Tuesday, July 17, 2007

5 Days

5 days...and the preparations continue.

A rainstorm hit Portland overnight. I almost wrote "freak" rainstorm, but in the Pacific Northwest, we're serious about our rain. It can happen at any time, on any day. So no rain in the PNW is really "freakish," is it? In the past as I've prepared for long-distance events through torrential PNW rains, I've joked that if it rains on race day, I'm going to win. While there's not much of a chance of that happening anytime this millennium, I'm glad to say that the rains have been rare during the past 3 months of heavy-duty training. Still, it's nice to get a bit of a change in the weather, especially during my taper time--when my training mileage is low and my thoughts are focused on packing and getting to the starting line.

The kitchen remodel that I've referred to continues. My hands and forearms have recovered from last week's demolition job, and now the task is in the hands of the professionals. Door and wall framing commenced yesterday, with electrical and plumbing soon to follow. Distraction or diversion? I'm not sure yet. Ask me after the race.

Haircut in one hour. I wrestled with the idea of going to Badwater with my usual longer-length hair, but decided that I'll take every advantage when it comes to cooling my body. So short hair it is. And as a bonus, I get to visit with my coiffeur of choice, my cousin Natasha.

I assembled my foot-care kit yesterday, which might be suitable for use in a M.A.S.H. unit. I'm submitting the content list to the Pentagon later today for approval. I'll keep you posted on their response.

It sounds a bit strange, but due to the intense heat radiating off the roads of Death Valley, many/most of the competitors at Badwater wear long pants during the daylight hours. I struggled with finding the right pants...you know, lightweight, breathable, and WHITE. A solution came by way of my friends Jay and Lisa Smith-Batchen (Lisa's blog is a MUST read), who suggested I try Patagonia's Capilene 1 "long underwear" pants. When it comes to anything related to ultrarunning, if it comes from Jay and Lisa, I'll at LEAST give it strong consideration. In this instance, I took their advice and acquired a pair. A test run (in the middle of the night, on a back road, with camo face paint used to conceal my identity) proved that the pants are just the ticket. Thanks, guys!

For what it's worth, or "FWIW" for the under-30 set, Lisa is making another attempt at a Badwater DOUBLE. That's right--she will be doing two consecutive crossings of the 135-mile course--once on her own and once during the race itself. Astounding, any way you look at it. But those of you who know Lisa know that this is a woman who has achieved many remarkable things in her life, and something like the Badwater double is easily within her grasp. How can I be so sure? She did it LAST YEAR!

I thank you again for your support and plead with you to visit my friends at Soles4Souls to see how you can make a difference in our world. If you're wondering how to best support my effort at Badwater, visit Soles4Souls! Send a pair (or ten!) of new or gently used adult or children's shoes, or better yet, make a cash donation to help Soles4Souls make a huge impact on the lives of people who need our help.


olga said...

In case I don't read the Friday post before you leave - have a kick-butt run, Greg! I think you are the most ready for this one ever since I've known you. Enjoy the Valley, forget the Death part!

Lisa Smith-Batchen said...


Soul4soul...Love it..what a great way to help and make a difference.
I am so looking forward to seeing you this weekend and at the starting line Monday. It has been a long time coming.
Thank you for your very kind words about me on your blog. I feel very calm, relaxed and at peace with doing the double again for so many reasons but the most to run with a purpose, for a good reason and to help make a difference. We all make a difference.
Thank you my friend. Jay and I will be rooting for you all the way.
White silk weight pants all the way:)
Lisa and Jay