General Discussion Race Reports! » Indiana Trail 100 Rss Feed  
Moderators: k9car363, alicefoeller Reply

Indiana Trail 100 - RunUltra Marathon

View Member's Race Log View other race reports
Albion, Indiana
United States
25F / -4C
Total Time = 00m
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

This isn't a race report - it's a volunteer and pacer report because I wanted to put down my thoughts surrounding this amazing first-time event. It's long and boring so you don't want to spend the time reading it. I just wanted to get it all down so I could reference it next year.

I knew I wanted to be part of this event when I started seeing all the chatter and reviewed the website. My friend (Karen), who'd done her first 100 at Mohigan in June of 2012, had signed up to make this her second and I wanted to get my head around what it took to do an event like this. When I met Karen a few years ago we did some training runs together but it was quickly apparent that I couldn't keep up with her pace. She's an amazing athlete and 10 years younger than me, so when she asked if I'd pace her the last 30 miles she had to assure me she'd be going 13-14, even 20 miles an hour through the dark of night. It seemed like a great adventure! I got to the state park Friday late morning and saw all the water from the flooding we'd had and knew the trails were going to be mud covered. The forecast was for low 20s too, so I really had to think through not only my safety but Karen's as well. She told me my one main job was to not let her quit. I needed to make sure I wasn't the one to have to drop out. :)
Event warmup:

I volunteered at packet pickup Friday from 3-7 and again Saturday morn from 4-6:00 and there was no heat in the main tent so I was cold, although I'd layered as much as possible. After the race started I rechecked the participant log then grabbed a breakfast sandwich and made it to the Mile 9 aid station to be scorekeeper. Thankfully they had a campfire going and the sun was peeking out from time to time. My job as scorekeeper was to write down the time as each participant passed by. It was hard to catch everyone but they'd been told to yell out their race number to me so I ended up only missing 3 people. When they came by on their second loop I took a best guess at their first lap time. I started getting exhausted after most folks came through the second lap so I passed the job onto another person and headed back to the campground. I slept off and on for the next 6 hours and estimate I got 4 hours of good sleep. Not enough, but it had to do. Karen had been doing each loop in around 4 hours so I estimated I'd be picking her up around 10:30 so I prepped myself for that. Her daughter was crewing her and she kept me up-to-date as best as she could. Cell service in the park was spotty and I couldn't get a signal in my camper. I got to the main tent all ready to go but got a text that Karen had really slowed and that I'd have close to 2 hours before I'd take over pacing duty. That ended up being a blessing because I realized with the constantly falling temps that I needed to layer up more. In the main tent they'd made a dry-erase board of everyone in the 100 and listed their lap times. I was shocked to see more than half had DNFd by that point in the night. I heard folks tell of the multiple water crossings that were starting to get a thin layer of ice and I knew I would be in trouble if I didn't do something. I went back to camp and redressed in two pairs of tights, another pair of socks with plastic bags in-between and another UA cold gear shirt. I grabbed a balaclava which turned out to be a life-saver and also my heavy mittens with heat warmers inside. Phewwww - I'm glad I packed all varieties of stuff. Came back to the main tent and saw Karen come in and she looked spectacular - smiling and laughing. Another friend was pacing her from miles 50-70 and they were having a good time. I rode with Karen's daughter to the first aid station which is where I was to take over pacing duty. She turned up the heat in her car and we both dozed off a bit which was nice. Around 12:15 we saw the girls come in. Karen got on another layer, grabbed some nutrition and then we were off.
  • 00m
  • 30 miles
  •  min/mile

We started off at a relatively slow jog. I knew Karen wasn't her normal self (who is after 70 miles thus far?) She said she was having knee pain but wasn't going to let it stop her. We fell into an easy conversation. We really hadn't gone far when she told me she just had to drop down to a walk. No problem - I could keep up with her at that pace. :) The miles from the first aid station to the second were wide, so we walked side by side. After the mile 9 aid station it was single track and she had me lead because my headlamp (I used one attached to my hat) was stronger than hers. This was the section of the river crossing which was above my knees. It was crazy and even with the plastic bags, the freezing water got in my feet. I was really worried and prayed fervishly that I'd get the feeling back in my toes and I eventually did after I started jogging a bit. The water didn't faze Karen at all. In fact, I joked with her that when we came to water I looked for a way around it and she just went right through. Karen and I talked about EVERYTHING and the night passed by amazingly quick. Although she was in a lot of pain, she was determined to push through and she maintained an easy-going attitude the whole time. At some point in the night she also said her shins were hurting and she got really quiet (she's usually the talker and I'm the listener). I asked if she wanted quiet and she said no, so I started asking her all kinds of silly questions to get her mind off pain - her favorite color, favorite song, etc. We whittled away a couple hours talking about that juvenile stuff and laughing. Her daughter was the BEST crew person - she was at every aid station and turn that she could be, with a smile and cheers throughout the whole 100 miles. It was beautiful to see such support of a daughter to her mother. Another cool thing was watching the sun rise and the earth start to come alive with the sounds of birds and critters. The night had been extremely quiet in the woods. On our final loop we realized that if she was going to make the 30 hour cut-off she would have to pick up the pace. It was a test of her spirit and it was amazing to see her grit her teeth and pick up the pace. When we made it to the mile 9 aid station with 7.67 miles left to go, we were told they'd extended the cutoff by an hour due to the folks left out on the course. I could see the visible relief come over Karen. Even at that, though, I knew she wanted to come under the original time and she did!
What would you do differently?:

Not a thing. What an amazing adventure with an amazing friend!
Post race
Warm down:

The finish line was up a hill and Karen and I hugged at the bottom and I watched her jog her way up and across the finish line in 29 hours 20 minutes. I've never seen, nor have I felt, such emotion while finishing an event. The tears just flowed joyously. 100 miles! Wow!

Event comments:

The IT100 folks put on an awesome first-time event. Mother Nature pulled a punch with the flooding but the RD re-routed some places and did his best for the safety of the particants. There were ham radio operators camping out along the course and they kept track of where everyone was through the aid station scorekeepers. Out of 181 people who signed up only 57 completed the 100 mile adventure (31.49%) and I'm so proud that Karen was one of them.

This is what I put for my Facebook status after the race: "There was no goody bag for me with a cool t-shirt and stuff, no crossing the finish line to cheers and a medal, yet running the last 30 miles with Karen on her way to completing the Indiana Trial 100 miler was one of the most rewarding races I've ever been a part of. Running through the night in 20 degree temperatures on a muddy/flooded/icy course then watching the sun rise, hearing the birds sing and all the while watching my friend maintain a positive and determined disposition amidst knee and shin pain was an incredible adventure. In an event where only 31% completed the 100 miles they signed up for, I'm blessed beyond measure to have been able to experience this journey into what the human spirit is capable of and I'm thanking God for it all."

I've already set aside April 25-27 next year to volunteer again. And if Karen signs up again and needs a pacer, I'll be the first in line to volunteer for that duty as well.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2013-04-10 12:00 AM
00:00:00 | 30 miles |  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Course: A 16.67 mile looped course on the trails throughout the state park. With the recent flooding there were many areas that were mud covered and spots where they had to string rope so you could get across the river safely.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2013-05-10 2:28 PM

User image

Subject: Indiana Trail 100
General Discussion-> Race Reports!
General Discussion Race Reports! » Indiana Trail 100 Rss Feed