June 2005
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Month June 2005

“cannon versus the mountain”

i just want to reiterate how much i love my wednesday night spin
classes at ATS. last night we had my favorite format: face offs! the
bikes are arranged in 2 rows facing each other. the whole 2.5 hours is
interval based (oh, we did have our standard 30 min run in the middle),
with 1 row sprinting or climbing, and the other recovering. it is the
duty of the recoverees to yell, taunt, and otherwise motivate those in
pain. sometimes you can hear them… sometimes not. i do remember ken
yelling at me during one particularly brutal climb… “it’s Cannon VS
The Mountain… gogogogogooooo!” i think i’ll hear that line again next
time i’m on my real bike, facing something like winding stairs gap
soon.

xterra·time

while i ended up not doing this race, i still suffered with my friends
by waking up before the crack of dawn for the second saturday in a row.
we packed up and headed down to arrowhead trails (in macon). billy,
joanna & melissa entered as a relay team and i think i counted 7 other
friends racing individually. the weather was perfect and not too hot to
start off – ‘course those jumping in lake tobesofkee would have
preferred things a tad warmer! billy did AWESOME on the swim – she was
teh 2nd woman out of the water (and i think 5th overall person!)
melissa was next up on the bike – a difficult position to be in so
early, as many strong bikers came behind and needed to pass. let’s just
say this course is not passing friendly so that was i’m sure quite
frustrating. joanna finished things off with a very solid run on a very
course filled with lots of climbing. they finished 3rd in the team
division.. meanwhile some of the BOD girls rocked the house, with kate
taking overall female champion and kari placing 2nd in her age group.
norma was also there, getting 1st in her AG and johnny took 3rd. i was
definitely jealous i couldn’t be out there, but glad i could cheer on
all my friends!

taking a walk on the other side

while i absolutely love racing, the fact remains i can’t afford to do
everything i want. so instead of sitting on the sidelines lusting
impatiently, i get involved in other ways. i do really enjoy being
support crew – in the heat of the action, helping contribute to your
team’s success directly (plus, you can usually get them to crew for you
sometime later, a very handy negotiation tool!) then i also like to be
involved with the race itself. volunteering for a TA or CP is great
(and earning race credit is what has thankfully kept me busy racing so
far this year), but getting your feet wet with the organization of the
race itself is exhilarating. i’ve always liked making things happen…
from high school & college groups, to the organizations i’m involved
with now.

so to have the opportunity to work with kevin / checkpoint adventures to
organize from scratch the inaugural Adventure24 adventure race
was quite exciting! while i helped him out for several months on course
consultation, sponsor ideas, and oh yeah, the logo itself, my main
responsibility was that of volunteer director, because face it, the
race really couldn’t happen without them.

to be honest, i think i started a bit late in soliciting volunteers. i
wanted people to sign up to race first, then hit up the rest of the
community then. we had a great crew, until the week prior, when several
dropped out and a few more didn’t show up to check in. that made things
a bit rough! luckily those that did show up were awesome about juggling
the positions.

now a redux of the weekend…
Friday: woke up early, packed the car, ran a few race errands for
kevin, packed the car some more (really an obscene amount of stuff
crammed in there!) then hit the road for Cherokee Nat’l Forest in SE
Tennessee! the drive went well and i got in at 1pm. kevin and i
unloaded a few things, then he handed me some maps & cps to put out and
off i went! i hopped on my bike and set out 2 points (on the
orienteering section). due to the on and off again rain, i got nice and
muddy (i reaallly need to replace those glasses i ran over a few months
ago. too much mud was flying up!). i got back to the 4H camp (that
served as race HQ and check in) a bit before 5, grabbed some zanfel and scrubbed
my legs down – at one point, going to CP13, i looked down at the poison ivy was
as tall as my knees! crap. i just wasn’t looking. fingers crossed this stuff
works! then kicked back and checked in teams. that’s something i like
about races, it’s always like a big reunion…seeing lots of friends &
old buddies, as well as meeting new ones (this event was particularly
fabulous in the meet-new-awesome-people arena! ;-) After the pre-race
meeting (which went well.. teams didn’t seem to have too many
questions), kevin, emily & i set out to place the last few CPS
(involved a midnight walk in the rain thru Tanasi!) then i curled up in
my sleeping bag on the stage of the rec hall and tried to grab a few
winks.

Saturday: woke up a LOT during the night. nerves?? then was up at 6:45
to help direct some of the med/rescue units to their proper location.
then i lazily went about the morning, setting up and organizing things.
the first few teams rolled into the area (served as TA 2, 3, and the
finish) around 10am, with others really not settling in till the mid
afternoon. i’m glad i brought my ipod & speakers! the rain drizzled
here and there, but in general wasn’t an issue. daniel from adventure sports
magazine
hung out a lot (and helped out too).. then john, the owner of
terrapin beer, rolled in with his family and 2 kegs of beer to keep us fueled.
(my vote is for the cream ale!) the rest of the day and night went smoothly.
teams seemed happy and jazzed about the course.

Sunday: at some point, that is really quite indistinguishable, it
became sunday. the first team (litespeed) finished sometime the
previous night, but due to an unfortunate penalty, they were not the
winners… bryan, james & lisa of ASM pulled off a close win over
racemetrics, with litespeed coming in third. somewhere around 2:30am
kevin took over TA duties and i was able to grab 2 hours of sleep. and
i actually fell asleep somehow, with the adrenaline leaving me for a
wee bit. then kevin woke me up; it was his turn to nap. :-( by this
time teams were steadily coming in and my post-race pancake cooking
duties kicked in. easy to make and yummmy! blueberry of course, with
fresh sliced bananas. (i stashed some maple syrup for me!)

the race ended at 7am, with the awards presentation at 8. then the
“fun” began. (or misery i should say). for some reason it didn’t
actually click in that we, being just the 3 of us, had to stash
everything back into our cars (u haul next year for sure!!), clean up
the camp, then pick up all of the checkpoints. (note to self: recruit specific
volunteers for post-race duties!)all this on 2 hours of sleep! oh, then drive
back to town safely. HA! i was anxious to get out as i had a friend that raced
southern lights (24hr bike race) supposed to stay at my house that night. i
snagged some of the o-points and hit the road (no time for the zanfel.
unfortunately. the poison ivy is starting to pop out now, but luckily not too bad.
yet.) i left the race area around 2pm, once again muddy from riding the bike.
(was able to get a brief shower as i changed in the rain.) as i was headed out of
town, back to atl, my lack of sleep started catching up to me, so i
called my friends jim & carol in chattanooga to see if i could take a
nap & shower at their place (and return the road bike i had borrowed
for a bit). felt much better, but after an impromptu dinner (with one
of those new special friends i mentioned earlier), i decided it best to
stay in TN overnight and just head home the following morning, totally
refreshed.

so that’s it. this is long enough. and i’m tired again. the race was a
success, i had a blast, and kevin and i are already thinking about next
year’s!


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