Sunday, November 2, 2008

Taroko Marathon

Taroko Gorge marathon...was in a word...INTENSE! I'll write a proper synopsis of it tomorrow, but for now I'm too tired and too lazy to fully describe all the feelings, emotions, challenges and craziness of the marathon. But long story short, the first 13 miles went from sea level to 550 meters, they were the most intense 13 miles I've the gorge was incredible; giant cliffs, waterfalls, gigantic pieces of granite rock strewn about in the river bed. Plus it was 80 degrees when I hit my wall around mile 18. Anyway as I said a proper post is forthcoming. Even though my time was terrible (to get a feeling of how slow I was going, a man ran the race with his huskie tied to a leash, and both of them still kicked my ass in the race. When I finished the race, to just rub salt in my wound, the dog had the marathoner's finishing medal around his neck. Arrogant Huskie!) BUT that being said it was a challenging , crazy surreal experience. Every marathoner can tell you tales about their race, when they hit their wall, what challenges they faced, and at times it can be a little boring , even redundant but there's a reason why so many people have done these kinds of feels good to overcome a seemingly insurmountable challenge. What's an even better feeling is having some cool photos to show it....

As I said I'll write more about the details of the race but here are a few pics...check out for all the pictures:

Pre Dawn Line up for the buses..

Getting ready to run

Start line

There was a lot of running through caves/ tunnels and other pitch black crevasses:

Mile 8 or so...winding in and out of caves, with a sheer drop of 200 or so feet below and insane cliffs above. After a few meters the caves opened up to this spectacular sight:

I didn't take any pictures on the course after mile 10 because I was focused on not dying. But the rest of the course was just, if not more spectacular than the first 10 miles....

FINISHED! (Abysmal time though)

Post race exhaustion, coupled with disappointment at losing to a guy running with his huskie, and uber-disappointment at the food they gave me after the race. Instead of a bagel and maybe some apples, I got fried rice, a boiled egg and some mysterious Taiwanese meat....not a good combo after running 26.2 miles in 80 degree weather.

Was a great experience will write more about it after I get some much needed rest tonight....
The bigger the challenge the bigger the reward...and this was a pretty big challenge!

Keep on truckin'

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