A week ago I started the Bear 100 Endurance Run. I did not finish. This was my first DNF. I'm still trying to figure out what went wrong and evaluate how I responded.
To recap: I rolled into the sixth aid station, Tony Grove, mile 51, at 9:59 p.m. I made a head to toe gear change. Underwear, pants, hat, socks, and shoes. Diaper ointment lube on my feet and privates. Ate potatoes and chicken noodle soup and refilled my bottles. I spent too much time there, but this was going to be my main stop before dawn, and I wanted to get properly set up for 8 hours of plugging through the night. I left at 10:43 p.m.
Somewhere around mile 59, descending into Franklin Basin, my left ankle stopped working, and I limped into the Franklin Basin aid station (mile 62). After 15 minutes of triage, I decided to quit. I had no flexibility or stability in my left foot, and continuing seemed pointless.
What happened? I couldn't remember a single major incident. I'd had a number of little wobbles earlier in the day and the descent from Tony Grove was pretty rough. I certainly picked up a little damage along the way. And I'd sprained this ankle four weeks ago. Maybe it wasn't strong enough to go 100 miles. It's possible that I fell asleep on my feet at 1:30 a.m. and rolled it. I was certainly sleepy enough at some points. Either the accumulation of stress was too much for my ankle, or an acute injury happened while I was checked out. Or both. I don't know for sure.
I'm disappointed. Otherwise, things were going well. My gear choices were solid. I was eating and drinking well enough. Other than one toenail lost to kicking a rock, my feet were fine, no hotspots or blisters. My ankle was swollen for several days, but I didn't go far enough to wreck my quads or hips. Sigh.
I will try this again.
More about the race, photos, stories, etc, soon.