run, rest, eat, bitch, buy things, cross-train, blog, repeat.

Friday, June 11, 2010

I might just die.

Last Friday I flew out of Nashville at 5:25am and arrived in Salt Lake City around 11:30am local time. The plan was to drive down to Provo, grab some lunch and then scope out the start/finish lines of the race and maybe try to drive through some of the mountains that the race course went through.

After a LONG mexican lunch. (Seriously, I LOVED Utah, but the service in the restaurants that we chose was shit-tay. Who goes to a mexican place for lunch and spends an hour and a half there??? Wait, let me rephrase that. Who goes to a mexican place for lunch and DOESNT order margaritas and spends an hour and a half there???).

Now it was time to head down to the park where the start/finish line was. Along the way I couldn't stop staring out the window. Utah is gorgeous, y'all. I mean. SERIOUSLY. Mountains everywhere. I was in complete and utter awe. I had no preconceived ideas of what Utah would look like, but it definitely blew me away.

When we got to the park I cracked up when I saw this...
Yes, folks that is Vandy Montana standing in front of a Root Beer Float Mug. WTF? How awesome is that??

The park was pretty. It had a little creek running through it and Mountains everywhere.

After the park, we decided that we could drive over to the 2nd Aid Station that was going to be at a campground.

It was during this drive that I thanked Vandy-Montana profusely for his 3am drunk dial last November. That phone call, I was beginning to realize, was probably the best thing that has ever happened to me. This course was going to be NUTS y'all. And this part was the easy part!!!!!

The type of scenery you want to drive through or hike for 3-4 days through and enjoy? YES. The type of scenery you want to run 50 miles in for a race? Hells NO.

It was at this point in the day that I started thinking about what I was going to say at Vandy Montana's Memorial. I can crush a toast at a wedding or special event, but somehow, I don't think I'd fare so well with a eulogy. I tried to play it cool... casually asking him if his parent's and girlfriend's phone numbers were easily identifiable in his phone. I tried to make him think I was kidding about it. But... I wasn't. I also confirmed with him that he was bequeathing me all his wine. I considered getting it in writing, but thought that that might freak him out a little.

And then, I realized... HOLY SHIT. This isn't even the hardest part. No... the hardest part of the course is yet to be seen and that's the part that I'm pacing for. Why the hell am I worried about him?? He's a beast in the hills and lives in a higher elevation that me. I should be worried about myself, for chrissakes! I made sure to let Vandy Montana know that my parents phone numbers were in my phone listed under their actual names instead of "Mom and Dad." (that's not weird, right?). And tried to forget about my 17 mile death march tomorrow. Afterall... at least it wasn't 50 miles.

We drove to the hotel to settle in. I immediately got all my shit out of my bag and got it ready for the morning.  I wanted to make sure that I hadn't forgotten to pack anything like socks, my handheld water bottle, my sanity. We chilled in the room until it was time to head downstairs to the pasta dinner and the pre-race briefing.

This was the first time either of us had gone to a pre-race pasta dinner. And, it was honestly, a little weird. For one... no one sat at our table with us until every other table was completely full. It was like we had the word "NEWBIE" stamped on our foreheads. One guy sat down, scarfed his food down in 2 minutes and then got up to go stand at the table next to us. Like... we were that awful to sit with, apparently.

The pre-race briefing was just that... brief and the race director didn't answer the one question that we had... how the hell was I going to get to Aid Station #8 to hop in the race with Vandy Montana? The race instructions strongly discouraged driving to it yourself and even if you did, you had to have a 4wheel drive vehicle AND you had to somehow get back there at the end of the day to pick your vehicle up. Logistically... it was a problem.

At the end of the briefing, Vandy Montana raised his hand and asked the question... The race director then said.. "Oh, right! I almost forgot... so, there will be a suburban driving up to Aid Station #8 in the morning, any pacers that want a ride, they'll have 3-4 seats. You can volunteer at the aid station in exchange for a ride."

Perfect! I was excited to volunteer and get a feel for a 50 mile race.

We headed out to find a bar to grab a couple of beers and a grocery store for supplies for the next morning. We didn't stay out too late... The 5am race start was going to be there before we knew it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Utah is VERY beautiful and friendly. If you ever get back out that way, drive out west of Salt Lake City and check out the salt flats. It has a desolate beauty all its own.