Sunday, October 18, 2009

Palo Duro Weekend

Well my weekend started early, Thursday lunch to be exact. I went to work Thursday feeling like crapola so I says to myself, "John, you outta leave work early and drive out to South Llano River State Park and just go chill out." So, I called up Enterprise and picked up a car, 4 days for $70 bones. That's a steal. Asked the boss man if i could just roll out at lunch and he was cool with it. So bam, just like that I'm out the door at 11:50. Sweet, dawg.

It was nice little 4 door red number, a Chevy Colbolt. What POS. I spent 4 days in that damm thing. We made an agreement. If the car would not piss anyone off, I would promise not to beat the steering wheel when it just pokes along as I nail the gas pedal.

I got to the South Llano river park about 4ish. I got my sleeping pad outta the car, and my new book "Where Keynes Went Wrong" and lay in the shade, under a tree, by the river and started reading. Well from the title you can tell it was probably pretty booring, so about 15 minutes in I fell asleep. I needed to, because I was feeling like shit anyway. I think I had the brown bottle flu from Hooters on Wednesday night.

I woke up about an hour later and went to my campsite, but I forgot my tent. Oops. No problem, I just slept on the picnic table. That went pretty good except for the mosquitoes. Of course I forgot Off, but the park hostess lady has some and fixed me right up. I was asleep by 8PM. Up by 430 in the AM, I showered up, and took off for the rest of the drive up to Amarillo for the Palo Duro Canyon 50 Miler.

My good friend Bill Conway, signed up to run this race. He started training while I was at Hardrock, after reading Ultramarathon Man. I have been excited to run see his development regarding running. Bill and I have been friends since '96. We were stationed together in Germany while in the Army. We used to lift weights together back in the old days. He taught me alot about nutrition. I got down to 5% body fat just before I turned 21 and had 17 inch arms. Whose ya daddy? Anyway, we have traveled around the U.S. on motorcycles and we both work for Verizon Wireless. He was there as a pallbearer at my grandfather's funeral. I was there at his mom's wedding, and his wedding. So yea, we are good friends. We have been friends my whole adult life I guess.

This guy is built like me, about 5'6 or 5'7 180 lbs. Like a brick shit house. hahha

I told him, hey man I am gonna run with you. You run your race and I will provide motivation and coaching, on the fly. Like take more salt, or hows your blood sugar. Eat some food, etc..... Drink more water.....

Loop 1 went well. 2hours 40min. with 5 min at the start/finish aid station. loop 2 went pretty good with about 2 hours 50min. with 10 min at the aid station. So we were still sittin pretty. He wanted to make a shoe change here. Loop 3 we had a slow down b/c of his knee. It was bothering him quite a bit. But we did quite a bit of walking and got to talk about alot of good stuff. Like whats going on in your life, etc... But more than just the casual B.S. that you usually talk about. That really made the whole race for me.

We came into the start/finish about 30 min over the cut off so we had to stop. But this guy ran 38 miles. Wholly shit, on 2.5 months of training. Hell, I'll take that any day. If he wouldnta tweaked his knee, then we would have been out on loop 4. His wife came also to the race. A beautiful lady, who is totally supportive. He is a lucky dude.

Also my friend Mike West and his wife showed up with his son Cody. Totally unexpected. Mike and I have pictures of us sitting on his parents couch in our underwear when we were kids. His dad and mine worked in the oilfield together back in the '70's. I don't guess I have known anyone any longer than Mike. Well, other than family. We got to catch up quite a bit. He is doing well and so is Mindy, his wife. As I was running down the start finish chute, I told Cody to jump on my back and ran in with him. That was cool. We may have us another trail runner one day. I guess we will see. hahah.

After the race, we sat around drinking beer at the Austin runners hangout. John Kuss had an RV and Joe brought the overhead cover. Crash was cooking and about 45 folks showed up for supper. Crash is the man! The food was great, and the camaraderie was also pretty damm good. The freakin Barney Fife park rangers showed up about 10PM givin everybody shit and busted up the party. Freakin douchbags. Prob for the best though, I passed out in the car shortly after. ahahah

On Sunday morning, Brenda and John Brown had their post wedding reception breakfast. That was real nice and I wish them the best. They met the year before at the race. Pretty cool! Again Crash was cooking up the vittles. Wow, ultra runners are some hella good folks. Come out and run an ultra. Preferably one that Joe puts on. You will come back!

The drive home was pretty uneventful. So I will end here, but will say its one hellva long drive from Amarillo to San Antonio.


Larry said...

Awesome report, Sharpie! Sounds like a classic weekend and a long road trip was a great bonus.

Anonymous said...

rock star!