Monday, May 14, 2012

Relax, breathe, and enjoy The North Face 100km

"When I get on the line, I realize that the issue is 90 percent settled. My recent training, whether I am over or under or at my peak, the state of my health cannot be helped. These factors are out of my hands. They are behind me. I need no longer worry about them. I have to remember only two things; one, not to do anything stupid and two, not to quit." - Dr George Sheehan in This Running Life.

5 days before the 2012 The North Face 100km Race and the usual pre-race antics are going on inside my head. Amidst the nerves and excitement it's easy to forget how much fun running is (mostly because I am not running due to tapering), and what a pleasure it is to share the experience with so many amazing characters. I try to remember the training I have done, the long runs completed with friends as well as alone. I try not to doubt my mind and body, and to remember all the ups and downs we have conquered in previous races.  Most importantly, I try to stay focused on my goal: to run my own race, to run strong, and to be the best that I can be on the day. I think the quote above from Dr George Sheehan is pretty spot on too, and that is what I will be focusing on when I stand on the starting line! 

In past years I have mostly raced with friends but without support. This year I feel like I am so supported: by friends who will be racing alongside, in front, and behind me; my Salomon team-mates (Mick Donges, Andrew Vize and Matt Cooper as well as Naima and Sam); and by my amazing crew (my mother and my friend Nicola visiting from Canada).

The race itself is going to be epic. The terrain is fantastic - rugged, runable in some areas, technical and challenging in others. There is rolling, playful, single track trail, scrambling required over rocks, undulations, big climbs, cascades and waterfalls, rainforest, slender eucalypt trees, sandstone, and...views!!! Oh how us trail runners love those awe-inspiring views that stop us in our tracks and make us go "Yes. This is why I woke up at 5am to go running!" The last couple of weeks I have had a blast training in the Blue Mountains on the course, as well as playing host to Nicola and showing her some of the local trails:

Campfire at Old Ford Reserve during a true "training camp" in the Blue Mountains:

Morning light across the Three Sisters and Mt Solitary during a early morning run:

Nicola hugging a huge Red Gum on my last long run (while pre-sweeping for the Wild Endurance event):

Taros Ladder. I never knew rope-tying could be so sexy:

Some sexy rock alongside Narrowneck:

Endorphins make you do funny things:

So, here we go. Relax, breathe, enjoy the run and see you on the other side of the finish line! If you are like me and love to get a little crazy before a race, this song might be for you:

1 comment:

  1. thanks for sharing - gretzky. you girls look like you are having too much fun!!! love it. good luck and have fun!