Speed Bump……….with a side order of Redemption…& a lot of purpose!

“If you fall short, you don’t cross that arbitrary line, it doesn’t mean you suck.  It just means that you have ambition, that you try to do big heroic things. That’s what matters. A DNF should be a badge of honor. It means your dreams are boundless.  

~Mishka Shubaly

Thank you to my friend Andrea for messaging me this above quote after my DNF at Pinelands……really meant a lot….

Memorial Day weekend is best spent with family, friends, and remembering the veterans who have given us the freedom we know today.  Driving up to Maine, hubs, the boys and I were super pumped.  We couldn’t wait to get there, the drive was smooth, except for the car in front of us on I93 hitting a deer….so sad. I couldn’t wait to see friends and hang out at our little pre race potluck BBQ together, before race day.  I have to say, the running community is really special.  So much camaraderie and encouragement between everyone.  So happy to be part of such a great group of people.

The boys

The Grill Masters…Charcoal vs Gas

We went to L.L. Bean and picked up our bibs before heading over to the venue for dinner.  Great to see Jen (who is an Inknburn addict, like me) for the first time.  So proud of her for running her first 50k!! She smashed it, I think she’s hooked!!!  Also got to hang out with my BFF, Julie and her family, and got to meet her lovely friends….So fun hanging with our four running buddies,  Jim and Amanda and their adorable boys and Jon and Astrid..it was like VT moved to Maine…

We settled in for the night, and the boys had the movie “Vacation” playing on the boob tube…I heard giggling and reciting of the movie (mostly from the big kid….aka Hubs) as  I packed my gear and got stuff ready for the morning.  Amanda was sweet to offer to bring our boys to the start of their 25k around 9:30am, since hubs and I had to be there at 5:40am.

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The VT crew..hubs, myself, Reeve (what a cutie grabbing my cheek), Amanda, Jim, Astrid, Jon, Hugh, Julie, and Naia before the 50 start. Love these people!!

 It was super foggy at the start.  We settled towards the back of the pack, got the chance to see Heather who was running her VT 100 qualifier!! (She by the way, rocked the friggin course!! Congrats Heather!!)  The start was calm and relaxed….we settled into a nice pace around 10 minute miles and then we were doing about 5 miles an hour, for the first 15 miles.  It’s nice to bank some time in the beginning when you’re fresh, yet still run smart, which we were.  Then the wheels fell off……..  I dropped at mile 20, finishing just the first loop of the 50.  I had to stop and use the “forest” bathroom at least seven times (TMI..I know) on the last five miles of that loop, thank you to my hubs for hanging in there with me…our time was really dogging by that point…..I knew at about mile 15 something wasn’t right.  I was taking in my appropriate tailwind and bars, but couldn’t keep anything in.  My stomach would gurgle, and sharp pains ensued.  I tried Rolaids with no relief.  My body wasn’t digesting correctly like it normally does. I’ve run lots of 20+ mile runs this year in training, nothing like this has ever happened.   Hubs was really worried about me, I could see it in his face. We ran into the aid station where our team tent was. Hubs loaded up with more tailwind and headed out on his second loop, after making sure I was ok.  I told him I would sit and rest and see if I could keep fluids/food in. If I could, I would get back out on the course.  I had plenty of time.  The weather was near perfect (it was the mud that everyone kept talking about, the fields were saturated by the immense rain we’d had).  So I sat, ran to the bathroom, sat, ran to the bathroom.  Ate and sipped…..I felt like I lived in the gross porta-potties all day…..ewwwwwww.  I decided it would be a no go, and made my way to the timer to turn in my bib….wah, wah.  I knew my boys were somewhere on the 25k course…..they were flying and it took hubs nearly ten miles to catch them.  (The 25k loop is done twice by the 50k and three times by the 50)

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my boys on their way to their 3rd 25k finish!!!Beasts!!!

It was nice having friends/family come off loops and see the determination and happiness on their faces.  It was a nice distraction for me.  One point in particular was when Julie and Naia came off their fist loop on their 50k..both looking to finish their first ultra!!!!!!!  I helped Julie with her blisters…and tailwind refilling. I got the nicest message from her after I got back to my hotel room (I was feeling a wee bit sorry for myself….)  She wrote…… “For what it’s worth, having you at the tent my first lap made my day and I am eternally grateful for your help and support at that point.  Maybe you were meant to be there at that moment…I sure needed you.” This is why I run, this is what it’s all about.  Connections, people, friends helping each other, encouraging one another.  That really brightened my spirits, when I needed it the most.  So Jules (and Naia) way to epically ROCK your first Ultra together, I can’t wait to see where the trails lead you…….love you to the moon and back girlies…..

So thank you to all my friends and family who reached out with encouraging words about VT100.  Somedays, the fairytale in your head doesn’t play out.  But, I live to run another day with these beautiful people in my life.. and I’m thankful for that!!!!

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Hubs at the 50 finish!!! He’s an animal and my HERO!!! Pic by the famous Allyn Genest

 

Congrats to all who ran Pinelands, we will certainly be back next year, celebrating Memorial Day weekend in running fashion with friends and family…..

 

Follow Up Since the 50 debacle

After Pinelands, I went to see my Chiropractor, Dr. Beth (who is a complete Goddess and Savior to me and my family) She felt my stomach had not recovered fully from the stomach GI thing I had 5 days before Pinelands (the stomach I learned from her takes 10 days to regenerate…I’m learning so much about how the body works)and that she feels my bloating in my everyday life is from a lack of acid in my stomach…who knew!? The whole time, I’ve been feeding myself Tums, Rolaids, anything to help…which in turn was hurting me worse.  I’ve been following her advice:  take 1 tbsp of Bragg’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar with a bit of water before each meal.  I’ve felt wonderful this week…

I decided to map out 50 miles on my Strava map and run my own “Brownsville Redemption 50 miler” …as I affectionally named it.  I awoke Friday morning a little nervous…I didn’t know how of would feel and I was still a bit worn out from the weekend.  Thankfully hubs was going to crew for me out there, bringing me tailwind, extra food, grilled cheese and of course his smile and positive attitude……As I laced up my shoes and headed out the door, I was thinking of my Grandpa Blitt, who had passed away the morning before.  He was 95 and lived such a full and exciting life.  He fought in WWII, was an incredible artist, some of his paintings would blow your mind……His spirit was with me all day…….I’m forever grateful for that.

There was no fanfare, no accolades, no cowbells….just me, my breath, my every foot fall. The backroads of VT were so peaceful that day,  I never saw a runner, biker or horseback rider.  I felt as if I were all alone, yet had so much strength wrapped around me.  Thank you Guy and Justin who helped and encouraged me throughout the miles…….I’m so grateful for my family always………

 

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50 miles done!!!!!

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I’m also excited and humbled to be a RunFar Athlete

This is what they stand for and was taken from their website:

“We believe that the brave men and women who have protected our country respectfully deserve to have their families protected as well. Through the Sergeant Sean Northcutt Scholarship, we will provide educational benefits to the children of these fallen service members who have lost the battle at home. Founder of Run Far, CJ Schneider III, veteran of the United States Marine Corps, is an Ultra Marathon runner whose goal is to bring people together through fitness to raise awareness for Veteran suicide and PTSD”

“Run Far is all about inspiring runners to reach goals that before seemed nearly impossible. It’s for those with dreams of adventure & successes, and for those who want to put a little more good back into this world.”

Donate to RunFar

Sergeant Sean D. Northcutt Scholarship

Sergeant Sean Northcutt, Proud Veteran of the United States Marine Corps, served multiple deployments in both Iraq and Afghanistan. After honorably giving 8 years of his life to his country, Sergeant Northcutt was diagnosed with PTSD and depression prior to transitioning into civilian life. After a long fight with these horrible illnesses, Northcutt took his own life on July 20, 2015 at the age of 31, leaving behind a widowed wife and two children.

​ Sergeant Northcutt lived a life filled with immense pride and discipline in everything he did. He carried himself with the love of his family, country and fellow service members. Northcutt affected many lives in a positive way in his short time on earth.  Ideally, those who benefit from this scholarship will emulate the principles by which Northcutt lived, thereby keeping alive the legacy of our fallen Hero, Brother, and Friend.

I’m so excited to be part of the #teamrunfar. Together we can help veterans and their families……every dollar counts….Thank you.

RunFar hats

100% of every purchase and donation goes towards the Sergeant Sean D. Northcutt Scholarship fund.

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Run Far hats (they are pretty awesome!!!)…100% of every purchase and donation goes towards the Sergeant Sean D. Northcutt Scholarship fund.

 

The moral is…..do not give up, do not let thoughts/or failures tear you down.  Get back up and fight another day…….

Happy Trails….and thanks for following my running journey….

Krista 🙂 xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Five days till the 50!! Yippee Skippy!

“Do the work. Do the analysis. But feel your run. Feel your race. Feel the joy that is running.”

~Kara Goucher

The clock is ticking…….Is it me, or does Spring seem to be flying by??!? I love spending Memorial Day weekend with family and friends at the Pinelands Trail Festival, so pumped that this weekend is right around the corner! It’s such a great race, endless distances from a 1k kids race to a 50 miler.  The vibe in Maine is relaxed and it’s always a treat for this Vermont girl to see the ocean on the way up on our drive.  This race will be a great warm up for VT100 coming up in July.  It’ll be a family affair, the boys are running the 25k and hubs and I will both be running the 50…….I’m sure we’ll see the boys out on trail…..They’ll do one lap, and we’ll do three, so chances are they will pass us! Can’t wait to meet some new peeps and hang out with my precious dear friends…..Happy Tapering everyone!!! Can’t wait to see you all!!!

 The past three weeks have been HUGE for me in the mileage department.  I’ve logged 122.4 miles with an elevation gain of 19,402 feet thus far in the month of May!!!  Including two Mt. Ascutney climbs (getting myself ready for those relentless long hills of VT, remember the ones with scary names?!?!!) I’ve been adamant about having my training elevation mimic that of the VT100.  Granted, most of my training loops are crazy hilly, so it’s not that difficult to achieve that.  Last week it was in the upper 80’s, low 90’s and my 19 miler kicked my bootie!!!  I’m focusing on eating smaller portions more frequently during longer runs.  I really have to get more heat training runs in, I’m waiting on Mother Nature tho.  This weekend actually looks picure perfect, 62 and partly cloudy, let’s hope the rain holds off…..

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6 miles into our 19 miler….it was hot! Love this shot of hubs running down one of our favorite back Vermont roads….

 

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Loving my Last Horse Runners hat….check them out 

I hope your May training is going well……..I’ve had a few rest days.  Trying to preserve my legs and be careful of injuries……My shins were definitely sore after my last hike up and down Ascutney……feels good to rest the bones……..lots of hot baths filled with epsom salts and lavender….I kinda like tapering…….

Soon, packing will begin…….

  • Fun happy clothes….InkNburn of course! Now which outfit….hmmmmm
  • Hydration Tailwind Check!
  • Bars Simple Squares….. I will have extra if anyone at Pinelands would like to try some!! Come see me!!
  • Socks Only Injinji…..knock on wood no blisters…however the compression didn’t end up working for me.  My calves locked up in the first mile of a 22 miler I did….Luckily hubs came to the rescue and brought me my shorter socks…….not sure why my legs disagreed with compression. As soon as I switched, all was right in leg land…
  • My running supply drawers I made for races…….holds everything from Lube, tampons, bobby pins, rolaids, tums, pens, bandaids…..you name it, it’s in there. Also works great at home, I always know where things are……

 

Sweet drawers!

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fuel for one of my long runs…..

 

And please, please, please turn on the Charity Miles app…..I’ve logged 429.28 miles in 2017, which is $107.32 for the charities of my choosing……..Every Mile Matters……..

 

Running with Raven

When you love a book so much, you read it again…. “Running with Raven”

 

I’ll let you know how the 50 goes! It’ll be a great test to iron out any kinks before VT……I’m a little nervous. My only other two 50’s were at the VT50….home turf…  Of course, it’s a kick ass hilly one, so I’m hoping this one will be a tad easier…..but who am I kidding, 50 miles is 50 miles!!!!!!! Thanks for following my running journey………..

Happy Trails, & see ya at Pinelands!

Krista 🙂

xoxooxoxoxo