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2017 Desert RATS Kokopelli 150 Racer Posts

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2017 Desert RATS Kokopelli 150

Day2/3 – K-Ray
Day 2 is a long story, but im still in the game. I will share more with you when I get home.
Day 3 was a short 9 mile run. I finished! The temps are crazy!!! I made it back to basecamp, hopped in the river and got a massage. Im going to toe the line in the morning. I am going to give it my all, take no risks. Fingers crossed we have a nice breeze and some cloud coverage. Thanks again for following my week in the desert. Im having a blast and making new friends. xx

Day 2 & 3
Excuse the typos, I am writing this without my glasses lol
Day 2 was hard. My goal for the day was to hold a good steady effort I could maintain throughout the hot part of the day. The morning that meant running slow. I took that opportunity to take a few shots, including spoting climbing route (thanks Bob for that lol). The last runner passed me early and I didn’t start catching up to the back of the pack until a few hours in. Once I did caught up I steadily passed runners throughout the day. With a good feel on effort I found a good pace for the afternoon. I filled 2 20OZ bottles as my personal watering agents (RunStrong crew you will know what I mean here) then carried a 3rd 20oz bottle for extra electrolites then my 3L bladder. I barely could pulled my pack on my back lol I never experienced low points in day 2. Every time I wanted to stop I kept remembering to stay positive and that I am in charge on my brain not the other way around. It was just a tough tough day on the trail. I was pushing harder, running faster. The last few miles I experienced the worst discomfort. My vision started to blur the very last miles but I came in happy and safely into the finish.

dAY 3 I loaded up on water for day 3 despite it being only 9 miles. There was no aid station. The trail was gently rolling with a few technincal section. The run part was over early. We are spending our afternoon chilling at base camp (in the shade) and cooling off in the river. Wendie I miss you guys and had a lot of time to think about you this afternoon.

Day 2 & 3 – Chris
Yesterday was tough. It took a lot more than I expected. The heat was unbelievable, and it was hard to keep your core temp down. At 34 miles I was struggling a bit, but was able to walk the last 5 miles. Just over twelve hours. Honestly, wasn’t sure I’d be able to go again today. Never fun when you are cramping up as you more around in bed. 🙂 But today went well, 9 miles, and we were finished before noon. So an afternoon, soaking at the boat ramp at Dewey Bridge campground. Really great people here doing the race, and the race crew has been fantastic. Hope the fam is doing well, and enjoying the hut trip. We can exchange stories on our return. Tomorrow is 43 miles, and since I’ve never gone that far, I have no idea what to expect. Keep your fingers crossed. Till tomorrow night. Love you.

Day 2 & 3 – Ulla
Day 2, 39 miles, hot, long day! Fortunately some clouds showed up around 5:30 and that helped with the heat. It’s beautiful out here!
Day 3, only 9 miles, walking. This afternoon we soaked in the river, took some naps, eat, rehydrate, and just trying to recover as best as possible. Tomorrow is another long day

Day 2 and 3- Tara

Day two ended up being a very hot almost 39 mile day. Reports of temps between 106-110 degrees, and at one point a staff measuring the temp on the road at 121 degrees. I kept a very even pace, and was able to stay steady in the heat with a stratagy to get into the finish between 7-8pm. My stratagy was working well and I was able to stay cool enough by alternating drinking Normalyte (ORS salts) and water, and carrying extra water just to wet the cooling headwear and tanktop. I even brought extra to spare because I am sensitive to heat and sun and was overly prepared.

I ended up being fine by keeping on top of my tempuature control and hydration, but was glad in the end I Was over prepared. Around mile 21.5 I caught up with KayRay and Mikey whom I had been leapfroging since mile 13. We all cooled down under the bridge, and continued to leapfrog toward the aid station at mile 28.5. Around mile 24.5 I had just past the two girls again and I came upon Hans, who appeared to be convulsing on the side of the trail in the direct sunlight. By that time I believe the temps were close to 110 degrees and there was still 4 miles left to the next aid station.

After trying to talk to him I realized he was not coharently speaking, and he could not stand up on his own. He was limp as I tried on my own to figure out how to lift him over a small berm to the nearest shade. He was lucky to have colapsed right next to a larger tree, as shade is spares on that section of the course.

While I was trying to move him, I grabbed one of my extra water bottles in my pack, unscrewed the lid, and poured the whole bottle over Han’s shirt and head. As I was pouring, Kayray and Mikey came around the corner and I alerted them. With their help we were able to quickly cary him to the shade and started removing extra clothing from him and we all took off our cooing clothing and started trying to cool him down. For the first 20 minutes he was tachycardic with a weak and irratic pulse, and he was not oriented to person, time, or place. He kept slipping in and out of conciousness.

As his body started to cool, and his heartrate became more regular and slower he came around and between 20-25 minutes he was more alert. We tried to call out to Reids number, and tried calling 911 and could not get an emergency call out, but he appeared to be stabilizing and so we decided the best action was for us all to remain put as a group until a race official came by. About 50 minutes after I initially discovered Han’s, a medical team member finally came by and he had ice water and was able to continue cooling Han’s. About 20-30 minutes after that Tyler came by and the three of us were able to continue.

The experience was a bit traumatic for all of us who were helping Han’s because all of us were afraid he would not make it as evidenced by his appearece when we first found him. We decided the three of us needed to stay together and help eachother out to make sure all of us could stay cool enough and make it safely.

I think the shock from the experience made us a bit slower for the next few miles as we emotionally recovered, and we were greatful first and foremost that Han’s was going to be OK, but also that Ried allowed us to finish the stage and lifted our time limit. We came into camp around 10:30 PM. We were all physically and emotionally drained.

We ate dinner and then headed to bed. I had a terrible night of sleep because I had given up all my Ors salts to make sure Han’s was OK and to help Keyray, who was struggling in the heat and became a bit salt depleted the last 10 miles. I was able to catch up by taking Scaps throughout the night but only got about 2.5 hours of sleep and was not mentally ready to do the 9 miles today.

Luckily it was only 9 miles. I was dragging for the frist 3, but then I started feeling a bit better.

After completing stage three and cooling off in the river, eating all day long, and drinking probably 1-2 gallons of water today, I feel better, and I believe I will sleep well tonight and be ready for the Expedition Stage tomorrow.

h

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Sue H – days 2/3

I came here sincerely not sure if I could do this or how I’d cope in the heat, but for whatever random reason of genetic luck I seem to be tolerating the heat better than a lot of people. I’d like to claim some sort of mental persistence or genius training but it was neither. I just kept sipping Tailwind every minute or two and pouring water down my dress, front and back. My butt provided an effective 37-inch circumference swamp cooler and I never felt uncomfortably hot. I was just delighted to be in this beautiful place without any serious foot pain, and chose my pace by what felt comfortable. I actually *won* the second and third stages which is crazy because there are much stronger and more experienced runners here who were doing all the “right” things too. I didn’t come here to compete and it felt strange to pass the leader just a couple miles from the finish line as she sat by the side of the road being attended to by the staff. There were quite a few DNFs on day 2 and some people who were potentially in serious situations. The staff here is great, very professional and attentive but as Tara wrote above sometimes it’s other runners who have to step up. The support among the runners is a beautiful thing; it’s the last people who come in every day who get the most cheering.

p.s.I joined the blister club! But the blister expert takes good care of me.

Day 1 – Sue H.

So, this is kind of a crazy sport, and it’s definitely a fair question to ask why anybody would want to run this many miles in this kind of heat. We’ve been told we WILL be miserable, we WILL have blisters like we’ve never had before… and that’s part of the point, the whole overcoming obstacles and seeing what you’re capable of thing.For me I think it’s replacing what I had in my earlier life as a young aspiring musician, taking auditions, being rejected, and immediately looking for the next audition. There’s something very stimulating and satisfying about setting a goal a couple weeks or months away, feeling like there’s no way you’ll be able to do this, and then working incrementally toward that goal. Once I finally hit the jackpot with the professional music thing, the goal was to actually *enjoy* it — and again so many parallels in long distance running. Trust your training, don’t compete with anyone but yourself, and try to actually enjoy it while it’s happening. (People assume it must be so wonderful to do art for your job but it’s so steeped in perfectionism, anxiety, your personal emotional stew, that it’s not inevitably a fun experience.)

Anyway so, this is like that. I texted my running guru at 3:30 AM on the way to the airport yesterday to tell her I thought there was about a zero percent chance I could do this. She talked me down as she always does… I also mentioned that I had just said the same to my husband Bill who said, “does it matter if you can’t do this?” A similar accepting comment to the one he gives me when I say “I am SO screwed” about some upcoming performance — he always says “I know you are. But you’re actually not.”

He’s on the trip with me, doing it on his bike since he’s not a runner. Today was actually harder for him because there was a lot of rocky steep single track where he was hauling his very heavy bike uphill. He says he had some spectacular wipeouts.

As for the run… so far I have not been miserable and I don’t have any blisters but there’s plenty of time for that in the next few days. The mental gymnastics are exactly like the music thing. You can feel miserable, or you can be grateful for this experience. Much better the second way.

Just now as I was typing this a couple who had struggled a bit (there was definitely vomiting today by several runners) walked through the finish line hand in hand. It was lovely to see and everyone was applauding, cheering them on. I literally teared up. I really think this kind of experience teaches you a lot about yourself.

Day 1 – K-Ray
Hello friends and family! I survived day one and it was HOT! HOT like Dan Goodwin at Blackburns wedding HOT, but I finished before the cutoff. I am going to try and double the distance tomorrow with a little more heat. Slow and steady will be my gameplan. If any of you are sitting on your porch, drink a cold one for me. Monie, I’m not sure you will ever read this, but I am wearing the necklace you gifted me at Christmas. It reminds me of my sole sister. Love you girls. Love my spin class cheering for me, my friends family and especially you Andy Ray! xo

Day 1 – Ulla
20 miles, it was hot again. Tried to cool off at mile 11 by the Colorado river, splashing water all over me, but the mosquitos found me and chased me up the strenous hill to aid station 2. Feeling good, after a delicious meal and sitting in the shade drinking ice cold water. Life is good!

Day 1 – Jean-Michel
Well made it thru day 1. Some are in it to win it, others just to survive it. I am definitly one of the latter. My goal for today was to come in at the finish with plenty of energy and legs left, which I did, so today was a good run. I think tomorrow will be much harder, but I am mentally prepared for it. No blisters or any major trauma for day one either. It was hot today. I am carrying a little thermometer. It was 105F at one point and didn’t drop under 100 until later in the afternoon. But we were also gifted with a nice breeze so that helped a lot. I jump in the river about mid run. That was rad! Wendie baby your banana oat bars were awesome, melting in my mouth at the high of the heat today. I am living la stage race vida loca, complete with “expedition cuisine”. I feel I am in the middle of one of these Nat Geo documentaries. Hello Matt & Michelle, best vacation ever. Wendie please rub your belly and tell Mina I miss her little kicks. A kiss for you Wendie, wish you were there <3 <3. Day 1 - Hsin A great "welcome to the desert" start! Happy to finish without fanfare. Desert sun is relentless as advertised, though the 0% humidity is a treat coming from mother Houston's humid summers. The climb up to the second aid station was a test on morale, and I briefly questioned tomorrow's run which is double the distance...good thing is doubt disppears whenever a climb ends! Got an encouraging note from my coach for tomorrow, and to "listen to the Pee Police! Most important!". Medics here are great, so Mom and Dad don't worry we are all in good hands. Angela, let's do this together one day! Day 1 - Chris Hot! Great start to a long week. The ending was tough, but glad to get in for the first day. Nice to sit around and visit with everyone. Tomorrow will be long 🙂 Day 1- Tara I started out the trek today slowly because I was a bit concerned about the heat, but after a couple of miles was feeling warmed up and was able to start picking up my speed. I took the first half of the course at a conservative pace which seemed to pay off. As I climbed out of the salt creek basin and hit the second aid station the tempurature seemed to soar. But I had been very careful to hydrate and take in plenty of ORS fluid, plus keep my cooling clothing wet. The combination paid off, as I hit the last 6.5 miles the tempuratures were high, and I was able to keep moving at a reasonable pace as the temp neared 100 degrees. I came into the finish in just over 6 hours, which was a little slower than 2 years ago, but I felt OK about because it was a lot hotter today than it was in 2015, and I was feeling fine when I got into camp. After cooling down, washingup, and a change of clothing, I was able to relax and play the Guitalele for a while, La Cateral is coming along nicely and I'm glad I brought it out here. Music helps to bring my biorhythems back to normal, and I feel more ready for the next day. I'm going to bed early, hopping to be ready to face the heat tomorrow.

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