The Race That Broke Me


Elevation graph. One loop 25k, 2 loops 50k, 3 loops 75k.

Elevation graph. One loop 25k, 2 loops 50k, 3 loops 75k.

It was merely a week before the big event.  After 2.5 hours of running the gnarly single track mountain bike trails in Copeland Forest, I broke out of the forest, and in one final push, I ran full steam toward my awaiting car, a couple hundred metres away, completely unaware there were a couple pairs of eyes following my every long stride.  Arriving at my car, and somehow sensing I was being watched, I quickly surveyed my surroundings and then noticed them…. 2 young, rad, diehard, hard core appearing mountain bikers.  They were getting ready to “saddle up”, and shred these trails, known to the local mountain bike community for their “epic riding”.  As our eyes met each others, one of the bikers yelled out, “HEY MISTER, YOU FORGOT YOUR BIKE”!!  Noting that he was referring to my empty bike rack on my car (which I don’t remove until winter), I laughed at his comment, and went over to say Hi.  Then after a few minutes of chitchat, I proceeded to tell them why I was running those trails.  My next event was going to be the “Creemore Vertical Challenge” (CVC), a 25k run, half gravel road, half trail, that climbs up and down the Niagara Escarpment twice, for a total of 836 metres (2743 feet) vertical up and down.  There was silence.  The 2 mountain bikers looked at each other, and one of them turned back to me and said, “MAN, YOU ARE CRAZY”

Copeland Forest...one of my two trail training runs

Copeland Forest…one of my two trail training runs

This was not the 1st time I had one of those #whatamigettinginto moments.  Even the registration form for the CVC was worded in such a way, that it would discourage the unprepared, including an excerpt from a seasoned ultra runners blog, from a previous years race (with one word changed), “A few weeks ago, I ran the Creemore Vertical Challenge in oppressive heat.  It was horrible.  It’s the second time in a row that I stagger through 30+ degree Celsius weather while baking under the sun on those (blankity…blank) rural roads.  This is it. I’m never going back.  Even the joy of sitting in the river after the race felt wrong.  It reminded me too much of the joke:  “Why do you keep hitting your head on the wall?  Answer:  “Because it feels so good when I stop”.  I love the people there, but enough is enough.  One can only take so much character building”.

Massive Hills!

Massive Hills!

With my running this year, everything is focusing towards my full marathon in October. Running a couple of times a week, plus most days, a couple hours of different cross training.   I have also been running at least an actual event a month.  In August, there was not much out there for races.  But I kept coming back to this one race, the Creemore Vertical Challenge, which was only 45 minutes away.  My extreme fear,  was this race was going to break me.  Finally, desperate to have an event for August, with no training whatsoever in trail running, and with just over 2 weeks to go before the event, while shaking from head to feet, I registered.

The CVC is part of the Trail Runner Trophy Series.  This is a points based series of 191 trail races in the United States and Canada.  All events are divided into 2 categories: Non Marathon (races shorter than 26 miles), and Marathon and Longer (races 26 miles and longer).  The race I registered for was the 25k, but the CVC also had a 50k, and 75k.

I arrived at the event 2 hours early of my 9:00AM start.  I wanted to get the “feel” of the event, and hopefully calm some jittery nerves.  The 14 runners that were brave enough to do the 75k, had already left at 6:00 AM.  The 50k Ultra runners were arriving, I could sense a genuine camaraderie, and family like feeling among them.  Watched and cheered the 50k’ers, as they started their race.  These runners were SO fit looking, with leg muscles that looked like they could easily dig in and pull a bus around the block.

A blurry pix of the 50k runners very shortly into the race!

A blurry pix of the 50k runners very shortly into the race!

After the hour long wait, the 25ker’s were called to assemble.  Somehow I ended up ahead of the middle of the pack in the coral, and feeling very anxious, I kept thinking, “I’m WAY too far ahead in the pack for this, I’m going to get trampled”.  Before I could get myself further back, the starting horn sounded, and the race was on.  The 1st 3 kilometres were single track, with very little opportunity for runners to position themselves.  Once we all got onto the 1st gravel road, and the 1st major hill, the runners were passing and getting passed.  I was so amazed that once those couple of kilometers were finished, where runners found their place on the course, the pack spread out.  And for the remaining 20 kilometers, it was pretty much the same individual runners that I kept coming across.   I loved connecting with them, when we came across each other on the course.  After finding out where they were from, it became a bit of a game, where we would call each other by the place we came from.  For myself, I was “Hillsdale”, and interesting enough, everyone else I was in contact with, came from a further distance than I did.

There was Markham.  There was Guelph.  There was Whitby.  There was soft spoken Toronto.  She was an Ultra runner, who just a month earlier completed the North Face 50k Endurance Race in the Blue Mountains.  She had leg muscles that could easily power her way up those steep hills.  On one very steep singletrack, I had no steam left, and ended up walking.  I looked over my shoulder, and saw her really coming up fast, and moved over so she could get by.  But she didn’t, instead walking with me to the top, while patiently answering a lot of questions about her North Face race.  There was Waterloo. Small but mighty, this speedy roadrunner, on her 1st trail run had a lot of grit, and a lot of wit.  On the hills, the tall, lanky, long legged runners like myself would go past her.  On the downhill’s, her legs would be going a “mile a minute”.   She would roar past those very same runners, flashing a smile, giving a witty comment going by.   She was an “encourager”, and had an AMAZING sense of humour.  There was Thornhill (yes, that is a place).  🙂  Thornhill, like myself, was another runner in his 50’s , but he was SO much a kid at heart.  At one stream crossing, when I was trying to maneuverer my way across on a few stones, (wimpy me, did not want to get my feet wet…LOL)  he came up behind me, and without a thought, just sloshed his way across, giving me the most amused, “cheeky” look on his face.  By the time I finally got across the stream, he was long gone and out of sight.  I would catch up with him, and go by him, and we would joke around with each other.  At the next water stop, I would linger for a couple of minutes to “refuel”.  There was fruit, pretzels, gummies, as well as the regular water and Gatorade.  Watermelon never tasted so GOOD.  Thornhill, would come in, grab a quick drink, tease me for hanging around and eating watermelon, and was gone again.

Hills, and more hills!

Hills, and more hills!

I was expecting this course to be tough, and it really was.  My 2 practice runs for trail running was really nothing compared with what I encountered.  One gulley, I needed the aid of a fixed rope to pull myself out.  And some of the downhill sections were so steep, you could barely walk, much less run.  It was by far, my toughest race ever, and ironically, by far, my most enjoyable race.  On one of the uphill climbs, I got up beside Waterloo, and said how much I appreciated her wit and encouragement.  She said “You have to have fun, otherwise this race will eat you up.”  Later on in the race, Waterloo called out to me, “We’re all idiots, may as well have fun being one”.

A bonus "pinkie finger" in this pix. (no clue how to photoshop, but an example of the technical downhills. :)

A bonus “pinkie finger” in this pix. (no clue how to photoshop), but an example of the technical downhills. 🙂

Guelph, Markham, Toronto, Waterloo, Thornhill, and myself being Hillsdale, we all ran our individual races.  Soft spoken Toronto could power her way up the hills.  Speedy roadrunner Waterloo could blast like a rocket down the gravel road hills.  And Thornhill, this experienced runner, paced himself sure and steady.  The finish of a race is always a wonderful feeling of accomplishment, this one was no exception.  There were about 20-30 people waiting at the finish line.  When I came in, there was this roar of cheering.  It came from volunteers, and other runners who finished before me.  It was SO INCREDIBLY LOUD.  The runners I met with our town names connections, finished our runs within a 10-15 minute period.  Interesting enough, on this course, I never thought about my time, yet my ending was just the place I started…..”just ahead of the middle of the pack”.  Several of the “town name runners” finished ahead of me, Thornhill a few minutes later.  We hugged, 2 guys in their 50’s drenched in sweat.  Shortly after, Thornhill proudly introduced me to several members of his running club.  Some though, were still on the course, one, being one of two female runners on the 75k course.

This was such a well run event, and I was like so many other finishing runners, no one wanted to leave.  Had some pizza, loudly cheered other runners as they finished, cheered the winners in the 25k award ceremony, and had a refreshing foot soak in the river.  Feeling very tired both physically and mentally (in a good way), I walked to my car to see if I could catch a sleep.  But sleep eluded me.  That statement from Waterloo kept going through my head, “You have to have fun, otherwise this race will eat you up”.

The event was capped at 250 runners for all 3 distances. Many runners stayed around.

The event was capped at 250 runners for all 3 distances. Many runners stayed around.

You see, all year I’ve been focusing on another race, the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon (STWM).  Every event I have entered this year (the CVC was event #7), was to help get me there to reach a goal….the challenge of breaking a certain qualification time at STWM.  A time that some other runners I follow have achieved at various qualifying races across North America. These runners then get to race in a famous race (sometimes called “the Holy Grail of running”), held in the United States.  I am getting much closer to my target, but I am NOT nearly there yet.  The problem is, I’ve been focusing SO hard on that time, it has been eating me up.  Running has been losing it’s “funness”.  And I definitely did not like the person I was turning into.

So I sat there in that car for the next 30 minutes, slowly sipping away at a litre of pure coconut water, I brought for my recovery.  I thought of this upcoming Toronto race, and the race I just came off of.  The leg burning hills, the deep, deep gulley’s, the bogs, the stream crossings and the sheer fun I had doing it.  I felt like I was an eight year old kid again,  like I was running through the forests and fields with my dog Laddie, without a care in the world.  All of a sudden, the lustre of a Boston Qualification did not matter at all anymore.

Greatly enjoying soaking my feet in the river! :)

Greatly enjoying soaking my feet in the river!  TOTAL contentment!   🙂

It was SO quiet sitting in that car, in this beautiful country location.  And then, a short distance away, I heard another enthusiastic ROAR of cheering.  It could have been for a top 75k finisher, it could have been a 50k finisher, or one of many 25k finishers still coming in from the course. You could never tell the difference.  The roar, and cheering was as loud and the same for all the runners.  A HUGE  smile erupted for that runner on my face, as I thought of the accomplishment he or she had just made.  Then out of nowhere, the floodgates opened and joyous tears started flowing down my face.  I was SO, SO frightened that this race was going to break me.  It did break me, but in a VERY good way, and NEVER in the way I expected.

Thank you for reading!  🙂

~Carl~

My new favourite finisher medal...handcrafted ceramic, with a cherished technical shirt. :)

My new favourite finisher medal…handcrafted ceramic, with a cherished technical shirt. 🙂

 

 

Categories: RunningTags: , , ,

63 comments

  1. Thank you for sharing! I ran my first marathon in April, and it almost did break me. I’m heading into the next one with better focus, and I’ll remember just to “have fun” on the course! Thanks again, and well done!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Sarah for stopping by to read and comment. Well done on your 1st marathon. That is a HUGE accomplishment.. Being broken, and almost being broken is really hard. In the end, it does make us so much better a person. And All the best on your next marathon, and do enjoy and have fun, (which I have to remind myself of as well). 🙂

      Thanks for the follow. I’ll be dropping over soon! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great race report. It makes me want to head out your way to give it a shot.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yay Hillsdale! Yay Thornhill! Yay Whitby and Waterloo! Great read and a fantastic race review! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Nice description of a really tough sounding race! I like the idea of all of the camaraderie.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That head-hitting joke made me LOL. The rest made me glad to experience this run through your words, ’cause I will for sure be sticking to occasional nothin’-special marathons. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL….yeah Deborah, I had read that ultra runner’s blog excerpt, with the head-hitting joke on the registration for over 3 months. It seemed that every week I’d get ready to register, read it on the registration, and chicken out. FUNNY, and it made me laugh…but it also affected me that much.
      Finally I got the courage to follow through. 🙂
      WOW, maybe I missed it on your blog, but I did not know you were a runner. That is so very cool.
      Thanks so much for dropping by, and sharing your wonderful comment. 🙂
      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  6. What a great race and and equally great race report Carl! Congratulations!

    I am racing Scotiabank as well in Toronto come October 😃

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Carl,
    I loved this blog post. I felt like I ran the entire race right along with you. I follow your FB page so I knew this entry was coming up. I love the picture of you sitting in the river. To me, that is pure Carl. How I picture you. Very kind and happy. Oh, and old, very old. LOL!
    I love how you can take a race and relate it to life. I also appreciate how much it takes to train and what goes into it. Well done, my friend. Well done.
    Much love as always, CC

    Liked by 1 person

    • My dear friend…..THANK YOU SO MUCH!

      I often think of how fortunate I am, to be able to do what I do. I am SO, SO fortunate! It made my day, my dear friend, to read that you were right there, running this event with me. Thank you so much for sharing this.

      The “old, and very old” made me LOL. 🙂

      But seriously, THANK YOU! Your comment really touched me. I love the connection, the friendship and the camaraderie we have made through the blogging world. You are such a authentically, genuinely kind, caring person that has impacted me so much this past year.

      I cherish our friendship so much.

      With much love,

      ~Carl~ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Yay! Congratulations!! Great story Carl and so inspiring. When reading your story, it feels like I were there myself.

    I have seen several running medals (Dutchie’s medals to be exact 😀 ) and your CVC medal is truly special, showing how special the race was as well I believe 🙂

    Thank you so much for sharing the story. I will forward this to Dutchie, he is preparing for another running event but the area will be flat then 😀 Have a great weekend..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awww, thank you so much Indah. Your posts on scuba diving in all these spectacular places around the world are such an inspiration to me.

      I do love my CVC medal. Have it right beside me at the computer as I type this out.

      I know way back, you mentioned Dutchie was recovering from injury. Hope he healed up well, and he has a great upcoming race!

      Thanks you so much for stopping by to read and comment. You have such a huge following on your blog (every bit deserved), and I am always so amazed that you take the time to drop in here. It really means so much. THANK YOU! 🙂

      Have a great weekend yourself! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Like

  9. Firstly, I’m jealous you ran such a trail. No, firstly, well done for what sounds like a great race!

    I know all about loosing the ‘funness’ out of running. Recently my runs have felt like chore. I’ve lost the funness! When I read Waterloo’s words, it all made sense. I need to put the fun back into running. This year I’ve started running longer distances than 10km. I can run them (max 21km) but I don’t enjoy them. I prefer shorter runs, 15km or under preferably 10km and on less concrete! I also miss running trails and I think that’s why I haven’t been enjoying them as much. So I’m envious you ran this race! But not the long legs, Waterloo’s right too; having short legs is advantage running down hill! Less to trip over 🙂

    And way to go with the coconut water! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awww, Natalie, thank you for sharing such touching, detailed personal response on how your running is going. I needed this run myself, and I am SO grateful I came across Waterloo on this course.

      Since I have started running, I have always wanted to try trail running, but was hesitant, with my age against me, I did not think I had what it takes. Am so glad I did eventually do this one. Been only been running for 2 years, but this last couple of months I have struggled. Will definitely be looking into more trail running. Loved the adventure of the trails so much more, than the asphalt and concrete.

      Have always enjoyed your beach photos from your runs. Is there much trail running in Spain? Was talking to one of the runners who was doing the 50k. He was from Scotland, visiting friends in Canada, and did this race while here. He mentioned their trail running, (what is called “hill running” there) is huge in Scotland.

      And Natalie, you got me into coconut water from a post a long time ago…… THANK YOU. Not knowing, at 1st I bought one of those cans of “coconut drink” with the pieces of coconut and added sugar, and did not like it. What a HUGE difference, once I tried the pure coconut water. My favourite recovery item!! 🙂

      Thank you for dropping by, and sharing! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Like

      • Trails are so much nicer under the feet and for the mind! The closest I get to them now is running in the beach! I think some people are born with confidence, self belief and others like you and I have to work at it and rarely see achievements when they happen (well, me anyway)! I can imagine in Scotland they run trails a lot (I’ve always know it as trails. Scottish, English difference 😀). And yes, coconut water is the ultimate recovery drink! I get zico as it’s the closest to the real thing I can find! Have fun in your next trail!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Am very much like you Natalie. It has taken so much work to see improvements.
        I am so glad you do have the beach at least to go running at. Keep sending those pictures. 🙂
        I have so many trails around here. Have used them for hiking, and mountain biking, but never running. That is now changing.
        I REALLY appreciate all your camaraderie, and support. THANK YOU!!! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • 😃 forgot add outdoor sports are huge here! Lots of sky running, trail marathons. But you need own transport to get to them!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Had to google “sky running” Natalie! WOW, pretty intense. Found the website http://skyrunning.com/ Spain has some very serious events.
        It would make it very hard when you need transport. Even the one I did in Creemore, it is in the middle of “nowhere”, and transport is a necessity.
        I sincerely hope you will have the opportunity to participate in one of these events.
        ~Carl~

        Liked by 1 person

      • Maybe not the sky running!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. An excellent read, thanks for writing this! I love the line “because it feels so good when I stop.” Funny perhaps…but very true in some ways. Keep pounding your head on the wall, brother!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Jimmy, thanks for stopping by. I tell you, it REALLY DID feel so good when I stopped! 🙂

      Just the bit I know of you, through your blog, I think you will do extremely well with your 50k. And you know exactly about what that “pounding your head on the wall” is all about! 🙂

      Really wonderful to have you drop by. Thank you for reading and sharing! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  11. This is such an inspirational post. What an accomplishment, and congratulations! No easy task. I cannot run anymore since I tore my hammies twice. Get too beat up windsurfing, too. Keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What an awesome retelling of your experience Carl! I could almost smell the fresh air. I had no idea there was such a seemingly large “Ultra” community in Ontario.

    Like

    • Thank you so much Shawn for your kind words. 🙂

      I never really knew much about the Ultra community in Ontario (or anywhere) before this race. Just a decision 3 weeks before the Creemore race. I was extremely impressed with what I saw and experienced. All part of “OUTRACE” (Ontario Ultra and Trail Race Series). As it is a point based series, no doubt some runners would go from race to race in the series to run.

      Definitely am going to be looking into other events, and maybe…..just maybe, I will attempt an Ultra sometime! 🙂

      Thank you Shawn, for dropping to read, and share your kind comment! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Carl, this is an amazing post. I think the thing that I came away with after reading this is something that Waterloo said, “You have to have fun, otherwise this race will eat you up.” I think this maybe true about everything in life. It certainly sheds new light on a lot of things, and puts many things into perspective. Congratulations on the completion of this race and good luck as you continue to train for the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon. One day I look forward to reading a post about Boston! Please enjoy your weekend, and take good care!

    Always warm wishes,
    Pepperanne

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pepperanne, I love your well thought out and articulated comment. The post was getting long, so I decided to leave it for people’s own interpretation. But you hit it right on the head, of what I was hoping people would come away with. It applies not just to a running challenge, but to any challenge in life. To have fun, and not let those challenges eat you up.

      Waterloo was a Godsend. Her attitude, her humor despite the conditions, and her comments still continue to resonate with me.

      Thank you for your encouragement, as I continue to train!

      Have a wonderful weekend yourself! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Congratulations! What a happy achievement.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Carl sincere congrats on this race and your success in training and getting ready for Toronto! Your dedication and perseverance to your goal are to be commended. Best of luck with your qualification!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Biggest congratulations for finishing this mammoth 😀 What an achievement! The photo of you sitting in the river is lovely.
    My thoughts when I read this that it is not the race in itself that builds character – not entirely anyway. It is the people. The folks with whom you speak, share stories and motivate is what is character building. They can all easily carry on to finish the race – but no. They stop for you, slow down for you, give you that shove. That is character for me (well, mostly)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awww, thank you so such Prajakta. I always love how you go deeper, and “read between the lines” when you come to my posts. This race was very different from any others.

      There were some incredible conditioned and experienced athletic runners on that course, that did slow down for me, and “give me that shove”. All part of their character rubbing off on me, and puts things in a much different perspective. Very refreshing to see and experience. And just LOVED interacting with them before and after the race.

      Thank you for taking the time to read, and your most generous comment! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  17. I’ve never been a runner, and never will be, but I did so enjoy your account of doing something you love! Thank you for taking me with you up and down those steep hills.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Bravo Carl! Not only on completing the race but on finding your joy and passion for running again and putting the human connection first over a top finish. What fun it was to relive the race with you through your post. And I can sure relate to those “whatamIgettingmyselfinto” moments as well…! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Tricia! Yeah, those “#whatamigettingmyselfinto”, moments, either through running, or anything in life, certainly makes life interesting…LOL.
      I really appreciate your comment. You summed it up so well. There can often be such an emphasis on Personal Bests and Top Finishes, that the joy and passion for running gets lost. Just glad it is back again! 🙂
      Thank you Tricia, for taking the time to read, and for your wonderful comment! 🙂
      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Carl well done.. a big congratz man! it felt like I ran the race, awesome write up.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Thank you for sharing…it really moved me and I could feel your joy (the break down)…..I am early 60’s and have been running since I was in my mid 20’s….these days I am limited to treadmill because of knees…I miss running outdoors as I always use to do, but now I hike a lot more than I use to, so I still get my outdoors fix and enjoy nature…in all those years, I never did a marathon…I know myself too well…I am uber competitive and I knew enough to not do that as I knew I would lose my love for running…thank you again for sharing…awesome post!! Blessings…Kirt

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kirk, that really takes a lot of strength, sacrifice and discipline (and knowing yourself extremely well) to decide not to run a marathon. The way you have been active your entire life, including the running, no doubt you could have easily completed a marathon. That shows SO much character on your part. Thank you for sharing this.

      I badly tore my meniscus when I was 20, and I never tried running again until I was 55. I really HAVE to be smart about it, if I am even to attempt this marathon at a quick pace. What the training manuals and training apps say I should be covering in distance for training for a marathon, and what I can do without a lot of knee pain are 2 completely different things. So I just run twice a week, (one shorter and one longer run) and make up the difference with other training.

      I am SO fortunate that I am able to run, and should never take this for granted. I am so glad you are able to get a lot of hiking in Kirt. No doubt you would really miss your running. Nature is so restorative. Hoping it will continue to provide the fix needed.

      Thank you for sharing such a personal account of what you ended up doing, when you were running to maintain your love of running. That is HUGE! Thank you. I needed to hear this. Hoping this will keep my perspectives up the right alley, as I near this marathon.

      Blessings in return, 🙂
      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  21. What an amazing experience! I love how you find a group that you more or less get to know while your out on a course! The medal is very cool! I like those handmade ones best!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Angie. It really was the most amazing experience. It makes me wish I had tried trail running before now. Having a cap that was very low on the registration may have helped with such a friendly vibe. I really enjoy smaller events, which makes them very unique, right down to the homemade medal.

      Please keep me posted when you have a date for Summit Run 2016. Can’t make any promises I can make it, with my various obligations, but it really would be cool. I have not been any further than 250 miles from home in over 10 years.

      Thank you Angie for dropping by to read and share! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Liked by 1 person

  22. What a great post! I enjoyed reading it and have enjoyed your “journey” as your running has progressed. Inspirational and enjoyable 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Wow Carl! Great race report on Creemore. Yes, it is a lot of work for Lee Anne (my wife) and I to stage the race. Lee Anne makes 60 pieces of pottery for the prizes and I make enough maple syrup to take a bath. It is heartening to hear that people such as yourself find trail and (soon!?) ultra running to be such a great pastime. Does it get easier? Ron Irwin writes about his trail trials at Creemore in his blog:

    http://westgreyrunner.blogspot.ca/2015/08/creemore-vertical-challenge-50-km.html

    Love the shot of you in the Mad river.

    Cheers!

    Pierre Marcoux
    Race Director
    Creemore Vertical Challenge

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much Pierre for reading, and for your very kind reply. I was not 100% sure, but I am assuming that was you on the wagon, handing out the 25k awards. It was such an amazingly run event. The trail prep in itself, the whippersnipping and blazing was huge, and such WONDERFUL volunteers.

      I really cherish my finishers medal. Thank you Lee Anne. 🙂 Just seen from a small distance the pottery as they were handed out as prizes, and Lee Anne, they looked amazing. And Pierre, that is a LOT of maple syrup. Thank you for all your extremely hard work.

      Have already made the decision to the 50k next year. After reading the West Grey Runner’s blog post, of after 8 years of running the 50k at Creemore, with Creemore 7, Ron 1, it is definitely back to that #whatamigettingmyselfinto type of feeling….LOL. It will make for a very interesting day….and blog post, haaha.

      Thanks again. Hoping you all have been getting lots of rest after the big day! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Like

  24. Holy cow, Carl! I won’t even run to the end of my driveway (well, maybe if my house was on fire, I would)! Good for you for doing this and for deciding to tackle the 50K (?????) next year – you are definitely an inspiration and should be VERY proud of your achievements!

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL…had to laugh at your comment Denise. And it did me a world of good to read it, after a hectic day at work. Thank you so much for taking the time to read, and for your very kind and generous words. It was just what I needed. Thank you for making my day. 🙂

      We’ll work at getting you to end of the driveway, and then go from there…haha! 🙂

      ~Carl~

      Like

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