The miles have been run. The training is more or less done. With only 12 days to go to Western States 100, I find myself getting nervous, excited and aching to experience the unique journey of this race. But given my experience last year, of getting sick in the final days before Western, I have one very different preparation step in mind this time.
Last year, I let the Western States media hype devour me whole. I read all the blogs, posts, twitter, and other social media predictions, contests and commentary. Mostly, because I am as much a fan of the sport as I am a competitor in the sport. But it did nothing for me other than make me more nervous or worry or upset, leading to less sleep and ultimately a breakdown in my immune system. If I ever got another chance to run Western, that was the one thing I would change. Well, by some awesome luck and a chance at a do over, I will make the choice to go off the radar. My goal is getting to the start line healthy, rested and peaceful. The three most important ingredients I need for a good 100 mile run.
And so, from here until after Western States, I won’t be on Facebook, blogs, websites or the like to see what other’s think about the race. I love those sites, but will have fun looking at that AFTER the race has been run. I am going off the grid and just going to enjoy my family, my garden, short shake out runs with my dog, and eating really clean and resting really deep.
I think I am fit and ready to go. After a long training session on the course itself, I made peace with the historic trail and asked it to take care of me during the race, to let me run quickly, safely and with all my heart. And so, that is my only real race plan- run hard, run smart, respect what the course and day gives me and to smile of course.