I have never had a volunteer experience that I would stay with the race for over 24 hours of enjoyment. Friday, I took a vacation day to help out (and maybe pace someone) at the Zumbro 100. I left at 5 AM and pick up Zac Pierce on the way. We arrived at about 7:15 and prepared for the day. Now Larry, his family and friends had the fire going as it was pretty cold.
We all did preparation for the race and soon, 17 runners were off and running. It was early in the race and after the first 5 miles they all looked great. Then they took off for a 14.3 mile look to the east. Many looked different after that stretch. I thought it was just that they went 20 miles. So the day wore on and I to take pictures and help out until just before midnight. I had the chance to pace Steve Quick for miles 60-80.
As I ran the course, I found out why some looked tired after the second loop. This is a course like no other I could imagine. It had some great flat areas to run, some minor hills, some major hills (I thought there was one that was harder and steeper than anything on the ST 100 trail), stream crossing, places with great footing, places with no footing, plenty of rocks that moved under your feet without notice, “U” shaped horse trails that had a 3 inch flat bottom before the curved upward (you had to run one foot right in front of the other) and areas where 3-4 inches of leaves covered roots and rocks. I managed to get through the loop with Steve, trying to look strong, but I was killed on this 20 mile stretch.
I stayed at the finish until half the finishers were in than I left. It was a hard drive home. Shelley brought me dinner and I ate and do not recall when I went to sleep. It was 8 AM when I woke…
I took over 200 pictures of the race. If you feel like a challenge… put this on your calendar next year!
Of course, not like I have been training hard. I did have a 32.9 mile week. I feel sore from my 20 miles yesterday but should be fine. So next week I hope to hit 35 miles. Just inching forward a little at a time. Although, I have a tennis event all weekend next week which may mean a 25 mile week would be a success. Either way, I do not hate the runs, they are enjoyable… Maybe not all the time, but afterward, they all are… Including a 20 miles at Zumbro where I used many curse words as I did those 20 miles.