May 1st, 2012 by ultrarunning316
I apologize for the small font, copied & pasted from my Facebook, think if you pinch & zoom it’s easier to read…Hope you all do this was a huge day for me and I think shows what is possible for all of us…I hope this inspires & is helpful… I never sleep well before a race before my last race the Last Chance 50 miler I slept 1 hour…I thought being in my own bed and the fact that I wasn’t really running to get a PR would make sleep easy, I mean I’m still recovering from an Achilles Tendon Rupture, so I’d be walking this year’s Big Sur International Marathon in a big bulky boot cast…Sleep never came no matter the adrenaline suffices, So at 2:30am I got out of bed to do some ultra sound therapy and to bath and get dressed…After arriving in downtown Monterey I along with 9,000 other runners boarded a vast caravan of buses that would take us down the snaking HWY1 to Pfeiffer State Park…Driving down and around the curve on the south side of Hurricane point was amazing, never seen so many buses, looked like a train all lit up in the pre-dawn hrs. After we made our arrival all us participants huddled in the ranger station parking lot shoulder to shoulder in what became cramped quarters as we waited for @2 hrs…The sun coming up over the mountain peaks was an amazing site and the day only got better from there. Bart Yasso lead the runners out to the start, we heard a stirring rendition of the National Anthem as white doves were released…I had to explain my injury and how I thought I’d be able to finish the marathon wearing my boot cast countless times as we mingled in the 3rd wave corral…I have to say I was a little melancholic looking up to where the 1st wave corral was where I’d of lined up pre-injury…None-the-less people were over all very supportive.
The race began and we were off, for a moment I feared everyone would blow right by me and I’d be left all alone but that wasn’t the case and I with my arms and legs pumping madly began to gain traction and ground on many of the competitors in the 3rd wave. As we came upon the Big Sur River Inn we got a pleasant surprise as the Ultrarunner Man himself Dean Karnazes came floating by…I cheered him on with a "Big Dean!" as he gave me a big smile and thumbs up! If you ever feel like you’re not getting enough attention in life wear a big boot and enter a race, I can’t count high enough to number the amount of people that wished me well as we worked our way up the coast…I got comments like "you walk faster than I run", and "are you kidding me, your really passing me on this hill", that last one cracked me up…I’d do my part telling people I was there to keep them honest! This was one of the funnest times I’ve ever had at a race, the banter was priceless and encouraging…I was told so many times what an inspiration I was and it worked both way as each comment put a little more wind in my sails…Speaking of wind the forecast, typically I might add, had the wind at a mild 5-15mph, but in reality when we hit the feared Hurricane Pt. (2 mile climb of @ 500ft) it was blowing 30-40 mph! That wind would buffet us for the next 6-7 miles and was particularly strong at Garapata, where it felt like the hand of God was pushing against your chest! The only real down time came when this woman that was chugging along @ 2 miles short of Hurricane stuck herself to my shoulder and proclaimed that I now have a stalker and she was serious! When I run or in this case walk really fast I climb into my own head and heart and with laser focus drive myself through the route…I’m not saying I don’t enjoy interacting with others cause I do but this woman was on my shoulder for 4-5 miles and really had a wearing mental affect as all of a sudden all the positive interactions ceased as she vampirically suctioned every positive bit of energy i was involved in, the kicker was that her 2 friends kept asking her to run with them and she just kept saying no she wanted to stick with me! lol, I finally and nicely was able to drop her near the top of Hurricane Pt. All the comments started turning from good job to you are one tough sob, my favorite was this huge buff Military guy told "Son you’re tough as woodpecker lips":) The lady leading the 5:30 Cliff Bar pace team dedicated a mile to me around mile 16 as they finally caught up with me, they were all so nice to me as we went back and forth I’d pass them on the ups and they’d return the favor on the down hills…Btw Hurricane point was awesome except that’s where I worked the traction off the front of my boot as the whole toe section broke away…I from then on had to toe off of hard plastic on the forefoot causing my foot to slip a bit here and there…From mile 17 on I had to make sure I was gobbling salt tabs like they were candy as my legs started to cramp, from then in it was all heart and determination as I pushed on with pure emotion. I could see the faces of my Wife & kids in my mind and the stride of my Friend & Hero Oswaldo Lopez as I kicked it into another gear. People started slowing as we approached 20 mile mark and I did my best to return the earlier encouragement telling people to push on and take it a piece at a time…Also "don’t let the one legged man beat you:)" I was happy to be a part of people’s memories of the race as one woman told me she’d be talking about me in the hot tub that night! lol and that she’d never forget and would talk about me for years…At Point Lobos I knew I was going to make it as I had the leg cramps under control, from then on I challenged myself to finish at 5:30 hrs, as I crested the last hill and saw the finish line I surged ahead to finish at 5:33 hr/min! What a brilliant finish as the MC announced my name I pointed skyward to glorify my Lord and a few tears came to my eyes…The cheers came up and I saw my family along the rail and really had a great upwelling of emotion…After the race the handshakes and hugs and pictures were very touching…People can be so warm, love each and every person I competed with, even my 5 mile shadow what a compliment :)…Post race seeing my friends in the elite category do so well was great and the time hanging was warming! Well that’s how my awesome and picture perfect Sunday went! Tendon feels great legs are sore but tendon is great! My doc was there at the finish and was very proud of me…I iced at home and enjoyed a great BBQ with my encouraging family after!
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