Awhile ago I bought a GPS for my second marathon in Bear Lake, Utah. I knew I’d never be able to follow the map on how to get there plus I figured if I were going to run all 50 states I’d never be able to find any of these places with my horrible sense of direction. I must have been absent that day in Heaven when the sense of direction gift was given out. I get lost going to the bathroom. My next marathon was in Casper, Wyoming but for some reason, maybe nerves, maybe a touch of Alzheimer’s, maybe a little of both I put the street name in the GPS where the city should be and the city where the street should be. So after about 6 hours of driving I showed up in Riverside, Wyoming and not Casper, Wyoming.Ugg!!!
I drove 2 1/2 hours away from where I should have been. My step-son Riley Stanger was my co pilot and he suggested I call the marathon expo. There was no morning packet pick up so I begged them to stay open until I got there. The expo people were very nice and said they would place my race packet at the front desk of the hotel that was sponsoring the race so I could pick it up when I finally rolled into town.
Since the GPS was on the fritz and couldn’t locate the address. Riley used his smart phone and read directions to me the whole way while I sped to Casper. Now if there are any law enforcement officers reading this Blog please skip down a few lines…….. while I tell everyone else I probably drove 90 mph the whole way in order to get to the packet expo on time.
We might have been OK time wise but the Phantom Fireworks stand called to us as soon as we got into Wyoming. With the 4th of July coming up the fireworks stand was a “must stop”. It was a pyromaniacs dream. I’ve never seen so much stuff that blows up and explodes as they had at this place. Riley had researched each and every item he was planning on buying on the internet before we arrived and bought a buttload of fireworks.
At 10 minutes to 9:00 we arrived at the hotel and made our way to the packet pickup area. People were still there and I got my bib number and shoe chip with no problem. Thank goodness. I was shaking all over from driving so hard and so fast but it all worked out. Next order of business: find a nice restaurant and feast.
Casper is very nice, but being a small town finding an open place to eat proved to be a challenge. We finally settled on a nice steak place and went inside. Low and behold and to my shock and surprise they had spaghetti and meatballs on the menu. After dinner we settled in the back of my Saturn Vue and slept until my “up and Adam time” at 5:00am to catch the bus to the starting line .
I have a whole routine I do before a race, lotions, gels, mole skin, tape, aspirin, water, orange, banana, cliff bar, fitting my prosthetic running leg on, stretching, and most important…gathering my chi. I have been training very hard and getting my body in shape and so before every race I become a Ninja Warrior and prepare myself mentally for the grueling event I am about to participate in. It is a very serious process. If you are not in both physical and mental shape you can suffer some pretty good injury.
Riley was a great co-pilot before-during-and after the race. He is like one of those personal assistants that follow rockstars around picking out all the brown m&m” s and Evian water for the dressing room. He met me along the coarse several times and had water for me. He gave me course and time info and kept me going when I didn’t have anything left. After the race he took me to a spot he had found where I could get a quick camp shower and clean up and then he drove us home while I rested. If I had an extra million bucks I would have given it to him.
I need to give the Casper Marathon the kudos it deserves. The coarse was great, we ran mostly through a green belt parkway next to a river. It was very safe and the risk of getting hit by a car was minimal. There were plenty of water stations with ‘extras’ like fruit and even ice for your water. The buffet at the finish line was the best I’ve ever seen. We had Pizza and sub sandwiches, fruit and juices. Pastries and popsicles. There were plenty of chairs so all the runners and their families could sit and eat under large tent awnings while the race coordinators gave out the trophies and prizes. I had a great time and another really fun marathon. Wish they all could be this nice.