Well, one thing is certain - weather reports are almost never accurate! This would hold true for last weekend. I was expecting very pleasant temperatures for the 2nd Annual North Coast 24-Hour race. Instead, the temperature during the afternoon rose to a toasty 80 degrees and the nighttime temperatures only dropped to the mid-60s.
So what does this mean? Well, in my head I was thinking cool temperatures, which is my perfect running weather. I am NOT a hot weather runner. I had calculated out a plan to run 71 miles the first 12 hours and 63 miles the second 12 hours based on nice, mild weather. Once the race started, I should have done a few things.... slowed down a bit AND increased my electrolytes. Of course, this is hindsight. So, I did neither and set out to run the 71 miles for the first 12......
|Smooth sailing early in the race.|
From the start, the temperature did seem hot... and I totally spaced out that I would need sun screen. For goodness sake, it's almost October and we hardly ever have SUN in Cleveland.... Another mistake. I am very sun-burnt now to say the least...
|Roger and Dee relaxing in the shade while I bake in the sun...|
At the 12-hour mark, instead of 71 miles, I only had 66 miles. That was pretty discouraging. Under these circumstances, it is very easy to quit. I thought there is no way I'm going to have a good race and why put myself through 12 more hours of torture for nothing.... But, the one positive in having a race like this in your home town is that I had TONS of friends stopping by and crewing for me. They were all committed to camping out overnight (some actually looking forward to it!) so I didn't want to disapoint anyone by quitting and spoiling their fun.... So on I trudged.
|Just a few of my crew members having fun.....|
Between the hours of midnight and 3:00 a.m., I had a burst of energy and was passing runners like crazy on the course. Not sure if it was do to consuming Red Bull, or my large and boisterous cheering contingency or that my legs were finally starting to recover enough from the cramps to allow me to run again....
|In for a pit stop in the middle of the night... calves still bothering me.|
By morning the wind picked up along the Lake and it looked like it was going to storm. The rain held off but one section of the course was pretty windy.
|Looks like whitecaps on the Lake... storm appeared to be brewing.|
|Less than a loop to go until the END!|
|Courtney and me with my race marker marking my distance.|
|Me and Anna P. after the race - Anna doesn't even look like she ran!|