OK, this time next week I'll be an hour into it. My head is spinning around a million different issues but overall, I'm totally pumped about it all.
Some random things:
Weather plays a big part for me. Right now, the forecast is calling for 30% chance of rain on Saturday and increasing to over 50% through the day and into Sunday with temps only in the low 70s. Overnight lows are expected down around 50F which is darn chilly. I say that because by that point, my body will chill easily even in 80F temps due to dehydration. I will continue to watch the weather and plan my drop bags accordingly. I have inserted a weather gadget on the right so you can see current weather conditions at the race site along with sunset/sunrise which definately matters. It's looking like sunset at 8:30pm so that means lights out (and headlamps on) by 9pm and sunrise not until a little after 5am on Sunday so that means first light should be out around 4:45am. All in all, over 7hrs in the dark.
Those Hefty bags I mentioned yesterday are nowhere to be found. Luckily, Target carries the same thing by Ziploc so I'm going to pick them up today on our way down to Loudonville for our family canoe trip.
I've e-mailed the race directors about live updates during the race. I've heard that we'll wear chips but unsure about how often or how reliably updates will be posted online. That's the only way that you'll be able to check in since I will be totally disconnected with regards to technology...cell phone will be powered down and in my trunk for the duration. When I get more reliable info, I'll post it here.
Drop Bags will be approximately every 15 miles: Emma Carlin #1, Scuppernong (50K point), Emma Carlin #2, Nordic Parking Lot (100K and start/finish line), Highway 12 #1(77mi) and Highway 12 #2 (86mi). Standard items will be replacement socks already filled with Sportshield Lubricant powder, Shot Bloks, anti-chaffing lube and replacement baggies filled with Perpetuem. Other items depending on the location will be replacement trail shoes, change of clothing (shirt), water to refill my 1.5 liter bladder in my pack, Garmin GPS, and my headlamp(s). I rely on potatoes, as well, but am confirming now if that will be standard fare at the aid stations. If so, I'm not going to try and stage those as I believe they will be nasty by the time I make them on Wednesday, they make the 8hr trip, sit on ice for a couple of days, then go un-refrigerated in drop bags. I may get more sick from them being old than helping me. I'm also waiting to hear back from the race director on the potato reliability at aid stations.
I plan to have a few items with me at all times: backup headlamp which is very tiny, weighs only a few grams, and will be the 2nd/backup light during the night for directional use. I'll wear a head-mounted lamp for the bulk of my light. (new batteries purchased yesterday) I'll also plan on always having a fresh baggie of Perpetuem with me at all times...double-bagged to keep it dry. I will start the event with one handheld bottle with Heed and will pick up the 2nd bottle with Perpetuem powder in it at Emma Carlin #1. From that point on, I will sip on a multi-hour bottle of Perpetuem and supplementing it with Heed and water. I will also alternate between Shot Bloks and Hammer Gels every 3-4 miles. Everything else will be solid foods at the aid stations.
Ants in my pants...that's what I've got 7 days out! The weather is promising, too. Rain for me is a good thing. It helps keep me from over-heating...kinda like having a slow-trickle battery pack on my back....or like running in air conditioning. When I ran the Green Jewel 100K last spring, it rained from Mile 15 to 55 and was a good thing. If raining as night falls, I'll double layer with a long sleeve tech tee and my rain proof North Face jacket to keep the chills to a minimum. That jacket is so darn technical but so light and minimal. I'll keep it with me for the duration of the event as it will fit in the back of my pack...it's a "never leave home without it" item.
Say goodbye to May and hello to June!
Happy Trails, everyone!