A race report from LPTRunner Alison Wiedmann...
My dear LPTRs,
Two years ago this past weekend I ran my first ultra! I would have never thought I would be able to accomplish such a distance, especially when not long before I thought 5 miles was a long run. I still have memories of that first ultra…talk of squishy beds and trolleys with your favorite beverage to take you to the finish line. Random chairs placed on the trail, but NO sitting down! Nutter butters and good friends made it possible to make it to the finish.
Now 9 ultras later, it wasn’t all that different. Talk of being on a happy train, but no getting off till the finish, 3 teachers trying to teach the proper use of good and well - (Apparently 38 miles isn’t long enough for some students!). Glow sticks and headlamps flying through the air, olives and nutter butters, two new ultra runners and an amazingly fast last mile and a half and we made it to the finish line!
I have learned and grown so much during these past two years. Not just in becoming a better runner, but in many ways. Although I do now know what drop bags and s-caps are, the importance of staying hydrated, and that I better not have too much of a kick at the end of a run or I’ll be accused of sandbagging the rest of the way. (Do they realize it’s just fun to make boys suffer once in awhile?) On more than one occasion when runs get long, hills get taller or the snow gets deeper, Todd reminds me that it only makes me stronger. You’re so right, Todd! (Did I really just say that?) I am a stronger person- mentally, physically and emotionally!
I’ve also been told many times- while running with boys who make me work harder than I wish to be- you’ll thank me later. I usually give a “look” and say – yayaya. But I think that later is right now.
And so I thank each and every one of you. Thank you for your friendship. Thank you for your conversation on and off the trail. Thank you for making me laugh and smile. Thank you for your encouragement. Thank you for giving me something to look forward to in the middle of the week in the middle of the winter. Thank you for helping me be a better person. Thank you for running amazing races and amazing distances that continue to inspire me! And yes, thank you for making me run when I don’t want to!
Sadly, in the next month I will be saying good-bye to Lapham Peak and Wisconsin and the LPTRs and heading to new unknown trails of Florida. I believe that each of you has helped me become a stronger person, a better runner and this will help me on my new race in life. I will be a long ways from LP, even for ultra-runners, but you will stay close in my heart. I will certainly be smiling when I think of each and every one of you!