Augie and Ray's.  Goat is working out the details.

I did manage to get 2 good runs in on the course this weekend.  Yesterday, the Goat, Dave D., and I ran the old course.  Goat had a head cold and fell a couple times.  I didn't think much of it because the Goat is usually good for a couple falls every few times out.  On the way back, however, he fell and let out a bloud scream followed by some expletives.  There was something wrong.  Goat had smashed his head on a rock and was bleeding profusely.  I took off one of my shirts and we applied direct pressure to the wound....good old first aid class was finally paying off.  Of course, I elected to give the Goat my t-shirt rather than get blood on my coveted VT100 shirt.  I love the Goat, but sometimes you just have to draw the line.  Just kidding!

Anyway, Goat was not a happy camper and I was concerned about him being able to get back to the car which was 2.5 miles away.  I was glad Dave was with us in case Goat passed out or something.  Luckily, Goat seemed OK, and actually decided to run a bit.  We put a hat on his head, so he could run without holding the shirt on the wound and we shuffled back to the car.  Goat seemed fine and the bleeding had stopped.  Later on, however, it started bleeding again and he went to the ER where they stapled up his head.  This had happened to me years ago, so I know how it feels to have someone put staples in your head.  It's kinda weird!

Goat was down for the count this morning as you might guess, but I was fortunate to get an email from my ultra-buddy, Matt Estes.  Matt was the fastest ultrarunner in CT a few years back, but hasn't run a lot over the past couple years due to work and school.  Fortunate for us, he is running Traprock this weekend.  It turns out that he started running again in January and has been logging a solid 10 miles per day.  I always enjoy running with Matt and today was no exception.  Matt has lungs of steel whereas I just have the ability to run for a long time.  Matt has both actually.  He has won both the HURT 100 and Massanutten 100 and held the course record for both.  He also holds the course record for the Vermont 50 despite the fact that the website still shows it otherwise.  Basically, he's an ultra stud.

So, today we start out up the first hill and Matt is chatting away while I am redlining it.  Damn, this is going to be a long run!  I elected not to carry water while Matt thought better, and I was getting worried already.  Matt is cool though and actually runs at my pace when we are together.  I push harder than I normally would when I'm with him, so I can make a reasonable showing.  I enjoyed catching up with Matt and hearing some good stories.  He was in Hawaii this past year and paced a runner at HURT100.  The runner was hallucinating and Matt was barely able to get him to an aid station before things got really bad.

We finished up our run on what I believe will be the race day course.  It came out at about 10.75 miles, so I need to shorten it up a bit this week.  On the last 1.5 miles, there is a big hill that I told Matt I always walk up.  He said, "Let's run up this thing, so we can go eat some food!"  I had to smile.  It was a good push to the finish.  It was great to run with Matt again, and he said he would be there on race day.  The loop took us about 1:45 with some detours, so we are thinking sub-5 hours is possible on race day.  My money is on him to take home the top award for the 50K.

Everything is falling into place.  We have 45-50 runners signed up.  I think we actually have 50 shirts, so we'll have to see about ordering more.  I hope you all pre-registered!

There's always more to do to make it better, but I think we will make a good showing for our first year.

I managed to log about 35 miles this week despite all the race prep and a monster week at work.  I'd like to do a few more races this year, and hope to get in some mileage once we get through race day.

A big advanced thank you to everyone who has offered assistance for the race.  We couldn't do it without you!

Have a great week everyone!  Can't wait to see many of you on Saturday!


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