"I've overcome the blow.
Learned to take it well.
Only wish my words could convince myself,
that it just wasn't real.
But, that's not the way it feels."
The reality is I am doing fine. I think there was just too much baggage on my shoulders this year, so it is going to take a bit of time to remember always that I did my best and that I continue to live a dream when it comes to just being able to get out and try to do the Death Valley crossings.
So, as I always say, Onward! It is time to plan some events and activities for the coming year.
Here is what I have been thinking about. First step is that you might notice subtle, but important changes to this blog. It is now the "Continuing adventures of Badwater Bill...." Sort of like Star Trek after it went well beyond its planned "Five year voyage." This blog is becoming something unplanned, too.
I do not race trail ultra marathons anymore. That is just too hard on my back. While the surface is good, the twisting and constant strain is just to much for it. So, I stick to the roads in general. In my current state, I also find myself chasing cutoffs. For me, that takes away from the experience and the whole reason I do these things. These and other factors are inputs into my planning.
Aside from what I list below, I will also do a few marathons. I find them a great way to get long training efforts in and have some fun with other people. I have been able to let go of being the 3:15 runner I once was in favor of just having some fun.
* October will be a solo, just me and a small pack, trip from home to Santa Barbara, CA - about 104 miles.
* I am registered for Across the Years, a timed ultra that goes over the New Year. I am registered for the 48 hour event that starts on 30 December. I enjoy timed runs. "Go as you please" as these events are sometimes called. My goal is 150 miles.
* A double Napa Valley Marathon. I did this a few years ago, before my back problem slowed me. It rained and could have been miserable, but I was having too much fun to be miserable. Lots of good stories came out of that run.
* Maybe home to San Diego in April. This one is about 140 miles.
* The Nanny Goat 24 Hour is in late May. It is a small, very fun race run in Riverside, CA on a horse stabling facility.
* Death Valley Express III is currently planned to be a full double crossing including a summit of Mt. Whitney. I have to be flexible with this plan. How things go in the spring will tell me if I should make the attempt. More on this as it approaches.
There will be more, but these are the events I want to be the ones that dictate my training and getting ready for more fun in Death Valley. If you have any thoughts, I would like to hear them.