Friday, November 16, 2007

Family Man on the Run

“How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn" Dr. Seuss

How did it get so late so soon? – I’ve been away on blogcation. For the most part I've been enjoying the many challenges and joys of raising three children under the age of four. With princess’, superheroes, and cowboys running around wild let me just say there’s never a dull moment in our household, it’s a busy place I certainly could use a few more hands and yes there have been times when I feel like my head is going to spin off and there’s days when I’ll be speaking to a brick wall and sure steam can be seen blowing out my nose and ears but once the dust settles I smile and remember the laughter, innocent little voices and precious moments that fill our home. When I look back I feel it was a greater challenge becoming a parent for the first time then it is to add a second or third child to the mix. I remember how we tried to make things perfect for our first…having a few more just makes life a lot more interesting. As you can imagine this family guy has been struggling to maintain a decent running base while juggling home and work; this has been the story until this past weekend when I came out of hibernation to run the Stone Cat 50 Mile and Marathon Trail Races. I made the wise decision to register for the marathon, last year I completed the fifty and not the same challenge this year. In the coming days I proceeded down to the basement to gather my gear and found cobwebs on my Brooks Cascadia they hadn’t been worn since the Vermont 100..yikes! A little apprehensive I packed my bag of cold weather garments, salt caps and gels looking forward the coming event. Hit the road Saturday morning, it was a nice 45 minute drive up to Ipswich MA which was expected since the start time was at 6:15A.M. Once I checked-in I met up with a local running friend Kevin who was doing the fifty. From the looks of the crowd huddled in the elementary school gym this years event had a large turnout. After the usual course briefing Kevin and I anxiously proceeded to the start, it was a cold November morning and I had the look and feel of a dog that was just released from a leash if I had a tail it would be wagging wildly about picture Chester the Terrier from the classic 1952 Warner Bros. cartoon the small and jumpy dog with yellow fur and brown, perky ears who bounced around his friend Spike the bulldog. Things got underway smoothly and after completing a fast 1.2 mile lap we (the marathoners) entered the gauntlet a 12.5 mile lollypop loop through some very scenic State Forest. I caught up with Kevin, Sherpa John and a few other friends running the 50 as well. Everyone was in good spirits and for being undertrained I felt fairly well on the first loop. For the moment I was keeping pace with the women’s marathon winner, this usually means I’ve gone out to fast and in the back of my head I could see the inevitable wall approaching off in the distance, I hit the wall like a pancake in the middle of the second loop and pushed onward to the finish. I forgot what the wall feels like – honestly I don't think I could have run another loop, I was happy to call it a day. It was a great experience loved the delicious burgers/soup and grill cheeses I think I ate more calories than I burned and it felt really good to be back out on the trails, YES it was a fun day chasing down the Ol’ Stone Cat and I sure went home dog-tired.

So many things to look forward to on the horizon, in March I registered for the Pittsfield Snowshoe Marathon in Vermont and I’m planning to try some winter hiking in the White Mountains as well. So I'm back and there's no telling what tomorrow will bring…

Bottoms Up

Stone Cat Photos taken by Emily Trespas