Shannon & Pam, after months of training, officially became ultrarunners with finishing Way Too Cool 2010 (3/13/10). They continue to run the long distances as they continue to challenge themselves physically & mentally. This is where they post those triumphs and also their tribulations.

March 4, 2010

Momentum slowed - Shannon

This week I've struggled with keeping up with my training. Some how, I managed to have an appointment every night this week, thereby not allowing me to go for a run out at the lake after work. So that leaves me with the hamster wheel in the morning - yuck!

HHHHMMMM sleep or go run on the hamster wheel? Extremely tough choice to make! Tuesday I did manage to crawl out of bed and get to the gym and push out 2 miles on it. OMG I hate running on those things. I realized I haven't been on one since I had that miserable 5 miler a few weeks ago. I've become very spoiled with getting in afternoon runs after work.

So needless to say Wednesday morning and this morning - sleep won the vote! I keep telling myself my body needs the rest! I sure hope that plays true come next Saturday.

Since tomorrow is my birthday, I'm gonna start anew. Forget about the last 3 days and move forward, because that's what ultimately we have to do at WTC - just keep moving forward. I will get in a nice 10 miler with Pam bright and early, then I head off to get a much needed massage. After that I head to Roseville to work with a beginner's quilt group (I've been teaching them to quilt). Saturday I will enjoy the day with my youngest (Skyla), go to the movies, etc. Then I'll get in another run on Sunday with Pam. Then we completely taper off next week, however, I do plan on getting in some kind of XT.

Side bar: I was reading a great article in Jan/Feb Ultrarunning magazine titled "Getting through your first ultra" by Gary Dudney - funny how that article showed up in time for WTC. I really enjoyed one paragraph where the author discusses the differences between a street marathon and a trail ultra.

"In a marathon there are only about 4 things that can go wrong. You're gawking at the helicopter covering the start and you twist your ankle in a pothole. You trip over someone who cuts in front of you to grab a cup of water from the cute girl at the aid station. You flatten up against "the wall" worse than usual, or your hamstrings cramp like made at mile 22. Otherwise, marathons are pretty predictable. You run, run, run and finish pretty much where your training puts you. Not so with ultras."

"With ultras, you have to expect the unexpected and get ready to roll with the punches because you're going to get punched. Your hamstring may go south, your knee may go south, your ankle, a toenail. Name a body part, it might misbehave. You may trip and fall down over one of ten thousand roots or rocks; you may even fall off a cliff. You might dump your iPod in a river, leave your water bottle at an aid station, get stung by angry wasps, follow the wrong trail to nowhere, put your foot down on a rattlesnake, do a face plant in a rock garden, get blisters on top of blisters, throw up, lose heart, get dizzy, or get to the end of your rope. The trick is to realize ahead of time that anything can happen, so when something does happen, you don't get discouraged. Something is always going to go wrong, for you and everybody else, but it can still be your day."

This is just a small portion of the whole article, but I just loved it because it is so true. The funny thing is this can and does happen every time you go out on the trail, even just for short distances. So I know that I have faced most of this, and I think that I'm pretty prepared. The key will be to "...sharpen up your gallows humor and work the mental part..." and "keeping your sense of humor when the chips are down...."

So be prepared for the unexpected and laugh as much as possible - that's my plan!! What's yours?


  1. I'll be out there laughing with you!! Great snippet. It is going to be a fun day. Happy early Birthday by the way! Have a great day and I agree, the body does need rest. Mine has been screaming that at me all week!

  2. Shannon, don't sweat it. Just keep your legs limber and moving. only one week of preperation left :)

  3. Great post! I wanna read that article :) I had to take 2 rest days in a row this week, but I was much better for it. see u in the am birthday girl!