So, as I look back at 2021…..race wise, I want to forget about it all
No races yet this year. Everything had been cancelled. Notice how on the top of my main page I have result headers going way back to 2013? And the last year was 2019? That’s because 2020 blew up all the races. And then 2021 just kept being disappointment after disappointment of races being delayed and then cancelled. I have said it before–I am not a virtual race person. So I only did one in 2021 and that was the Haida Gwaii Half Marathon. That race holds a special space in my heart from when we went and did it in person in 2019. Once summer hit in 2021, I hit the trails. It was my last hope. Lost Soul 50km WAS going to happen! The 100km and 100 mile racers started on Friday, September 10th. It was exciting that something was actually occurring. I started to get my pre-race, night before jitters and laid all my stuff out.
And then….the rain.
This won’t be a really big recap, but the main thing is rain hit at around 9 pm Friday night. We had been so dry and at risk of wildfires all summer long, and it chose to rain that night. Rained all night long….100 mile runners were STUCK on the course in coulee mud. They pulled the runners off the course starting around 3:30 am whenever they reached their next aide station. At some point in the middle of the night the race directors started making a plan.
When I woke up at around 5:30, everything was up in the air. I believe it was at 6:15 am that a decision was posted on Facebook that YES the 50 km race would start, but it would be delayed to 7:15 am, and at that time all 100 mile racers would also start up again with the 50 km runners. The final catch-wet weather route.
What is a wet weather route for a 50 km trail race in the easy-to-destroy coulees? It is a 10km loop you do 5 times that is on mainly pavement, a touch of shale path, and one 100m stretch of mud.
Now. Today’s date is Jan 6th. This race recap is so soon after the actual race, it’s going to be very detailed…..yeah, no. My New Years Resolution is going to be to get back to actually doing training and race recaps, because 2022 better have some fucking races (more on that at the end). But the main thing about this Lost Soul….we were all just SO HAPPY to have a damn race! If this race had been cancelled due to weather, and not COVID, it would have been a huge slap in the heart. Was my time faster than it would have been on the coulee course? Of course—it was pavement. But was I in more pain than I would have been on the regular route? Of course—it was pavement.
I am forever grateful for the lovely race directors who made the decision to change the route in order to protect the coulees and allow us to still have an event. It was very stressful even leading up to race day before the weather hit as there was a chance that it would be cancelled if new COVID restrictions had come in by then. So, the only thing I can thank Jason Kenney for is that he delayed any sort of Vax Passport restriction stuff until after my race. THANK YOU, but you are still an asshat.
My finish time was 5:28. I was sore AF after. I got to run with our son Andy into the finish line. My husband got to see me finish. My friend Tracey helped me at the main aid station whenever I came through. The positive about a looped course was that anyone who was spectating was in the same spot and you got to see everyone anytime you came through headquarters. No, it wasn’t the traditional Lost Soul Ultra. But nothing since March 2020 has been traditional.
So, what’s next? Register for the 50km for 2022 so I can do the regular route again and try to beat my 2019 time? Nah…..how about do it twice? That’s right….I registered for the 100km Lost Soul Ultra. This will be my farthest race ever. The most I have ever run in one day is 70 km during our crazy 100 Point Day event in 2020. This will be a total different race for me, and my main goal is to just finish. I need a different challenge; something to motivate me. I had little motivation last year with everything getting cancelled, so starting 2022 off on the right foot with signing up for races and starting plans is step 1.
While that is the Goal race it isn’t until September. I have also already signed up for the Whitefish Half Marathon and Calgary Marathon (both in May) and Taber Tuff 25km Trail Race in July. We also have a deferred entry to the Lone Wolf trail race in September (that was another last minute cancellation due to BC COVID rules). I am going to attempt to get in to the Elk Valley 50km in July to use as a training run. And I will also keep my eyes open for other races that intrigue me.
This year is about getting back in the habit and reaching some new challenges. Here goes nothing!