Last weekend, our awesome running hero Wendell set out to conquer a feat that he has been working on for three years……
For three years Wendell has attempted to complete a 100 mile race and has always come so close with 77 miles being the closest (leaving us all in awe of his accomplishment) but has not quite reached the 100 mile goal….. until now. With a head of steel, a mind of sheer determination, a heart that is all in and a TON of training, last weekend, he did it! As I still try to wrap my head around this amazing feat and how incredible it really is, I will tell you how Wendell described it to me….
Camping out at the start line the night before, Wendell woke up at 2:30 am on race day so he could fuel up with some food and get ready for his 4am start time. 350 people started this race and a very interesting fact he told me was that the trails are actually horse trails for horse racing so it is a tradition that an hour after the runners start, they start the horses off too. He said that the horses try to slow down to pace o fthe runners so you are running with them often and he also said it was actually a pretty cool part of the event.
With an amazing running coach who was there for another runner, but took time to also make sure to see Wendell at a few points during the race to encourage and advise him as well as an awesome crew and friend, Clint Miller, who mapped out the race for Wendell and was at every check point with a chair, nourishment and words of encouragement, and an awesome surprise appearance from back home (that Wendell said choked him up a bit and was so touched by) – Maggie, Chris Mada, Suzanne and Sam there to cheer him on, Wendell was on pace to finish the race in 24 hours when he was 3/4 through! This in and of itself is an amazing feat!
Around mile 75, Wendell’s ankle started to really hurt and swell up a bit from over use. He said that mentally this is where the race got very tough. He said he was starting to fall asleep on his feet while running and by mile 88 he was in his darkest spot. He said at this point he thought he was not going to finish by the cut off point of 10am (this was at 4am) and he almost stopped. But there was his crew guy, Clint there to tell him that he HAD to keep going. At mile 94, Wendell wrapped his ankle with an ace bandage and set off for the last, longest 6 miles of his life. He knew he was so close at this point that he started running again and at about mile 95, a guy on the course told Wendell that he was going to finish this race and to just keep going!
Wendell said the last 5 miles were the hardest and that very last mile seemed to go on forever. He thought it would never end. However……after 100 miles and 17,000 feet of elevation, Wendell crossed the finish line at roughly 8:30 am! 350 people started this race and 250 people finished it and our Wendell Webber was one of them!
Congratulations Wendell, you have undoubtedly earned the title Super Hero!