Now that I've calmed down, had some time to rehydrate, think, and reflect over the weekend's event (I received a gracious apology from the race director who, I should stress, is not the same turd who verbally thrashed me for getting lost on the course that he personally marked) I've decided what I'll probably do differently next year at the Grady Williams Sandy Death Adventure Race.
No, you don't need to clean your glasses. I actually wrote that.
Next year. Grady Williams.
There's something about the predisposition of multi-sport athletes to punishment, mainly self-inflected. We're a stubborn lot, aren't we? I in particular, pride myself on my stubborness in terms of always finishing what I started. I'm not a quitter; it's so, so, embarassing. As evidenced by my race results, no matter how slow, tired, or hot I am, it's hard to discourage me. You will keep that finish line up. You will continue to follow me in that slow-moving vehicle. You will keep the clock running. Sonner or later, I'll be there even if I'm walking, or crawling.
So now, with grim determination, I've decided that I don't want to do this, I must do this next year. I will do it and finish it, because I can't stand having that DNF on my record, and because, until I was resigned to being hopelessly lost, I was enjoying myself. I enjoyed the swim, the scenery was nice, the weather was good, I was running in a soaking wet skin suit, which felt AWESOME, and I think I was doing pretty well.
GAWD, I'm so pathetic. It's like I'm a battered wife. "It's a really nice course, when it's not trying to kill me...you just have to understand it...it doesn't mean to be difficult..."
There are lessons to be learned from every bad experience, and these are mine:
Lesson 1: I need a lot of money or I need to become a faster runner. A lot of money would be to get a GPS setup so that I can find my way through the desert if they have the same man mark the course. Faster would be so I can latch onto one of the other runners who can find their way through, and follow them.
Lesson2: Er, come to think of it, just because they're faster doesn't mean they know where they're going. I want to try to walk/jog at least part of the course the day before.
Lesson 3: I was right to bring a bottle full of HEED, sunblock, and drink lots of water before the race and at the first water stop, and I'll do it again.
I'll get a two-bottle "Ultimate Direction" hydration belt. When I got back to Albuquerque, after having drunk 3 bottles of various fluids and eaten a meal, I was still three pounds down. That's nearly a quart and a half of fluid. Lesson 4: I will ignore any and all rude and arrogant course markers who attempt to blame me for their lack of foresight and planning. Or spray them with mace.
363 days until the 2007 Grady Williams "Death by Sand" race. And counting.
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