Thursday, May 9, 2013

Rolling with the Punches


Miwok 100k turned into Miwok 60k due to a red flag warning causing a park closure. UMM and I decided to camp at Pantoll Campground the night before where we were joined by some of his buddies also running. I was just there for support and crew. I had also brought our new pup Penny for her first camping experience. I must say she did quite well and really rolled with the punches!



Speaking of rolling with the punches - Tia the race director of Miwok really adapted quickly to the changes of the trail closures, worked all night to change the course and still had a smile plastered on her face the whole entirety of the race event. Kudos Miss Tia as this is what event coordinating is all about. Defining those who are really good at their jobs to those who are just mediocre.


Chicks on a Stick - My version of Smores called Smeeps.
Barely getting any sleep at the campground, we awoke at 2:30 in the morning to cook breakfast and get ready. We were in the town of Stinson Beach just before 4am for bib pickup. The race started at 5am and as we walked into the community center this is what we saw -


Ugg. At first we were disappointed. UMM more so than I of course as he was ready to tackle his first 100k. We slept in the car for an hour or so not wanting to return back to camp. Upon waking, UMM’s attitude did a 180 and he was positive and upbeat about the change in race distance. All is fair in love and trail running. Things can and will happen out of anyone’s control. Either you adapt or are bitter about the situation causing negative vibes where no one cares to hang out with you because you are such a downer! That being said, UMM truly inspires me as he certainly can turn his frown upside down and focus on the bright side.

The day was long. I had fun hanging out with fellow SFM ambassador Peter and chatting with other support crews and pacers. At the Tennessee Valley Aid Station around the 25 mile mark, UMM surprised me by sitting down and claiming that he was going to hang out for a while. Usually one to fly through aid stations, I knew he was struggling. Thankfully his buddy Ranbir agreed to pace him the thirteen miles or so back and I was happy to see UMM cross the finish line happy and strong. Everyone who crossed the finish line said the same thing - “That course was tough.” Shocked to even hear it from a few Miwok veterans. And though I didn’t ask, I wonder why it had been so tough even with the shortened course. Was it purely a mindset, the heat, or just an off day? Perhaps I will never know.
Photo courtesy of Ranbir
Even though I did not run this race, I was very impressed. If I ever decide to run a 100k, Miwok would be the one! And if nothing else, for the Lagunitas Trail Ale specially brewed for all the race entrants. I am very proud of UMM for keeping focused and battling through his demons to finish strong. 



Ranbir and UMM at the finish line
60k Finishers - Willie, Tony, & Umm