#Runabler Recap: Meaghan’s First Ultra

Note From Heidi: This is one of [hopefully] many race recaps I’ll be able to share for Meaghan…as well as other runners who don’t have a blog-like platform to share their recaps on. This recap is 1000% from the mouth of Meaghan, I just placed photos and added a few links. If you’re looking for a place to share your race accomplishments shoot me an email at runaroundaroo@gmail.com, I’d love to share your story!

I did it. I ran an ultramarathon.

This is a short blurb about my entry into the world of ultra running. Back in the spring of 2014, I decided that I was finally going to take the leap from marathon running to ultra running. I decided that a 50k would be the best option, after all, how much more difficult could 5 more miles be? I searched for a local race so that I wouldn’t have to worry about travel accommodations and could potentially be familiar with the course. The Indian Creek Fifties somehow caught my attention. I had run Waterton Canyon a few times and done sections of the Colorado Trail several times. Perfect! Mitch, Danielle, Allen, and I decided to do a “test” run in the summer at Roxsborough. After the run, I was immediately onboard to sign up for the 50K.
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Currently.

And just like that, December is here! It feels weird to be closing in on the end of 2014. It’s been a long year with many life changes so I am more than ready for whatever 2015 has to offer…but at the same time it feels weird to close out such a massive year, to just be done with it. Of course, I’ll still be signing everything with “2014” well into March so I have plenty of time to adjust!
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My First 100 Mile Ultra [#RRR100]

Full Disclosure: I went into this race rather under trained — my “peak weeks” of training were spent off my feet with a bowl of ice cream in hand and included many visits to the PT for work on my left Achilles/Soleus. Two weeks before the race I was cleared to run again but if I took it slow, didn’t go far and stopped every mile to give my body TLC. Then the week of the race the PT proclaimed I was no longer injured, just under trained! I went into the race with ONE goal — finish with a smile. Spoiler: mission accomplished!

It’s been a week since I took on the Run, Rabbit, Run 100 mile race in Steamboat Springs, CO…and I’m still alive to talk about it! Since everyone I see in real life is getting sick of hearing my stories about the race so I guess it’s time to write a legitimate recap. How does one recap 100 miles? I have no idea, but I’ll start out with some stats + spoilers for anyone with a short attention span, because this is going to be a doozy!
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I survived! With a smile! [#RRR100]

On Friday morning I started the longest run of my life – the Run, Rabbit, Run 100 in Steamboat Springs.
On Saturday evening I finished the race still running with a big ol’ goofy grin on my face.

Mission accomplished.

I walked away from the race a smarter runner. I played it safe from the start. I was hyperaware of my body and addressed niggles as the popped up, not hours later. I ate consistently and consciously, without puking. I kept moving forward with purpose. I ran across the finish line.
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Ready As I’ll Ever Be… [#RRR100]

So, it’s here. Race week has arrived. The Run Rabbit Run 100 starts in less than 24 hours! And I’m as ready as I’ll ever be. You’d think that with the lack of actual training on the trails I’d have every other part of the race day prep mastered. Not true. Not even a little bit true. I spent a good portion of last night sitting on my bed staring at 4 mini totes nicely labeled but not even sort of packed…a pile of clean clothes was tossed on my pillows, a stack of half finished lists were scattered across the bed, two cats are crawling all over me and a half packed duffle bag was hiding behind me.

Rather than check the weather repeatedly I’ve decided to pack everything I own. That’s a valid compromise, right? It’s a good thing I drive an SUV…the list of things I need keeps growing! Yea, yea, I know ultras are all about making due with what’s available, which I can appreciate, but what if I need it before or after the race?! All this insane list making keeps me sane…or at least speaks to the tiny part of sanity I have left.
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Everything and Nothing [North Fork 50M Recap]

It has been four days since I finished my second 50 Mile race…my legs still work, my feet aren’t broken and the vivid memories of pain are fading away. As of this morning I have officially gone on two short shake out runs since the race and my body has not rebelled. My poor, abused body never fails to impress me.

Now, about that race…

My day started out with nerves – my hands were shaking so bad that I didn’t really need to move my arm to brush my teeth. I was scared. But I knew what I had to do, so I did it. I threw my gear in my car and headed to Pine, CO where I parked at the fire station then grabbed a shuttle to the start. By 6:15am I had checked in, picked up my bib and snuck in a quick bio break – now I just needed to kill 45 minutes before the start of the race. The time flew by with so many familiar faces at the start. I knew people running, crewing, pacing and volunteering…I may have arrived alone and I may be spending many hours alone on the trail but I was going to know a lot of people out there and I was going to soak up ever single word of encouragement!
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A New Mindset! [Mt Evans Ascent DNF]

This past weekend I toed another start line…this time for the Mt Evans Ascent, a 14.5 mile run up a “Colorado 14er” mountain with over 4,000 feet of elevation gain. You finish at 14,264 feet above sea level and last year I learned that the altitude is real and it can kick your butt. This year…the wind was real, my mental mojo was missing and I only made it to the top because a motorized vehicle helped me get there.
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It’s okay, I have a plan…

My first 50M race – Quad Rock – is less than 8 weeks away. Or, in a scarier sense, it is 50-something days away. My training plan is still non-existent and my running has been all over the place. But it’s okay…I have a plan.

In the coming weeks I plan on running a few legit long runs on the weekends, preferably with friends and maybe as races. I plan on focusing on hill repeats when possible – even if it takes me 2 miles to get to the closest hill on my lunch runs. I plan on playing with nutrition and finding something that doesn’t make me want to scrap my taste buds off or yank my intestines out. I plan on getting some value out of each run, whether physical or mental. I plan on turning down stupid “hey, want to run [way too many] miles” opportunities in the two weeks prior to race day in favor of legit “tapering”.
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