Tuesday, July 24, 2012

My Epic Weekend

My plan for the epic weekend was to run the Hardrock 100 starting at 6 AM on Friday morning the 13th of July and finish in about 36 hours: in time to drive (ride) six hours to Leadville in time to show up at the starting line for the Leadville Silver Rush 50 at 6 AM on Sunday the 15th so I could keep on track for a Leadman finish for 2012. I fell short of that goal.

Hardrock is hard! To reach 60 miles at Grouse Gulch (where I dropped) you have to go over five Hope Passes on steroids!! I was unable to hold down calories, vomiting up any calories I had taken in plus all my water every time I went over 12,000' in elevation. The last 15 miles took me and my pacer, John Courtney 10 hours to complete. Do the math. I was running on empty. I first took a 20 minute nap at Grouse, then I took an hour and a half nap. I was no better able to continue after that rest than when I first plodded into the aide station. Harry Harcrow had been at the Grouse Gulch aide station for eight hours getting sick and sleeping. I talked him into getting back on the course, which he did, finishing in 41 hours. He tried to talk me into getting back on the course too, but I was too weak and I still couldn't eat. I felt bad for Rick Hessek who had driven all the way down from Colorado Springs to pace me for the final 40 miles, but I just didn't have it.

I withdrew and we drove back to Silverton for breakfast. I ate only four bites of the food I got from the buffet, I felt so nauseous. 

Rebekka drove us to our room in Twin Lakes where we got a gourmet meal from the proprietors of the Twin Lakes Roadhouse. Really very well done! The gourmet meal was only for guests of the hotel. We went to bed at 7:30 and I just thought that I would show up at the starting line and see what happened.

Well, what happened is I started off slowly in the 50 miler then I accelerated to the turn around. I saw Clark Sundahl was about 200 yards ahead of me at the turn around and I got a little fire in my eyes. I kept him in sight until I finally reeled him at mile 35 and I just kept pounding it. Ran up the long hill passing another dozen or so runners and finally finished in 9 hours 7 minutes. Not bad for an old fart who struggled through 60 miles the previous day!