Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Snowdrop 55 Hr: Loopity Loop Loop

     Over the holidays I was fortunate enough to run the Snowdrop 55Hr Solo event in Sugarland, TX.   The race started on Dec 30th and ran through Jan 1st.  I ended up with 100 miles and a sweet buckle in about 35 hours. At .74 miles per loop, it took 134 loops to make 100 miles.

     The buckle is pretty sweet.  I'd been saying for at least 3 weeks I didn't really want to run the event.  My training had been slipping since early November, so I was feeling fat and out of shape.  I felt good skinning up the mountain up in Steamboat over Christmas, but I wasn't feeling running around in circles for two and a half days.
     Originally, when I signed up, I thought I could run 200 miles. That was back in August or September.  Little did I know I'd be faced with some work issues.  In early November my employer laid off a number of folks.  Two from my team.  Some guys I'd known my whole career.  One was my old boss who I'd worked for directly for eight years.  I guess I took it a bit hard.
     My flight back from Colorado was cancelled early Monday the 28th of December after being delayed for about 8 hours.  I wasn't able to leave CO until Tuesday afternoon the 29th.  Once I arrived in San Antonio I had to pack, load up the dogs and drive to Houston Hobby Airport and pick up Gina which happened to be about 1AM the 30th of December.  About 6 hours before the race started.
     We arrived at the race venue about 0330.  Thankfully Vincent from Trail Toes had already set up the tent for us.  We knocked off a few hours and woke up to start the race with everyone at 0700.  After about 2 hours, I stopped to send a few work emails and take a nap.  Around 1130 I got back out on the course.
     Being totally tired did not help my disposition.  In the afternoon, I thought that since I had plenty of time I should go ahead and finish the book I was reading on my Kindle. I was reading The Revenant.  The movie comes out tomorrow night! I've already bought my ticket.  By dark I wasn't quite done with the book.  I'd gotten over the fact that I didn't want to be at the race, and decided I should run a bit.
     Through the night I slept two different times for about 4 hours total. I spent time running with Vincent, Dimitry, Kelley, and Will.  I spoke to Matt a bit about his upcoming attempt on the TIR 200 solo.  Also, Gina ran/walked a few laps.  The night drug on and on.  But finally the night yielded to the day.  I pulled the Kindle back out and finished my book.  Once it was done, I picked back up with Catch-22 but didn't finish reading that book.  Pretty hilarious book about military life.
     I had another book on my Kindle called "How to Run Faster with Less Effort" .  I joked with some folks, saying I'm reading this book so that I can learn some stuff. :)  I wasn't really reading it though.  I got a few laughs from folks with that joke.
     Finally the total number of loops reached 110, so only 24 more to go.  I ran a few fast ones with Joe Fejes, who set a 48 hr age group record and reached  250 total miles in 55 hours.  He's the real deal. The RD Kevin Kline is a great guy and made a big spectacle for everyone who reached 100 miles.  He spared no expense whooping everyone up when I finished my 100 miles.  Here is a pic of us with the buckle.
     All in all, Kevin puts on a world class event.  I had a great time.  The food was delicious, hot chow, and ultra food.  A nice warming tent with TV's playing football games.  I think that I will be back next year.  Nice place to chill and celebrate the running lifestyle I guess I've been living for some years now. Life could be worse. :)  I feel like I crossed another mental hurdle with this event.  One of just accepting and getting shit done.  Whether it be on a boring .74 mile loop or not.  Thankfully I had Gina to make sammiches and I didn't have any blisters or ball chaffing.


1 comment:

Steve Pero said...

Good job, John....I appreciate your incredible running strength in the off season. I guess in Ultrarunning there doesn't have to be an off season!
Best of luck getting into Hardrock from the wait list, you have a great shot at that. Deb and I are way too far down the list to have a chance...maybe next year!