Sunday, August 26, 2012

Didn't Quite Make It


My Leadman quest this year came to a crashing halt about 30 miles from the finish of the Leadville Trail 100 Mile run.  After doing the Silver Rush Double, having a good Leadville Trail100 MTB race (good in that I gave it my  all, even though it was among my slowest), and winning my age group in the 10k, I came up short in the 100 mile run. The reason was quite simple; I went out too fast. For some reason I thought even though  I was not anywhere near 2009 fitness (all my races were much slower this year) I could take 2 hours off my  2009 time in the 100 mile run. My goal was to run it in about 22 hours.  So to make a long story short I went out at about a 22 hour pace, held it for about 40 miles, then got destroyed on the double crossing of Hope Pass. At 60 miles things were not looking good at all but I  decided that as long as I could keep moving forward I would. Poor Sharon Larson, my pacer for this segment had to  walk with me the next 10 miles (I couldn’t run) listening to me whine, until my legs began cramping up so bad I could not go on at about 70 miles.
Myself and Alex all smiles at the start
Jeff and me leaving Winfield for a 2nd Hope Pass Crossing (50 miles)

 
 
Am I disappointed? A little. The whole purpose of doing  Leadman again was to show there is life after the brutally nasty HEP C treatment, particularly the people in the Colorado Springs HEP C support group in which I am a participant. I think I proved that by completing the races that I did, especially the Silver King double. And I know, had I not made the mistake of going out  too fast I  would have finished the 100 run. I guess to put this in perspective, one can suffer and really tie up the last couple miles in a 10k run by going out too fast. Do this in a marathon and you hit a wall at about 19 miles that can destroy your whole race. Do it in a hundred miler and the effects are multiplied.




The result of starting too fast: Game Over at 70 miles!

So this year’s Leadman is history. Congratulations to all that toed that starting line. There were 99 entries this year and I believe about half made it. Some were very fast. After being away from the Leadville scene for three years it’s amazing to see how the whole series has evolved. It’s huge but somehow keeps the same original spirit that keeps us coming back. Good for Leadville – good for the race. I hope they can manage to keep it that way.
Finally I had an incredible crew during the run. Roswitha, as always running  the show  and doing an incredible job. She is truly a seasoned crew leader in every sense of the word. Jeff Mulder joined her this year as well as paced me over Hope Pass. Incredible guy to have crewing and pacing. As far as a pacer he’s the best anyone can ask for. He sticks to the plan ensuring you  get the right amount of calories as well as entertaining. He definitely helps keep your mind off the suffering. Alex O’Daniel, a 15 year old high school cross country runner who came out from Kent, OH to help crew and signed up to pace from Fish Hatch. Unfortunately I didn’t make it that far, but it was still an eye opening experience for him. And finally, Matt and Sharon Larson who came up to pace, after running the Pikes Peak ascent on the same day. Sharon walked with me ten miles through the night until I couldn’t go on. I know this had to be very painful for her, especially since she had to listen to me whine most of the way.
So all in all this quest was mostly a success. My main mission was to come back from HEP C treatment with a Leadman title. If not for a silly tactical error I would have made it. The important thing is I  can show people going through treatment today that there is life afterward... And, I’m already searching for the next big challenge!