Running a marathon? No, too easy! Running a 50k. Getting closer.
50 Miles! Bingo!
Wait, we said the hardest thing. Hmmm...
50 miles in 110*+ heat!
Now THERE’S a winner!
NO! Not me, I didn’t risk life and kidneys. But I watched people do it!
I volunteered for the Running with the Devil event. This is a brutal event where the RD purposely makes it as difficult as possible for a racer (while still being safe). It’s run as the opposite to the sister event.
- You race MID DAY when it is the hottest
- You must run along the Silverman bike course, (one of the Hardest Ironman’s out there (ahem…JT)) with LOTS of hills
- For the die-hards, there is a ‘late’ start where you start 2 hours after the regular 50 milers but you still have to make the same cutoffs.
- You can choose your poison: 50 miles; Marathon; Half-marathon; 10k or 5 k. Just so you don’t think that it’s too easy the half Mary’s doesn’t leave until noon (104*+)
I manned the 9 mile stop (mile 17 for marathoners and mile 41 for the 50 milers).
We had the greatest booth! LOTS of ICE, LOTS of Water, even a spray device to hose off the runners. And to top it all off, we had an ICE BATH. Just lay down and we flood your core with screaming cold ice and water! I think I saw steam coming off the bodies!
Turns out that a lot of the 50 milers were ‘tapering’ for badwater. (Lord, I know I am crazy when I taper with a 50 mile race through the desert).
Most of the runners looked like they were from the test site. Clothed head to toe in white, with only a few inches of skin showing. I didn’t know whether to give water or run from them.
I will mention that not everyone was in a mummy suit. There were a couple people who were barely clothed at all. One guy went shirtless and waterless the entire way. I think he even shunned sunscreen. Needless to say he didn’t make it the entire way! Don’t know if he didn’t ‘respect’ the distance or just a ‘tough’ guy.
How sad to have to give up after 41 miles of running. Just 9 more! Of course 9 more miles means another 2-3 hours out there. Most people were walking/running at 15 min/mile.
Not to be out done in our level of craziness, Stef and I went out to Lake Mead.
I had on the books to swim 2100 and bike 35. I rode down to meet Stef (who was SO gracious to wait for my late butt) and we went out for a l.o.n.g open water swim. For the details, you’ll have to go to her site (expect remember that I’M the innocent one).
Suffice it to say that it was a monster swim of 1.5 miles. We went way over time, but it was great and the best part was I did it all naked!! Well ok, I did it sans wetsuit. But I felt naked out there. It took a lot of courage to get out there without my safety blanket. Thanks to Stef, I had a swim belt. That was a major relief. But now I know that I can do it.
After the swim, the plan was to ride back home (up the pumpkinman course) take a quick nap and then bike back to the volunteer post. But after my lateness and our epic swim, there was no way I could get back to home in time. So I ended up volunteering for the whole day.
After my time at the post was up I tried biking home and had NOTHING in the tank. NOTHING!
Exhausted, I headed back to the race and volunteered MORE! Finally around 10 pm I was SPENT.
A BIG THANKS to the Mrs. for picking up a smelly, tired and useless biker!
I ended up getting in the 35 that day but I was hoping to get in 50 or more. The next day I was beat! I laid around the house and vegged.
I was the same way after the Silverman event. That volunteering is f%&*ing exhausting!