Despite the fact that DC is getting hammered with snow again over the next two days, my focus can finally shift away from shoveling and back pain: The first race of the year has arrived, and thankfully it's going to be in non-arctic Florida! I've had a bit of a forced taper the past few days (tough to run when both the streets AND gyms are closed), but I'm feeling confident things will go well enough in my first tune-up of the year.
The race starts Saturday morning at 7 a.m., and I'll try calling in updates to the blog after every 25 mile loop. Not sure of the cell coverage down there (or of Utterli's recent unreliable behavior), but I'll do my best to entertain and inform somehow. The plan will be to run an evenly paced 100 and finish around 16 hours. We'll see how that goes after the first 75 miles or so of playing rock soccer on the old rail trails. My well-rested legs should be there for me regardless, so if I can keep my feet flat on the ground, I should be OK.
I'm not sure of the entry list since the race website doesn't publish it, but I'm excited to see old friends from last year and meet some new folks on the trail as well. As I found out last year, Florida has a budding ultra community full of great runners. ...and no matter how the run goes, I'll be tremendously thankful to Chris and Erin Roman for letting me shower at their place after the race. It could be a dangerously smelly 10 hour drive home otherwise!
I'll check in on race morning (hopefully) with an audio update to kick things off. I figure there has to be cell coverage somewhere along the route, so be sure to check in during the day/night to follow along w/ the fun!