Monday, February 10, 2014

Hook, Line, Sinker

So I felt disappointment for the first time in my entire life about a week ago... I felt caught in an intense emotional fog...

I've thrown around the idea of completing a 100 miler for a while now. Last year was all about pushing the limits and finding myself as a runner. Coming into this year that was the goal... to complete a 100 mile race. So when Mr. John Gregg said... "throw your name in!" (referring to the Wasatch lottery)... I did.

I would like to personally blame this man for this feeling of disappointment... my first feeling of disappointment. Ok... maybe not the first time... and maybe blaming him is a little harsh (considering Wasatch wasn't even on the radar for me...)

Of course I'm just playing. John Gregg is a great runner, great husband (please... correct me if I'm wrong Katie)... and all around awesome guy.

After patiently waiting for the lottery drawing I was a little disappointed when I didn't see my name. Well I did see my last name... they just had the wrong first name in front of "Andrews." Even more disappointing was the fact I passed on the Thunder Rock 100 signup because of the off chance that I did get into Wasatch... I couldn't pay two pricey entry fees within a week of each other. Luckily I was about 4 miles from my car when I found out the terrible, terrible news. The next mile was a pity party, but as soon as I started scampering down the summit of Shackleford at sunset... it all went away. All was right with the world again.

Still, I was hooked. I took the bait. I swallowed the 100 mile lure and was slowly being reeled in... it's just sooooo shiny and sparkly and pretty...

So I made a training plan. After putting it together, I slumped back in my chair. Depressing. This looks miserable. Ugh. I haven't made a training plan in well over a year. Why? Because a piece of paper should not determine my efforts for the day. Last year I ran by how I felt on any particular day. Sure... I threw down long runs when I knew I needed them, but if Saturday wasn't the day for a 30 mile run... maybe Sunday was. Not having a plan works best for me. Earlier last week I was 100% ready to sign up for one in May... that is until this weekend.

After clocking out of work on Friday I headed straight to the state park to follow the plan...

For the first hour I ran hard. Killing every climb... destroying every downhill... but it just wasn't fun. It felt like work. I started the climb up Shackleford as the sun was setting. I hit the summit and started chasing the sunset. Boom. Fun again. My mind was so far from that 100 mile training plan it was ridiculous. The next thing I knew... my headlamp was on and it was dark. After being horribly defeated by the deer I was attempting to race... I was back at my car. Dang that felt good!

When my alarm went off Saturday morning... I wasn't all too anxious to get out of bed. That stupid training plan kept popping in my head. "SHUT UP!!! I know I have to go run!!" Any other Saturday I would have hopped right out of bed and been on the trails before sunrise. I started making every excuse I could think of... and then... "BEEP!" My phone went off. Sunny (my snowpacolpyse host mom) texted me asking if I wanted to run. "Yes!" After white iced, rainbow sprinkle donuts and coffee, an unsuccessful shoe shopping experience, Mexican and margaritas with Kati, Erik, and a "I asked for no salt" diva (yes... I went there Sarah Anna) .... Sunny and I hit the trails. A solid +2hr run... the kind of running I absolutely love.

After cleaning up... it was time for guitars, brews, and bros!! Loooooong night of great music, great beers, and great company!

When my alarm went off Sunday morning... I was NOT happy. Ugh. High Gravity... you got me. Not feeling up to par... I lounged around the house and watched the Canadian high school sitcom drama "Degrassi" and some stalker show (she puts up with my running... I put up with her shows... fair trade).

I finally got up and out to the trails. Perfect. Exactly what I needed. I couldn't have asked for a more enjoyable afternoon. The weather was amazing, people were out in the woods hiking with their dogs, every one looked so happy...
"Is it because it's the next big thing? Life is too short to waste half a year on something that you aren't 100% on... and who said anything about boundaries? There are no boundaries with or without a 100 under your feet."

Sometimes you just need to hear it from someone else before it sinks in. Thank you...

The only race that I'm 100% sure that I'm doing is late in the summer and I'm super stoked about it! It's going to be a blast! And I think that's exactly what racing should be... FUN! I'll of course sign up for races as the year progresses... and I've got a good amount of self supported fun runs planned (God willing the first in a few weeks)... but for now... I'm at peace and enjoying running too much to worry about the next big thing to cross off the list.

I'm still carrying around that sparkly fishing lure... but the line has been cut. I'm no longer being drug up to the surface. I've been set free... for now (dun dun dun). Maybe I'll check off that 100 miler this year... maybe not... but what's the rush? This is an endurance thing right?

Till tomorrow...


  1. You're an excellent runner Zach, but I'm glad you're also an excellent writer so you can choose to share. Bottoms up!

    1. Thanks Al! I meant to write you... I met David "Mouth of the South" Smith on Shackleford and he told me to tell you hey!