When I signed up for Quad Rock 50 mile in Fort Collins CO, I knew my chances were 25% at best at even finishing. The unforgiving, rocky, beautiful terrain, would take me up and down with 11,000 ft elevation gain. My health conditions (especially hips), are what make my chances so slim but I'm still determined to chase after my love. One of my main goals for 2018, is to be stronger than ever despite any circumstances. I'm doing this, and going to continue to do this by increasing weight with my strength training and pt exercises, and dig even deeper with educating myself on all aspects of hip/glut issues, injuries and surgeries.
Preparing for a hot year at Quad Rock, I was surprised and even a bit disappointed to find it would be a wet, cold year. No matter what mother nature had planned, I was going! I wanted to be there to share the trails with some of my friends and rugged running clients. We had a fun weekend of camping planned with it,despite the rain. If there is one thing that makes this sport of ultra running one of the best sports ever, it's the community, and that is exactly what keeps me motivated through the pain.
Race day morning-->
I woke up to the pitter patter of rain on the tent. No surprise there, the forecast called for 100% precipitation for most of the day. Grateful for my Ultimate Direction Rain Jacket , I geared up as Maya (my 3 year old) sprung out of bed at 3am ready to go sporting her kids UD Vest.
Within the first few miles of the race, it was clear that it would be a damn miracle for me to even finish the race. The course conditions resembled those of Indiana Trail 100 2013, EXCEPT WORSE!!!.. Especially since this was up and down mountains! As hard as I worked, as strong as I felt, the reality is that my hips are rotten to the core and with the extreme muddy conditions my chances were minimal. Today was going to be one of the most challenging days I've ever faced.
Yet in true Yates style, I ran. I ran to my maximum potential. I gave all I had, slip sliding my way through 50 miles. Leading half of the race, my hips were no challenge for ultra new comer Addy Bracy. She over took me after the turnaround point as I pushed through the inflammation in my hips. Although we both received major applause, positive comments, on how we were crushing it, I could only think... with my overall race career, "am I flying or dying?" Will this race be my last? If I finish, will I be able to walk without support (last year with my post double surgery RRR 100 attempt, my race ended early around 70 miles. I could barely make it in to the aid station, grasping at weeds to hold me up due to my hips giving out, with 2 full weeks of needing walking support afterwards). *The pictures don't do it any justice.. these were the easy parts!!!
So why? Why am I battling through so much pain. Despite what most people think, it's not for the glory, but for the burning desire to run and feel free for just a few minutes, running as hard, happy and as fast as I can WITH my friends, clients, competitors and the community I love, know, and continue to grow with.
My races would not be possible without:
1. GU ENERGY
2. ULTIMATE DIRECTION
4. ELDORADO SPRINGS WATER
5. HEALTH WARRIOR
*special thanks to my awesome crew and friends: Wyatt and Maya Yates, Matt and Suzi Collins, Caroline Veltri, Anna, Shawn and Emery Hailey, Chris Bull, Nicci Corradino, Megan Moriarty, David Long, Gia Madole, and of course the Race Director for one heck of a well put on race!