Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Rock and Ice Update #2: Why?

(Trirudy.com) I have been asked many times why I want to compete in a race like the BHP Billiton Rock and Ice Ultra. I will be racing in the Diamond Ultra (six day/225km race), then there’s the K-Rock Ultra (three day/135km) and also the Cold Foot Ultra (one day/55km). All races are very challenging in their own way with the unpredictable environment of Canada’s North. With the extreme nature of Rock and Ice, I sometimes find myself asking the same question….why?

Participants in the three races last year ranged in age from university students to a 65 year old gentleman from South Africa. This is truly an international race with competitors travelling from such places as Great Britain, Australia, South Africa, Italy, France, Korea, Ireland, in addition to various parts of Canada.

What is it about Rock and Ice that captures everyone’s imagination and lures them to Yellowknife?

I guess I can only speak for myself, and for me, the appeal of the north has always been a part of why I’ve wanted to run Rock and Ice. I love the winter months. Many hours of my winter training are taken up by either running the cold trails near our home, or strapping on the snowshoes and spending long, wonderful hours of snowshoe running in the forest and frozen lakes nearby.

My other favourite wintertime activity is dogsledding with our pack of happy huskies. I guess the thought of actually being a husky and having to pull a pulk (sled) with my gear in it has also struck me as being strangely fitting.

I felt like I learned a great deal by participating in the K-Rock last year and observing the competitors in the other races. I learned about what I needed to do to get myself through each day and by the end of the race I had the strange feeling of being so relieved to be done, but also not wanting it to end. The only thing for me to do was to go back and experience the Diamond Ultra this year.

Fitness wise, I feel as though I am better prepared than last year. I have had a solid year of training, including a successful debut in my first attempt at a 100 mile race in the Haliburton Forest. Funny thing is, there is so much more involved at Rock and Ice than just fitness. That part intrigues me, yet scares me at the same time. Isn’t that the way a challenge should be?

1 comment:

  1. For every Why there is a greater and more powerful Why Not ~ Spaff's Third Law of WhatTheHeckedness