amy courts: en route

Have You Ever (Trail Run Edition) or Deep Woods Madness or My Life, So Far
August 21, 2010, 9:47 am
Filed under: Running

Last night, I enjoyed (if you can use that word in this context) one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I shall share it in question form. (Feel free to check “yes” or “no” next to each question.)

> Run 14 miles on an unfamiliar mountain trail with one coach and four strangers?
> Gotten stupid-sick and had to stop for a deep woods runner’s dookie just off an unfamiliar mountain trail?
> Run in the dark by head-lamp light only, fallen down twice, and stripped your knees raw on a UMT?
> Learned, over the course of a 4.5 hour run, that you are a super over-sweater and thus prone to dehydration?
> In an effort to be ‘one of the runners,’ failed to consume an appropriate amount of electrolytes, calories, and water…making you dehydrated and facing electrolyte-absence-induced paralysis?
> Needed to stop for a second bathroom break only to be attacked, mid-potty-search, with crushing calf cramps so debilitating your coach had to race to your side, hold down your leg to relieve the cramp, and carry you up the hill?
> While listening to coach explain why it’s best to try not to vomit, proceeded to do so, projectile-style, while he stands by laughing uproariously at the grand perfection of it all?
> Realized after the fact that the leftover Thai food (which also happened to make you similarly sick earlier that same morning) was probably the primary culprit and enemy, but that in the course of four hours, you have suffered every. single. runner’s ultimate nightmare…on the same night….for the first time in your life (on all counts, from dark night run to dookie in the woods to falling twice mid-stride to vomiting en route)…

…On your first unfamiliar moutain trail run with one coach and four strangers.

Welcome to my evening, Friends!

In truth, I’m grateful it was everything at once on such a vulnerable run. I made four new friends who cheered me on despite the insanity; bonded with coach; and learned some incredible lessons about my body, its needs, and its limits, and that even so, I am able to finish. Maybe not strong, but certainly with my hands in the air, a shrug on my shoulders, and a huge smile on my face at its utter absurdity, and the entertainment it undoubtedly provides for others.

Last night, I more than survived: I lived.

I am a runner.


1 Comment so far
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I aspire to this. Okay, minus the vomiting – nothing will ever make me aspire to vomiting. But I really want to be a runner – right now I’m just someone who runs now and then.

Comment by orualundone

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