THE TOPIC: Post on the FB Meat Grinder Death Run invitation
Georgia Snail: Awwwww, man! MG the DAY before PRR?
LHRM: Yep : )
Georgia Snail: Well, y'all have fun with that...next time I'm in!
THE DATE: July 3rd 2011
THE REASON: Because I am
A little background. 'The Meat Grinder*' is a run from the base of Amacalola Falls to the top of Springer Mountain, the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail. After a run on Thursday night Amanda thought it would be fun to run something a little different this weekend. So, being me, I was in as was Margaret, Michael, and Todd (by default). We would be later joined by Len and Kerry who would bring their A game and kick all of our asses.
The Meat Grinder*? Well, the traditional route runs up the gravel trail from the Visitor's Center to Springer Mountain and back. We changed it up a bit. We climbed the 9 billion steps, ran to Springer, down to the parking lot and back up to Springer (while I rested my ankle), over to the Hike Inn, and eventually down the gravel road to the back of the Visitor's Center. Total mileage: me +/- 18.5, everyone else +/- 20.
The day before the run I decided that it was time to get a new phone. Yes, I am now part of this century and have my own little Android. So, because of this new piece of equipment I ended up sleeping only 4 hours before which would turn out to be a pretty challenging run.
|Highway 136 overlook.|
|Is it me or does the O look like it is about to fall over?|
It was game time. Water...check. Food...check. Camera...check. Pulse...check. And then we started running. The last time I was here I was a lot fatter and a lot out of shaper than now so it was kind of weird for me. Last time I had a really hard time with even walking up to the first of the 7,973 stairs. This time I cruised up the 7,498 stairs and was only moderately sweaty at the top. This is not joke...there are 7,465 steps...I counted them.
|Heading up to the 7,235 steps.|
|My phone has a reverse camera! Damn I look scraggly.|
|Michael a.k.a. 'Mad Dog' on stair tread 5,698.|
Are we there yet? YES! Finally after 12,285 steps we reached the summit of the falls and were awarded with an awesome view. Then it was more running. I have to say that the next section of trail from the Lodge to the summit of Springer Mountain was wonderful. The environment was really diverse where some of the trails were really rocky, others grassy, and others would run through thickets of mountain laurels (my absolute favorite). In addition to it being wonderful it was also very challenging and did not hesitate to lay a beat down on my ass. At the top of the falls we lost Kerry and he powered up to the summit by himself only to meet us on the way back down at which point he would turn around and run back up.
|Plaque at the southern terminus of the AT.|
|Swarm of bees on my water bottle.|
|Screw the shelter...|
|It's A Trap!|
After we all laughed at me for a while we returned to running and finally made it to the Hike Inn. Just before we got there I had to literally squeeze the remaining water out of my pack. Once there though, for a small donation, we had peach cobbler, lemonade, Arnold Palmers, and water...lots of water. I refilled everything. Then we chilled out for a minute.
|Who wears a 10K shirt on a run like this? I do.|
|Action shot of Mad Dog.|
|One of the many overlooks / views along the way.|
|No, the word Zensah is not melting...that is salt...|
|We look so happy, don't we? What the hell? At least Mad Dog is showing his pearly whites.|
THE DATE: July 4th 2011
THE EVENT: Peachtree Road Race.
Something happened to me that doesn't normally happen. Actually it's never happened. I missed a race. I've not participated in a few due to injuries, but never have I not woken up in the morning. I slept from 11:30pm to 8:30am and right through three alarms...wow...I am kind of pissed.
There will be another race...oh well :-D