Saturday, April 28, 2007

Me. In Sleeveless. Happy. Spring.

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Tom, Maria, Jeffrey and Al

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Water Hole !

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I Feel Good !

This week has been wonderful. I feel recovered from the McNaughton 100 Trail Run and I feel strong. Last week I was feeling tired, I slept quite a bit, but this week, woohoo. Game is on!

Monday was eliptical running and weights, Tuesday was off, Wednesday was trail run , some stair stepping and weights, Thursday was trail run, Friday was supposed to be off but it was beautiful so I had to take a run for 8 miles with Topaz. Before I knew it I had 35 miles in by Friday night.

Today was an awesome Afton Fun day. A group was beginning to run at 7, Al went out at 6, a group was going to head out at 8. I arrived a bit earlier than my posted 8 time so ran a 40 minute out and back before meeting up with the 7 and 8 o'clock group. I was running up the hill and here came a GROUP of 15! It was incredible. Friends that I haven't run with all winter long. We had a fabulous time.

The Afton State Park is a wonderful place to run. Lots of hills, open meadows and single track along the St. Croix River. It's fabulous. The trees are leafing out, the flowers are blooming and spring is definitely in the air!

We sat in the lot for a while visiting and then it was time to get home. I have been cleaning windows, washing screens and enjoying the day.

Oh yeah, this is what Minnesota is all about :)

My training plan told me 2-3 hours today. Well, I was having such a great time that when I could have gone back to the lot for 2.5 hours I asked Maria how much longer for the finish of 25K? She told me another 45 minutes or so. I was in! I figured I'd just sit at the lot and wait for the finishing runners anyhow. I might as well be running. I felt good. I was happy, I was having fun!

By the time we came into the lot I had just under 4 hours in. Gee, how did that happen?

Saturday, April 21, 2007

EVE WOMAN'S CHAMPION!!!!

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Eve 'n' Duke

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Jeffrey

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Post Race Fun

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Trail Mix

Today I participated in a different aspect of trail racing; volunteering. It felt odd to wake up early, to shower and put on street clothing to head to a race. No pre-race jitters, no wishing I could poop prior to the race start, no fretting over the weather and what should I wear. Just low key, low stress fun.

I pulled into the park at 545 AM, popped out of my car and into Curt, from Big Lake, and his wife. Curt was running the 50K today. Last year was his first 50K at Trail Mix, then he went on to run the Superior 50K and today was back to the Trail Mix. He finished in fine form. I was able to watch him finish and did a cheer for him. Good work, Curt!

I found OC, Race Director, and was told to work the packet pick up area until 10 and then head to the finish line.

Trail Mix consists of a 50K beginning at 7, a 25K beginning at 730 and a 4 person relay team, each running 7.5 miles and 930. I was amazed that so many people came in to get their packets with only a minute or three before race start. Wow! I guess since I typically show up 45 minutes before the start that I assumed everyone else did it. One man who was entered in the 50K (7AM) came in at 9, said he overslept but wanted his shirt. I told him to "Start running Dude!" I think he just wanted the shirt, but didn't really want to run. Good lord.

I was able to see all of my friends at packet pickup. The volunteers commented that I seemed to know everyone. I was having so much fun. I even recognized some people from blogs that I have been reading (Iron Jenny!) and many people came up to me, telling me that they had left me email and posts here. I remembered them all, it was great to put a face to an email.

After working packet pickup I was anxious to check out the finish line. I wanted to catch Eve cross the finish line and I was worried I was going to miss her. I went up to the finish at 940 and put together finisher bags. As the 25K runners finished we had a line going: take a bag, add Powerade, yell out a shirt size, add the shirt and give to the person up front to give the runner. It went pretty smoothly. It was great to meet and work with the group of volunteers. Many of them had been volunteering at this race for many years and they all had great stories to tell me! I worked the finish tent until 1045 and then had to get out and see what Eve was doing.

I found a spot at the bottom of the hill near the finish and hung tight. Sure enough, after 10 minutes I saw her! Here came Eve!! I yelled and danced and screamed. She was a focused machine. Pumping arms, looking straight ahead, she powered up that last hill and into the finish line. BREAKING THE WOMAN'S RECORD AND TAKING FIRST PLACE. 4:00:11. Rock on Eve! Isn't she something special? I ran in for a hug and congratulations and she is ready to run some more. Full of energy and smiles, she just rocks. It was great fun spending the rest of the afternoon with Eve. I just love her.

I didn't realize that Wynn Davis took FIRST overall in 3:25 until later when I saw him holding his trophy! How embarrassing for me. I had been speaking with him earlier, right after his finish, and he was congratulating me on McNaughton, I congratulated him on his run, but didn't realize it was first place! Finally I realized it and went up to tell him congrats! Good job, Wynn! Sorry I was such a ditz.

We hung out and watched our friends finish the race. Tom, Nancy, Kate and Chris had finished the 25k while I was in the tent. We watched Kevin finish in 445! His first 50K was at Afton last year and here he is running a 445! Sheesh. Good job, Kevin. And Scott! Man! Running a 5:00 PR. Scott, that is so great! Scott, you had an awesome race. Good work :) We watched Pierre come in, Alicia, Jeffrey, Karen, Greg and Jason. We were doing cheers and just having an absolute blast. I had a fantastic super day. I feel SO blessed to know all of these great friends of mine.

Something reminded me of where I've come from and how lucky I am to be where I am today. I saw a class mate that I graduated with at the race today. I haven't seen her since graduation, I suppose..ah, 1983, you know. We were standing at the finish line and I kept looking at her. I told Eve "I think I graduated with that girl. I think I'll ask her if she is Paula" Well, it was Paula! I couldn't believe it. I was shocked. I have never run into someone from High School at a running event. I'm a different person since then. Well, most of us are. Paula asked me about the best friends that I hung out with in High School. After I told her about them I realized how lucky I am now. My past best friend committed suicide, one is in prison, one is addicted to meth and who knows where she is. Maybe dead, maybe prison. Who knows. I told Paula "I got clean, got sober..and started running" Thank God.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Recovering Well

Not a bad toe for 5 days post race. It's better than I've ever had! Usually I'm still limping around on oozing blisters. Woohoo. Gotta love that foot potion.

Today I went to the gym for an upper body workout. Felt good, good strength, didn't lose anything. Topaz and I hit the trail for 5 miles of power walking. It felt very good to move, increase my heart rate and inhale the woods deeply.

Earlier this week I went to the gym and used the elliptical for 40 minutes; I felt some twitches of tightness but all of that seems to have vanished. Other than the blister pain, I am good to go.

As a requirement for Vermont 100, I will be volunteering at Trail Mix 50K for 8 hours tomorrow. I'm looking forward to seeing everyone out there. I'm not looking forward to waking up at 4 AM again! Ah well, the weather looks absolutely beautiful and many of my friends will be out running their first race of the season. It will be an awesome day.

Eve, go get 'em girl! I'll be doing cheers for you!! I think you have the win. Eve won the 25K last year at Trail Mix, then won the 50K at Afton. Remember? Duke, Eve and John. 1-2-3. Good memories!

See you at Trail Mix!

Almost Perrrrrrffecttt :)

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Recovery is nicer than Taper

Thank you so very much for the wonderful comments that were left relating to McNaughton 100. I feel very fortunate to have this online community of runners. Blogging has made the world a bit smaller and it is a wonderful way to communicate with other ultra runners as well. There aren't a whole lot of us, the ones that I have found online are incredible. I wrote a thank you to each and every one of you in the comments. Thank you again.

Here are the results for the 150 Mile which I still can't quite grasp, and the 100 Mile Finishers. Thank you , Sherpa John!

150 Mile: 40 Starters / 10 Finishers*
1 Paul Stofko 31 M 35:22:25
2 David Goggins 32 M 40:26:52
3 Ryan Dexter 30 M 40:40:45
4 Dan Brenden 56 M 43:08:18
5 Hans Bern Bauer 38 M 43:50:52
6 David Corfman 44 M 44:24:34
7 Doug Hansel 47 M 46:30:25
8 Phil Rosenstein 36 M 46:55:09
*9 Diane Van Deren* 47 F 46:59:01
10 Ken Fancett 57 M 47:02:58
*****100 Mile: 61 Starters / 27 Finishers
*1 Karl Meltzer 39 M Utah 17:40:13
2 Akos Konya 32 M CA 19:55:27
3 Jamshid Khajavi 53 M 22:25:28
4 Jason Bour 38 M Ohio 26:19:10
5 Mike Samuelson 41 M TN 26:29:26
6 Gilles Barbeau 51 M BC 27:23:11
7 Paul Braun 35 M Wi 27:57:18
*8 Julie Berg* 42 F MN 28:22:49
9 Steve Hoger 49 M NE 28:42:32
10 Darren Fortney 39 M WI 29:21:03
11 Bill Andrews 55 M Nevada 29:32:45
12 Bob Murphy 48 M NE 31:06:45
13 Christopher Midden 42 M IL 31:27:11
14 Mike Alopfenstein 34 M IL 31:28:51
15 Ed Cook 51 M IL 32:02:53
16 Dick Canterbury 59 M Indiana 32:36:04
17 Adrian Belitu 33 M IL 33:09:20
***18 Cindy Heisdorffer* 49 F IA 33:24:20
*19 Bonnie Busch* 49 F IA 33:24:20
20 Garret Cawthon 45 M Ky 33:32:09
21 Mike Matteson 48 OH 33:34:18
22 Shan Riggs 28 M IL 33:54:07
*23 Nancy Burrows* 40 F IL 34:01:53
24 Sherpa John Lacroix 25 M NH 34:15:29
25 Jeffrey Genova 39 M AR 34:15:29
26 Shiran Kochavi 38 M NJ 34:55:09
27 Joseph Galloway 49 M IA 45:40:


I didn't take any Advil during the run but have taken a few each day since. My toe is what is painful. I am anxious for the damn toenail to fall off. This big toenail has never fallen off but has been badly blistered underneath each and every ultra. I'm ready to follow in Lisa Bliss' shoes and have it surgically removed if it doesn't fall off this time around.

I'm still carrying 6 pounds of water - is it water? I guess I don't know. My ankles, calves and feet are still swollen. I can't fit on any shoes yet so am wearing my Montrail Molaki's to work. My feet are under my desk anyway so nobody cares. But my toes are cold!

I have an appointment with my regular Dr. tomorrow to go over the whole breathing issue and see what she thinks it was all about. I have had a few coughing spasms since Sunday, but the breathing is nice and easy. I did have the prescription for the inhaler filled but am not filling the antibiotic. It was unnecessary.

The results were posted by Andy and I was so happy to see that a few other women finished the 100 too! I never saw them on the course and thought that nobody was left. Hurray for the runners!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Nice Way to Finish the Long Day

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Me and Karl - 1st 17 hours, record breaker, 100

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Me and David-2nd place, 150

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Karen (her first 50), Julie, Maria (50)

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Whew! I'm done. Me and Andy

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Maria, Julie and Don

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Waiting..

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150's Ready to Roll

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Doug Hansel ready for 150. We've run MANY miles together at the McNaughton's

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Me and Chrissy..Chrissy ready for 150

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Andy giving 150 milers the pre race briefing

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McNaughton, Men and Medical

Where to start? This will be a l o n g race report, as most of mine usually are. I think this report may be longer the the norm.

I left home after Troy was on the bus headed for school. It took me longer than expected to arrive to Maria's home with accidents along the freeway and rush hour traffic. I finally arrived around 915. After unloading my endless duffel bags and stuff into her car, visiting with Doug and new pup Tahoe we headed to Starbucks and then were on the road to Pekin, IL; hopeful to arrive in 8-9 hours. The ride was safe and uneventful. We had both been hydrating all week so had numerous pottie stops and lunch.

We arrived to McNaughton Park 45 minutes before the 150 milers would be taking off. I could feel the excitement in the air! Andy (RD) saw us coming and yelled out a hello and had a hug for me. This years swag was a blue bird blue technical short sleeved shirt and a heavy fleece vest. Nice. The 150's also received a hat and the 50's the technical shirt. Two of my Minnesotan friends: Al Holtz and John Taylor were taking a crack at the 150. I spoke with them, with Chrissy Weiss, Doug Hansel, said hi to Dallas, met Jahmid from Seattle (and asked him if he knew Olga..yes!), whom were all entered in the 150. Wow, I was in awe.

We met up with Karen from MN, who was running her first 50 and visited with Don Clark a bit who was running the 100. Lots of friends to say hi to and lots of people to meet. Lots of fun. A woman named Tanya introduced herself and her daughter to me. Tanya was running the 50 at McNaughton and had left me a message on this blog. It was fun to meet her in person. I hope you had a fun run, Tonya!

The 50 that were running the 150 lined up at 6:00, I snapped a few shots and I had a feeling of "maybe another 5 loops wouldn't be too bad. Maybe next year..."

They were off!

Maria and I said goodbye to Andy and headed off to find our hotel and search for food. It was past our dinner time and we were hungry.

4AM and the alarms went off. Time to wake up and get this party started! Maria found the weather channel and it looked like rain soon. We had some breakfast, filled our bottles, made last minute adjustments and were heading to the race start.

Andy had a nice warm fire going but the wind was blowing smoke at me. Maria picked up her ankle chip, we checked in and headed back to the warm car. It was cold out. I decided to wear wind pants with a long sleeved shirt and jacket, hat and gloves. I didn't see a whole lot of runners with shorts on. I had plenty of clothing in my drop bag so I could change as necessary as temperatures changed.

About 545 we headed back out. The 150 milers had been out running for 12 hours and the 50/100 would begin at 6. Andy had some big name runners out there: David Goggins was running the 150 and Karl Meltzer was running 100. Wow. You just don't see these guys at the Midwest races. After only seeing photos and reading about these guys it was pretty cool to see and speak with them in person. They look damn good too :)

OK, so 600 and we are off and running. It was congested for almost the first 10 miles, eventually thinning out and then at times I swore I must have been the only runner as I was totally alone for hours!

During the second loop the rain began to fall. Oh man, here comes the muddy mess. There were already mud holes-big ones-on the trail before it rained, but as the rain fell the trail turned slick. Many runners went sliding down the hills on their butts.

I came up to Chrissy, we began going down a hill and she started to laugh. She asked me if I remembered what she said last year while we were running the 100. Oh yea, I said..you were going to begin making Butt Slide Gaitors (Chrissy is THE woman behind Dirty Girl Gaitors. She reminded me that as we were sliding down the hill her butt was becoming impacted with mud and the Butt Slide Gaitors would be perfect. I asked her if she had created any and no, she hadn't..yet. Funny! Chrissy was having a tough time, you know, to begin the 150 at 6 PM, and only have an hour or two of daylight before you have the night upon you has got to be so very difficult. I just couldn't fathom. Most of the 150's that I came across looked pretty beat up. Whenever I felt an ache or pain I thought about those guys and gals out there running for 150 freaking miles. The 150 wasn't looking so good to me anymore!

I ran with Beth Simpson for a long while. I enjoy talking with Beth as she has so much running experience, is so kind AND SAVED MY FEET! Yes, last year, at this race, she is the one that told me about the foot potion. Guess what? Only ONE blister this year. It's a honker, fully engulfed my big toe and is all nice and filled with blood but it is ONE and it didn't hurt THAT much. Last year I had 101 blisters. I re lubed my feet and changed socks every 40 miles. I couldn't believe all of the mud and dirt that was in my socks. Ugh.

Travis from blogging recognized me and we ran a few loops near one another. This was his first 50! He finished in fine form, under 12 hours. I was at the main aid station, having just finished my first 50 when he came in. It was great to see. See you at Ice Age, Travis!

I ran hard. Harder than I have in a 100. I felt good, I've never hit the 12 hour split at 11:39, as I did here, so I was pretty pumped. I listened to my iPod all but the first 30 miles and that kept me going. I had my eyes set on a 25-26 hour finish and it looked like I might pull it off.

While I was lubing up my feet at 80 miles Diane Van Deren was heading out for her 120 I believe. She yelled over for me to join her for a while. I was stunned. You know, I have this 'star fear'. These great runners, I feel inferior you know? I feel like I might be wasting their time by striking conversation. My problem, I guess. I couldn't believe she wanted me to go out with her. I did and it was incredible to speak with her. You know, ultras strip you down to who you are at heart. It doesn't matter what your employment, your family history, the size of your car, home or the jewelry that you wear. It you: pure as you are running with all the social stuff detached from you. I need to remember that as I run and to not be quite so afraid to speak with the runners that are so incredible in my eyes. I think it was Travis who told me that running with the David Goggins, the Karl Meltzers is like playing basketball with Michael Jordan. You know? We are all there..together..getting the run done. Fantastic. Every day basketball players don't play with Michael.

Doug Hansel was running the 150; he took a 5 hour nap and then joined me on the trail for a 10 mile lap. He was doing pretty well. We power walked a lot, getting through the cold, oh so COLD night. It was freezing! There was big time frost on the ground and I could see my breath. The rivers made my feet numb and I am not kidding. As I left the park yesterday at noon to go home, Doug was heading out for his 130th mile. I know he finished 150. I just know it!

After all of the 50 milers, or most of them, were finished, I began to notice that the only women I was seeing on the trail were the 150 woman. Where were the 100 milers? There were 8 of us registered, but I didn't know if they all showed or not. I made a mental note to remember to ask Andy about it when I came through the start/finish again.

As I was at about mile 70 I began to slow through the darkness. I noticed that I was having difficulty breathing. I turned off my iPod and could hear myself wheezing. Wheezing loudly. I'd stretch my neck up to the sky try to get big breathes. I couldn't. I slowed down some more, which really was pissing me off since I had been running so fast (well, fast for me, you know) and this breathing thing was costing me time. I noticed that when I ran downhill I was OK, but running the flats and hill climbing was making my breathing erratic. I thought maybe it was because it was so cold out. It was 27F at this time and maybe the cold air was doing something to my airways. Who knows. I kept going and put it out of my mind for a while. At mile 80 as I walked up the rope rock I told myself that if I couldn't get up that rock without gasping and choking that I would call it a day. Damnit. But I was afraid; I'm used to ultra pain but not this breathing shit. I took two steps up the rope rock and rested, two more steps and rested..it took a long time, and the only person in back of me I had passed quite some time ago, he was a 150 miler who finished 3rd, Ryan Dexter, I figured if I passed out and went into a coma it would be a long time before Ryan would come upon me. Luckily I went slowly enough where that didn't happen and I didn't need to drop.

I began to have flashlight problems. I had 4 flashlights and tons of batteries. Each time I put in new batteries, in like 30 minutes I was dim again. This was not a good thing. I came into the aid station, panicked because I was tight in the chest and couldn't breathe and mad because of my flipping lights. Marie and Karen both finished their 50's (yeah!), had showered and become pretty and were helping me out. Maria took my flashlights and a handful of batteries to her car, I was walking around the aid station asking if anyone had batteries; I didn't DARE go out without lights. Scary. No one had any! Maria had her lights and everything in her van, I was crabby for sitting around with f*cked up lights for 20 minutes so I asked Karen, as Marie was going to her van, if they could meet me on the big hill about a mile or two from the start. They agreed and thankfully they fixed my lights. I wasn't closing the end piece on tight enough, the battery wasn't making the connection and I was being stupid. The batteries still didn't last very long in that little Fenix-I had 3 of them with me this time and they were really pissing me off. Some people had lamps that I could see a mile away! I need to re look at lights again.

The sun came up and warmed the frost up. I was able to drop my lights with Maria and head out for my last loop. The last one! I told Maria it would probably be 3 hours for me to do the last 10. I had slowed big time. I was clawing at my neck feeling the tightness in my chest wondering what was going on. I took it slow and easy.

After Doug and I finished mile 90 he was going faster, I was going slower so we split up. Every time I came to a river crossing or a mud pile I'd think "oh, this is the last time" what a delicious thought at this point. I just wanted to be done. My breathing was tight and my chest hurt. I wasn't going to make my goal but what the hell..I was going to finish and that was pretty awesome in itself.

As I was finishing up my final Heaven's Gate loop, Paul, who reintroduced himself at the start, whom I've met at Superior and prior McNaughtons came thundering down the trail. He had left the start/finish and would have to run a 215 loop to make 28 hours. I told him I wanted to make 28 hours. I tried to follow him for about 5 steps and had a coughing fit, plus I was just plain old tired. I probably couldn't have hung with him if I could have breathed normally. He was flying! I was amazed at the will he had to make that goal. He did too: 27:57 or so he finished. I find that incredible. To be able to push like that in the last 10 miles. Wow.

I didn't push it. I pretty much walked the last loop, taking in the beautiful sunny morning, removing my jacket, hat, gloves and a heavy shirt. It was great to see people again, the 150 milers had woken up and were back out on the trail. I never did see any other 100 mile women. I guess they all dropped.

The finish line. Andy, Karen, Maria all whooping and hollering; I ran in at 28: something. Less than 28:30 I know but I don't remember how many minutes past 28. I was delighted. I finished the race, I felt pretty good and was doing fine.

"Here is 100 Mile Stud, Julie Berg. Julie won the McNaughton 100 two years ago and she's done it again" said Andy.

Andy presented me with First Woman plaque and my buckle, we took pictures and had a party. It was really so very much fun.

I sat down and smiled, thinking about all that I went through over those 100 miles and how much I was grateful for. All of the friends around, everyone was so nice. Pure bliss.

As we sat around we watched the 2nd place male 150 come in, David Goggins and then 3rd, Ryan Dexter. Way to go, I can't fathom. And no, I no longer want to do the 150. It's just too much. Remind me that I said that when McNaughton comes near next year! We watched John Taylor come in, he finished 100 and decided to not go for the 150. 100 is a pretty respectable distance!

Karl Meltzer was there, all fresh and clean. He broke the course record in 17 hours. He passed me THREE times! He went up the hills effortlessly, he was wonderful to watch, but was gone too quickly!

Andy asked to take Karl and my picture together. Ohhhh yeah...gotta like that! Men all over the place. Then picture with Andy, picture with David, I'll post them soon. A ton of fun.

I didn't have time to run (ha) to the hotel to clean up before leaving so I just changed into clean running clothes from my drop bag. Clean clothes on a filthy dirty body. Ick.

Maria and I said our goodbyes 2 hours later and headed out of Pekin. Something began to happen to me. Something that scared me.

I couldn't breath. I had been wheezing at the finish line, but tried to get deep breaths and wasn't real concerned now that the race was finished. I coughed a croup type cough, but wasn't too worried.

As Maria drove out of Pekin my breathing was was more of a gasp and she mentioned that I sounded like Darth Vader. I was becoming nervous. We stopped at a rest stop about 1/2 hour out of Pekin and I had a coughing fit, I couldn't breathe, I was gasping. Maria asked if I though I should go to an ER, I though about it, went pee, had another coughing fit and said yeah, something is wrong here. This wasn't ultra pain this was scary stuff.

Maria called her husband and he looked online for an Urgent Care near where we were. We found the little itty bitty city and stopped at Urgent Care, I had a coughing fit, wasn't breathing well and the told me to go to the Emergency Room at the Hospital instead.

Off we went.

Luckily there was not another patient in the whole ER! I explained what was going on, explained that I had just finished an 100 mile race (WHAT???), and that I was out of town, blah blah blah. They put me on a heart monitor, asked 101 question and I'm sure figured I was insane because who the hell runs 100 miles. The Dr. asked me if I ran this over a period of 6-7 days. Um, no, 28 hours, you know? I think they thought I was originally there for foot surgery because I couldn't walk at all, but that is normal ultra pain. I explained to every medical person that came in and touched me that I had been running for 28 hours, had not showered and I stunk. I was full of sweat and mud and my fingernails were horrific. Among other things. They didn't seem to be worried about my state of freshness. They did a lung xray, which was clear, had me spit my cough substance into a bag and describe what it looked like! Um, green, yellow, gross, come on! They did an albuterol treatment and I instantly felt relief. I could feel my passage ways open up and I could take deep breaths. Oh thank goodness! I began to shake, didn't like it, my heart began to race, apparently this is a reaction from the albuteral. They did another treatment with something that didn't cause the tremors and now I was all opened up and breathing magnificently. They listened to me and said I was still wheezing, but better than prior. He told me it was probably "exertion induced bronchial spasm' but then also prescribed an antibiotic called levequin ? and an inhaler. Maria is concerned about the levaquin and runners, let me know if you know anything about it. Why an antibiotic anyway? I don't know if this came on from the flora in Pekin, the cold air or what but it scared the hell out of me. Maria and I were stuck there for over 2 hours by the time they were finished with me. As I hobbled out of ER a nurse told me I was her hero. She had never heard of ultra runners before. How nice, hu?

I had a few coughing fits on the way back to Minnesota but my breathing was much much better. I left Maria's at 952 PM and arrived safely at home at 1052. I couldn't get out of my car. I was stuck. My body had swelled so that my sandals were too tight, my feet felt like they were round as I hoisted myself out of the car. Luckily the garage opens into the laundry room, bathroom and living room without a stair. Topaz was very excited to see me, tried to knock me down with paw hugs but I leaned against the wall for support. I hadn't been able to sleep at all on the ride home; I just can't fall asleep in a car, even after being awake for 50 hours. I laid my sweaty, salty, stinky self on the couch, pulled on my down blanket and slept until 6 for the boys school wake up time.

I couldn't get off of the couch! I didn't move all night, I was stiff as a board. To get off the couch I rolled onto the floor, stabilizing myself with my arms until my legs could put my full weight upon them. Egads.

You know what though? This ultra pain is much better than that breathing scare!!

I have the day off today; Tyler has a baseball game at home at 430 and Troy has a 7 PM practice. As I hobble to the fields the parents will speak of me in hushed tones. Oh well. I love what I do!

I'm going to run a hot bath now! I hope I can hobble up the stairs :)

I have a ton of pictures I'll post later today.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Kind of Freaking..

Well, I went to the grocery store after work today and loaded up on pizza, TV dinners, pot pies, chips and pop. Yeah, the family loves when I leave town. It's junk food city. I did make up a big batch of pizza casserole tonight so they can have leftovers as well during the weekend.

I've set up rides to and from baseball, school and birthday parties. I've washed laundry for the family as well as my running jacket, gloves, hats, gaitors, etc. It's nice to put on freshly laundered clothing during a race. Anything to give a little lift!

I've mixed up another batch of my foot potion. If you haven't read here long you may not know of my blister problem. Oooohhh..real horrific.

While running McNaughton last year I had the worst blisters ever. As blisters were popping new blisters were forming. It was awful. I asked the other 100 milers how in the world did they take care of their feet? Beth Simpson shared a recipe with me: 4 oz vaseline, 4 oz A&D, 4 oz aloe vera, 4 oz vitamin E, 4 oz Desitin. Oh yeah. It works. I slather on a layer each 25 miles or so and have only had a few blisters since. It will be interesting to see how my feet hold up at McNaughton. The course has river crossings and lots of sand as you exit the river. It tears my feet up.

I have charged up my iPod, as well as Tyler's iPod. We have the same music and I'm not sure how long my battery will last. He's offered his to me for the weekend. What a guy. I've charged my camera, have to have pictures!

I'm packing long pants, long sleeved shirts, short sleeved shirts, shorts, two pair of shoes. I am wearing Inov 8 Roclites. I have a size 10 and 11 to bring along.

I don't think I'll get to wear shorts. The forecast is still a high of 45 with rain/snow and high winds. Low of 29 during the night. Brrr. But crossing the rivers in pants will feel gross. I suppose I can unzip the legs and roll up over my knees to keep them dry.

I'm riding with my friend, Marie Barton, who is running the 50 mile. She ran the 30 at McNaughton last year. I'll head over to her place in the morning and we'll be on our way.

Goal: PR of 25-26 hours. 2005: 29:07 2006: 27:37

Woohoo! Over and Out..

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Snow Run!

This morning I awoke to a few inches of snow on the ground. I was hoping it wouldn't happen, but, alas, it did.

It snowed and blowed all day long.

After work I headed to the snow covered trail with Topaz. He loved frolicking through the wind-driven snow, although he was squinting, keeping the snow squall out of his eyes.

I opted for sunglasses, even though there was no sun, a neck gaitor, gloves, pants, hat; the works. It is winter in Minnesota today. It is still snowing.

I am hoping I'll head over to Pekin, IL on Friday and see spring. I may just see more of winter. Oh well..it will be great fun :)

Julie's German Chocolate Cake

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Frost the Sides

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Filled Layers

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Filling: Add custard to pecan/coconut

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Mix whites into choclate mix

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Soft Droopy Egg Whites

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