Sunday, January 26, 2014

Well, that idea died fast!

I checked the temperature yesterday morning, to get an idea of what to wear for my run. -6. "That's not so bad" I thought to myself. "I won't even have to wear some of my layers!" No balaclava, no bun toaster, not even a jacket (opting for two long sleeves instead). So remember after Sawtooth when I said I was okay with never being hot and humid again? Ever. Yeah, that's still true. Just to make sure, I tried a hot tub in December - I lasted about three minutes before not enjoying it to such an extent that I crawled over the wall it shared with the pool and stood in the pool instead. So at the end of last year, I had this vague idea of a possible goal I wanted to set for myself - to only do races in 2014 that I hadn't done in 2013 (with the exception of Sawtooth). See, my problem is that I love races. So I go to a race and I LOVE it and I HAVE to do it again the next year. Except I also HAVE to do all the other races I usually do and still want to try new ones which quickly become races I HAVE to do. See the problem? So I figured trying this idea with my races would set me free a bit to explore some new races. I knew I would have two problem races (well three because of my favorite 5K but it went and got cancelled on me)- Spring Superior 50K and Voyageur 50 Mile. Well, registration opened up for the 50K and I caved and registered in an impressively short amount of time! Really, though, I'm very okay with breaking my sort of goal so soon in the year for a few reasons - 1: It turns out that Spring Superior is three weeks before Kettle (where I shall go after my 100 mile finish) which makes it perfect for getting a last weekend of good back-to-back long runs and anything that helps with that is a good thin; 2: Doing this race won't conflict with doing a different/new race so I'm not missing out on something new, so I don't feel I'm breaking the spirit of my idea. Other side reasons for being fine with my decision - this is really the first big race of the year (sure, I'll do Chippewa 50K and many of the same people will be there but this always feels like the opening of ultra season in Minnesota) and it's hard to turn down seeing so many friends on the trail; this is a Storkamp race which means it will be well done; more time on the SHT north of Duluth means good training for Sawtooth. So yeah, my idea didn't last very long, but I'm a-okay with that. I was never completely sold on the idea anyway, just more intrigued by it. Maybe I'll save it for a year where I don't have to attack Sawtooth again since making one exception just makes it easier to make others! I'd still have a problem skipping Voyageur, though. Honestly, I don't have much hope for avoiding Voyageur this year as it has a special place in my heart and I just don't see myself skipping it for a not good reason. It's especially hard to miss the close races this year since I'm taking a full week and a half off to head out west this year plus two 100 miles so that uses my vacation right there. Which means any race I have to take ANY time off for is pretty much out so no winter/spring adventure for me this year. Good thing there are lots of quality races close by!


  1. Seems like solid rationale for bailing on the "no old races" goal for the year.

    Plus I think the fact that Spring Superior was selling out fast pushed a few folks to jump in that may not have with more time to contemplate.

    Some would argue that Zumbro is the true kick off of the spring/summer ultra season, but for us northerners Spring Superior is it.

    1. Yeah, the fact that it was selling out fast definitely pushes a fast decision! And true that Zumbro is definitely earlier, as is Chippewa. Maybe because there are more options at Zumbro and people are more spread out it feels like Spring Superior is more of a get together. Of course, I also haven't been to Zumbro yet . . .