Category Archives: Race Write-Ups

Ramble On Foot Fall Strikes and Recovery

It’s easy to go quiet.  OK, that’s a lie.  Life hasn’t been easy because change and challenges go really well with not crying in the corner.  This is not a confession.  However, life is unique.  Failing cannot happen without action.  Some actions are destructive based in shallow minded righteousness, some are heroic beyond extreme risks, others hide in pure self centered comfort- a shadow, and most (hopefully) exist in that serene light of love and kindness wishing for a shared existence of earth and humanity.  I gamble that we are all at fault for all of these actions or reactions at some point.  Revenge might be served best cold, but love rules.  Right?

Right!  It does if it is given air to breathe and a space to grow.  Love will flourish under the light of forgiveness.  Sounds easy?  No way!  Forgiveness is such a difficult truism.  AND then to forget!  Set.  It.  Free.  As humans, we do much better at carrying loads than dropping them off in cavernous voids of forget.  Do we actually want to live without judgement?

Now that’s a loaded question.  By whom?  Only we control who we deem as important and no one can please everyone.  But if we pick to please everyone, we do elect to either live in false shadows or fail to feel real love’s light.  Some one, some where, will not like you.

I told my daughter no one could possibly not like her.  Her banter responded with three entities that do not fit the puzzle pieces of my mind, but ring true.  1. Someone who never knew me; 2. Someone who assumed I wasn’t who I am; 3. Someone mean.

Now the first two are epic physiological brilliant bits of pocket truths.  She is eight years old and therefor we can’t fault her for number 3.  Even if it is true.  She sheds no hint of self deprivation or personal doubt.  Glorious!  Can you remember the last time you did that?  And MEANT IT?

Now, because we always do….let’s bring it back to athletics and running.  OK, those have been at the bottom of my list lately, but thankfully they never completely disappear.  I was grateful to be able to have the chance to compete in this weekend’s Ramble On Romero here in Santa Barbara.  There were two options: a six mile loop verses a 12 mile.  I decided to go long because short bombed downhill terrain gag my aging knees.

This well designed, organized event went off with a first year bang.  I enjoyed the back country racing so very much.  Racing forced me to put my music on the shelf and enrich my aching lungs with nature.  The senses overloaded.  Vibe be Good.  If you weren’t here this past Saturday, you might want to consider the next round.  Personally, I think this event is here to stick and Ramble On.

And like any good Rambler…..gratitude floods you over when you are able to enjoy aches and burns of physical fun in the best way…….with a view……a crew….and eventually a brew.

Hats off to Rabbit, Santa Barbara Running Company, and Alta for this event.  And remember if you run your life right, it’s hopefully always eventually down hill from here.

Peace.

photo credit Ashley Mayfield
photo credit Ashley Mayfield

2015 Nationals XC Championships

epeacephotography
epeacephotography

Bless me, it has been two years since my last real race.  GREAT!  Let’s go back to Nationals Cross Country at altitude!  Absolutely.

And here’s why.  There is simply no other race that hurts so much, checks your ego so hard, and runs the clock into no man’s land.  It’s an epic battle between your nerves, your ego, and your lungs.  Nothing else matters.  Except the team.

epeacephotography
epeacephotography

And that’s the best part.  To be truly supported and part of a team.  Injuries have been haunting, but Oiselle lifted me up though the help of Monica & Joe DeVereese at Santa Barbara Running Company.  My leg got put back together with the help of Mike Swan, Ernie Ferrel, and Dave and Deanna Odell.  The team welcomed me back to training for this national event, and that always feels like gold.

The actual race was quite a challenge.  I could not handle high mileage due to my leg and incorporated cross training and cryotherapy into my routine.  My race plan was established with care and I executed it perfectly.  Meaning, go out slow and just hang ON!

The beauty was in the reality.  Welcomed by team Oiselle, I experienced an entirely new cheering quad yelling my name with enthusiastic smiles at each lap.  This included Oiselle founder Sally Bergesen, team leader Kristin Metcalfe, and pro super star athlete Lauren Fleshman.

epeacephotography
epeacephotography

I literally looped the marshmallow surface course sucking oxygen through a straw up my nose while Lauren cheered “Go Drea, Great job Drea.”  This is a woman who I personally watched complete the NYC Marathon suffering to the bitter end.  I also witnessed her cling way off the back at the Olympic trials 5K in Eugene.  Why did she do that?  She had earned the right to be there, suffered through injury, worked out on an ElliptiGo with literally 12 miles of running a week….BUT STILL SHOWED UP and FINISHED the OT in the 5K at Hayward Field in front of a thousand fans.  I met Lauren the next morning after her OT at breakfast- I sat gushing like a teenager- and she graciously took a photo with me and answered all my questions.

epeacephotography
epeacephotography

And here I was.  At Nationals again on one leg, from sea level, feeling old, and yet… a part of something great.  To me, this is what running is.  It’s putting yourself out there- wide and raw.  When you rock it you glow and fist pump, when you fail you cry and weep, when you do your best you accept what you did and feel an amazing admiration for those that fly so much beyond your capacity.

I’m proud that I once again put myself out there.  I’m humbled by the race.  I’m thankful by the enormous support.  I’m pleased that I had yet another chance to suffer.

And suffer I did.  However, not stupidly.  Coming from sea level, I ran the smartest and most controlled race I could have done.  I finished 61st ranking very close to my St. Louis performances and finished with a only your mother will be watching sweet kick.  It was a good day.  A blessing.

epeacephotography
epeacephotography

Thank you to those that got me there.

2014 ElliptiGO World Championships

What is an ElliptiGO?

It’s a bike that you can run on so if you’re a runner you can RUN without impact!

No more limits?!

Well, I wouldn’t say that!  Why don’t you come ride up Mount Palomar for the ElliptiGO World Championship title and then talk to me about limits?

An invitation to compete in the elite women’s field at this year’s event was very exciting to me.  I have not gotten to compete since 2013 California International Marathon and this was a perfect opportunity to train for something challenging and line up against very impressive athletes.

And that’s what I did.  I trained.  I made my little game plan which consisted of either 1). Try and hold on to the leader OR 2). Never look back.  As it turned out, I ended up experiencing both.  Brook’s elite runner Deb Maier took the lead out and just never let up.  We powered side by side for ten miles of climbing and up over 5,000 feet of elevation before my breathing went into spastic fits and she dropped the hammer.

It was such a beautiful hammer throw that I had to use my last breathe to cheer her on, but I also hoped maybe…just maybe…she would you know, suffer and come back to me.  Nope.  Negative.

My second place time of 1:29:19 did break the previous world record set last year by Sara Slattery and I was tired enough to know I could not have gone faster on this given Saturday.

This was a great event and I was very proud to get to participate!

2014-09-30 Oiselle Race and EGO 028