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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Pony Express 100 (Part 2) Oct. 26-27, 2007

This was only my second attempt at such a great distance of 100 miles!!!

The runners all lined up at 12:00pm for the start of Pony Express 100 Mile Ultra Marathon. (One runner started on his own at 6:45am and was going to do the course as an out-and-back, turning back at mile 50. I ran into him, Gary, at the summit of Dugway Pass... when I was at 45 miles and he was on his way back at 55 miles)

We had great weather, in fact, it was warmer than we had expected but we knew the cold would be a drastic change at night fall. It was great to have more runners join this time out in the desert.

The first 5 or 6 miles was on the paved road up to the summit of Lookout Pass.

I didn't plan on going much faster the first 50 miles than what I had done just 8 months ago on this same course. The difference was I felt I was stronger and more confident that I would be able to complete the second half a bit faster than in March.

I had my brother Heath with me for the first 50 miles. He ran the first 7 miles with me and then followed me in the SAG wagon running a little here and there.

The top of Lookout Pass is a spectacular view on both sides of the canyon. The next mountain climb wouldn't be coming for another 30+ miles.

I finished the first 25 miles in 04:08:00....but hadn't felt like I had pushed myself at all. I was keeping a very comfortable pace and taking breaks often.

We were having a blast and enjoying the time in the sun. It was a perfect day to go run for hours and hours and hours...

(John Bernhisel in the background)

(This is bro! He's heading to Florida next Saturday to compete in IRONMAN FLORIDA... he'll be in the pro-field with about 75 pro-triathletes)

Just chill'n at one of my mobile "rest stops".

John (from Wyoming) came up behind me and said he hadn't ever run more than 50 miles before and wanted to run 62 miles today (100 kilometers). We had a great conversation for a few miles and discovered that we both speak Portuguese, and we both served a mission in Brazil.

After 6 hours and 36 miles John decided he had done enough and got in his support car to drive back. He had been about 2 miles ahead of me by then, but now there was nobody in front of me. The nearest runners behind me were Davy Crockett and Brent Rutledge, and they were keeping the gap somewhere between 2-4 miles back.

(Simpson Springs Monument Mile)

After about 30 miles my left shin really started hurting and getting tight so Heath massaged it with some Icy-Hot gel and then wrapped it in plastic wrap which helps by acting like a natural anti-inflamatory device. Within minutes the pain was nearly gone.

As night came the temporatures dropped quickly. I had to put warmer clothes on and I decided that I would change into dry clothes every couple hours.

I was tracking my time every 5 miles and was 10-15 minutes ahead of my goal (21:20:00) for about 30 miles. At miles 40 and 45 I was EXACTLY right on (to the minute) of what I had scheduled. My dad drove my wife, Sandra, out to take over driving the support vehicle for the rest of the night. I stopped to take some pictures with them right at 50 miles.

Mile 50 was a pefect place and time to swap drivers. I was feeling great and still on track to finish well under 24 hours. I had finished 50 miles in 9 hours and 40 min.....but, boy can things change quickly :0)

(Me and my friend Rob Hilmo at mile 65, Fish Springs)
After 12 hours of running and covering 60 miles my stomach started acting up. My friend Rob showed up to run with me in the middle of the night, but that was when I started getting really nauseated. Rob was surprised at the pace I was able to run and I told him it's very normal to get sick and that it happens to most ultra runners often. But usually you just throw up, feel better and then press on.

After vomitting a few times I tried pressing on but didn't feel better. I took it slow trying to figure out what went wrong or what had caused my stomach to feel so horrible. At mile 67, just passed Fish Springs, Rob had to head back home. When Rob left Sandra and I took a nap in the car for an hour. I got up and felt a little better and I realized that while I was asleep Brent and Dave had passed me and were probably a couple miles ahead. So I started running again hoping to catch them by sunrise. It was after 3:00am and before I reached mile 70 I was sick as a dog AGAIN!

Nothing seemed to help. I had eaten and drinken a lot of sweet stuff and was craving salty solid food....but didn't have any. I kept a slow walk as that helped me avoid throwing up. Once I reached the car again at 72.5 miles it was 5:50am. I got in the car and took off my shoes praying for inspiration or a cure from the last six hours of being sick.

My situation hadn't improved in 6 hours (and that was with an hour nap).... I wasn't about to make things worse or even continue in such agony for any at 6:00am sharp I officially made the decision to stop and go home.
My congratulations to all who came out and attempted 100 miles. Great job Brent, Dave and Gary for finishing. You guys rock! The other 5 of us all dropped :( but we'll be back for more)
Thank you Sandra, dad, Heath, and Rob for taking time out of your personal lives to come spend time with me out on this awesome adventure!

1 comment:

Marissa said...

Way to Go!
Sorry you got so sick, but you sound determined to find a way to fix it and finish this thing.