Wednesday night. I could feel a cold coming down hard on me, and as I hit confirm on UltraSignup about an hour before the cutoff time, I wondered if I was going to even be able to show up.
I spent the next two days ingesting every remedy of cold therapy I could find. Raw jalapenos, raw ginger, raw garlic, ungodly amounts of throat coat, echinacea. I even dabbled in the genre of the homeopaths (just dont tell anybody). All be it said I awoke Saturday morning sick with a cold. I did take an illegal mount of nyquil at about 8 pm the night before so I was at least rested. I managed to find the start and prepared myself for a long cold night.
The race started at 2 pm on Saturday near the bast of the The San Fransisco Peaks outside of Flagstaff. The weather was clear and perfect, but the sun would drop all too soon, only to give way to a full moon across northern Arizona for the remainder of the night.
Races put on by runners are always the best, and when it comes to Ian Torrence and company, there's no one better.
Once again I was unsure how my run was going to go. It was again (as with UROC) the furthest race I had ran, and was unsure if my nagging left IT band would act up, or if my cold would just destroy me at any part of the run. The biggest variable being the long night and the enduring cold. This would indeed be the crux of this run, and just managing my temperature throughout the night proved to be trying.
I had the honor once again of sharing the trail with Brian Tinder of Flagstaff. Its been great seeing him at all these races, and hes a very entertaining and supportive guy to share the trail with. The first 30 miles or so of the race were quick. I felt getting as many miles in as possible before the sun and temperatures dropped would be the best approach leading into the night.
Besides getting lost around mile 90 for a good 30 minutes, the run went off without any major hitches. Post mile 80 I found myself unable to stop as my IT band would seize up, but as long as I kept moving I was fine. An early morning finish in Tusayan with friends and family and I found myself completing my first 100. 1st place 17:41