Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Afraid of 7-Day Race
I'm a bit nervous about the upcoming 7-day stage race. Actually, it's not nerves, it's more like actual fright. To the left is the turn into the parking lot. Once you make that turn, there's no going back! Here are my main concerns...
I'm afraid I haven't prepared very well. My average weekly miles run this year is 31 miles/week. That's not bad, but it ain't terrific either! I had hoped to average more like 50 miles/week. That 31 miles week includes a week where I ran a 100 mile race. Which means I've had some rather low mileage weeks too...like only 10-12 miles. I have supplemented a LITTLE cross training, but not much. I suppose one of the great challenges of doing an ultra endurance event like this 7-day thing is seeing how far a "normal" person can go. I'm no Dean Karnazes. I'm just Chris from Mahomet. I remember reading about Al Arnold (first to cross Death Valley and go up Mt Whitney) saying the real achievement is not to over prepare, but to try the challenge with normal training. See if a regular old guy or gal can cross the desert and go up the mountain. I guess we'll see how far a "regular old Moon Master" can run & walk in 7-days straight.
I'm afraid I'll wilt in the summer heat. We haven't had much heat until recently. This past weekend really got me tired. If I can barely run 15 miles and then mow my yard, how can I keep going for 18 hours? Maybe I'll acclimate DURING the 7-days? If I get severely over-heated, I'll take a break and soak my feet in ice water. I'm not in a rush. I hope to stop for lunch & dinner each day--that'll give me some time off the feet and in some air conditioning.
I'm worried that my feet will be wet for 7 days of running through mud and puddles. The trails have been very water-logged the last 3-4 weeks. Things are turning around now. We've had warmer weather, winds, and no rain. Gregg and Jeff dug some trenches to drain the worst part of the course (corner by Hwy 47). The future looks promising. Jeff has also added a few small wood "bridges" (wooden planks) to low and muddy spots. It might be possible to stay relatively dry.
I'm concerned that anyone that comes might expect actual support. Will people expect water? Ice? Salt pills? Food? Hope not. I will probably have a single 5-gal water cooler filled with water and ice each day. That's about it...and I don't even promise that much support. This is a casual fun run, not an organized race. If all goes well, then we'll have awesome support and extras next year.
My solution to all of the above is simple...do this event simply to see how far I can go. It's for me and not anyone else. Enjoy the challenge. Don't worry about other runners. I'm not competing with anyone except myself. I've always asked myself "How far could I run in a week?" (I'm a bit odd in the Qs I ask myself.) Now I have the opportunity (challenge) to get the answer. I'm curious how many others will come out to challenge themselves.
Don't forget...keep the original goal of this insanity in mind...next week will be full moon run #100 (June 18). That's reason enough to be on the trails all week! Enjoy.