Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Umstead, Um Steady!

Dear All,

Thanks so much for the positive vibes during and the kinds words after the Umstead 100.

Suffice it to say I am ecstatic and surprised at my 21:12 finish. I truly didn't see it coming. After a DFL and 30+ hour finish at Western States I didn't think I had a sub-24 in me. So I just ran at Umstead. I wouldn't let anyone tell me what pace I was on and I didn't wear a watch. I knew I was doing well though because I was a bit ahead of Woody, and Woody has been running like a mad-man, like a man possessed, like a scalded hound, a wounded Rhino, or some type of bat out of Hell! It wasn't until the last loop that my most excellent pacer, Becky (I can't say enough about the influence she had on my race finish) told me that none of my 8 loops were over 3 hours (I was sure a couple were) and that I was on sub-22 pace that I had any inkling I would be well under 24. ......... Me before the pain set in!.........

Speaking of Pacers, like shoes, they can be best in pairs. First I had a Greg. He and his buddy Dave came up from his current station at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville and ran 30 miles of the course with me. Greg is an aspiring Ultra-runner and an inspiring man! Greg knows adversity, as he's fought in Iraq, Afghanistan abroad. Fought cancer. And fought two teenage daughters and a 7-year old daughter at home! He asked me a million questions about ultra-running, and before I realized he was just trying to distract me, we'd run 30 miles! The nice thing about running with someone like Greg is, he's used to focusing on results, not hearing about problems. He didn't seem to care that I had run 30 miles before he got to me, nor that I had 38 to go when he left. He just wanted me to run. Excuses were not accepted, so after a while, I quit giving them! Yeah, that helped a lot.

As for Becky, well, I was two-hours slower without her, no question. She was fine walking with me, as long as it was a certified hill. If the grade was less than over our heads we ran it. Come on, this is uphill. No it's downhill, now get moving! So get moving I did. She was worried that she wouldn't be fast enough for me, but I barely kept up with her!

But, we had perfect weather! Snow flurries on Friday night in the park (Woody and I know, we had an unheated cabin in the park on Friday :) 30 degrees at race start, and a high of perhaps 60. So the day was right. The footing was perfect, the moon was 90% full. The stars aligned, and Viola! we all did well.

I am particularly proud of Woody. His first sub 24 in 8 years! Since he's a machine, we forget that Woody is... gulp, 60-old. 60 years YOUNG that is! I will never be the runner he is, that man amazes me, flat blows me away.
........... Woody and The Professor ............

Also, it was good to see Adam out there having a great time. He was looking all down and out on his 3rd loop, I was wondering if he was going to finish, and then, BAM! here comes round and round with Lindsay, smiling and laughing and motoring around that loop. Had it been a 200 mile race, I do believe Adam would have won. Instead he;'ll have to settle for a 2 hour PR and a silver belt buckle! Great Job.

June, Jim, Jerry, and Sandy. You guys were having too much fun, I'm not sure that counts as a 100-mile finish. You're not supposed to laugh so loud people can hear you one mile down the trail! I swear I heard Andrea shush you a few times. Well, I guess June was just practicing alerting the bears for Western States! The gang. Jerry and Jim Sullivan, the June Bug, and first-timer Sandy Melton. (Before the RDU Airport authority gave them their first noise violation warning due to excessive laughter!)

Any way, a great trip and one full of unexpected pleasures!


Anonymous said...

Hey, Florida, Great race!

I understand a couple of you beat my 200 mile time!

-Dean Karnazes

Mr. Matt said...

Yo Dean, easy there fella! Some of have to work for a living! My running partners Greg and Dave asked me 1000 questions about you, and I told them you were a nice guy, don't make me regret that!

Woody said...

AM, you better check your buckle. That picture makes it look bronze, not silver. Time to break out photo-shop and fix it.

Great trip... and the old van did good too!! We would have got there faster in a Toyota Prius. Just check out this You Tube Video.

Chase Squires said...

That's awesome, man!!!

Star said...

I can't put into words how impressed I am with you guys! CONGRATULATIONS!!!

Mr. Matt said...

Great to hear from you Woody, and while the Prius is rapid, I probably couldn't have splayed out in the full supine on the way back in that, with all that activitiy and all!

See, I told you guys Chase was still alive! Darn shame about SuperDave though...... may he RIP

Anonymous said...

Hey, who says I've gone to the great beyond? I'm still kicking and doing crazy Stuff.

SuperDave Osborne
(too bad about your brother though)

superdave524 said...

Dead? Not hardly. Shoot, if I were doing any better, there'd be two of me!

Anonymous said...

That SuperDave Osborne, he exagerates so much!

-Dean Karnazes