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Training Log Archive: Orunner

In the 7 days ending Nov 25, 2012:

activity # timemileskm+m
  Running1 54:43 6.2(8:50) 9.98(5:29)
  Orienteering1 51:50 2.65(19:34) 4.26(12:10)
  Total2 1:46:33 8.85(12:02) 14.24(7:29)

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Sunday Nov 25, 2012 #

Orienteering 51:50 [4] 4.26 km (12:10 / km)
shoes: Vavrys - studded rubber cleats

OMG. I had a senior moment. Not that that is unusual, but I generally have not noticed them during an Orienteering event.

I returned, today, just to take part in the Orienteering after serving all day yesterday as a TROL camp instructor. I probably shouldn't have; my fitness level, injury status, and overall wellbeing are metering low. Nonetheless, I went out on the Green course.

So as an avid pace counter, I aligned my tick marked thumb compass edge along the route of my first leg. It was three ticks from trail head to stream junction. "what's the scale?" Unfold map - hmm - 1:5000. "What did Mike say yesterday?" I recalled something about the shorter courses being 1:5000 and the longer ones were 1:7500. "did he say something about them being marked 5000 when they were in fact 7500?"

I don't know. 5000. 7500. let's see. 3 ticks... that's 100 meters, so 40, maybe 45 paces...

Right away I ran into trouble. I was confused about the map scale and under ran many of the legs. First control was a direct shot down the spur to the junction. It was a LONG 100 meters. Oh well.

Number 2, same thing, seemed long, but then I nailed it so, what ever.

Number 3, went too far left. I could not understand why. But it substantially increased the distance. I was struggling to figure out my pace. "Was it 5000 or 7500?" I don't know. My mind is not working.

Number 4, trying to think... I lost track of distance and time. Hit the reentrant. Saw nothing. Ran a little left and up stream. Turned back down stream. Nothing. Saw a sewer cover off through the woods. Huh?

I was in the wrong reentrant. What the heck is going on here?

Later, I would figure out that my mind had replaced my current tick value on my thumb compass with a previous one. Early this year I bought a new ultra cool Moscow Compass. It is 1:10000 scale. My previous compasses for 25 years were 1:15000 scale. I was using a factor of 3 in my quick calculations instead of the correct 2. Thus, under measuring every leg by 50% on top of being confused by the map scale.

Errors continued. Time was lost.

On a less sour note I saw lots of kids. Not just those that had been at the camp on Saturday, but many of the others who have a year or two of experience and some who have just started. Every leg I ran I came across individuals and groups of two.

I had blown controls 3 and 4, and committed a minor hiccup on 5. Disappointed and physically beat, I trudged hard up a steep winding spur to my number 6 as fast as I could. I was feeling it and going "Brain dead".

As I was about to surrender and walk the remaining climb up to a shallow knoll I notice a crowd of folks through the trees. It looked to me like a large family or scouting group on a hike. Realizing my route was going to take me directly where they were, I continued to run to avoid the shame of walking right through them.

The situation became odd as I noticed they stopped walking themselves and all turned and faced me. There were 8 maybe 10 of them. By the time I started to crest the hill I was in severe oxygen debt and suffering a substantial reduction in mental capacity. Yet I was able to see that they were on the East side of the knoll, well away from the trail, in the middle of medium green. I began to notice some of them may have had maps. (This is when my mind was storing the data I would later process to realize they were indeed orienteers.)

With me leveling off and still running, I picked speed. They stood still, only moving slightly to open a small gap for me to pass. As I did so, some recognition began to solidify. I did not identify anyone but I knew they were at the camp the day before.

One of the dads and I were eyeball to eyeball, however, I could not think of who he was. He said nothing, although I’m sure I uttered something I thought would be humorous, and was no doubt understood as nonsense.

As I passed them all I heard a familiar voice say, “We can’t find number 3”. I think it may have been Sophie Ratermann. I was now 20 or 30 feet beyond them. Contrary to every fiber of my being, I stopped. I snapped my map to see the control descriptions and hollered, “What is the control code?” Someone repeated “number 3”. Finally I heard, “31”. I looked down the list I had and seeing no 31 I told them I didn’t have it. I did, though, assume that it would be nearby.

By this time I began to recognize faces as people I should know. They were kids and parents from the TROL camp from Saturday. Someone said “Sophie, show him your map.” In retrospect it seems odd that I did not run back to them. They probably wonder the same. But I was in a great deal of pain.

My instincts were countering every thought. I did not want to stand still, I could not afford to lose ground I had already earned. And so, without thought or any other control in the matter, I watched as Sophie and Ella Egan jogged over to me. Taking the map, I looked for their number 3. Expecting it to be nearby on this very same ridge. I looked at their 3 and could not find the knoll we were alongside. I became confused. More so than I already had been prior to the encounter. I glanced back at my map and tried to refind my location. Then I held the two maps together.

They were a whole ridge north of the one they were looking for. I put my finger on their map and said, “You are here.” I pointed south and said, “You want to be over there.” Unfortunately for them I was still not completely clear in my own mind what was going on. I did not understand why 8 or 10 people would cluster together so far from a control. It was not until much later, I began to realize what may have happened. And only after the fact did I begin to think of better ways to have handled the situation. Unfortunately, my limited consciousness was satisfied that I had conveyed their location and destination. There were several adults, several trained TROLs, they would recover shortly now. Of this I was confident.

I did not think about it again as I continued to complete a failed effort to do well myself. Upon finishing I went straight to my car to change. There I saw Sophie and maybe her aunt and cousin walking across the lot in front of me. She hollered, “We never found number 3”. "Oh my!", I responded. Only then did I begin to think about what I had seen, heard, and said. I'm saddened that I did not successfully get them back on course.

Thursday Nov 22, 2012 #

9 AM

Running 54:43 [5] 6.2 mi (8:50 / mi)
shoes: Wave Nirvana 3

My 22 straight Thanksgiving Day race. Disappointing performance, but the best I had to deliver on this day. So be it.

On a bright note, I persuaded my dear friend, Steve Smith, to run. he kicked my behind. He overcame his neurotic refusal to partake, and enjoyed himself. This may be my single most glowing accomplishment of the year. (just funnin' ya', Steve.)

Truth is, my brother, my #2 daughter, Vickie, our buddy Mike, and a few 10 thousand or so other close strangers, kicked the Thanksgiving Day off with the traditional, weather be damned, annual 10k run; like any normal, red blooded American. Thus we legitimately over ate the heck out of turkey and fix'ns for the next 4 days!

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