Where: Virgin, UT
When: Saturday, April 11, 2015
Start: 6 a.m.
Vertical Gain: 3,100'
Field Size/Finishers: 114
Time/OA Place: 7:19.12 (66th)
Spontaneity. The Spice of Life.
If you know me personally, you know that "planning" is not in my vocabulary. I am more apt to jump on a plane last minute than I am to plan where I'm having dinner tomorrow night. I'm not sure if spontaneous is the best word to describe me, perhaps the following are a little more fitting: scatterbrained, stubborn, stupid and impulsive.
And just like a cat, if you dangle a new adventure or a new thrill in front of me, I'll be quick to pounce on it.
Originally, I had honed in on the Zion 50K after spending 2014 dabbling in trail running after feeling disconnected and frankly bored with road races and the marathon distance. After spending a year "naked" and watch-free; I wanted to get back to my roots so-to-speak and reconnect with the reasons why I love to run in the first place; all of which do not involve holding my watch up like simba when it's not connecting or discussing race times. Instead, I wanted to explore more which I have always found more fun on my feet, admire new scenery, take photographs and make new friends. And after a decade of pavement, I wanted something new. I had mentioned this race to my best friend but it wasn't until some others convinced her and her wife to register that I followed suit.
Fast Forward to April 3, 2015.
Things weren't looking so great for Zion. Although we have more time off than we've ever had before on this tour, our schedule (unlike any tour in our previous four years) has been pretty non-existent and very last minute. Therefore, I didn't know if an event was going to be added on the weekend of the race or what city we were even going to be in to browse flights. My friends and I both fell off the wagon, didn't train and just thought of Zion as an after thought so we started contemplating our options; should we scratch the race altogether, rollover our race funds to another upcoming race or drop down to the 25K distance? Amie and Savannah chose to rollover their race funds and race the Grand Canyon 25K in May instead while I scrolled through flights while sitting in my hotel room in Greenville, SC. Airfare was ranging from $500-$750 and I was seriously doubting my ability to fly from Atlanta (our next city) to Las Vegas while remaining responsible to my job and my finances.
Finally, I posed the question I always ask myself in these kinds of situations:
"What will you regret more: running Zion? Or NOT running Zion?" - 9.99 times out of 10, it's always the latter.
I hadn't run over 10 miles since CIM on December 7, and I was very ill equipped to run this race but I made a commitment and I'll be damned if I don't stick to it. So, there it went...
Just a few moments later, I placed a bid/purchased a flight via Priceline and got a round trip ticket to Sin City that wouldn't crash my bank account. I was going to Zion.