Monday, September 14, 2015
Pre-Barkley Race Thoughts
All the training is done. It's inadequate, but done. The "hay is in the barn" and I can only do damage now trying to squeeze in more hard wokouts. It'll be an easy taper week for me. I'm excited and looking foward to the challenge. The weather looks to be warm and humid (high of 84, sunny). Not good. The backwoods of TN at Frozen Head State Park have hosted the "real" Barkley many times. Often, that race has zero finishers. Zero. Nada. None. Guess that's why the RDs are predicting a small percentage of finishers in the shortened version. I'm game. Hike, run, crawl. Repeat. Don't give up.
Since I can't do much running this week, I'm focusing on preparation (supplies), nutrition, and sleep. Maybe eating well, and sleeping a lot, will help me this Saturday. You never know! And it doesn't hurt to be prepared with the right equipment, supplies, and on-trail food/drink. I have gloves and a pair of kevlar arm sleeves to protect me from the briars. They may not help, but it's worth a try. If nothing else, it makes me feel more prepared and confident...that's worth something. Right?
The course has not been given to us yet. We'll get maps and a compass at check-in. Much of the course is marked (not well) on established trails, but there are off-course sections too. I hope Gregg, a running buddy doing the race with me, can navigate better than me. He's one of those boy scout guys, so he should be an asset. I just hope we can stay together for most of the race.
Wish me well as I focus on Barkley this week. It'll be an adventure. Since we aren't supposed to finish, the pressure is off, right? No matter how hard this gets, it's still the "baby Barkley"--I can appreciate that I'm not in the real deal trying for 100+ miles on unmarked and unsupported trails. This is a small taste of the real race that I've dreamed about for many years. Time to have fun.