In roughly 25 hours, I will finally be able to end this damned taper! The Burning River 100 Mile Endurance Run starts at 5am tomorrow morning.
The training has been done. The gear is packed. The directions are programmed into the GPS. The crew is ready… more or less. Now I drive. And wait. And sleep… more or less.
The day before a major goal race is always nerve-racking. I’m fidgety with anticipation. Unlike the shorter races like 5 or 10ks or even marathons, 100 milers represent such an unknown. Even though I am a relative novice at the distance, I am aware of the variability in experiences. Every race presents a slew of potential problems. Which problems will spring up tomorrow? Will I be prepared to handle issues as they arise? Today will be spend going through an endless litany of mental checklists:
Before the race… do I have my clothes ready? Check.
Nipples taped? Check.
What shoes do I wear to the start? Sandals? Check.
Oh, sun screen? Check.
Aid stations… what do I do?
Change water bottles.
Replenish supply of electrolytes.
Drink high-calorie drink.
Eat some solid food.
Maybe eat chia, perhaps with Mike’s Hard Lemonade.
As I’m running… how is my pace?
How close am I to my goal pace?
How far ahead of the cutoff am I?
How far to the next aid station?
How is hydration… when did I last pee?
What color was it?
Am I getting enough calories?
These are just a few of the thoughts that will run through my head today. It is the storm before the calm. I will be a nervous wreck.
Then tomorrow morning will come. For whatever reason, race morning is always calm… always peaceful. The nervous, frantic, obsessive thoughts are replaced by… tranquil enjoyment.
Needless to say, I cannot wait for tomorrow morning.
On a completely unrelated note: minimalist shoe junkies, here are two pics of the GoLite Tara Lite minimalist shoe to be released soon. It features a zero-drop last and some pretty aggressive tread. I haven’t tested it yet, but it promises to be an interesting addition to the current minimalist shoe offerings from a variety of manufacturers.