Operation Ultra 24 Hour, Kingwood, West Virginia 1,2

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November 9, 2013 - After running the inaugural event last year to commemorate
veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan on Veteran's Day, I wanted to participate this
year to go the distance on a level course for time.  With the rather spontaneous
move my wife and I were in the middle of, once again my running goals had to
take a back seat. Since the race's venue was along the way I would drive to
move a truck load of our copious "stuff" and Mary and Paige Seigel were
generous to offer me comfortable accomodations the night before, I followed
through with my plan to share in the day with old and new friends and RD
Jim Lostroscio and his lovely wife Athena and lively son William.  But I knew
my tank was nearly empty from the get-go and running all day and all night
was out of the question,  not a real possibility.

Jim moved the event across the river from Camp Dawson proper, where we
ran on tarmac the previous year.  The figure eight course on mostly gravel
and dirt roads was much more amenable to staying entertained than previously.
I started at a good tempo to stay with Jim and young Rob Rives through the
first lap and then never let up.  Jim stopped while Rob and I kept up an honest
pace for awhile, chatting about climbing and the things that runners talk about.
After Rob took a break to walk I just kept going, round and round, greeting
everyone generally twice with each round.  It was all good for awhile - despite
being overly tired I was able to hold form and my energy level seemed nominal.
In the 23rd mile my form quickly slipped along with my strength.  Lifting literally
tons of boxes and furniture up and down stairs, onto and off trucks, had taken
its expected toll.  I had hoped to go further, at least 50K, but just didn't have
enough to maintain my own self-respect.  I stopped having fun.  So I stopped
running, then drove my truck load the seven hours down to North Carolina. Crap!!!

No excuses.  No whining.  It's what happens when one is overextended.  With
rest the juice will come back.  I enjoyed what little I did run on this perfect crisp
West Virginia fall day.  Rob Rives went on to cover a hundred miles; Mary topped
71; and Paige, who had never before gone more than 6 miles, impressively
covered over 38 miles.  A huge WOW and major congratulations to everybody
else who continued.  I am humbled by their tenacity and sticktoittiveness.