Saturday, February 19, 2011

Hello Catra

Congratulations! You have been accepted to compete in the 2011 Badwater Ultramarathon, presented by AdventureCORPS, Inc. You are part of a select group who will participate in what is recognized across the globe as “the world’s toughest footrace.”

I'm in I'm in!!! woo hoo!!!
Back in 2000 I thought I would sign up for Badwater , I filled out the app. and realized it was to expensive to run it ;-( I than started running lots of hundred mile races. I only ran on trails so gave up the thought of beating myself up on asphalt for 135 miles.
Although I did run several 24 hour races and even ran Mother Road 100 the first year. But still never thought I'd run it. I crewed and paced twice. I enjoyed that, it was there I realized it is up to the crew to get the runner to the finish.
Something happens to almost all the runners there it is what I called" brain fried"they can't think they don't know what they need or want, they become manic happy and laughing one minute to crying and yelling at you the next. They blame all their pain on you and any issue. If they get a blister, so and so got water in their shoe, you gave them the wrong sock. Whatever it's all the crews fault. In the end the runner is always so very thankful for their crew no matter how bad it gets for them in the end they are always thankful for the crew that got them to the finish.
My goal is not to be "brain fried" and try to remember to be thankful that I am there. Sure I may get bitchy but I'm apologizing in advance to my crew to not take it personal. Some thing happens when you are running 135 miles in the middle of Death valley in the Summer. My goal is to raise as much money as I can for Chance to Compete. I am blessed by all of you who have and will donate in the future. Without you I would not be able to do this.

Help if you can here :


avabee said...

HOLY CONGRATULATIONS! I'd tell you that I'm jealous, but I can't say I'll envy you, haha. Still, a big congrats is in order! I have no doubt you'll do great!

The Spiritual Hobo said...

I like your site. Thanks! Here is a true story of mine in return.

Lisa Nicole Lopes had premonitions about her own death, but she wasn't able to avoid it, despite the early warnings. I feel that I can relate to her, but I dealt with similar suspicions (of my own) differently than she did and I, unlike her, am here to tell you what I did to survive my first encounter with The Reaper.

Lisa Lopes was better known as Left Eye (a nickname that a boyfriend gave her because he said that her left eye was lazy). She was one of three singers in the 80's band TLC. Her premonitions about her own death and subsequent untimely demise are well documented, because Lisa and a crew were filming a documentary in Honduras during the time. Left Eye Lopes spoke on film about her omen, and again after a car that she was riding in had run over and killed a young boy. She lamented that the spirit that killed the boy was actually aiming for her but had missed.

Lopes paid for the little boy's funeral and did what she could to comfort the lost lad's family. Apparently Left Eye was right about the spirit that haunted her, because a month after the boy's death, Lopes died in a car crash (in Honduras). This time she was driving. Lisa was the only one in the vehicle that was wearing a seat-belt, but she died... and everyone else survived.

After hearing a story like this, some would say that it was Lisa's time, and that there wasn't anything that she could do to avoid it. Had I not gone through a similar situation, I might agree. But since I did, I don't.

There was a time when I felt like (my) death was close to me. I ignored the eery feelings for awhile, chocking them up to pessimism, but eventually I faced the strengthening force, first by admitting to my self that it existed. Left Eye got this far, but recognizing spirits isn't rocket science for god's sake. You have to fight shit like this, not freeze like a deer caught in the headlights!


It was 1986 and I was in Davenport, Iowa, when I finally decided to face the Reaper before he faced me. Since the Reaper has no face, I'm speaking figuratively.
I was sitting on a bar stool when a fellow came in asking if anyone wanted to get a tattoo. We chatted, and before too long I was the customer that he was looking for. We left the bar and went to a little garage space that he tattooed out of. The scene was totally unprofessional, as far as tattoo shops go, but since I was a carny (carnival guy) it wasn't anything new to me. I stopped the artist from apologizing for the place and we got down to the business of picking something out to tattoo on me.

There wasn't a lot to choose from, no walls of colorful flash or volumes of designs just a single, thinly filled, loose leaf binder. Having never wanted a skull tattoo, I surprised myself by selecting one with a black rose between it's teeth. "That's the Black Rose Of Death tattoo," the needler told me. "Perfect," I proclaimed! "It's just what I need to fight the reaper. Put it on my left arm where I can keep my eye on him.¨

I believe that the left represents the spiritual side and the right represents the physical side, so my tattoos are placed accordingly. One month later, in Chicago, I was stabbed (in the heart and stomach) to death. The doctor that saved me, said that I have a new birthday and... I still have that tattoo, too.

Ewa said...

Catra, you are my hero. Congrats.
Now only because of you and your training, I wish you hot, hot weather for your training (as long as it stays hot in Fremont) - I will just avoid Mission Peak.
Good luck. Gosh you are amazing!

Alyssa said...

So awesome, Catra! I know you've been wanting to do this for a while, so this must be a dream come true for you. I'm so excited & can't wait to hear how it all goes. :)

Johann said...

This is fantastic Catra! You deserve to get this chance. Looking at this post I see two of my dreams. 1 - to run in snow. 2 - Badwater. Will follow your journey with great interest. Good luck!

The Stretch Doc said...

its gonna be a super fun time and I will never take it personally if you yell at me. Congratulations!!

see ya soon..


CherryDeGrassi said...

Congratulations! I just stumbled across your blog and love reading your posts. Looking forward to hearing about all your training leading up to The Big Day.

Matthew Ruscigno said...

I'm a little late on this, but yay!! I'm stoked for you. Not sure if I'll be out there this year, but either way, I'll be following. So awesome.

Jeannie said...

Congratulations Catra, I'm very happy. I'll be looking forward to hearing all about it.

admin said...

that is awesome, you are in one of the hardest challenges ever! Prepare well and stay healthy. Love to read about your journey through the valley of death and into your soul, Marcus DC

JimQPublic said...

Dirt Diva,

Good luck in Badwater. I grew up in the Owens Valley with "Badwater Ben" Jones as the family doctor.

I wanted to say you have inspired me to get in better shape. I spent my teens and 20's hiking, skiing, and biking, but then job, family, kids got in the way. In the past 10 years (I'm 45 now) I had gained 20 pounds and certainly lost a bunch of muscle. I hiked the JMT in 2008 mostly through careful pacing on a training base of only walking. I climbed Whitney, Baldy, and San G. last year, but still on a pretty weak base. One trip up Baldy with someone who had been reffered to as "really slow" I found the pace too fast- meaning I was really, really slow. I definitely needed more energy.

So I keep thinking there must be something to Crossfit if you can do a JMT yoyo in 12 days, or any of your other exploits. I'm now 10 workouts into Long Beach Crossfit's 12 class Onramp program. Even after such a short time, I really feel the difference! I've lost 7 pounds and 2" off my waist and feel so much more energy. I love how so many of the movements train the muscles and power systems that hikers, backpackers, and mountaineers need.

I don't think the steps coming off the passes will be such a big deal after doing wallballs. Picking up my pack shouldn't be a problem after doing Oly lifts, thrusters, etc. I have three months more time to train for this year's JMT. Instead of 15 hiking days like last time it will probably be about 10-12 with more time lounging around.

Weather permitting I'm headed up Whitney next Friday-Sunday. Hopefully the past month of Crossfit will help me there as well!

On the other hand I never plan to do Badwater- that's crazy!

Long Beach, CA

Unknown said...

Congrats on the acceptance!