Saturday, September 11, 2010

Mid Mountain Marathon - not pretty, but done

I met Carol and her sister this morning at 6am, and we all headed up to Park City. (Thanks, sis, for volunteering!). After a couple of wrong turns, we made it to the start and picked up our bibs and shirts (which are quite nice - fun color). It was 36*. We hung out for about 45 minutes before it was time to toe the line.

We knew from the start that we were out of our league. These were serious trail runners. Oh well. We took off right at 8am and made a strange loop before hitting the actual trail. The uphills began immediately. It was OK, though, and two runners even recognized us from Sapper Joe. Not like it's hard - the fat chick and the old lady.

At about mile 4, Carol fell. She was a bit scuffed, and her hand really hurt, but the roots and rocks were everywhere and hard to avoid. About three miles later, my foot went off of the trail just enough to catch a root, too. I didn't go to my knees, but I went from upright to downward facing dog in a millisecond.

More tough trail. Really tough. Like really FRIGGIN tough. A couple of gals from West Tennessee were sucking lots of air (elevation) and one of them had fallen three times before the 13 mile mark.

At about mile 12, Carol wiped out again - big time. Damn roots. She said "Just help me find my glasses!" I said "They're on your face." Her hand was a bit worse, but manageable. It was about here that I started to get queasy.

We made it to the 5th aid station before the cut-off. Carol's sis was doing a great job at this aid station. (I must say that the volunteers all along the course were fantastic. Absolutely wonderful.). My barfiness increased. My shoelace also caught on a root and I actually pulled it out of the ground. Shockingly, I didn't fall! Then, with my Gu and Powerade on the verge of coming up, I stopped to crouch down. It felt so good that I decided to just sit down. Then, I figured what the hell, and I just laid down in the middle of the trail for about two minutes. It felt great.

After mile 18, there was quite a climb. Nausea intensified. We hit the top of the climb at the same time the EMTs passed us on bikes. "Yes, we're fine. Really.". The second they were out of sight, I barfed all over the place. It was about mile-we-are-insane.

I felt a bit better stomach-wise, but my hammys, calves, and lower back were killing me. At about mile-are-you-freaking-kidding-me, Carol biffed it again. This time, she popped up and said "Well, THAT one screams for an x-ray." Ah, crap! It wasn't much further until I caught another root with my shoelace. It was pretty comical, but I barely managed to stay up-right.

Sadly, the trail didn't really improve. Rain just a couple of days ago really unearthed tons of rocks. Since Carol's gait was affected by the fact that she had to hold her hand up, we just walked it in.

The results: a personal worst. 26.2 miles in 6:44:36!!! I'm not overjoyed, but this was truly the hardest marathon I've ever done. One high point: Carol was first in her age group! She was the ONLY one in her age group, but whatever.

1 comment:

Lish said...

I am so proud of you guys. Congrats on the finish.