Picking up from yesterday -
My dad was really antsy to get me back on the trail. I understand and all. I mean, I do want to finish before the day is over.
And I don’t want to take breaks that are too terribly long. I am trying to do a full marathon here, and I want it to at least sort of feel like one. (Which it does in the sense that my legs are killing me!)
I slipped on a different pair of shoes for a change of pace (one of the perks of having your own supporters with a van). I drank a whole bunch of water and Gatorade (yet again from my prepared super team – the race served Heed instead of Gatorade).
Finally, I slowly made my way back out on the course. In this one area, there was only about a mile until the next stop. (The stop where I currently was wasn’t an official stop. It was just a place where the trail met a parking lot, and people gathered).
My mom actually jumped on the trail and went the mile with me, which made it go faster. Thankfully for everybody, it was, for the most part, the easiest, flattest mile out there (other than the hill going down to start it off).
The next aid station was the last time I got to see my parents until the end of the race, which at this rate we figured would be sometime on Thursday.
A few more random thoughts from the day:
There was a time when an official race crew person was walking the course (in the opposite direction). As he passed me said, “Hey marathoner, how you doing?” Now, I know I am pretty much the sorriest excuse for a marathoner. However, it still made me feel special when he said “Hey, marathoner.” ‘Cause you know. I’m a marathoner. Or something.
As I continued to feel lost in the woods (since they never stopped), every time I heard people talking and laughing, it was such a fake out. I’d think that maybe I’d be close to the next aid station. Nope. It never ceased to be more woods and yet another family enjoying a nice Saturday hike.
I’m curious what the deal is with bandanas. I know why I had mine. Every single person who passed me had one as well. People had them in all different places on their person or their bag. I started to wonder why everyone had one and no one was wearing them in the same place. Is it so they can help control the bleeding if they get an awful dog bite? Is it to protect them from the sun (if it ever makes it through the trees)? Is it for both? Who knows. I still don’t know. The internet probably knows somewhere, I’m sure…
As much as I loved climbing that root wall, there definitely came a point where it was kind of like, “So, am I doing a marathon here, or am I acclimating to my new life in the jungle since I am never going to finish this race?” Balancing along fallen trees, jumping over little brooks, climbing walls. It was fun, but a little silly. I suppose that’s just the nature of the race.
Speaking of a little silly, how silly is it that I’m rattling off random thoughts? I like to (for the most part) try to keep my thoughts about races chronological ish. Sometimes space constraints or my memory or whatever other factors will keep me from doing that. But especially in this race, things blurred together. Oh so much of it was all the same.
I have a general idea of what happened between each stop, and during various stages of the sun being up or down, but I do not have a good enough appreciation for nature. The forest felt like a vortex to me, and every single time I made it to any rest stop alive was a miracle.
People who are cooler than me know the difference between all trees and plants and would be able to tell you all about their hike. I might be that cool someday. Today is not that day.
I’ll continue with my stories (or random thoughts or whatever I’m talking about now) tomorrow.