1. Rocky Raccoon 100

    I’m not going to offer a traditional recap. Breaking down a 100 is excruciating. I have very few insights but I’ll let you in on a few things while I let my deep thoughts percolate.

    This wasn’t supposed to happen. Between my terrible experiences at Graveyard and Lookout Mountain, my botched final weeks of training and my respiratory infection in the week leading up to the race, I almost didn’t have the guts to show up at the start. But, I did anyway.

    I started the race running scared. Every step took me towards the 25-30 mile mark where my previous races fell apart. I ran conservatively and limited my caloric intake to Gu’s, saltine crackers, pretzels and oranges. After 20 miles I began to sip on diluted Sustained Energy and at night I added broth to my regimen. For hydration, I took only water and a few electrolyte tablets in the heat of the day. I had very little confidence in this plan. In my mind, even if it didn’t irritate my stomach, it surely wouldn’t contain the calories I needed to get to the finish.

    Looking back, there were two things that saved my race. Sticking to my nutrition/hydration plan. Every hour I sucked down a GU, no matter how much I gagged, no matter how queasy I felt, I stayed on top of this. 26 GU’s!!! I never want to taste another Vanilla or Jet Blackberry GU in my life!

    The second, Kim’s wise race tactics. Logically, the race flow would be start conservatively in the dark, make hay while the sun shines, slow off the pace after dark again. Early on, Kim decided it would be best to run the second loop conservatively because that’s when we’d hit the heat of the day. I can’t tell you how smart this was, how much it made a difference in my race and how counterintuitive it was.

    The high was “only” in the mid 70’s but the high Texas humidity was very taxing. If we had not backed it off then, the later stages of my race would have suffered greatly. Instead, I finished feeling strong - well as strong as you can expect after 100 miles.

    We hit the 50 mile mark in 11:09. At that point, I began thinking a sub 24 was possible - gutsy, but possible. I summoned up the courage to go for it knowing full well that I could fail miserably and even compromise a finish. I was, after all, only half way through the race.

    To hit sub 24, I had to aim for my last 2 20 miles loops to be sub 5 hrs each. That didn’t scare me a bit. I must have been delirious.

    I set my mind to sub 24 and every time I began to doubt, I would picture the finish, picture holding the sub 24 buckle and ask myself, “Do you really want it?”

    The answer was (almost) always, “Yes!”

    To which my inner coach would reply, “Well, then, you’re going to have to be a little ballsy.”

    And, somehow, that was enough to light my fire. I was ballsy.

    But this was not a solo accomplishment. I had a great crew that met me at all the crew-able aid stations, great pacers that encouraged me before the race and across the last 40 miles. I have the best “coach” in the world who trained me, planted the crazy idea of a hundred in my mind and cheered me through training and each mile. To them, I owe this accomplishment. I couldn’t have and would not have wanted to do this without them.

    At mile 95.5, D stepped off the trail and let me run the final 4.5 by myself. I took every moment in. I knew I was just moments away from finishing one of the coolest things in my life. It wasn’t 100 miles. It was a journey of far more. And, like the quote I’ve been carrying around on my phone for a month:

    “Devote yourself to an idea. Go make it happen. Struggle on it. Overcome your fears. Smile. Don’t you forget: this is your dream.”

    This was my dream.

    100 miles, 23:28:11

    20 mile splits: 3:56:00, 4:56:06, 4:45:06, 4:56:52, 4:53:27

    Overall place 84, 15th female, 4th in age group

    And I still can’t believe it.

  1. recovering-michy reblogged this from runthepainaway
  2. chrisbiketri likes this
  3. questforendurance likes this
  4. becomingbailee likes this
  5. lifechangeneededaisle3 likes this
  6. malloryrunsthis likes this
  7. losingitall likes this
  8. whitneyrunson likes this
  9. davedoeslife likes this
  10. katiegirlchasesinfinity likes this
  11. trimamatri said: I love this!
  12. 300and30 likes this
  13. ontherunmama likes this
  14. michaeldoeslife likes this
  15. lagirlontherun said: Amazing!!!!
  16. lagirlontherun likes this
  17. strengthandlace likes this
  18. ceebeedoeslife likes this
  19. ceebeedoeslife said: You are absolutely fantastic.
  20. holmesstrong said: So proud.
  21. holmesstrong likes this
  22. milesandgiants likes this
  23. breathelively likes this
  24. suebirt likes this
  25. devonrunning likes this
  26. erinerinerint likes this
  27. seechrisrun likes this
  28. rookcanrun said: I’m not even sure how long I’ve been following you, but well over a year. I remember last year’s Rocky Raccoon. I am so happy you were able to reach this dream!! You look so strong in the pics at the end!! Also, thumbs up for crew and pacers!
  29. joanbayonne likes this
  30. rookcanrun likes this
  31. kirstdoeslife likes this
  32. joshbuildshealth said: Congratulations!!
  33. joshbuildshealth likes this
  34. justbrooksy likes this
  35. thebigsalad likes this
  36. mar-kicksass said: You are amazing! You could have decided not to go back after Graveyard. Just amazing.
  37. mar-kicksass likes this
  38. runningthankful said: So incredible, Rach! Congratulations!
  39. runningthankful likes this
  40. melissanat likes this
  41. for-time likes this
  42. reneepattison likes this
  43. hbrunnergirl likes this
  44. robbsrunning likes this
  45. marinemindset likes this
  46. runsforredvelvet likes this
  47. runelrun said: Truly amazing!
  48. charlesonthemove likes this
  49. westcoastrunner likes this
  50. austindoeslife likes this