Friday, July 4, 2008

Day Before Leadville Trail Marathon

My next event after Sundown Ultramarathon is the Leadville Trail Marathon in Colorado. I did not prepare myself well for the race simply because I was too tired after running in Port Elizabeth, Copenhagen and Singapore. In fact, I did something extremely suicidal - only managed a run a week after Sundown! That's just 4 runs of about 10km-12km each run! *Shaking my head as I recalled*.........

I flew into Denver on Thurs, 3 Jul 2008, arriving at around 4pm local time. Before the trip, I did not sleep and had slogged through the night to confirm all my travel plans and packing my luggage. Bad bad mistake. After picking up my rented car from AVIS, I drove towards the directions of the mountains, making 2 wrong turns and eventually driving towards the mountains after I had to stop to ask for directions. I was really sleepy through out the drive and was very lucky that I survived driving into the town of Leadville in one piece although I dozed of for split second twice during the journey. Phew!!! Lucky me. Quickly checked into the motel, washed up and slept.

The next day, I woke up with a throbbing pain in my head. Must be the high altitude doing its trick. You see, the town of Leadville is situated at an elevation of 10,152 feet, while the highest hill in Singapore is no more than 540 feet!!! In normal circumstances, I would just bear with the pain. But since the event was just 1 day away, I quickly popped 1 tablet of Acetazolamide that the Tan Tock Seng Hospital doctor prescribed me for high altitude sickness. It probably helped a little but not by much. I walked into the town and the 4 July celebrations were already over as the performers were dispersing, with the crowds still cheering them. After some pictures, I walked into 213 Harrison Avenue, the place where we were supposed to collect our race pack. The gentleman behind the counter confirmed that this was the right venue and that the collection would start at 12pm.

I surveyed the products being sold in the shop before leaving for an early lunch. It was 11am. Time passed quickly when you were busy engaging in any sort of activity, including eating and by the time I finished my carbo-loading lunch, it was past 12pm. I went back to the store and collected my race pack in minutes. It was easy and quick. Inside the race pack was a Colorado Runner's magazine, some product, and my bib number 101. I then went sight-seeing by taking a 2½ hour train ride to spend my Saturday afternoon, before returning to the motel to prepare my running attire for the next day. By the time I finished packing, it was time for dinner. Since I had a slow digestive system (and hence I usually do a carbo-loading lunch instead of dinner), I drove to Subway to get a 12" sandwich plus Coke. Thereafter, it was sleeping time!

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