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I conquered HTC and the Blackberry bushes-Part II

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

I left off part I about 6:00 am Saturday morning. Maria, Nancy and Kim were resting in the van and Jyll, Mike and I were out on the ground in bags (we could tell who the campers were LOL). Mike set the alarm for 10:30 so we would have plenty of time to be ready to send Maria off once Penny and Van 1 showed up. However, Nancy and Kim were up and at it about 9:30. I was NOT ready to get up. I had felt refreshed after the short rest I had after Leg 1, but this little bit of rest after Leg 2 left me feeling Yucky and shaky. The lack of sleep Feeling. But I didn't want to panic the rest of the early birds by hanging out in my bag for another hour so I reluctantly got up.

First thing I noticed was the 20 minute line at the port a potty's. Not a good sign since my tummy was not behaving very well. Not unusual for me but I had gotten through the last 24 hours and 2 legs with no issues so I had been cautiously optimistic that my food choices the prior 24 hours had served me well. So no coffee for me this morning. I downed a banana and yogurt along with choice drugs and had time for a couple of turns in the potty line. I guess I got up early for good reason-LOL. The mood of the van was pretty somber. We were all tired and knew we would all have to dig deep to get through the next 6-7 hours where the party at the beach was waiting.
We got Maria ready to run and waited to connect with our comrades in Van 1. With the lack of cell service we hadn't talked to them since we had started off into the mountains hours before. We had spotty cell service at our location but Van 1 didn't yet. Penny showed up and handed off to Maria - but no Van 1. This was the area where the traffic was the heaviest and we were afraid that if we waited for them to get there we would be missing our next runner. So off we went-leaving Penny there to wait for her van.
During Jyll's leg I did some warm up running to see how my tummy was going to behave. I was feeling much better by then and my legs were surprisingly strong. I wasn't running again until after Mike's long last leg of almost 8 miles. I was so glad my last leg was the shortest - only 4.13 miles. Traffic was thinning out at this point so we had some time to hang out while waiting for Mike. I saw him coming this time and he handed off to me for the last time. Leg 34 starts and ends with hills. Once I started up the initial hill my legs didn't feel quite as strong as they had an hour previously. This road also had a lot of oncoming traffic, no shoulder and the sloped roadway so even though it was only 4 miles it was definitely the worst leg I had to run. My pace slowed down to a 10 minute mile and my legs were burning finishing up the last mile-but I did it and was so glad to hand off to Nancy!
Nancy had a long leg on gravel and then it was Kim's turn to finish off the last 5 miles. We headed off as soon as Nancy came in to try and beat Kim to the finish line as we knew it would be hard to do. We originally thought we could make it to the condo and park but once we got into Seaside knew that would be unlikely. We did find a spot on the street and huffed it to the finish line. We found the rest of the team easily and got into the shoot to wait - and almost immediately heard "TEAM 649" and there was Kim rounding the corner.
Wahoo we DID it! 34 hrs and 2 minutes as a team


After we got our medals and our team picture taken everyone scattered. There were thousands of people on the beach. Mike and I headed over to the American Cancer society booth to see about getting food and a massage-courtesy of us both raising $500 for ACS. By then it was after 5:00 pm so the food was about gone and the massage list was long. Mike snagged some smoked salmon and I did manage to sneak in to the massage table and get the knots worked out of my calves!
The rest of the evening was a bit of a blur. I somehow managed to get a shower, have a quick snack with some Van 1'rs -Jackie, Leah, Gaye and headed back to Kim's house with her, hubby John, Nancy and Trish. We got back about midnight and spent the next hour and a half in Kim's hot tub reliving our experience.
In spite of that I got a decent sleep and was able to say goodbye to everyone the next day before I headed off for the 4 hr drive home and back to real life.
On the way back I wanted to stop and pick blackberries since they grow profusely everywhere. There are bushes just a couple of blocks from Kim's house so I stopped there. The bushes are taller than me and have thorns everywhere-including under the leaves. I was wearing my nylon HTC shirt and it didn't take long for the bushes to see me as fresh meat and grab both sleeves of my shirt. I couldn't believe it - here I had just survived the biggest adventure of my life and I was going to be devoured by the blackberry bushes. I hoped Kim would come by soon, see my car sticking out of the bushes and rescue me. I did manage to get free on my own. don a heavy duty jacket that resisted those buggers and picked a large bowlful of berries good enough for 2 batches of freezer jam!

I learned a lot on this adventure- the value of:
Friendship
Teamwork
Humor
Imodium
Planning
Fueling
Chauffeurs-thanks Mike for driving
Hugs-especially Hugs

We rocked HTC!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ETTEZEUS 9/8/2010 11:57PM

    Excellent Polly! I'm looking forward to hearing your experience at person at the Disney full in Jan.

We will have to get together there!
Can't wait to meet you!

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MIAMIA7 9/8/2010 7:17PM

    Great job Polly! Thanks for a great blog!
Anne

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DDHEART 9/8/2010 11:14AM

    You "slowed down to a 10min pace" !!!!!! for me 10min pace is like a momentary fluke that occurs in the beginning of a rested run! What a hero you are!....though I guess when you're running with the threat of "needing to run" it might speed you up...LOL No, I've been there, doesn't speed you up, in fact had it actually nearly stopped me since running and trying not to ummm well we won't go there.

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KEAKMAN 9/8/2010 9:41AM

    Polly, you were a trooper - unhappy tummy and all, yet you were still smiling at then end!

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KASHMIR 9/7/2010 7:17PM

    Polly, Love hearing about Van 2's experiences! Thanks for sharing with us. Congrats!!!

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JOPAPGH 9/7/2010 5:14PM

    Nice report, including the blackberry induced clothing wounds.

It was fun ghost running with you!

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GAYEMC 9/7/2010 4:06PM

    Great to hear how the other side fared. Hope the jam was worth the thorns, lol!

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RDARLING 9/7/2010 3:03PM

    I hope your HTC shirt survived the blackberry thorns!

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CASSIOEPIA 9/7/2010 2:48PM

    Hahaha Dana! Freezer jam is just jam, but instead of canning it, you freeze it. I laughed at the image of somebody more tired than they've ever been in their life, stopping during a four hour drive to pick blackberries! LOL, what a girl.

I never even thought of you guys having a struggle to get to the finish line before Kim, but of course that would be something to make sure got done.

I think you all did a fantastic job! Congratulations on a well run race, and thank you so much for the blogs!

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ZIRCADIA 9/7/2010 2:26PM

    OK this is NOT the kind of comment I expected to be making on this entry but... FREEZER JAM??? What's that??? :D

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