LBL on the horzion

Not so very long ago, I brought you the exciting news of my adoption into the Team Virtus family, and now our first race together looms large on the horizon.  Seeing as you'll be hearing even more about them, I thought I'd introduce you to my teammates for the LBL Challenge Adventure Race.  Because I have little room in my brain for anything that isn't obsessing over the race, I took the liberty of stealing the blurbs from the always entertaining Virtus blog, but I've been assured that it's ok because now it's my blog, too.

First up is Bob, who I first met last March at the Deuce.  Since then we've gotten to bike together a few times and hang out before and after the last couple adventure races (and I guess during, too, at times).

Then, there's Casey, who I finally got to meet in person at September's Berryman after months of commenting on his blog posts...and titles (or Luke's titles, depending on who you believe)...and spelling...

And, finally (alphabetically, anyway), there's Luke.  I first met him last February at the Castlewood Cup 15K, and then he was my tour guide to the wonderful world of maps at the Deuce.  He's also had the dubious pleasure of biking with me, most notably taking one for the team by being my partner in the Tall Oak Challenge.

I still am kind of pinching myself that I get to race with this team, some of the nicest, funniest, hairiest people I know (and that goes for the whole Virtus team, not just the ones I'm racing with this weekend). I have some awesome local friends who have their own adventure racing team, so it's really nice to have a team where I belong (and even have my own Tenacious D-inspired nickname!) rather than having to sit around and hope somebody needs a teammate.

LBL will be my first 24-hour adventure race.  The website tells us our race "will consist of 40-60 miles of mountain biking on paved and gravel roads, jeep roads and single track trails; running, trekking and bushwhacking 15-30 miles and paddling 15-25 miles".  The course is unmarked and teams navigate with a map and compass to checkpoints located along the way.  Teams with the most checkpoints in the least amount of time win.
We leave in two days for Tennessee.   Two days.  It should come as no surprise to anyone who reads my blog that I'm practically peeing my pants with excitement.  I've spent the last two weeks daydreaming constantly about the race, getting my gear together, obsessively checking the weather forecast, and doing my best to not email the guys 10,000 emails a day about how many minutes until the race.  Thank goodness for the teaching job that demands my attention.  While my kids are in the classroom, I'm focused on them (except for when they ask me about the race) and can give my system a brief respite from the adrenaline surge.

The guys aren't much better, though.  Luke sends us regular countdowns while looking into paddle options and trying to corral the other three of us into making decisions, Bob is reading race reports from previous LBLs and staring at maps trying to guess how we'll start, and Casey is researching the canoes it looks like we may use (rereading the blurb under his picture might give you a hint why).  A quick look at my email shows at least 28 LBL-related emails in the past week, and that doesn't count my responses or anything I may have deleted.

As is typical for me as a race looms near, I'm transitioning from simple excitement to bipolar mood swings between hyperactive puppy and hyperventilation.  What am I nervous about?
  •  The mountain biking, in particular at night, though at least I've been on the singletrack at LBL and felt comfortable.
  • 24 hours of racing.  Wow, that's a long time.
  • Slowing the guys down.
  • 24 straight hours of racing
  • Hoping that having a girl along doesn't cramp their style
Judging from the emails and comments like this, though, I think we'll do just fine.
I'm not really worried worried about all this stuff.  I know there will be times that it's wonderful and times that it's awful, but through it all will be the joy of doing something big in a cool place with awesome people.  Bonkhard Racing puts on fantastic races, I'm looking forward to meeting some new friends in person, and I completely trust and enjoy my team.  I guarantee we'll have more fun than anyone else out there. 

Unfortunately, once again there's no online coverage for you all to be able to check in and see how we're doing, but I'll update the SuperKate facebook page/twitter if I can or you can follow @teamvirtus on twitter or "like" Team Virtus on facebook. 

Two more days.

I can't wait.


  1. I am so excited for you. Man, you are going to have so much miserable awesome fun.

  2. 24 hours f racing? THat is insane!! This cracked me up!!! " some of the nicest, funniest, hairiest people I know " We all need people like that in our racing lives . haha

  3. "Come on pussy!" "Fuck You!"

    I think I love you just a little more after that :) And I KNEW KG had to be inspired by the D. I just knew it.

    Rock on, and have a great time! WAY stoked for the recap!

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  5. I"m smiling for you! Can't imagine doing this but it is certainly your thing! It would be fun to be part of this team. They must love you. Did you replace another female? How many ways can you incorporate your race into lesson plans? I made a whole week's lesson plans around the marathon once. The things that fascinated them the most..........the wheelchair athletes and the thrown water cups on the ground!

  6. Believe it or not, I think I'm the first ever female member of the team...for now. All of the guys have awesome wives/girlfriends, and I can't imagine that they wouldn't want to join the fun at some point.

    When we get to our unit on journeys, you can bet the map and compass stuff I've learned is going to come out!

  7. Be honest for the most part online tracking blows! Rarely works the way it's supposed to and when it does it's not all that exciting. I can wait to hear about it on the trails.

  8. Great job on your last bike ride. I just purchased a bike so I cant wait to get some miles in! Erica

  9. Big props to Bobbi for knowing your nickname is a Tenacious D reference. Very cool.

    Most of your "worries" are not warranted. You'll be great, and I guarantee there will be times when you are the strongest person on the team.

    One warning... Once you do a 24 hour race, you'll be hooked. The longer races are fantastic. But you're right - there will be good times and very, very bad times. In the end, though, it will all be great.

    By the way... What is a "HORZION" and why is the LBL on it? :)


    ---> .333*(Team Hangover)

  11. I'm so excited for you! You are going to have a blast. One thing that popped in my head since you mentioned mtb at night is that you might consider running a head lamp and handlebar lamp. I've never biked at night but a while back I was considering it and planned on that set up so you can look one way and have the path in front of your wheel still illuminated. That and spare batteries of course.

    Looking forward to the race report!

  12. omgomgomg!!! i know the exact feeling. you will have so much fun and you will be so tired. just KEEP MOVING FORWARD no matter what. it will be awesome. good luck!!!!

  13. So excited for you - and bummed that we're going to be on opposite sides of Tennessee!

    Knock 'em dead - and show those Virtus guys how it's done ;)

  14. this is going to be EPIC.
    I hope you will have a blast
    of course you will you are SK!

    (I am size 11 shoe to answer your question)

  15. Best wishes for the awesomeist of weekends. I know you and your teammates will rock this course - having a great time above all!

  16. Very exciting indeed! I get just as bad when a race comes along. You will be great Kate!

  17. oh, this is going to be the definition of fun for you Kate!!!

  18. Sounds like it is going to be fantastic!! Excited to see your report!!

  19. I am REALLY excited for you! 50k be dammed, you have a freaking 24-hour adventure race to do - way more fun! I'm sure your RR will be an amazing read - can't wait. Have a great time out there, SK - hope it's not super hot like it was in Iowa for me.

  20. This is so incredibly cool, Kate! I can't wait to read your report! Good luck and have a fantastic time! Chicks rule!

  21. It sounds awesome! You should be so exhausted and dirty and spent--and in such a GOOD way when this is all over (and if I'm counting correctly it's underway right now!). Good luck and can't wait to read about it.

  22. Nice to meet your friends!
    Good luck, go fast and take a lot of pictures for us.

  23. Do males who do adventure races have to have facial hair? Mine grows in patchy...


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