I am a girl who loves mountains, changing seasons, running, true backpacking, strong coffee, and knitting with high quality yarn.

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

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

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Want summer fun in Texas?

If you want to know what are those tough Texans doing while most of the country enjoys cool mountain air, come and sign up for one of Tejas Trail races, this particular one also being sponsored and benefiting Team Traverse. Since it's 102F outsdide, the summer fun happens to be run (literally) at night, with races beginning at 7pm. And since you won't see me racing in the area at these temperatures, I am a main aid station volunteer coordinator every summer at every race of the series (my 3rd summer now, thanks to meeting my sweetie). The races go in circles (parks are not THAT big to put a 30 mile loop in it, besides Bandera), and I get to see runners and revive them (forcefeeding or sweettalking) a few times. Enjoy the picture story below.

The Legend Joe P. and me (after stepping on a snake).

The start of 30k and 60k.

Wardrobe malfunction – imagine how it looked from the other angle!

A client who had a heck of a race. Hey, you made my blog!

Aww…another committed couple!

I just wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for getting my ass in gear and getting me back out on the course at Pedernales Falls. I don't know if you will even remember me, but I was crying at the end of the first loop because I had given up on finishing my first 60k. You had me and Stephen sitting in chairs next to each other force feeding us liquids and food. I CAN NOT THANK YOU ENOUGH! Volunteers never get the recognition they deserve. I am a relative newcomer to the ultra distance scene and I learned so much from you that day! I hope that one day I will be in a position to pass on what I learned from you. I saw how you bargained with runners who felt defeated and "compromised" with them. You put things into terms that they could live with. "You can't eat? Then just put the cracker on your tongue and suck on it." You told me "go out and walk for 20 minutes and if you still don't want to keep going, THEN turn around and come back." And "You can sit here for 30 minutes and THEN if you still want to quit, go ahead and quit."
Olga, I only started running in 6/2008, and my first marathon was 10/2009. I have finished 4 marathons and 3 ultras now. I am so new to the scene that at the race, I didn't even know who you were. I've read a LOT about you today though. It seemed like everyone else at the race knew who you were, so I just HAD to look you up, and I am in AWE of your accomplishments. In short, I want to be like you when I grow up!
I just wanted to let you know that I finished, despite not even having trained for the distance this time. My longest run since Hell's Hills in April was 16 miles last Saturday. I had planned to do the 30k, but at the last minute changed to the 60 because the cutoff was a generous 12 hours, and I thought it would be a really cool adventure to run all night long. Well, it was, thanks in part to you. I had no further issues with dehydration after I got back out on the course and actually felt pretty good at the finish. I practically sprinted the last 2.5 miles in!
THANK YOU AGAIN! and I hope to see you at another run soon!! I hope to complete my first 50 miler at Rocky in Feb, so maybe I'll see you there!
With kind regards,

AND while this was a great fun for me (and so rewarding in so many ways), I am not staying on sidelines for nothing. With over 3 hrs of exercise a day, every day, split between 3 workouts (weights/plyometrics, Bikram and cardio equipment), I am on a roll to hopefully be fit before I decide it’s time to start thinking about my next season and goals. So far, the plan is, well, not defined. I am running trails when I want to and planning to spend a weekend with Larry over in PNW, running and hiking trails and breathing air that is not boiled up.


sea legs girl said...

One of the benefits of not running the race must be getting to wear a bra like that (you look really, really good, by the way!). I have to wonder if you won't also be running these super hot races in a couple summers, once you're less of a polar bear :).

Danni said...

That sounds hot! Wow 3 hours a day? You're insane and awesome!

Scott Keeps Running said...

It's during the summer that I miss Texas the least -- but this looks like fun!

Meghan said...

I don't know how you and all the other central Texas runners do it; it's so freaking hot there.

You seem happy, Olga, that's awesome!

I love your blog post by the way, as you've really got a knack for synthesizing life, or at least the way it's supposed to be. ;)

Carilyn said...

I am so glad you're a Texan now, girl! I looooooove the heat! In fact, this west coast weather is starting to drive me a little crazy! Where are my extremes - 100 plus temps and then late afternoon thundershowers? Seriously, you'll get used to it, and then you will want to run Badwater, and I will crew for you!

Rick Gaston said...

102?! No thanks:) I would let the Texans have their fun too and hang around the sidelines.

Sarah said...

You may not want to run in the heat, but you're sure looking hot! :) The gym time is paying off! (Although, honestly you've always looked pretty good!)

Last week I ran 47 miles on a day the temps reached 97. Don't think I'll do that on purpose ever again. Badwater is definitely not for me!

zbsports said...

Cute, the event has lot of fun. The picture are great, I love it.

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