Pretty much all I need is a reason to yudu t-shirts, and I am there. I love it.
and this was a big, major reason to make t-shirts! As I mentioned, Friday/Sat was the ‘Wasatch100’. It’s a 100-mile race that starts at 5am in Kaysville, Ut and each single individual that is registered runs the entire 100 miles to the finish line in Heber, UT at the Homestead. This is Cameron’s second time participating in this event. I think that running is such an individual sport, that I love how this event allows us all to take part!
Friday morning, Cameron woke up at 3:15am and drove himself to the start. He had 40 miles ahead of him before he saw anyone. In the first 40 miles of this race, there are only 4 aid stations- so it’s a LONG haul. I can’t even imagine the mental challenge of this entire race!
Last time Cam did this race (2years ago), he BLEW through that first ‘crew’ station called “big mountain”. In fact, we barely got there in time to see him breeze through and off to the next spot! So, as we were contemplating our ‘support plan’, with kids in school etc, we kinda had collectively decided that maybe we wouldn’t be at Big Mountain, let my mom and dad (who were acting as the CREW managers) handle that stop, and we’d be at the next one in force. For whatever reason, I think that Cam’s wife and I both had a strong feeling that we needed to be there; and we figured heck, take the kids out of school, and lets get up there! It’s the W100!! As we were moving in that direction we got some intell that Cam wasn’t doing great- about a week and ½ before the race, Cam had gone on a hardcore trail run, and coming down, developed about a 3” blister on the bottom of his foot. – while he had been downplaying the blister, sounds like it was giving him grief. We anticipated Cam around 1, and he arrived around 2…and as he came in he was both smiling and crying. He didn’t look good- he wasn’t joking or laughing as usual- it was clear that he didn’t have the emotional control to talk to us- we knew he was in some trouble. – here is when Dusty totally helped Cam turn it around.
Cameron and Dusty have been friends since they were 4. Maybe younger. In the last few years, they have run 100’s of miles together, and Cam has been a pacer for Dusty in the past, and this would be Dusty’s turn to ‘pace’ Cameron. We were looking to Dusty, and he knew just what to do-
Dusty and LaRane had a little station all set up in anticipation of Cameron’s arrival- they got his shoes and socks off and washed his feet and legs, taped the blister with duct tape and filled the socks with powder and layered on 2 pair of socks. (i mean, take a look at that blister)
He switched to his trail shoes, had some Coke and off they went where we would see them- 13 miles later. It was 2:16pm when he departed from Big Mtn, and it would be about 3 hours or so until we met up with him again at “Lamb’s Canyon”.
The blister, and other complications had Cam about 2 hours behind his original projections and I realized that I needed to get a light jacket and a light, not knowing what the next section would bring. We got some food, re-arranged kids and shot back up to the check point. We had more intel that Cam had been puking and was moving slowly- Dusty told us to get Cam some ‘solid food’ and Ginger Ale. We grabbed him a Turkey Tom from Jimmy Johns (his favorite) and got set up again to greet him at the aid station.
This time when he arrived he seemed great! He sat down, and ate his sandwich and downed all that he could, and told us a little about the last leg, which he really had to get control of his head game and his hydration levels. But as he told us when he arrived he was 180 degrees from where he was a Big Mountain! He was feeling great. Foot was good, and he seemed happy and relaxed.
It was my turn to join him. Now, I am really in no kind of shape to keep up with Cameron- but I did start training earlier this summer to get myself to a point where I could do this with him!—I got my mileage up to 6 or 7 miles, with no serious incline (or decline)…but Cameron kept ensuring me that I could handle it!
At the point that I would be meeting him, he would have about 52ish miles under his belt, and when I left him- he’d still be looking at 40 miles through the night until the finish line; so he was really considering this leg his ‘recovery’ segment-and wanting to take it easy to gear up for a really strong last 40 miles. Our route was up and over Lamb’s Canyon and dropping down (down, down) into Millcreek Canyon, and up 3 more miles to the top… where if you know the area, he’d head on to Dog and Desolation Lake and over to Brighton. I had never been on the trail, so I wasn’t totally sure what I was signed up for!
The trail was beautiful! It was STEEP, and the speed at which we were hiking was super intense! I am not totally sure of the mileage- few miles up and a couple back down. We were visiting- and I think that Cam was counting on me to ‘distract’ him with conversation; and I can do that! As we were getting to the top, my heart was going to beat right out of my chest, and I had to have Cam reassure me that I wasn’t holding him back TOO much! We got to the top, and didn’t even stop to enjoy the view… the sun was just starting to set, and cast an amazing pink/red tone over everything, and Cameron broke into a run heading down the other side. We were literally racing against the sun. He didn’t have a light (while he didn’t tell me this) and was worried that we wouldn’t be able to see the trail well enough to run it. off we went, and I have never RUN down hill like that. I couldn’t even really focus on the trail- my eyes were kinda watering and I was just praying like heck that I wouldn’t fall! But I must admit that it was easier than the hike up! It was actually fuN! We came out in Milcreek Canyon where we still had 3 miles to the check point and it was about taking it easy- so Cam’s stomach would be ready to eat and re-group to move on. The road was pretty narrow, and we had 3-4 cars worth of family/friends drive past us and on up to the aid station. (it was a LONG 3 miles to me!)
All in all, Cameron was about 2 hours ahead of his 2009 time and was feeling great! His next ‘pacer’ was Seth, a young- super-fast-marathon runner and he would be with Cam for the remaining 40 miles! He was a great choice! This guy was a great motivator and mover and shaker! They ran their butts off! In fact, I didn’t make it up to the Brighton for that check point, but I heard Seth only gave Cam 2 minutes to sit!
As Cam made it to Brighton, we were trying to project when he would be finishing- we decided that rather than driving up to the Homestead (about an hour ½ drive) at 3:30am, we opted to just load up and sleep in the car up there- until Cam would come through the finish. We parked near the finish line and slept until about 4:45 am when we thought he’d be getting close! He passed through the last check point at 4:15, so it was a bit off.
It was PITCH black and cold waiting. We couldn’t really see anything or anyone coming- so Eric walked up the course about 200 yards so he could give us a heads up. He would see lights way up in the distance and as they got close enough to be in ear shot, he’d call out to know the number.
Finally… at about 5:50am Eric relayed that he could see runners, and Cam called out his number! It was him and we were so thrilled!! (as was he). He ran in and pretty much collapsed—he was so happy to be done! After he layed on the grass for a few minutes, he couldn’t wait to get his shoes off and find a shower.
Cameron finished 16th overall. he totally kicked butt.
i really am amazed by this whole thing! i am so proud of Cameron, and thankful for the opportunity that he gave me to be a part of something so amazing- i really loved it! it's inspiring, and crazy- don't you think that sometimes it's nice to meet people that are more crazy than you!?
as Cam and i got to spend some time in the thick of the race, talking- and philosophizing about life… we talked about WHY. why we do things that are hard, and push ourselves- well, really i was wondering what in the world can motivate him to not only just do the 100 mile run! but all the training for months and years etc… WHY?? ……..well, i thought it was funny, because the thing that Cam said: 'it's worth it". he loves it. it makes him happy.
the theme this year at CE was "worth remembering". so… that whole 'worth it' thing has been on my mind. any and everything that we do- that we are passionate about, that we love- is 'worth remembering'. Cam had this big thick 'race book' made with all his spread sheets, info etc. and in it was a printed copy of all the blogging that i did last time about it… i never really 'scrapbooked' about the whole thing- but i did a good job blogging about it last time- and you know… that was 'worth it'. i loved being a part of it… love the memories. love the bonding…etc. etc. it's good to do things that scare you, overwhelm you and all and all, make you a better person.