First off, I need to send a big congrats out to Amanda Stickel and her gutsy performance over the weekend at the NF 50 Miler in DC. It was her first 50, and even though she didn't win, as her pacer I saw her give it everything she had out there. I was pretty darn proud of her! Here's the shot of her fighting off the pain and fatigue as she crosses the finish line. Well done, Amanda!!
Moving on the title of this post: It's hard for me to believe the Mohican 100 miler is only 8 days away now. Since I haven't had a focused training period since France, this race really snuck (sneaked? snooked? ...why, oh, why did I sleep through English class?!) up on me.
Even though I've "called off the dogs" in terms of how hard I'll be running out there in the hills of Ohio, I'm happy to report I had a follow-up doctor's appointment today (got the green light, with a word of caution from the old school doc: "Pace yourself, Son."), and have been running comfortably over the past couple weeks with no kidney pain. The heat/humidity over that time has also given me a nice acclimation period for the summer, and I can definitely feel my body's ability to cool itself reaching optimal levels for the months of heat ahead. Things are looking great for the rest of the year!
That said, I'm still not taking any chances at Mohican. I'll go out slow for the first 50 and make sure my hydration is on track and my kidneys are operating properly. After that I might pick it up a bit, but certainly not with the intention of hunting down the leaders. With runners like Brian Krogmann and Brad Smythe ready to fly out there, they'll be long gone by time I hit the half-way point. I won't be catching them (and probably a couple others), but I will put in an honest effort all the way to the finish. This will be the 21st running of the Mohican race, and I have tremendous respect for everyone involved in putting on such a great event for so many years. The best way I know how to show my appreciation is to run the best race I can under the circumstances...and, of course, to thank all the volunteers along the way!
Since Utterli is long dead at this point, I won't be able to call in any live updates during the race, but I should be able to post something here on the blog from my iPhone once I finish. I'm working on a new way to post audio updates while I run future races, but I haven't been able to iron out all the technical stuff in time for this run. I'm working on it though!