Monday, February 9, 2009

100 Miles 1 Day

I knew once I crossed the finish line on Sunday morning what the title to my next post would be. I did not know what the focus of the post would be exactly, or whether I would write a race report per se or maybe dig a little deeper. I am still not sure.

100 Miles in 1 Day is like a running a Boston qualifier marathon, different of course but similar in what it means. The first guy to run a 100 miles did it in one day, read about Western States endurance run. You can easily find links to this on Google.

My finish time was 23:27. I had good consistent energy throughout the whole race and never experienced any lows. My knees hurt and my feet hurt but that is to be expected. I did not get any blisters or loose any toe nails either. Which is actually a good thing because in '08 I lost 9 of 10 and one of them I lost twice. As far as muscular soreness in the quads, glutes or hamstrings I don't really have any, but my tendons and ligaments are sore and tight. My mom, sister, and my nephew came to the race which was really awesome and I was glad that they were there to support me. They commented on the people there. How everyone was so friendly and supportive, like family. They were impressed by the character of everyone they met. I am continually impressed by the people I meet at these endurance events and that is one of the reasons I keep coming back. What a great community of people. If you have never been to an ultra event, go to one, run it or volunteer and you will understand what I am talking about here.

Some observations from the race:

Aid station crews will get you through! Mr. Potter, Lynn Ballard, Allen Wrinkle, Guarav, Crash, and Ganesh those guys kept me honest and kept me moving.

There are a lot of folks out there tougher than you are. Axel and Thomas Orf come to mind here. Axel had a strained Achilles and stayed the whole way, limping. Thomas had some type of stress fractures from Bandera in his shins and went to mile 76 before not meeting the cut off (his 1st 100).

Some guys can just run. Mark Richards comes to mind here. He ran a 21:35 in his 1st 100.

Some guys just wont quit. Naresh comes to mind here. From what I understand he has tried this race two times before and did not finish, On Sunday he did!

I mentioned reading the book Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage the week leading up to this race as a way to maybe gain some inspiration. What's funny is that I don't remember ever thinking about the book or any of the events in the book while I was running, consciously at least. Maybe it was there in my subconscious somehow affecting my how I interpreted the race and my feelings of pain. While I was reading the book I did lament the fact that it seems like all the frontiers have been explored, where can a man, now, boldly go where no man has gone before. Space, the Arctic poles, the jungles, the deserts have all been explored at least somewhat by someone.

In reflection, on my 4 hour drive home after being awake since 0430 on Saturday an idea came to me. While it may be true that all of the great physical frontiers have been explored, there is still one frontier, the greatest, the largest, the ugliest, the most beautiful frontier of all is still waiting to be discovered, mapped and transversed. This frontier exists for everyone and can only be discovered by one person. The one who possess it.

The mind as the final frontier. Physically the brain would probably fit into a large soup bowl, but the mind is boundless and limitless. What exists in the mind can be made manifest into a physical reality. You have heard sayings like "mind over matter, if you don't mind it don't matter" or "change your perception to change your reality".

Epictetus wrote in the Enchiridion:
"Sickness is an impediment to the body, but not to the will, unless itself pleases. Lameness is an impediment to the leg, but not to the will; and say this to yourself with regard to everything that happens. For you will find it to be an impediment to something else, but not truly to yourself."

As we venture into the unknown our goal is to "know thyself". What that means to any one person may have 6.8 billion different answers. Sometimes though, it is the journey not the destination.

A final quote from the movie Troy:

"You will never be lovelier than you are now. We will never be here again. "

8 comments:

Curtis said...

Way to go! I wish I could have been out there either helping or running. You are a beast on the trails!

Derek said...

It was great meeting you this weekend and a great race you had. Thanks for the help when I was feeling a little low. With you and others help I was able to finish my first 50.

Derek

Larry said...

It was great seeing you do so well this past weekend. When I saw you after 80 miles prepping to go back out, you looked really fresh and had high spirits. And, dude! You sure can write well. Maybe, one day, we will get to share a few miles at a hundred. Take care!

olga said...

Great writing, indeed. Great running, too:) And LOVED blister picture from Bighorn album! Loved it!

johnt said...

Derek - Glad to meet you also, you really did good man!

Larry - You are gonna rock Austin on Sunday!! I will drink a beer for you at the HCTR aid station.

Olga - Thank you, I remember you leaving Joe and I in the dust leaving Cow Camp with a, "Good bye, boys!"

Mark said...

"Free your mind and your body will follow"

You are a poet and a scholar sir. Great race.

Oh, and I found out from several other runners that Starbucks was supposed to open up early for the runners but didn't. We weren't the only ones waiting outside.

Anonymous said...

John:

You are such a positive presence on trail. Keep up the good work.

tc
naresh

Anonymous said...

I finally got to ready your story...one word..."Amazing." You simply are just that.

C-