The big day, Saturday the 17th of June 2017, the weather wasn't as chilly as we expected, I still packed extra layers and wore a long sleeve and a short sleeve figuring once I broke the tree line the wind would be there and I would need sleeves, the last two times this has been the case.
Nothing was usual about this race.
Power hike pace started early and wasn't disappointed I did this, I got passed by people, I passed people, the crowd thinned. I did notice that people with other people had more energy. Seems about right.
Interestingly, I was back and forth with #37 Ron Johnston a superior runner to me in all aspects..... not exactly sure why he was in my pace group, but he crossed the finish (2:31) turned around and walked back down this hill. Probably some super runner training program!
After breaking the tree line and the cold wind (or any for that matter) wasn't there it was clear this was going to be a death march....
I looked longingly at all the snow still in the ravines in the distance.
To relieve the pain that started in my hip at mile 3 I did a lot of marching backward and then forward to take the pressure off my right hip, that did seem to do the trick!
Taking off my long sleeved shirt at the beginning of the dirt section (mile 5 when it was clear there would be no cooling breeze) resulted in me managing to lose the only pair of sunglasses I have ever liked. I never did feel much cooler.
Finally hearing the car horns in the distance helped to make me not want to hurl myself off the side of the mountain.
My A goal was to break 2:30 (19:44 or less pace). My B goal was a 20 minute pace, this would get me about 2:32 I was 20:08 and 2:33.
Full results here
|Mark, Jason, Me, Peter, Ro (in front)|
Peter placed first in his Age Group!
I think the best part of the wall was seeing Leslie, stopping to talk, she suggested I may want to finish the race first. All I had to navigate was the wall, and I was NOT looking forward to that climb. That's probably the minute I lost, ha ha ha!!
Just after, Steve got some great photos and said he drank all my beer. I said he was a dead man. The spectators laughed. That energized me, only enough to miserably soldier at a 21% grade to the finish.
|I am a class act!|
Photo by Steve
Ro cheered me on.
|Photo by Ro before the race, I can't find the one she took I must have really looked bad!!|
Mark was there and behind him was Mindy who I was so hoping to meet in person. Got a little more lively and I was mere steps from the finish line. (Ro in the background)
|Photo by Mark Gravell|
My Maternal Grandfather always said do something interesting for the camera.
I couldn't even muster up the energy to RUN across the finish line. I crossed, grabbed the blanket they were trying to put around me, I totally did not need a blanket, and someone put a medal around my neck.
|Photo by Mindy Randall|
Bloated and ready to collapse
All in all a fun race.
By the time I got back to the car, saw the illustrious Scott Mason, and chatted a bit with Rachel I was clearly not in a good place and needed to barf, but there was nothing to barf. I got some Gatorade from teammate Peter and that helped a bit, sat in the car fidgeted a lot and managed to feel less like I was going to die or have the dry heaves.
Finally, we got moving, on the ride down we clicked off the 5,000 ft mark and traffic stopped.... I got out as I was surely going to barf now. I felt much better. At 4,000 feet I was hungry, at 3,000 feet I was hoping Steve really didn't drink all my beer.
OMG I have no idea what was the problem, the heat, the dehydration the lack of replenishing with salt tabs (I seriously need to remember this from the ultra, that got me through the last 9 miles)... dunno, but it was awful and very upsetting. Really more upsetting than anything.
We had a turkey dinner from Hart's and socialized until we got kicked out, it was the mini convention, they were going to the top to watch the sunset.
This was really a watershed experience for me, all my self-doubt (ok not ALL but a lot) seemed to vanish as the seconds and minutes and hours passed after I crossed the finish line.
I can't be exactly sure what rejuvenated my spirit, something certainly did. From the point of vomiting forward, I've been exceptionally upbeat and disgustingly perky.
There is magic in that mountain!
Video of the race and the winners, they actually RAN !!! Mount Washington Video 2017
Beth, hoping whatever valley she's been lolling about in for far too long is solidly in the past.
Oh yeah, and 6/17/17 was my and the Imaginary Husbands 17th wedding anniversary. There has been nothing conventional about our relationship from the moment we met in 1997; it seemed fitting I was barfing my guts out at about the time we exchanged wedding vows 17 years earlier, ha ha!!