Around 45 miles, I posted online updating my family and friends as to where I was at in the race. I also requested some encouraging words. My legs were becoming more tired and the blisters on my feet were hard to ignore now. I thought if I had some encouragement from friends that would give me the mental boost I needed to focus on the task at hand. That really did help me for about 3 miles but then I got caught up in my head, telling myself I was slowing down and walking too much. Which, by the way, looking back on my numbers/stats, really wasn’t the case. At mile 53, I hit my lowest point in the race…..so what did I do?!?! lol, call my MOM of course!! ha ha ha! No shame here ladies and gentlemen!
The first thing I said to my mom was, “Tell me I can do this. Just remind me what I’m capable of.” That’s really what I needed in that moment, someone I trusted, someone who truly knew me and what I am capable of, to give me the words that my head refused to say. One of the reasons I love ultra running is that challenge between mind and body, as well as that battle between common sense and your mind’s weakness. I knew that finishing the race was going to happen, but I also knew that my mind and thoughts needed a kick in the butt to turn direction from the negative and scared to the positive and pumped up.
All it took was a quick five-minute conversation and I was ready to get back to it. I had my mind made up that despite the aches, the blisters and exhaustion, I was going to do this. I decided to make my goal completing the 100K. My mom reminded me of how well I was doing up to this point and that I was well on my way to smashing my 100K PR, so that became my focus. Just nine more miles to go and that big a$$ belt buckle would be mine!!! 🙂
With 7 miles to go, the sun was setting and storm clouds were rolling in. I kept my focus on finishing before the rain came and it got too dark. I refused to stop and get my headlamp choosing to use the falling darkness as a motivator. I finished my last full loop at 60 miles, then I had to do an out and back for the last 2.2 miles. I could feel the excitement and adrenaline pumping through me when I realized that I was going to be finishing hours before my Devil Dog finish time. I put my head down and just focused on one foot in front of the other.
I crossed the finish line with an official time of 16:23:26…….a 3:09:23 PR!! 0_o I’ll take it!!! 🙂
My lap times…even with the long stop for the rain, my laps were fairly consistent.