Monday, August 11, 2008

don's catskill mountain 100k relay race report: guest post

me and don, at start of leg #5.

i'm so happy to post don's catskill mountain relay race report! readers of this blog may remember don's report of the 2005 nyc half marathon which i posted as part of the race preview for that event. what don didn't mention in this race report was he ran the westport summer series 6.85 miler saturday morning - on a course complete with it's own version of a monster hill at the 3.5 mile mark!

don is also race director of the norwalk (lighfoot runners) summer series. next up on our race calendar is the 11 miler this saturday. if you're within driving distance and want to get in a challenging run, join us!

A very awesome day and I'm still flying high and have not come down yet. Emmy got us there in fine fashion with her usual 85-90 mile per hour driving. She is amazing. Among other things we’re going to start calling her "Miss Multi Tasking" because she’s usually got 7 things she’s doing while she’s driving. I don’t know how she does it but she does and quite well I might add. As with any first initiative, our primary shortcoming was timing.

We were 15 minutes late for Frank's leg (#4) and Pam had to start it for him after having run leg #2 & 3 consecutively. Frank had to literally jump out of the car after 2 plus hours of driving and attack the worst leg on the course. And I mean worst. The hills would bring tears to your eyes just looking at them and Frank had to do them with no warm up. As usual Frank is courageous and game, but he still had to do a fair amount of walking.

Leg #5 I did, which was exactly opposite to Leg # 4. It was a net down hill. Only problem was half way thru the leg the weatherman fulfilled his promise for thunder storms and it started raining heavily. The scenery on this leg is really beyond description and you can view the photos to see for yourself. Myriam took the next leg, with courage and guts abounding. She got soaked, but ran an excellent time. Emmy took leg 7 and did real well after having done 2 races on Saturday, plus going to dinner with friends after the second. We all get reckless and overestimate ourselves occasionally. Frank took leg 8 and struggled. I’ll let him explain it to you.

I took leg 9 and it was quite an experience relighting the fire. Real tight and wondered if I’d ever loosen up, but I did. The hills don’t quit in the Catskills. They go on and on and when you think it will end around the next corner, it just goes on and on. Finally you stop expecting the hill to end and that’s where the mental breakthrough occurs and you can focus on the road directly in front of you. Expectations suck up your mental & physical energy. As I’m approaching the end of my leg I’m seeing Emmy’s not getting out of the car to start the final leg, and I knew she was having a tough time getting restarted, as we all did. She did "take the baton" for the final leg and finished in fine fashion.

A couple of beers and some food smoothed out and rounded out the event at the end. Moral of the story: All’s well that end’s well. We all learned a lot.

Take care. Don

more race photos and results.


Pam said...

Don - great rr. It was a pleasure being on your team. Looking forward to the next time!

CTmarathoner said...

Nice guest post and great photos !!--Don, am very proud of you for getting yourself going again and for finishing that second leg in style!
A mental and physical breakthrough indeed!! Thanks so much for going with us and for participating in such a positive way!! You ran in the rain, too...a least we didn't have to do leg 4 ---and doing Westport the day before made the relay more physically challenging:)))

DawnB said...

Nice job Don congrats to all of you again just to think I saw you,frank, emmy, at westport and saturday and emmy again saturday night!! awesome!!