Monday, June 07, 2010

R2R 2010

Whew! It has been a wild few weeks. We've been wrapping up spring quarter at work - now in finals week with graduation on Friday. I'll walk as faculty for the first time ever! These last few weeks of the quarter are always intense. Just to add a bit of fun...we had R2R going on. As Mrs. Assistant Race Director, I helped out when and where I could: hosted packet stuffing at our house, created a timing spreadsheet and entered the racers and corresponding data, managed packet pickup for one afternoon, shopped for food for 11 aid stations, boiled and cut up 50 lbs of potatoes, cut up 12 watermelons and helped stock and organize aid station tubs. Now, just imagine what Eric and Rob were doing! I got a full night's sleep on race night because Eric insisted. He got a whopping two hours of sleep, and Rob decided it wasn't worth it and got zero hours of sleep. They did it though, they pulled off a great race!

Oh, and in the midst of the potatoes and watermelons, our computer died. Really died, like gone, gone, gone. The day before the race and we have no email. And, our old dog was having a bad spell, so we had to fit in a run over to the vet for a prescription - thank goodness they refilled without having to see her! So, you know, a little of this and a little of that, and I was one tired old runner the night before the race. I told Eric that I thought it was possible that all the prep was more work than the 50K.

As it was, I had a lovely race. The sun was out (after two weeks of rain), the temps were up (not so good), Margaret and Abi were there to run with me on one of my favorite courses, and there were friends everywhere I looked. My run went well till right around mile 15 - by then I was hot and out of energy and my chest was tight. We played around with the timing, trying to go to a 3/1 run/walk cycle, but that did not help. Just as my breathing became more difficult, Eric called to see how I was handling the heat. His phone was cutting in and out, and I thought I heard him say "work through it", which I will admit, surprised me. I repeated it back to him, and got the actual message loud and clear: "don't over do it!" He knows me all too well. I immediately switched to a 1/1 cycle, and took a few minutes to walk and get some food in. I sat for a minute at the next aid station, and ate more food. It probably took another mile, but I finally got my second wind.

Right after we left the Puyallup aid station, a 50 mile runner caught up to us. He said he was exhausted and asked if he could hang with us a while. He ended up staying with us the rest of the race - slowly coming back from the edge and finishing strong. Margaret encouraged him to run the last quarter mile and finish on his own - which he did, then he circled right back around to run in with us! It was so awesome. Greg, if you ever happen to read this, you did great!

Right now, my race calendar is blank until October 10th. I know - I'm not very good at keeping my "no races in the summer" promise. Eric has been giving me gentle reminders for the last few weeks, hoping to get me to stick to it. Intellectually, I know I should not run, but holding off is awfully hard. I'm going to try...I'm looking for a September race, but am going to try to stay out of any for the rest of June, July and August. I'm volunteering next week at the Lake Youngs 50K (and running one early-morning 10 mile loop), and of course crewing at WS100 (coming up in just a couple weeks!).

There you have it, the latest and greatest from Puyallup. R2R was my 60th combined marathon and ultra...45 marathons + 15 ultras. Happy days!

8 comments:

Anne said...

Unless they've done it, people have no idea how time-consuming race management can be. Glad you hit all your deadlines and had a good time. 60 marathons/ultras is just amazing, Michelle.

Anne said...

You are such an inspiration...I may be repeating myself here, but every post you write impresses me more! Great job on the organizing and the racing :)

Sarah said...

You are definitely a pro at this marathon/ultra running thing! Congrats on another successful race! You make it look easy. :)

Sunshine said...

Oh my! Life and you are racing right along. Amazing Michelle!

Joe said...

Just sitting here chuckling with/at you, Michelle..you are awesome.

Hey, I'm with Eric... take it easy till Portland on 10.10.10. You don't need to prove anything and if you take it easy on your ticker, it'll carry you a long, long way!

Scott Keeps Running said...

Sorry I missed you. Congrats on #60! I saw Eric at the finish and he looked great ... and a little sunburn. :)

Sunshine said...

Bless You!!

Paul Rhodes said...

hi im Paul from downunder, what an inspiration you are...im one year in and loving reading about what you are doing