Saturday, July 24, 2010
I turned 30 over a month ago on June 16.
One (of many) thing I have learned thus far is that life is a series of decisions based on rules and emotions, with the pendulum constantly swaying back and forth between the predominant influence. I had a fabulous time during my trip to Alaska, I could totally see myself living there at some point.
In 7 days I will be attempting my first go at 50 miles at the White River 50 miler in Washington State near Mt Rainier. I am looking forward to that journey.
Secondly, some wildly belated race reports;
Hatfield and McCoy Marathon
June 12, 2010
State Counted towards 50 states; #7 WV
Country course, small marathon, everyone was super friendly, frequent water stops.
Limited lodging options so I opted for the "Bed and Breakfast" option, which isn't really a bed and breakfast as we know it, this instead was locals opening their home for the night of the race for $25-45 for the night. I was a little worried and had my camping stuff at the ready to sleep in my car if it turned out badly. I arrived and checked in, they gave me the phone number of my host lady, I look down and have no cell signal. "Oh well I will figure something out," I thought and headed to get my spaghetti dinner. They had a re-inactment of part of the Hatfield McCoy feuds (it was a real thing) and at the end I start chatting with the person sitting next to me. They were announcing some things that I could not hear due to the sound system acting up from the thick humidity and heat. At some point I randomly decide to check if I had safety pins for my race bib, nope, so I walk up to the front. At that exact moment the host lady and the other guest were standing up front, they had been announcing my name to find me and I was completely not paying attention. The host lady then drove us over just across the state border to the start in Goody, KY to show us where it was (5 min from her house, nice!).
OK, aside from that there was a good showing of Marathon Maniacs and we got a big group shot under the start banner as it was a small race and you can do that at small races. It was also a chip timed race, however there was no timing mat at the start, weird but I guess it saves some money. Everyone was super friendly, the runners were mostly from out of town so very chatty as well. Aid stations just about every mile, and the drenching thunderstorms at regular intervals kept down the temps that would have otherwise made it a more interesting run, if you know what I am talking about.
To top everything off, at the finish line they had great food (drinks, fresh fruit, and BBQ) and they gave every single finisher a mason jar (representing moonshine) with a hunk of wood inside with a metal ingraving of the race logo and your overall place number (mine was 91st overall). Nice touch, and it was raining steadily at the end, luckily it was a warm rain. Walked back to my car that was parked behind the coal house (literally a building made out of coal), drove back to the host lady's house, showered up then hit the road, returning a different route home that was an hour longer but involved less windy roads that required pushing in a clutch.
June 19, 2010
State Counted towards 50 states; #8 AK
4:28:+ (10 min faster than the previous week)
Small expo. Should've done the pasta dinner, it was hosted in the Anchorage Museum, darn!
Temps in the 50's, most of the trail on jeep (technically tank roads) roads on the AFB or on the paved bike trails that wind through town. Runners not very talkative, although I did meet a former Vashon Islander running that currently lived in Fairbanks (random!), he had gone to school on the Island when Burton and Vashon Elementary schools were for kids on the respective ends of the Island. Aid stations with water, Ultima, and often pretzels and orange slices (nice touch!). The after party had great food too.
This race originally was run at midnight but has not for many many years, but that would be cool if they still ran it that way. My first marathon in my 30's, hopefully I won't slow down much.