Wednesday, March 11, 2009

You Did What?

With my first real race in over a year coming up in a few days, I thought it might be fun to recount some of the more stupid things done right before or during a race. All of these were either done by me or a friend. I'll leave names out however!

1. After training using orthotics for the previous several years, decided to not use them at the big race to save a few ounces. Result - wicked calf cramps because of the lower heel height. DNF.

2. Needed to lose weight before the season's big 100 miler, so started drinking out of streams in hopes of catching Giardia. Plan went perfectly, except didn't get the inevitable Giardia till the week of the race. Result - DNF.

3. Booked Airline flight for the wrong day. Result - Still got there, but way more money.

4. After being out of town for a week, forgot watch was still on Pacific Time. Missed the start by an hour. Result - Ran very hard trying to make up for it and ended up DNF.

5. A fever of over 100 at the start. Started anyway. Result - DNF.

6. Wore camelbak on outside of jacket during a long winter snow shoe race. Hose froze within 1 mile. Result - no liquid for 4 hours. Most unpleasant race ever.

7. At race start, removed sweat pants to running shorts. Result - embarassment.

8. At first 50 miler, wore old racing flats to save weight. Result - see #1.

9. At race start, too cold to worry about sunscreen. Result - looked like a lobster at awards ceremony the next morning.

10. The night before the race, stayed at friends' house and ate pig that was cooked in a backyard pit and drank homemade beer. Result - Three "number 2" bathroom stops in the marathon. Lost by 1:20. Do the math!

11. ???? What's your best screw-up?

Good luck to everyone running WTC, Salida, Coyote 2 Moon, etc. this weekend.

- pauld


jhalekas said...

Wow. All I can say is wow.

My best:

1. Decided the morning of HURT to upgrade from the 100k to the 100m because I wanted to be able to wear the shirt (which had no mention of 100k). Result - finished my first 100m, but spent the next few months out with my first stress fracture.

2. Managed (via some combination of altitude, poor hydration, stress, and getting out of bed too fast) to pass out, clock my head on a wall, and spend a day in the hospital three days before TRT 100. Result - stressed out all of my friends a lot, but had my best 100m ever.

Brett said...

This one is not me (honestly its not). At a 50k last year this guy kept flying by me on a 6 lap course, but he would pass me twice on each lap. WTF?

Finally I asked him one time when he passed me and he said he ate at Waffle House on the drive in and he had diarreah problems. Lucky for him it was a 6 five mile loop course with a bathroom at the start of each loop and 2 miles in.

He literally was running 1 minute per mile faster than me but probably lost 20 minutes, because he said he stopped at each bathroom break (2) each of the first four laps (8 total stops) before it went away...

He said he had the all-in hashbrowns...scattered, covered, chunked, diced, etc.


Larry said...

Great stories!

I got the genius idea on the morning of my first marathon a few weeks ago to wear a pair of thicker than usual socks. I figured they would help in reducing the pounding my feet would take on the roads. Thirteen miles in, I could feel the hot spots developing. Lost two toenails and had blisters as big as my toes, when I finished. Brilliant!

All the best this weekend at WTC!!!

brownie said...

Guess who this is:

Told jt at mile 98 of Leadville that the last place CRUD finisher gets a pink dress. Have never lived down losing to jt.

Run hard at WTC!

GZ said...

Oh this is a brilliant post! Awesome.

1.) I have worn nearly new shoes in a race. Sure, they felt great in the DAY BEFORE when I did a short run in them. Not so much in a long trail race. Result - bloody feet.

2.) Drove my car to Albq NM for the La Luz. Got in a car accident. Drove the car home even though it was jacked Ithe wheels were pointing in). Got it to CoSprings before I had to get it towed because the tires were down to the steel (and it was raining).

3.) in HS, ran in the state finals of the steeple. Told the newspaper photographer to take my picture before the race. He did ... it was a shot of me biting it in the water pit.

The giardia one is fraking hilarious.

Anonymous said...

friend up here who is a weekend warrior ultra runner, particularly 100milers. a few years back he was driving to his first Western States. Unfortunately drove to the wrong Squaw Valley, the one in southern California..?..

I once had to crap so bad in a race and I did not want to stop to lost a second of time, but had a stomach cramp where I had to drop trou immediately, meaning on the trail. I was courteous enough to at least shimmy to the side of the trail. On the second loop i past a back O' the packer who was disgruntled over this mysterious pile of shit he stepped in to the guy running next to him. In fact I can remember his very words, "DAMN SUM BITCH!" I felt bad, but I had to chuckle.

Jamie Donaldson said...

Hi Paul! Hilarious post! My funniest mishap happened after a race. After the Umstead 100, I thought it would be a good idea to take my first Ambien ever so I could sleep. Needless to say I didn't sleep, but halucinated all night and my husband found me asleep on the ground in the woods the next morning. I didn't remember a thing!

Anonymous said...

Great topic, Paul.
Being an ultra-novice I'm still doing stupid things but have a good one for my first 50 miler.

I am notorious for not researching races and competition. So, I show up to the first North Face Challenge 50 miler in D.C. in Aug 2007 and proceed to bolt out with the lead group and eventually dropping everyone except Leigh Schmitt and Guilermo Medina. At the time my thought process was, "just under 7 min pace is silly, who couldn't run this?" Well after 20 miles I started to realize the magnitude of my mistake.

Dean Karnazes caught up to me at mile 37 and I was sitting on the ground with one shoe off, a cold wash cloth on my head and a mouth full of potatoes. He said I looked good and to keep it up. (I was sitting on the ground drooling). Anyway, I went from 3rd place solid run to taking 3 hours to finish the last 10 miles in 104 degree temps. My first slap initiation of pacing, which I have yet to master.

By the way, "light shoes" in ultra racing are one of the biggest mistakes I see. Look at Tony K with 11 foot 25 years old.

Paul DeWitt said...

I like all the great additions to my list! As for you JT, I have no recollection of the incident to which you are referring!

I thought of a new one that happened to a friend; he was leading a road race in Montross Colorado until a Yakk ran out onto the course and scared him. Like we haven't all had to deal with runaway Yakks!

Cynical Dirt Doll said...

These made me laugh so very hard! As a newbie ultrarunner I am taking notes on what not to do!

My only stupid story to date was during my first 50 miler when I developed a tight spot in my quad 7 miles into the race, I was so terrified of losing my running partner that I ignored the spot instead of stopping and stretching it out. By mile 25 the spot had turned into a tight knot and by mile 40 it was cramping up so badly that I was yelling as I was running. I never stopped to stretch because I didn't want to lose my 2nd place female position. I finished in 2nd but my entire upper leg turned purple the next day and I could hardly walk a step for the next 2 weeks.

Good luck this weekend!

Justin Ricks said...

For my first 50mi, White River, I was concerned with eating enough the day before. I had a Chipotle Burrito at 4pm, a speghetti dinner at 5pm, couldn't sleep so tried to eat to help me sleep-had another Chipotle burrito at 11pm, still couldn't sleep so at 3am decided I should eat breakfast had 3 huge waffles with butter and suger. Then I decided I ate too much so I drank a ton of water to try and go to the bathroom. Needless to say, showed up at the start line full of shit and overhydrated. Crappy race.