Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Mad Town USA

Madison...."70 square miles surrounded by reality."

Tomorrow morning David and I are off to Madison for the Mad City 100k National Championship on Saturday. It'll be an interesting visit. It's been a looong time since I've been to this favorite city of mine. I'd say it's been about 20 years!

I was lucky to grow up in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, a small resort town in southern Wisconsin, just 2 hours north of Chicago. Almost everybody I hung with from high school wanted to (and did) attending the University of Wisconsin Madison if they planned on continuing their educations (or social lives). Me? I thought a bit about it, but truth is, I didn't think much at all about any education when I was in high school. It's not that I didn't plan on going to college, it's just I didn't do any planning at all. I didn't think much about my future, a career, what I was going to do after high school, or what I was going to do the next week. In a naive and selfish way, I didn't think much at all beyond the moment in which I was living.

As a sophomore in high school, my best friends were freshmen in college at Madison so it was a convenient place for me to visit, and I frequently did. There was lots of partying and fun with Homecoming games and Halloween on State Street. I think I had TONS of fun there! :)

I left Lake Geneva before I finished high school though and ended up in Chicago, so attending Madison was not an option. Actually, my grades would have precluded me from going there anyway. I haven't been back there since the days at the Union, on State Street, and in the bleachers getting body passed!

Being back there is going to be a blast. I am so looking forward to it. Mostly because many of my beloved Midwest ultra family will be there. Also, my mom and brother Jeff are coming for the second half of the race. They have never been to an ultra or seen me run. It'll be so neat to have them there. My mom's a cutie and said she will boil up and decorate some Easter eggs for those who want to celebrate the holiday during the run. Believe it or not, eggs are a good source of fuel, especially when dipped in salt! Mmm...

David too is looking forward to being there. He did go to college at Madison and that was not all that long ago since he was going back to school to change careers.

I've been so focused on my recovery from my back injury (which is now 100% better!)and my work, that I have not even looked at the race info, our itineraries, or even yet thought about packing! It's only 100k, so there's much less planning than for a 100 mile race, but still, I like to be totally self-reliant and need to make sure I have everything.

I just checked the forecast for the first time. I figured it would be warm. After all, it's going to be sunny and near 70 degrees in Spokane this weekend. So, what is forecast for Madison, you ask?? Well gosh darnit, can you friggin' believe it's going to be only 23 degrees at the start! And get this...the high is 34 degrees! The skies will be overcast, and there is a chance of snow flurries! Oh my dear, that is horrendous! Blech! Phooey! Ick! Oh why oh why does it have to be COLDER than it is here?? Oh well, it'll make us tougher, build up our character, right? We can DO IT!! After all, for me, it's just a training run for my main race, which is Badwater.

Timo, the Race Director, is trying to get real-time runner standings on the website. So, keep checking back for that! The race starts at 6:30 am and there is a 13 hour cut-off.

UPDATE: Timo GOT the real-time runner standings on his website!!
Now, you can watch the race without your parka and gloves. I'm not sure how frequently it will be updated, but that doesn't matter much. It's just nice to be able to go do you long run, speed work, tire-pulling, stair climbing, or whatever...and then come back to check the progress of the champs. There are several athletes shooting for sub 7 hours and even faster than that! What an honor to be on the same course as these great runners, and at times to be able to run "in front" of them - like each time just before they're ready to lap you again! [I have a picture of me "leading" Yiannis Kouros at the Olander 24-hour National Championship in 2002. It's one of my favorites.]

So, anyway, I will be away tomorrow through Sunday, so y'all have a fabulous (and WARM) weekend. May your runs be smooth, your feet swift, and your hearts free!


(pic - another past blast: me and my brother, 1971)

15 comments:

Backofpack said...

Have fun in Madison, and run like the wind! Don't let the cold and the gray skies get to you, fuel well and drink lots. Looking forward to the race report!

Bob Gentile said...

Lisa Said:It's only 100k, so there's much less planning than for a 100 mile race
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Sigh)))) can't wait to the day I can say that statement :-)

and burrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr on the cold icky weather that is a bummer...

Good luck Lisa, have fun & kick Butt!

Love the pic!

Bob Gentile said...

from Olga's post--HAHAHA very funny Lisa what will be more funny is when YOU look up at mile 102 at Badwater and see me wearing it as I stand next to the cactus :-)

...The only problem I see with this is IF I do wear it in Badwater I will go from 169lbs to 98lbs in a matter of minutes :-( and if I keep it on for over an hour I will melt away..........

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Lisa B said...
Careful what you ask for, Bob! http://tinyurl.com/2fwrjl
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
LOLOLOLOL omg that is great OK I will wear that the next time I am in Russia:-)

2 funny!

Kendra Borgmann said...

FUN FUN, Lisa! How great to have so many special things involved this weekend! You'll have a madly madly good time. Thanks for sweet comments on my blog, too.

olga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
olga said...

I am a dumbhead and just posted a comment to you menat to kendra:) Go, Lisa! I almost contemplated jumping in there too, it seems so much fun:) Hope the race stays. be healthy, run well, dress up! Can't wait to hear all about it! Say hi to all,and give my wishes to Leah for her goal.

D said...

You guys were CUTE kids. Brrr. . . good luck and stay warm!

Bob Gentile said...

HMmmm U have NO comment icon on the above post?!

Good luck in that COLLLLLLLLLLLLLD it is SOOOO Nice here in FL, I sooooo cannot relate to ur pain- ummm let me go stick my head in the freezer that may help :-)

Seriously be safe, have fun & stay warm!

Lisa B said...

Thanks BOP - You realize though, that if I could "run like the wind" here, I'd finish 62 miles in 2-1/2 hours! Thanks for the cheers!

Lisa B said...

Thanks everybody! I really appreciate the encouragement. The sun was shining brightly today and that helped with tolerating the cold. Didn't feel as bad as you'd think. Not sure why the "comments" are not working...

Kelly S. Nichols said...

There are no "great runners" running this race. Ryan Hall, Alysun Deckert, Uli Stiedl and Deena Kastor are not signed up to run. Ryan,Alysun,Uli and Deena all ran in college and were very successful. Scott Jurek did not run in college. I DO NOT admire/respect him as a runner!
p.s I ran in college also!

Lisa B said...

Hello peeps - I'd like to introduce y'all to Kelly Nichols.

You may or may not have seen her messages on other running boards, but this is her usual rant, mantra, her raison d'ĂȘtre.

So, please just ignore her and pretend like she never even visited my blog, okay? I'd rather not have ANY responses to her here and will choose delete them. For the sake of fairness (and perhaps some sympathy), I will leave her post for now. Anger is often a front for insecurity.

So, anyway, I hope you all are doing well. It was fun to see so many friends at the pre-race mtg. We are all mentally prepared for the cold. I think it's going to be a fantastic race on a rolling hilly course with gusts of wind, some sun, some snow flurries and tons of guts and glory...in everybody's own way.

C ya' later! Must get sleep now.

Lisa

Kelly S. Nichols said...(above post)

Lisa B said...

Hello peeps - I'd like to introduce y'all to Kelly Nichols.

You may or may not have seen her messages on other running boards, but this is her usual rant, mantra, her raison d'ĂȘtre.

So, please just ignore her and pretend like she never even visited my blog, okay? I'd rather not have ANY responses to her here and will choose delete them. For the sake of fairness (and perhaps some sympathy), I will leave her post for now. Anger is often a front for insecurity.

So, anyway, I hope you all are doing well. It was fun to see so many friends at the pre-race mtg. We are all mentally prepared for the cold. I think it's going to be a fantastic race on a rolling hilly course with gusts of wind, some sun, some snow flurries and tons of guts and glory...in everybody's own way.

C ya' later! Must get sleep now.

Lisa

Kelly S. Nichols said...(above post)

Bob Gentile said...

LOLOL Kelly Who?

what are U talking about Lisa ALL I see is Great Runners next to you as U toe the line :-)

GO GO GO u Bundle UP Runner of Pure Greatness!!!!

Kelly S. Nichols said...

I made an error. Greg Crowther DID run cross-country and track in college. He is a great runner. He is the Mad City 100k National Champion. He ran fast and has amazing leg speed. Congrats to Greg!