Ok, I'm back, and I'm looking forward.
To get forward, it is prudent (if that means the "right" thing to do) that I take a look back at my year's training and my run in Vermont.
Hey, for me to be pointed at success, I've got to analyze the data, isn't that one of the steps in a theory building and the scientific method and all that Dizzy Gillespie jazz? I believe it is.
So, here we are. Things I should have done differently in the year's training:
1. I remember saying, "I'm going to go to the gym twice a week." I remember going to the gym a couple of times total. I wasted a golden opportunity to sculpt my body in a Barrettesqe form in the last year. Yes it would have been nice to have chicks falling all over me, and yes, I would have loved to be helpful when people asked, "Where's the beach?" but more important than all of that is that I could have strengthened the legs and core and given my body a break from all that pounding. Drats! I can't go back in time, but I can go to the gym a few times during what's left of the slam............These doors clearly did not see enough of me!.............
In addition, more biking would have helped. I did one sad ride with Star and the Good Docotor, and they toasted me! To be truly ready for the slam I should have worked to be able to pull them through the hills instead of having to beg them to leave me to die in peace! Er, yeah, mistake!
2. It would have behooved me to hook on as either Roger or the Wedge's cabana boy in their North Georgia estates. Mountains, mountains, mountains are bigger bigger bigger than tiny little hills hills hills! This one would have been harder to enact, but I needed more time hiking in the mountains. Yes, there were reasons I couldn't go, either injury or Harley issues. I'd trade the injuries, but I wouldn't trade Harley, I've come to really love that dog. He's cool. Sometimes you just have to admit, I did the best I could. As for the mountains, I did the best I could.
3. Injuries. They needed medical attention early and I'm such a home remedy guy I was like, "I'll fix 'em." Hey great, unless you like need to use the feet or hips for I don't know..... running 4 x 100 mile races! I'm not always the brightest bulb, but at least I've got ADD. Hey did I ever tell you guys about the time with the monkey, the rooster.... wait, I think I had more.
Ok, so the training issues I can't really change, and I believe by changing course ever so slightly I'll be getting that cool Miami Ink tattoo in October. But not if I don't take heed of my issues from the Vermont 100.
Issues at Vermont:
1. I started out too fast. I didn't believe the RD when he said, "hot and humid." I thought the same thing that AB, Jon, Roger, Michelle, Rob and a host others did. "I'm from warm weather climate, I'll be fine. I'll just run my race." Don't tell me you weren't thinking it, because I was on 20-hour pace through 50 and you guys were an hour or more ahead of me. We all faded, and we didn't have to. Should have walked more early and dialed it back a smidge. This, I'm not too worried about because normally pace is a strength, I just needed a reminder.
2. I was thinking too big at Vermont. Oh, this was almost my downfall. My success in ultras has always been not even focusing on the event that I'm doing, rather on getting over the hill, or even just getting to the next tree. At Vermont, not only was I thinking, "10 more hours, I'll never make it, I'm so tired." no my mistake was bigger, "Even if I do finish this one, 3 more to go, this is insane!" Yes, it very well may be insane, but I know it's insane for me to be thinking about the long hard race in the Wasatch Mountains while I'm actually running in Vermont's Green Mountains. Be where you are AndyMan, be where you are!
3. AMCD PACER? AM (andyman) C (see) D (the) PACER (dude whose job it is to keep you company and keep you from taking naps on the trail, in people's yards, or even in someone's galldarn driveway!)? Ok, in hindsight, perhaps I should have signed up for a pacer at Vermont. I'm relatively sure that a pacer could have replaced some of the negative energy with positive energy during those last 30 miles.The beautiful thing is, I can learn from each of these, during the race boners. With little effort I can relieve the effects of a hard situation and clean my race up. Focus on the chore at hand! Start slowly finish strong! Get some company, it's better and easier that way!
So, speaking of company: I'm set for Leadville. I know Wasatch is tough to get to, fly in and out of Salt Lake in early September, but I'd love to have a pacer there, I'll see if the race can help me there, and honestly, spending money to get there is dicey because Leadville only has a 40 -50% finish rate, so practically speaking... we may want to wait on this one (but I'll still take a volunteer!) and then Arkansas. The second Leadville is over, I'm putting the squeeze on somebody to come out there and finish this thing with me! It's what the Doctor ordered!