the captain drove to the treehouse, and patiently waited while i started packing (i still had lots of time) - okay, maybe a comment or two was made - and then we were on our way! first stop was the ferry/border crossing at marine city. we got to go on a boat!!!
then we hit big boys for lunch were i managed to ignore the 'strawberry' desserts that were displayed in the menu that cap and E kept waving in front of me!
from there, it was another hour and a half to ann arbor and the running fit store where we picked up our race kits. i scored an awesome deal on a pair of cascadias AND a really kool pair of arm sleeves. next stop was the best western just outside of ann arbor where the three of us were sharing a room.
and as pylon tradition dictates, we found an applebees for dinner! the wait was about 30 minutes, so we grabbed a picture, and then headed over to the grocery store to get some stuff for breakfast. me and the cap had ribs, and i think E had a steak - so far no junk!
saturday morning we got up at 6 and began preparing for the 21k which started at 8. and despite having gone specifically to the grocery store for something for breakfast the previous night, i ended up eating a bunch of blueberries and some carrots, as i seemed to have gotten distracted while there, and forgot to buy anything. stoopid dora! anyway, we got to the start area plenty early, so we sat in the parking lot for 45 minutes, laughing at all the dumb roadies and tri-geeks running around in tights, toques, compression sox, race belts and tights with baggy shorts over top. finally we got out of the jeep and meandered over to the beach, where 800 others were waiting to start.
the race director was great! he informed us he was going to start everybody in waves of about 100 so there would be no log jam on the trail. the first group was to be for those expecting to run 6 - 7 minute miles. i just about shit when i saw captain and E taking off at the back of that group. i found out later that they got passed by the entire second wave. not wanting to be left out, i stoopidly started with the next wave - those capable of running 7 - 8 minute miles! ahaha! i got passed by the entire third wave, and half of the fourth!! it was a good course. not very technical, but a lot of random roots you could trip over if you weren't paying attention. and it didn't have any big hills, but there were a ton of them - all runnable - which over the course of 21k added up to a total elevation gain of 1800 meters! i can honestly say i didn't like this run. it was too fast for me, and there were way too many people. but i got through it and managed to finish in 2:12. cap and E came in around 2 hours solid. i did my burpees - 78 of the fuckers - at the end, and then we all braved the nasty cold water in one of the lakes to soak our legs. at this point, it started to rain, so we hustled back to the jeep, and back to the motel.
as i was coming out of the shower, E made some comment about my head being all swollen (or something like that, i can't remember). "what the hell are you talking about?" "you won kendra" "what - fuck off, i did not!" "yes, you did, you won your age group" "oh sure, what were there, 2 of us?" "no, 30" "fuck off, you're shitting me!" and so it went. i never really believed him, or the captain, until i saw the results myself. aha! i guess all those seizure repeats derrick made me do were actually working! dora was getting a bit faster!
we then drove to hell - really, it's a little town called hell - for some lunch. slim pickings for paleo, so i settled for some chicken and fries (i know, fries aren't paleo, but i was really hungry, and they USED to be potatoes ...). i did manage to refrain having a milkshake while the cap and E were devouring theirs! next, we drove into ann arbor and visited a couple shops - the REI store (like an american version of mec) and the michegan state varsity store. oh, and i did get something for breakfast this time. we ended up at mr. b's for dinner, (after a side trip to the outback steakhouse, but we won't go there) where all three of us had sirloins! mmmm!
doh, this is a pic of E and the cap trying to fix the heater. i had cranked it before we left, and forgot to turn it down, and as a result it stopped working ...
sunday morning race start was 7:30, so we got up a bit earlier. it was chilly - minus 4 i think - but the sun was out and we knew it would warm up fast!
i was MUCH happier with this distance - well, okay, not the first 21k loop. my legs were great, but my mind was kranky. regardless, i sucked it up and got through the first loop in 2:35. the second loop went way better - i was totally in my happy place and finished 5 minutes faster. of course, it might have helped that i was running with this guy for a bit ...
who i found out is from colorado, and who is also running leadville this summer - wait - where was i ...
oh ya, the race. okay, so by the end of 42k i felt super strong. the last 8k was on trail we hadn't run before, and i swear to gawd, they put all the big hills on this loop! the total elevation gain over the 50k was 3500m. kool! still i managed to run every one of them, and came in with a respectable time of 5:57. cap finished his marathon - he decided it would be funny to sit in a chair and watch us head back out for another 5 miles - in 5 hours, and E was about 10 minutes ahead of me. we got 2 medals this time -one for the 50k and one for completing both races!
i even did all my 79 burpees unbroken - fuckers - before a nice soak in the lake!
check out the kool shirts - looking good E !
finish line shot!
the ride home wasn't TOO bad. i was whining silently in the back, trying to stop my legs from throbbing. i made E stop on the gore just 20 minutes before we got back to palgrave cuz i had to whiz. ask me how hard the two of them laughed at me trying to claw my way back up out of the ravine. it also was really hilarious watching all three of us stumbling around at the treehouse trying to unload the jeep! and most of all, watching the captain as he walked backwards down the steps to his car!!
so the whole trip was gold! i came out with a ton of swag - 2 technical t-shirts, 3 medals, 3 buttons, some bling from the varsity shop, a new pair of shoes, some sweet sleeves and a new sticker for the mazda. but most of all, i had an awesome time with captain and E !! despite them relentlessly teasing me about winning, it was all good! AND i didn't succumb to the pressure from both guys as they tried to break me and get me to fall off the paleo wagon (except for the fries - which used to be potatoes - which i'm allowed - cuz i'm a runner)!! wahoo!
AND my feet weren't bad at all ...
thanks guys! can't wait for the next one!!!
and finally, i leave you with this hilarious line uttered by the captain's mother as he was trying to complete his first marathon way back in the 1900's ...