Well, I'm not sure I'm going to have time to post anything immediately before the run. Grammy is coming tomorrow to pick up little Elliott and Casey so they can have a weekend at her house. Holli and I are leaving, probably late afternoon on Thursday, to head into Canada. We'll stay in a hotel Thursday night before driving the rest of the way to Haliburton Forest where we'll camp Friday and Saturday night.
I'm definitely more nervous than the 50 miler last year. Going from a 35 mile training run to a 50 mile race feels much different than going from a 50 mile training run to a 100 mile race. I read the other day that the first 50 miles are physical and the second 50 miles are mental. We'll see if that is the case (actually, I'm not sure if that makes it better or worse). I've decided to think of the whole thing as simply 10 consecutive 10 mile runs. 10 mile runs have been the bread and butter of my training so that makes it feel much more manageable. How do I plan on running 100 miles? By thinking about the distance as a little as possible.
I've downloaded "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card to listen to during the race. I thought some classic science fiction would be engaging and not as dry as some of the nonfiction that I tend to listen to. During my night training run I listened to some horror short stories from www.pseudopod.org and I confess to having had one minor freaky moment just before 2 AM (Are there people standing in the middle of that sugar beet field? Can't be. It really looks like some people. Why are they standing there?). I'll probably throw on some podcasts and music similar to what I listened to on my last run (check this post and the follow up comments for my playlist.)
I also picked up a new pair of shoes. I went with some Brooks Adrenaline ASR 4. These are the trail version of the shoes that I've been running in. I've put a couple hours on them and they feel essentially the same, but with better traction. It feels a little risky to be sampling new shoes at this point, but since they are so similar and I could feel my last pair starting to break down (I can feel my knees get sore after I get 300 miles on a pair of shoes) so I thought it was a fair risk. This is, consequently, the first time I go into an ultra without some issue of blisters and/or ITB problems. That has me feeling optomisitic.
I'll probably have some extra food and drinks at drop bags and Holli is planning on being at aid stations with supplies and to hand over a flashlight, headlamp, and long sleeve shirt to me before it gets dark. I haven't used drop bags before and, honestly, making sure that everything is in the right place at the right time has taken some strategizing. I'm actually traveling relatively light with just a fanny pack that carries one bottle. I might bring the little video camera again as a video diary of the experience--I'm not sure. If you're curious about what I am bringing, a complete list is here.
Anyway, thanks in advance to all those who have supported me up until this point. Hopefully the T-shirts will be ready in the next couple days, but I still haven't heard from the company. A reporter from out student newspaper is coming to my office in a little bit so hopefully we'll have the chance to drum up some more donations. Holli is going to try and post updates from her cell phone, but it will depend on the reception up there. Wish me luck!