Regardless of what happens on race day(s), in less than 96 hours... which is less than four days it will all be over. I can't believe it. Not only less than a week to the race but less than a week for it to be over. It is hard to believe that it is here.
There isn't much to do now past just waiting. Most of my stuff is packed and ready to go. There isn't much running for me to do right now as I am in taper/rest mode. Just take it easy and enjoy these last few days.
Right now I think the biggest thing I have to do is work on the mindset that I will finish this race. Not just think that I can but I have to really believe it and stay with that.
My goals are modest, I want to be dead smack in the middle of the pack. That is about a 27:30 finish and I believe if everything is going well I should be able to achieve that. I'd love to be a sub 25 finisher but the reality is that I am not there yet. So I am going to be pretty damned happy with a 27-29 hour finish and leave it at that.
What else... had a fun trail run last night that loosened things up, raised my spirits and also calmed my nerves. I'll have another light one tonight after it cools off then another one tomorrow sometime probably up in Pb. Tomorrows will be really light. Everything is feeling great.
Anyway, I should introduce the rest of the players in this tradgedy/comedy... we won't know which until Sunday.
Crew Chief A.M. - My lovely girlfriend Melissa who has been WAY more than understanding and supportive through this quest. She proved her crewing prowess in Lake City and I expect to have nothing but the best support from her with her attention to detail throughout the race. I owe her some serious time skiing, rock climbing, etc... after this.
Crew Member A.M. - JJ... I've known JJ forever and I am excited that she is part of my crew. Plus she owes me after last years Georgetown to Idaho Springs run, right JJ??? ;)
Crew Member/Photographer A.M. - Annie the greatest daughter in the world. This will be the first race in ages she has been at with me so I am really excited that she will be there. In addition to helping Melissa and JJ with me during the day Annie has the responsibility of being the team photographer. I can't wait to see the pics.
Annie, being a teenager with endless energy will also be serving as a crew member through the night.
Crew Chief P.M. - Here is the real man of the day... Erich. Erich will run the Pikes Peak Ascent then boogie himself to Twin Lakes to crew me from that point to the finish. I have known Erich since 1987 and he has had the honor to see the good, the bad and the ugly from me over all these years. So when it DOES get ugly he can handle it and consequently me.
Pacer - Carolyn... I couldn't ask for a better pacer. Great strong runner, she knows the course, knows what to expect and she can adjust I am sure to whatever pace we need to do for those second 50 miles. Just as long as we don't fall or get lost... :) Along with Carolyn comes Carols her boyfriend who will be helping Carolyn as part of the crew and he will also serve as backup pacer if something goes awry.
Ray - I'll have a cold one waiting for you.
Coach - Coach Weber. This guy has has his hands full with me since the word go in February. I've learned a ton from our talks and have taken "most" things to heart. :) Seriously... we've got the fueling, hydration and electrolyte pattern down to a science and that alone will go a long ways to me finishing this weekend. Thanks for everything!
Friends - I have made a lot of friends the past year who are ultra runners and you all are a constant source of understanding, inspiration, motivation and in some cases, cautionary examples of what not to do. :) For those who will be in Pb I look forward to being in the same race. To others doing other races such as the Peak, have a good run!
There is the cast of characters. I can't thank you all enough for being part of this.
This will be my last entry until after the race. It will be a different story than last year, I promise.