When something bad happens, you have three choices: let it define you, let it destroy you, or let it strengthen you.

The heart of the difference is not ability or even talent, but desire

The purpose of life is to discover and develop your gift. The meaning of life comes from sharing your gift with others. - David Viscott

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Am I ready to be a Big Hornie?



This is out-n-back course, imagine starting right to left and then going back.

From the Message Board of Bighorn 100

As for wildlife - wildlife abounds in these mountains. Over the weekend several of us jogged portions of the trail to clear brush and check the general condition of the trail. On Saturday and Sunday combined I saw a dozen moose (one young bull came off of a hill and jumped into the middle of the road not 50 feet in front of us - it was just as startled as we were, but with a little yelling and screaming he decided to clear country), we also saw a couple hundred deer, 20-30 elk, squirrels, marmots, birds, butterflies, and a few bear tracks (a sow and two cubs had traveled through the Dry Fork drainage the night before). Most of our running this weekend was at elevation where it is still a little cooler/wetter right now so we did not see any snakes. However, there is always a possibility of encountering rattle snakes along the trail so you should ALWAYS be on the lookout for them. This summer while training and doing trail work on the course individuals have seen rattlers in the Little Big Horn canyon and all through the Tongue River Canyon. From personal experience I would not recommend using a music player and headphones in these areas. A rattlesnake knows you are to big to eat, therefore it rattles to tell you to go away, however, if it rattles and you don't hear it because you are listening to music blaring in your ears, the rattlesnake might get even more irritated that you are ignoring its warning -- hopefully enough said.

Enough said indeed, I am already shaking. I just hope Rick and I to be on the same pace and have relatively same high's and low's so we can slog together and he would save me from all those things:) Did I tell you this is my first time going at a 100 with no pacre or crew? Well, Wasatch 100 in 2005 was like that, but then again, I had Mike Bushwhacker Burke to team up with and go together from start to finish (we felt good for the first half, then both broke down for different reasons in second, and he basically saved my ass from hypothermia). This is where Rick steps in this year - as with Mike, we have no committment to stick like glued, but we hope we will.

Jeff Browning (2 times winnder and a CR holder) has an awesome report on the run which finally made me excited. That and Sean Meissner talking my ears off how extremely beautiful and hard this course is. I've worked on my proposed pace chart (per usual) with a goal in mind I set up last year when I registered. CR by Kim Giminez is just a touch over 27 hrs. How come if this race bears less elevation change than WS100? First of, it's all goes at altitude. Second, it's mostly on no shade. It is hot out there. Lots of technical track. Did I mention the "no shade" and "hot" will last for 2 days because the race starts at 11 am (instead of "normal" 5 am)? The climbs, while not that steep mostly, are long, and walking them will not make up time as opposed to hiking short steep climbs. The downhills are not "scream down" mostly eihter, what also won't add up speed. But the Ais Stations are plentiful and well stocked/organized.

Lead runners for men's field: Karl Meltzer will break a CR by over 2 hrs and add 17th 100M win to his story book. Josh Brimhall will follow closely and then Mike Wolfe. On the girls' side there is Bethany Patterson (ready to go under 24), then former winner Diane Van Deren, strong Jodi Chase and amazing Van "Pigtails" Phan. Plus a bunch of names that ring a bell but not sure in which ear, so surprises are welcome.

So what's the plan? The plan is to run under 27 hrs. The goal is 26:30. The dream is 25:30. The "survival" is to finish whatever it takes - too expensive emotionally and financially of a trip to justify a DNF and need a WS100 qualifier. Plus I am still dwelling on Leadville DNF in 2005. But life been it is (really, if you only knew why the f$@% I was up all night), anything can happen. In fact, it may so happen I don't even toe the starting line. I can't not only look into tomorrow, I am unsure about next hour. As you guys say: if it rains, it pours. Or as we say: the trouble came - open the gates.

But tears and snot aside, I am getting ready. Hopefully, I'll post something more upbeat before I leave. I want to run this race, I need to run this race, and I have to make it a positive experience. Nobody but myself can do it for me.

p.s. and just to cheer you on - there is a new blog in town: Greg Pressler, a Portland endurance athlete (really, he doesn't like to have any definition to be applied to him - and he's got valid reasons too!), joined our insane community of those who reads thes kind of early morning rantings and even leaves comments - lets show him we do do that:)

29 comments:

Joe said...

Morning Olga! I'm looking forward to seeing the Bighorn results with the letters CR after your name. Hang tough.

robtherunner said...

Hang in there and focus on your goals. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Bob Gentile said...

However, there is always a possibility of encountering rattle snakes along the trail so you should ALWAYS be on the lookout for them.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
ummm I vote RICK to be in charge of this part-lol

Olga good post, YOU are Strong and will DIAL IN over the next few days...and you will RUN this race. Tears and snot aside!!!

Backofpack said...

Olga,
You are strong. You've made it through tough times before - hang on baby. You can do this. I'll be thinking of you and hoping every hour that you get to Big Horn and that your troubles melt away.

Wes said...

Don't worry Olga! Snakes don't like to bite stuff that leaves a bad taste in their mouth :-) With that said, seeing that kind of wild life while running has to be supremo cool!! Sounds like a great plan. Did I mention you are INSANE?! LOL...

Donald said...

You can do it Olga! Good luck with the race - I'll be cheering for you.

Eudemus said...

Sounds like a great race, Olga. I've no doubt you'll hang in there and have a strong finish.

Andy said...

Best of luck Olga! I'll be very much looking forward to hearing all about it after you finish.

Steve said...

Snakes and no headphones, that sucks. The rest you can handle like the pro you are. Take it easy with the altitude and heat. Like Catra says, we will send you energy and good vibes.

Rooster said...

Olga, you have put in some great training and I know you have the ability to reach your dream goal so go for it. Think about it, live with it for the next few days and don't let any mental blah, blahs stand in your way. Remember during the lows....you have put in the work and your body can do it! Get a new course record, stand proud, strong and full of energy even when you have an ultra moment your still moving forward.

George (Squirrel) said...

Hi Olga,

Keep you head up and focus high, you going to do just fine. Your well trained and ready. Just go out there and have fun it will come to you. Can't wait to hear about your exrience. Enjoy the wild life!

Sarah said...

You can do it, Olga! I'm so bummed that I'm going to be traveling during your race and then computer-less for a week. So I'll have to wait to read about your triumphant finish! And yes, I do believe it will be all you hope for. Best of luck! : )

Amy said...

I've enjoyed following your blog Olga. You'll be great at Bighorn! I look forward to meeting you there. Bighorn will be my first 100 and I'm getting excited and scared. Scared, more than anything! Looks like we'll have snow for snow angels, big snow heading towards the Bighorns.

Journey to a Centum said...

OK Hornie, go get em!

As far at the snakes go I think you should strike first. Get them at their own game!

Enjoy the wildlife and don't go up against any moose. The moose always wins!

Cheers!
Eric

Gretchen said...

Yes, you ARE ready! No shame in tears and snot, but running is surely the best thing for it. I know you can deal with whatever comes your way.
I can't wait to hear your race report (and see all the photos you will take with that nice guy Scott's camera!)Go get 'em Olga!

Lisa B said...

What doesn't kill us makes us stronger, so just smile in the face of whatever "obstacles" appear in front of you and...leap right on over them. Not a problem for you, Olga! You'll kick butt.

Jamie said...

That sounds like an awesome race! I've heard of it before, but haven't read the details on it until now. Grab it by the... um... horns! :-) You're going to do awesome, looking forward to the report.

Julie B said...

Ha! I like the Big Hornie name and yes, you are ready. You will reach your time goal no problem. I can't wait for you to be out there! Keep on keeping on, tough girl!

Larry said...

I have quite of few friends here in Austin I've been running with that are also ready to be a Big Hornies! There's almost 60 from Texas (know half of them) making the trip up to Sheridan next week to make it official after several months of training. Wish I was one of them...

If I don't make it into WS, I'll be making the trip to BH next year. All the best, Olga!!!

KendraBo said...

I'll be thinking of you - I may be out of sight (blog wise) but I'm not out of mind (our of yours, I hope, but I'm probably out of mine!). Rock the Hornie!

Meghan said...

Olga,

I wish I could be in the Bighorns next weekend, but I'll be away from Wyoming for a wedding. :(

Regarding your comment on my blog, I'll bet the Bighorns got some snow and rain with this storm, but as long as it warms up, things will melt and dry out. It's Wyoming after all, a regularly dry and arid place in the summer.

I agree with what the others have said that, at this point, it's a mental thing. You're there physically, but now it's time to bring your mental game. How tough are you going to be?

I'll be cheering for you!
Meghan
www.running-blogs.com/meghan

meredith said...

Keep the faith, and enjoy the taper. Your strength will take you to the finish...hopefully with the wind at your back and effortlessly to your dream time.

You have done the work, and then some!!
meredith

Ryan said...

You've done the training, the research and you’ve got the passion you're ready for this one, get out there and boogie! You got game Olga!

rick said...

So you're leading right, me 5 yards behind:) Hahaha ok, lets stop talking wildlife and weird night sounds.

Did someone really say snow...CRAP. I'm not scared of the cold but I am fearful of running long distance in wet shoes...WS100 2006 has changed me forever.

You know Olga, since I've known you, followed your blog, you've always had trouble this, issue that but you've always managed to keep on rolling. Your feet never stop moving and you always summit the shit in your life. I look forward to catching up with and running the race with you and just having a grand ol time with all the other ultra folk at Big Horn. Compared to life, what's a 100-mile race at least there's a finish line.

~concrete angel~ said...

Good luck to you, and I look forward to finally meeting you (I'll be at Bighorn as well to pace a friend of mine)!

adam said...

Good luck at Bighorn! Have confidence that it will be great! Just remember that no matter what, it will be much better than not running it (I have had to miss out on this opportunity for two years in a row)!!

Try@thlete said...

Good luck Olga. All the best!

a.k.a.Moogy said...

I'll be cheering for ya Olga. You are going to do awesome. I've had the SAME feelings about this one as well. My last 100 attempt was Leaville 05 (when we were in the slam) and I had to bow out because of medical issues at 78. BH scares the crap out of me but whatever happens, happens. But running that far w/ a pulled groin muscle is NOT going to be fun. Seya there and we'll toast one to the running gods at the finish. 8)

mtnrunR said...

good job olga. a great time on a tough course.

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