Saturday, June 14, 2008

Lake Youngs Ultra - a family affair

I did Lake Youngs ultra Saturday - all three loops, total 28.8 miles. It was a fun day and lots to celebrate - from Jenn Sempsey's first ultra (as well as others') to Van Phan's 100th ultra! The entire Martineau clan put the race on, with Arthur and Jennifer as Race Directors and the kids checking off the times for racers coming in from a loop and grandma chasing down the younger ones. It was quite impressive and very well organized!

The day started early - way too early for me, but it's good practice for White River and the early start. After a fitful night's sleep, the alarm went off at 3:45 and I bolted out of bed (highly unusual behavior for me) and went in the bathroom to get dressed so as not to disturb the sleeping Donn. I managed to get breakfast, make an espresso, and get myself ready to go by 4:25 - a new PR! Funny - when I got up Donn thought to himself as soon as I was done in the bathroom, he'd get up. Next thing he knew, I was leaning down to kiss him goodbye. Damn I'm good!

I picked up Danika in Ballard and we headed to Renton, making a quick pit stop before getting to the race site, as the restrooms were still closed. There were quite a few folks at the start when we arrived and several had already taken off. The area seemed socked in with clouds and despite the nice sunrise we saw, the sun was not going to appear there today. It was also rather chilly - something that would last the whole race. Tracy and Jenn drove up and we picked up our race bag and numbers. The shirts were a short sleeved version of the Chuckanut shirts (made by Patagonia) and very low key - not any advertising. It's my favorite summer shirt! The Martineaus managed to secure some awesome sponsors as the bag had some decent stuff in it!

When we were ready, we thought about taking off, but it was so close to 6 that Arthur asked us to wait. Finally we were off and Jenn and Danika soon sped ahead. Jenn had some unfinished ultra business- last year, while training for the Northface 50K, she sustained an injury that put her out of that race, and left her unable to train for another til now. They both looked very strong every time we saw them on the trail - oh to be young again! Tracy and I had a nice loop together, but I wasn't quite awake, and hence, not very talkative and maybe even a little grumpy. Poor Tracy tried, but I just wasn't very responsive. We came in (9.6 miles) at about 1:48. The regular starters had already taken off, and we decided the second loop would be a reverse of the first one (which was clockwise). We saw Shawn and *tc heading towards us near the end of the first loop, and I pointed out to them they were going the wrong way. *tc said 'oh crap!' and started to turn around but Shawn protested so they continued backwards. Hence our decision to try the next one backwards.

We soon started seeing other people as they came towards us. Arthur was running in his own race and oops! we were busted for going backwards! Steve Stoyles came towards us and we stopped to exchange hugs. Soon Rich and Linda came our way - more hugs! I told Tracy it was amazing I didn't come away from these events with a cold from all the hugging. Eric and Iliana came our way too and so may others I can't remember 'em all. I was amazed to see Jess out there since she had run her first 100 miler the week before. She was doing a one loop "recovery" run - wow! At one point we got a peek-a-boo of the reservoir which got us to talking about soaking in cold water after the race. Neither one of us could think of a place to go - no rivers or lakes were nearby. Bummer. The loop soon ended and as we came into the aid station I heard Arthur yell "Laura!" and I looked over to see him sitting in a kids wading pool! Brilliant idea! I yelled to Tracy - there's where we can soak when we're done!

Tracy changed shoes, I ate my PBJ, we both hit the toilet and then we were off - clockwise this time. Funny thing about this loop - seems like a lot of people decided to go counterclockwise so we saw many more as we went along. The amazing Bob Stoyles (Steve's 80 year old dad) was out there cranking out the miles. He's my hero -hands down! About halfway through this loop, I started getting bored. Plus, little aches and pains kept coming up and I was getting ready to be done. I must have checked my watch every half mile thinking 'are we there yet?'. I tried all kinds of tricks - speeding up a little, going to certain points on the uphill, you name it! Thank goodness Tracy was there - at least we could talk! About a half mile before the end, we came to a nasty hill. I totally did not remember it from our first loop! I was really shocked! We grunted up the hill and finally came to the nice slight descent back into the parking area/aid station/finish. Done! And so glad to be, that it made me nervous thinking about the upcoming 50 miler.

There was a fabulous post race barbecue and Team Hippy had a brief reunion. It gave me a chance to wish Linda well on her first 100 at Bighorn - let's all send good vibes!! I stood in the kiddie pool for a while but couldn't bring myself to sit down. It was still cloudy and cool and I was getting chilly. A little while later, the two youngest Martineau kids were playing in it. Young Arthur really had to pee, but was refusing to take the time to go to the bathroom, no matter how much Jennifer tried to coax him. When I saw him in the pool, I thought, hmm, guess it's a good thing I got in there earlier. Of course Arthur the elder could have been doing the same thing while sitting in the pool....nah!

I have a spot on my right bunion that gets rubbed. I have tried taping it (that rubs off), lubing it (no help) and two coats of New Skin. It still gets rubbed and there may be a blister under the callus. It's a little tender when I step down. I talked to Karen Wiggins who gets the same thing and she uses Elastikon. I'll have to try that. It bothered me through the second loop but as my feet swelled, it didn't bug me so much. Still I'd like to take care of it once and for all. The Mizunos did well, though maybe a little too cushioned for that trail (?) as my knees started talking. I still love them for trails like Cougar. All in all, this was more good training for what's to come.....


Backofpack said...

I'm sorry to have missed it, though LY is not my favorite course. That's where I did my first 50k (Pigtails) and had to climb that dreadful hill to finish.

Bunion advice: I had a constant blister under mine. It would barely heal between races and then get it again. Arthur suggested (and Eric reminded me he had already suggested it) carving away the insole under the bunion. Eric did it with a dremmel(spelling?). I use Superfeet, so he filed away the area under the bunion, leaving a thinner layer of insole. He also smoothed it out gradually to the edge - we've done it to three pairs now and it works beautifully. I have not had a blister since - at least, not on the bunion. Let me know if I need to send pictures because I probably didn't describe it well.

antil0ck said...

Laura, I came across your blog as I was searching for any info on the Lake youngs ultra. I will be particpating this June and wanted get as much info as possible from people who have already run this course. Reading your article was a nice introduction into the lake youngs ultra. Thanks again!