I am going to split the race recap into two posts – this post will have the first 50 miles and tomorrow I will talk about the second 50 and Jake proposing. <3 Jake is also going to do a guest post on here either late this week or early next week to share his experience with everyone!
Here we are Friday afternoon, heading to Leadville for the pre-race meeting. Definitely a lot of nerves at this point, even for me. I was so impressed with how Jake handled the whole process.
A little background on the Leadville Race Series: there is a series of 5 races – the marathan, the 50 bike OR 50 run, the 100 bike, the 10k, and the 100 run. In order to be a Leadman, you have to complete all 5 races (choosing either the 50 bike or the 50 run) within a certain amount of time. Jake first attempted the Leadman series in 2013. He didn’t make the cut-off for the 100 bike, so he wasn’t able to go on after that. Then he attempted again in 2015, where he made it all the way to 83 miles in the 100 run and had to pull himself off the course due to an injured knee. His third time attempting was this year. And he did it! He finished the 100 mile run (the last event) in 27 hours and 45 minutes. The cut-off is 30 hours. You can imagine how special this weekend was for us, and his Dad completed the Leadman series along with him, which made it even more special.
Okay, back to Friday!
Poor Cynthia had to sit in the trunk of her own car!
Here we are at the pre-race meeting! This 100 mile run has been going on for 35 years!
It was amazing to see how many people were there either to race or support a racer. My favorite quote from the meeting” “Don’t trust a fart after mile 5.” HA!
After the meeting, the guys were provided with lunch, so Cynthia and I grabbed lunch from Tennessee Pass, which has the BEST brussel sprouts EVER.
Then we stopped to take some pictures on the drive back to the condo. Here’s Jake and his Dad!
We really do love it here!
This is one of my favorite pictures. Jake, his Dad, and three of their four pacers. <3
While Jake finished putting his race stuff together and tried to relax a little, I started packing up our stuff. I knew we would be exhausted on Sunday after the race, and we were leaving early Monday morning, so I tried to pack as much as I could Friday evening.
If you haven’t tried Skratch, we both HIGHLY recommend it. It’s some of the yummiest hydration mix ever and they have all kinds of flavors. Plus, it’s all natural. Check it out! Jake drank Skratch throughout the entire 100 miles.
Cynthia made an amazing skillet dinner for us! I’m obsessed with balsamic vinegar…it was DELICIOUS.
I brought our running calendar along with us. This was the quote for Jake’s race day. Nailed it. 100%. It gave me goosebumps.
Jake getting ready Saturday morning! He was so ready to rock his race. I would tear up every time I looked at him. It was definitely a very emotional experience. We had spent the last 8 months preparing for this moment. I couldn’t wait to watch him perform and I know he was so ready to just get started. He ran ran most of the race in Altra Timps, which I also run in, and he loved them!
Here’s Jake and his Dad, John at the starting line! The race started at 4 am. We all got up at 2 am to leave the condo by 3 am to get to Leadville to get our guys ready to go. I had way too much on my mind to sleep, so I didn’t sleep much the night before the race. Luckily, Jake said he slept pretty well!
Here’s Penny, Jake’s Momma, cutting up some tape just in case we needed to tape Jake. He had been fighting a sore knee all week, so we were making sure we would be prepared if he needed some tape. And don’t worry, we watched a lot of YouTube videos on how to properly tape… ; )
We saw the guys at the first checkpoint, which was about 13.5 miles. Check out this view. It was beautiful. Also, I tried really hard to keep all the checkpoints in order and remember mileage, but I might be off on some. We were at all but one checkpoint two times, so they start to blend together. Plus there were LOTS of emotions, so I’m lucky I even remembered to take pictures half the time…
This sign cracked me up! They get a buckle when they finish the 100 mile run in under 30 hours.
Jake came in looking SO good! Here we are stuffing different things in his pack.
Whenever Jake or John would come into a checkpoint, it seemed like 2 minutes of organized chaos. They had written down and organized everything they needed and when, but I remember feeling so nervous about messing it up. On top of being nervous, I was excited, anxious, happy, and worried all at the same time. It really is just an incredible experience to be able to crew for amazing athletes. I LOVED watching all the men and women run.
After that checkpoint, we quickly packed up and headed to the next. We got to see both John and Jake on the road!
He always has his tongue out in pictures. Eye-roll.
Just mixing all the Skratch!!
There’s Jake in the white! I want to say this is mile 27ish or so. He still looked so good.
Here’s our race set-up, along with Jake’s first pacer, Dwayne. I had a blast crewing for Jake with the group! My future in-laws are pretty amazing!
Here’s John and Cynthia as John was headed back out to run!
Here’s Jake at mile 40ish or so – see how good he still looks? He looked this good the whole time! I’m not kidding. I was so impressed. Every time he would come into an aid my heart would swell a little. I was so glad to see him feeling so good.
This happened before Jake came in, but it was at the same checkpoint. I saw Anton Krupicka, who Jake and I both love. As soon as I saw him, I dropped everything I was carrying and sprinted after him to get a picture. I tired to explain why I was chasing him, but I couldn’t breathe, because altitude. ; ) But I got my picture with him and told him how much Jake and I loved him and that Jake was running….I probably also told him what I had had for breakfast because of the lack of oxygen from sprinting after him. ; ) Kidding! Maybe. Funny story about this, I didn’t want to tell Jake about it until he finished because I knew he would be so jealous. Well, I guess Anton was pacing a female runner and Jake and his pacer, Dwayne, ran into them on the trail and Jake freaked out! He was telling Anton how much we loved him and that I would be so jealous that he got to see him, ha! Dwayne finally broke in and told Jake that I had already seen Anton and Anton remembered me!! I was pumped. He’s a super cool dude.
Here are the pacers, Dwayne and Derek, at the 50 mile checkpoint waiting on Jake and John. Both Jake and John picked up pacers are mile 50! We were SO happy when that happened. It lowered our anxiety a little knowing the guys were going to have someone with them for the last 50 miles.
The guys ran on this…OUCH.
That’s the first 50 miles! It was definitely an amazing experience, but also a nerve-wracking one. I will post about the second half of the race tomorrow. I will also share some more about my surprise proposal at the finish line!
Happy Tuesday, everyone!