Monday, July 25, 2016

Dirty Girls 24 Hour - Saturday July 23, 2016

 Dirty Girls is a special event for me.   Way back in 2008 it was my first Marathon and first Ultra Marathon all in the same day.   It was my first time experiencing pain like no other ... even my hair hurt.   Fast forward to 2016  and its still a race I hold close to the heart.   Form the RD Di to the dear running friends its a special race.   Sadly rumour has it that this is the last running of this event.  Races come and go with RDs but this one will be truly missed.

 There has been allot going on in my life recently and last week was no exception.   I wasn't really sure of what my race plan was and was toying with the idea of doing a 12 hour day run.  Prep for the race as a last minute afterthought ... oh yeah I am going to go run for 24 hours best I put a few things together.  I kind of planned for the night just in case I was having a good day ,  kind of had enough calories and kind of had everything I needed to go long.  Usually planning for this starts days in advance ,  this time it was hours.

 Had the best nights sleep in over a week and woke up feeling surprisingly refreshed on Saturday morning.   Treated myself to a Tims breakfast enroute and arrived 20 minutes before race time ... unusual for me as I am usually an hour early.  No worries ,  no cares it was just a matter of pulling out the chair and cooler and picking up and pinning on my race bib...boom I was off and running.

 Took off in my Hoakas ,  Race Bib,  Shorts and a Hand Held ... love the simplicity.   The hand held would be a godsend.   I haven't used one in a long long time but on this day it was perfect.   Aid station every 4K ,  500ml of water every 4K ...simple.  So simple was the theme of the day...keep it simple and enjoy the forest , enjoy the heat ,  enjoy the my fellow runners just enjoy and keep it simple.   As I ran I developed a plan based on how I felt ... it was simple.  I ran and I ran passing 48 km feeling great and surprisingly in 6 position out of 30 men!   There was a small part of me that wanted to keep going at that moment but thats not why I do it but it is fun to compete sometime.  So at 4:16 pm I told the starter that I was going to be off course for a few hours.   I drove home ,  an hours trip ,  let my dog out ,  had dinner ,  showered ,  caught up on my email so on and so forth making it back close to 8pm to cheer on the start of the 12 hour night race.   Made it back on the course around 8:30  and I ran and I ran and I ran again ... no music just me ,  I didn't talk I was alone in my head.   My head had allot in it ...not bad just lots of time to think and figure things out.   I had a particular moment of Zen when I realised that I had just ran through one of the toughest 2K of the course but had absolutely no recollection of doing so.  I was in such deep thought that I totally disconnected my mind from my body it was like I was physically transported  through space.  You could never consciously choose to have such a thing happen just happens and it was amazingly cool.    I stopped for a break at 12:30 am ,  grabbed a sleeping bag from my car and had a bite of food and a beer in my zero gravity chair.  It was really cool wrapped up so toasty and warm just listening to the conversations.   Again I found myself in another time warp ...12:30 am turned in 3:00 am.  I have no recollection of falling asleep just the constant drone of warm conversation.    The night air was cool and I was still shirtless.   It took awhile to formulate a plan to make a dash to the car for a shirt without freezing.   Once again I hit the trail ,  alone in the night and alone in my thoughts.   My energy levels were drained ,   I was 72K in and about to trip the 50 mile mark,  this was where I finished last year but I knew I was going to go longer but how long .... 1 ,2 3 more laps did I have it in me.    Vertical Pierre better know as the Creemore RD had a secret weapon at the 4K aid station ...Maple Syrup.    Had a shot in my coffee ,  two shots straight up and the stuff worked like rocket fuel...repeat, repeat and done.   Finished the last lap at about the speed of the first lap feeling amazing ,  simply amazing.

Logged a 104km run spending about 18 hours on the course satisfied and content ready for a good ,meal and a bed.

God I love this shit ...ultra forever baby,  ultra forever!

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