3 Epic Race Weekends

I know my blogging has been slacking, but it is definitely for a good reason!  I have been busy crewing, pacing, spectating, and participating in epic races!  Each one so completely different and awesome. 

Saturday, July 19th: VERMONT 100, Windsor, VT 

Crew/Pace for Amy Rusiecki:  if you read my blog post about Cayuga 50, then you know who Amy is. If you are an ultra runner from New England then you know who Amy is. She is a rockstar in the Ultra scene and I was lucky enough to share the trails with her nearly the whole Cayuga Race.

It’s amazing how things work. I was out running with a couple girlfriends in the trail a week before the Vt100 and told them, “I think pacing would be a great gig. Enjoy the race, not a lot of stress, etc etc”. No joke, I got in my car and had an email from Amy asking me if I was free the following weekend to pace/crew her for the VT100. I wasn’t, I had 2 jobs that I was working, but I knew I had to make it happen. This was a chance to experience an amazing race with a runner I have so much respect for in some beautiful scenery. 

I got coverage for my jobs and headed up to Vermont with my friend Melissa to experience our first VT100. What an amazing experience. We got to crew with two extremely enthusiastic up-and-coming Ultra Runners and I was able to pace her from mile 77-88. I was very nervous with it being my first pacing duty and the fact that it was for someone who was TOP 2/3 female. This was not a middle of the packer just trying to finish. No, this girl is the real deal. Not to mention she is next years race director, so it was as if I was running with a celebrity!  

I learned so much from this event and had an amazing time. It was beyond gorgeous and running alongside the horses was just cool as hell. Amy finished the race with a PR (18:47) and 3rd female overall. Her husband would break the course record that day (14:47) and win the race. This couple. Come on.

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Sunday, July 27th: IRONMAN 140.6 Lake Placid, NY

The following weekend  was the IRONMAN in Lake Placid. I have been attending this event for the last 6 years and it will always hold a special place in my heart. This event is something every person needs to experience in person. The energy is unlike any race I have ever experienced. Add that to the constant backdrop of the Adirondacks and you have a girl who is at her emotional edge for 5 days straight. Then throw in the fact that MY BROTHER is doing the race. Stop it. Too much. 

This year my husband was able to join me….YES!!!!!  Best. Thing. Ever. Breath taking bike rides, hikes, and moments with him.  My Mom was there. My sister in law and nieces. Then add in two other mission FITNESS clients doing the race and about 10 MFers up there to spectate. Enough said. An amazing 5 days. 

Race day. Unreal. Too much. My brother KILLED it. Finished about 11:42. He is just unreal. My two friends finished happy and feeling good with great times! So amazing. One thing I will never miss at an IRONMAN is the midnight finish. If you have been, you know what I mean. 11pm-12am is THE MOST AMAZING HOUR IN SPORTING EVENTS. I can’t even explain it. You have to be there. But, as I sat there and watched it this year I couldn’t help but think about the finish line I was at exactly one week prior. People finishing a 100 mile race, and MAYBE 10 spectators. A horse. A few claps. That’s it. INSANE!!!  You DO NOT do a 100 miler to finish with thousands cheering you on. You need to have something else that drives you. But, I guess that’s with ANYTHING we do.

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Saturday, August 2nd: GMARA Bitter Pill 12 Hour Adventure Race, Richmond, VT

last weekend I headed back up to Vermont to participate in an Adventure Race. I did one of these years ago with my brother and LOVED it. It is basically finding checkpoints in the wilderness by orienteering (using a map, compass, etc) while doing several different disciplines (Could include: Trek, Mountain Bike, Kayak, Canoe, white water raft, Repelling, etc) I have been wanting to do one ever since I did one with Matt, but I’ve had a hard time finding someone to race with.   Traditional AR teams are coed teams of 3 and it is hard to find people who can take a weekend away from family. I luckily bumped into a guy in the trails when training one day and he happened to be a Rev 3 sponsored Adventure Racer. He contacted me to race with him and his other Rev 3 teammate and I jumped on the chance. 

I was extremely nervous since my I have not been Mountain Biking a lot, and I knew these were professional racers. Turns out I kept up just fine and we ended up destroying the competition. With bonus checkpoints we beat the 2nd place team in our division by 6 hours. Crazy!  Results can be seen here

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So, that’s what I did my last 3 weekends. So amazing. Life is good!

 

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