My First 24 Hour Race

August 22, 2011

 No not my first, Althea’s first!  Two days after we got back from Denver, we were up in Canmore, getting ready for our first camping experience, along with the race.  I will say this about my one lap: it really hurt but I made it around.  The laps were approximately 18 km, with the normal amount of lots of climbing.  The route seemed to be not as much intense climbing, instead more gradual, but more of it.  What really hurt was the last couple of km’s, a gradual up the whole way, followed by a lot of up.  I wasn’t sure I was going to do it, or whether Mr. J would have to come and find my gasping body by the side of the trail, still clipped in, muttering “make it stop”.  Somehow I kept going, and even got up the last hill, my legs just kept finding more and more strength from an unknown reservoir.  I had wanted to do two laps, but had to concede that that wasn’t going to happen, and be happy with my one lap.  Mr. J did five!

I felt isolated from the rhythm of the race this year, as for me it was so much about Althea and looking after her.  With her Daddy doing so many laps, and resting in between I wasn’t expecting him to help much.  It rained almost right up until the race started, and then stopped thereafter.  Good thing Althea likes the carrier (or “How can you carry her around like a kangaroo, you savages” as GGM says) so we were able to move around quickly and see the sights, and she napped in it all weekend.  I did learn that she doesn’t like people cheering loudly near her, it prompted a few crying sessions, poor little munchkin.  For our first camping experience we enjoyed temperatures just above freezing.  I had her in warm sleepers, her warmest sleep sack, with a  hat, and under my sleeping bag, tucked under my arm, and she was just fine.  I kept worrying about her little hands getting cold, but because the rest of her body was toasty they were good.  On the second day she got used to all the noise from cheering and the loud speaker and began to ignore it, and slept well in the fresh mountain air. 

 They added a new feature this year, the flyover as they were calling it that you had to bike over in order to start the race.  Finishing races came underneath it.  My lovely shot of Mr. J didn’t come out very well did it?  The exact moment he gets behind the flag, I take the photo!  I think you can get an idea of how glorious the sun was, and how breathtaking the mountains were this weekend.  I felt refreshed and rejuvenated just being out there.  I’d love to say see you next year, but this may be the last year!  The race has become so expensive, and it is hard to find racers to join the 10 person teams, my team captain didn’t sign up again and I don’t blame her.  I will miss the race, but it is a lot of money for just one weekend.

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