Sunday, October 7, 2007

I'll take a Marathon

Night before the Race
The Chattanooga, TN Stump Jump 50k proved to be the most technically challenging trail run that we have ran to date. This being a training run leading up to MMTR 54 mile Ultra would be our longest training run.
Fun facts about the race:
Temp: 89 degrees with 90% humidity
Number of Runners: 419 with 11 milers and 50k runners combined
Swag: Technical Shirt, North Face Mini Bag, Smart Wool Socks (ALL REALLY COOL)

To make a long story short, the race was going well and at one point I even began passing other runners one by one until I reached a girlfriend of mine that had ran ahead of us. I was feeling good and on track until... I ran out of water. An aid station ran out of WATER!! How could I continue in heat conditions like this without water? A headache had already set in and shortly after that I had stopped sweating all together. Not a good sign. To that point I had taken in electrolyte tablets and had eaten at each station. Without liquids I knew I was in trouble. So finally at mile 26 another girlfriend and I were pulled from the race. We had not met the cutoff and we were done. My first DNF. It was sad and there tears but now as I type this I am even more proud of myself than yesterday. I am such a small part of the population that would even consider attempted anything like this. We never quit and we are stronger for the experience of all the highs and lows we experienced.
I train with 3 other amazingly strong ladies that dream just as I do. Yes it may seem nuts that in less than a month we will set out to tackle the hills in Lynchburg, VA but who are we without ours dreams. I am living my dreams and stronger for it. I am so proud of the two girls that completed the entire course. We all rock in my book!!!
Robin

Final Note: It was not until after I put this post together that I learned about the events from the Chicago Marathon. The gentleman that died is the same age as I am. So sad that a life is lost. Please take caution in this heat. Once you have been affected by heat exhaustion you are more susceptible to the effects of it in the future. Most never know how close they come to suffering from this. My heart goes out to this family and other families that experience a loss of a loved one.

22 comments:

David said...

26 miles on trails is a damn hard run, so you have every right to be proud! Good job, and sucks about the event organizers dropping the ball like that. Smart to take it easy, though, especially with what happened just a few weeks back after the Dupont run with Scott. Great to hear you back, well, and in good spirits, and I dig the pics!

Wes said...

Yea, we'd rather have you and a DNF then a finish and no Gotta Run :-) Running Smart is harder than running dumb...

Scott said...

So proud of you my love ! ! ! ! You have not only picked up the physical expertise in your running, but you have also picked up 'knowledge' of the human body...a far more valuable tool.

I am EXTREMELY proud of all that you have accomplished. Sorry I could not have been there, but you will be seeing alot of me on your 50 miler - with water bottle in hand.

You are one of the stongest and most consitent runners I have known.

Love you.

Overpronator said...

I was thinking of the Chicago Marathon as I was reading your entry.

Some times, a DNF is the best thing you can do. Runner's tend to be the most foolishly stubborn Type A people out there, but common sense needs to make an appearance every now and then.

See Zanne Run said...

way to go girl. you ran a marathon! on trails. there really shouldn't be anything DNF about that! three cheers for the common sense that beat out our runner's type A personalities. you rock. smart girl.

i can't believe that race organizers can get away with this stuff - they know about the weather ahead of time - what's with all these reports of not enough water at races?

Bob Gentile said...

Smart Wool Socks in the goodie bag...very nice, love those socks!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

OK what is up with these events running out of water (sigh)))))

Glad u took it easy after not having water... this was a training run, you done good :-)

remember that mantra for ur 50 miler Hun....

EARLY & OFTEN... take a few electrolytes tabs before the race starts about 30-45mins (recommended from my Coach ) helps to get u ahead of the game a little bit.

EARLY & OFTEN...


EARLY & OFTEN...


EARLY & OFTEN... you are physically and mentally ready, the only thing barring an injury to knock u out will be ur fuel....

SOOOOO don't fall behind...

EARLY & OFTEN :-)

Bob Gentile said...

PS: love the foot pic with the bibs and shoes...NICE!!

RunningCrazyAfter3 said...

I agree...a 26 mile trail run sure does not sound like a DNF to me! You did a great job of listening to what your body needed. Reading your report, I was so scared that you kept going even with no water and dehydration signals coming on. Awesome race Robin!

runningtwig said...

Robin, I was looking in bloglines for other stumpjumpers to see what they thought and I stumbled onto your blog. I ran the race with some other folks this weekend it was crazy! Smart decision since you were running this as a training run, but this race was the one I had been training for (I guess like your 50 miler). So I barely pushed through. Good luck at the 50 miler!!! Hopefully they will have water!!

Non-Runner Nancy said...

You did great, Robin. You ran great and you ran smart. I am so sorry they ran out of water, but you did the right thing under the circumstances. Rest and recover.

J~mom said...

I am so happy that you listened to your body rather then push into dangerous territory! Great job on 26 miles!!! Love all the pics!!

Chad in the Arizona Desert said...

I was also thinking about the Chicago Marathon as I was reading your post. DNFs get a bad rap. You had the courage to start and the sense to know when to slow it down. Sounds like a smart athlete to me. Next time, I'm sure the weather will be better for your next race.

At least you got a good, long run out of it.

scott keeps running said...

sounds like it was a wonderful training run. too bad they ran out of water. i'm glad you played it safe and didn't try to push through too hard while low on liquids.

i like writing dnf in lowercase because it doesn't seem quite as...BOOM! :)

Taryn said...

Wow - even with a DNF that was some achievement! 26 miles, hills and that weather?! You rock girl!

P.O.M. said...

Sheesh - who plans these? Running out of water? I'm sure.

You did amazing an job - 26 miles is awesome!

Marcy said...

I absolutely agree with everyone else. 26 miles doesn't seem like a DNF to me! I think this weekend was just brutal all around. You did the best you could given the circumstances :-) Smart running, chica!

Marcy said...

Ooops I forgot to add . . . those feet look "pretty" why is that? Aren't they supposed to be all bruised and callused, with toenails hanging off? ;-)

stephruns said...

You were so close and I just can't believe they didn't have WATER!!! Myself just can't run without it, especially when it's that hot. I think it's really unprofessional to let that happen.

Be proud of youself! 26 miles - you ran a marathon on a trail!!! Congratulations Robin.

jen said...

Congrats on a great run! After hearing about the tragedy in Chicago and all the suffering, I'm glad you were smart about this one. There are more important things than finishing. That said, you did a great job and I love to see that smile on your face! What a run, great job. :)

Mendy said...

Robin! I'm so glad you listened to your body with this one too. 26 miles is a long way, and you accomplished it!!! You did great!
It's been a rough week with dehydration and heat exhaustion.

Great talking to you tonight!! See, I told ya - I'd get on and get caught up on blogs.

Journey to a Centum said...

Take that DNF in stride. You know you were ready but with those conditions it was probably best not to go on. Cutoffs are a good safety valve for runners having a bad day or running in severe conditions. Better not to finish with your health than to finish but not be able to recover for your next race.

We are having cooler than usual weather for this time of year. The foothills in our area have had a couple of light dustings. I've got a 17 mile training run scheduled in a week and a half that climbs to 5300 feet and I'm thinking we will be running through snow. All our winter trail runs end up in some sort of snow. It's worse when you get high wind and blowing snow. Have I cooled you off yet?

Run Happy!

Eric

streak said...

Great job on the 26 miles! That is a complete run in my books. Glad to hear you listened to your body and took it easy! Let's have some fall weather now!