So the stage was set yesterday at 4pm when the stock market closed. 438 people had registered for the available 180 slots, over 100 more than the number registered in 2009. Based on where the stock market closed and the direction in which it was moving when it did, the field was set and I was in. I was actually one of the first in. I believe the number was 597 (the last 3 digits of the closing stock price including decimals) and it was dropping at the close...I was number 565 so I got in lickety-split! I now have to pay my entry by the first week of January or I lose it. No problemo, senor! I now have about 5 months to best prepare for yet again, the toughest challenge of my life. Like I have said before, this just seemed like the next "logical" step in my 100-mile "career." It's been an awesome journey so far and I expect nothing less for 2010. The picture here is of Lloyd Thomas' MMT buckle from 2009. As you can see, it's basically a 'pewter-like' work of art. It will go nicely right beside my Oil Creek 100 buckle. :-)
Training will be tricky for this one as much of it must happen over the winter. I really need to seek out tough terrain and long multi-hour runs. Unfortunately, we don't have anything that really compares to MMT here in NE Ohio regarding rocks. Mill Creek Park has a bunch and 'running' up creek in the Brecksville Reservation are a couple of options. Plus, my Navy commitments have a pretty big ramp-up starting in March and April, the last 2 months before MMT. Luckily, one of those involve my graduation from Supply Corps school in Athens, GA. I'll be there for 2 weeks so the weekend in between, my plan is to travel about 2hrs north into the mountains and hop on the AT (Appalachian Trail) and hike/run for at least 12 hours. Awesome elevation, major drops and rises in temperature conditions and lots of rocks will provide a perfect training ground. I'll have to get creative to get in other quality training runs but I'm confident I'll make it all work out...I always do. One thing I won't do is show up in Virginia in May ill-prepared.
A little update on my trail clinic this Saturday at 11am at Kendall Lake Shelter. I picked up some great swag to raffle off to those in attendance courtesy of Vertical Runner. Thanks, Vince! I will also be giving out discount coupons to Vertical Runner good for anything in the store except for Garmin products. You must be in attendance to be eligible for either of these items. It's going to be cold so if you're coming, dress warm to stand around in the beginning. For the run, it'll involve slow running and some walking on a beautiful but tough trail for about 4 miles. As of now, about 20 have RSVP'd to the clinic. If you're up for lots of running before the clinic, I have posted multiple options starting at 6:15am at Happy Days including a familiarization run of the Winter Run for Regis 50K course to be held in January.
Remember the pesky psoas muscle problem that showed itself at Mile 20 of 100 at the Oil Creek 100? Well, it continues to remind me of its presence. My massage therapist has thrown in the towel and can't do anything more so I'm going to visit my chiropractor tomorrow to get an adjustment and see if that helps. It's not stopping me from running but it's still 'there.' It needs to NOT be 'there' because it will rule the world if it's still 'there' at MMT! It feels the worst when I rest, believe it or not, and feels better when I run on trails. Go figure! The soreness is just in such a difficult location that you really can't stretch it much or anything.
Winter has appeared in NE Ohio! Time to ramp up the training and get out there! Screwed shoes, stand by!
Happy Trails, everyone!