Run Fest 2017
It was so exciting to go to Memorial Park and pick up Bibs and get the coveted running bracelets. The Pikes Peak merchandise this year was excellent and extremely popular. I waited in line for one hour to purchase all of our goodies for the year. I met some interesting people while waiting in line. My husband enjoyed the beer garden. After we left the Run Fest, we headed over to Ritz Grill for one last call before closing the doors over the weekend. The anticipation was thick in the air.
Eve before the Ascent--Pasta Dinner
Gerald and I attend the Pasta Dinner every year before the races. It is a tradition to carbo load and listen to the speakers. Luckily, this year was a comparison of Imogene Pass Run and Pikes Peak. This is another race Gerald and I try to do yearly as long as we get in. Race sells out within 30 minutes. It is located in a beautiful part of the state. We listened and watched the slide show while we filled up with pasta. 12 hours before go time for the Ascent. Needless to say, I did not sleep well at all the night before. My nerves got the best of me. I learned the hard way, you can't predict what will happen on race day!!
I woke and and felt prepared to tackle the mountain!! We arrived at the race venue early, 4:30 to be sure parking was ideal. I prepared the last few things in my hydration pack and waited for GO TIME. The race started without any hiccups but it would not take long for that to change for this Marmot. Mile 2 I started getting sick. All I could think about is how am I going to complete this race feeling so bad. I decided I was going to put one foot in front of the other all the way to the end. Mile 8 I had the nausea come back with a vengeance. All I could think was, I can't be the Marmot that doesn't finish. So I kept plugging away. Mile 11--almost to the top but oh no it was the worst episode yet. I could see and hear the finish--I can do this, I know I can!! I kept plugging away even the every inch of my body was rebelling now. After a very slow ascent up, I was there!! I see my friend Renee Renn with my medal!!! Thank goodness I didn't fail. Now time to get off the mountain and get ready for Round two--which scares me due to the experience for the Ascent. I went home, showered, ate a little bit and went to bed!!
Gerald decided he was not feeling up to being competitive for the marathon and agreed to stay with me. He knew it was important for me to finish and fulfill my duty as a Marmot. Woke up at 3:30 am and was able to eat a nice breakfast and hydrate. Arrived at the marathon venue at 4:40 am and prepared for the day. I was feeling a lot better so my confidence was building. It was time to start Round 2!! We are off!!
Finisher of the 2017 Doubler
The marathon went without any issues. Gerald being the awesome husband he is, carried the hydration pack for me. I just had to concentrate on getting through the miles. The Ascent time was 20 minutes faster for the marathon which means I had some cushion for the new 6 hour cutoff at the Summit! We took it easy above treeline, Gerald fell at this point in last year's marathon and hurt his shoulder, so we coasted the first 3 miles. Once we got down to A frame--we picked it up a little on the Pace. Several runners took a stumble so of course I made sure they were okay. You can't take the nurse out of someone after 17 years being in the profession. The wonderful sound of Barr Camp was echoing through the trees. I knew I would make the cutoff as long as I remained at the current steady pace. It was a wonderful feeling to pass runners on the way down. We reached No Name and I knew I was going to have a successful doubler year again. I kept the steady pace all the way down Ruxton. I soon saw my friends Gladys and Julius Menodza at the finish chute with cowbells. Gerald and I had our own little escort in!!! I made it!! Gerald was right there beside me the whole time!! I didn't let my fellow Marmots down!!! Victory is wonderful!! Now time to change my training for 2018 Doubler so I can finish stronger!!
Forever a Marmot!!! I highly recommend everyone to apply and try to be a part of this great team!! It may take a couple times applying, but the experience is beyond words!! The love of the community is evident when you put on that magical gold singlet with Mighty Marmot on the back!!