Tunnel Hill 2017

I love this race!  This makes the fourth year I have I have attended this event.  It can be a love hate relationship, it is flat, very flat!  Fast times and no excuses to take walk breaks, which makes mountains so nice.   It is a mind game.  There are so many things I would love to share about this weekend…

To start with I did not have a great race,  I had not put in the time training since Utmb that this race requires.  Running in the woods does not translate to flat running.  That being said I knew that before I started,  I had the chance to design and Todd to print the shirts this year which I loved doing so I was going to be there.  So, I just started.  I felt fine, no issues, loved the people I met along the way.  Then at mile 20 I fell.  Who falls on a completely flat course?  After that I could not comfortably run.  I made it to mile 50 knowing it was my end.  I tried to tell Todd as he put my headlamp on my head so off I went.  When I got to the aid station around mile 55 I knew it was the end, Todd and Hondo walked back with me.  I was at peace with it.  I love night running but I did not need to walk 50 miles by myself.  After that I hung around the finish and watched as a new world record is set.  Camille Herron ran 12:42:19.  Wow!  She had such a smile and the crowd was amazing.   After that I went to sleep, set my alarm to get up to see Jonathon and Rachael finish.  I went to the finish in my pj’s and long down coat.   After Jonathon finished in personal record time, my friend Scott Black came by and asked me to go with him his last 24 miles.  It was his first 100.  I asked if he was running or walking.   I knew I could not run but walking, why not?  It became the best decision, I got to know Scott better,  help him finish his goal, meet others along the trail that I would not have met.  I was so happy.  That is the crazy thing about this sport, we are like a big family, each person has a story to tell.  I can learn from them all.  I feel as though I become a better person not only by my time on the trail but from those that I meet.  I had to laugh inside because the whole time I was walking with Scott I had on this long down coat, I got hot but I could not take it off.    My ankle held out till the end,(which may have been from the glass of wine and Tylenol I had prior).   Now it is swollen but only sprained.  I am okay. I am soo glad I went with Scott!

This race is like a celebration of ultrarunning and friends.  Steve Durbin, the race director, has done a great job of creating a race where it is as much fun to come to, watch, crew, cheer, volunteer, as it is to run.   I volunteered during registration the day before and I loved it!  I got to talk to so many people.  The pasta dinner was wonderful and Traci Falbo spoke.  She gave a speech earlier that day to the high school students which left me inspired to set new goals and follow my dreams.  You are never to old to dream!  I loved seeing Traci out there encouraging everyone.  Really, the crews, pacers, volunteers, and families give so much.  I think perhaps this is way all of life should be.  When you help someone reach their goals it is a selfless act and that is what each of these people are doing.  Thank you to all that were out there!  Thank you Steve for a job well done!

Actually, maybe I did have a great race!

Hope to see you all at Otter Creek and Lovin’ the Hills!

p

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