The Last Annual Vol State Road Race is a 500 kilometer or 314 mile race that takes place on the roads of Tennessee from July 12 th to July 21st, 2012. There is no prize. There is no entry fee. There are no aid stations. There are no "stages". There's no place to sleep or eat unless you stop in a motel or restaurant. It can be run as a relay. It can be run with a crew who takes care of you and feeds you. It can be run carrying your credit card, toiletries, phone and whatever else you feel like carrying. When you run it carrying your own stuff, it's called uncrewed (or sometimes, "unscrewed").
Regardless of how you run it, relay, crewed or uncrewed, you begin on or near the 12 of July. Most of us will start on the 12th taking a ferry from Dorena, Missouri to Hickman, Tennessee. If you start later, that's your choice. Once you start, you run as much or as little as you like. The biggest thing is to finish before July 21 st at the Castle Rock in Georgia.
I'm choosing to run "unscrewed". "Why?" you might ask? First, because I know of no one who could or would drive a car a mile or three at a time for 300 miles to take care of me for 10 days. Secondly, I wouldn't want to have someone waiting on my stinky ass for 10 days!! I'm pretty self sufficient and enjoy the challenge of self sufficiency.
You might be asking why I chose this race in particular. It's got a reputation as a very hard race because it will be hot and on the road for 300 miles. Also, it's a race that has been run and is still run by some of the old school legends in ultra running. I don't have a lot of strengths when it comes to running. I'm not good. I'm not fast. Physically, I have adrenal insufficiency and hypothyroidism working against me. I know it. I've got ENTHUSIASM. I also tend to do ok as the days wear on. At my last multi-day, I got faster as the days went on (trust me that's not saying much). I've got a dream and I've got time! Lucky me!!!
I decided to partner with Adrenal Insufficiency United and raise funds for them so that this race will be about a little bit more than me being completely self centered.
Here's how Jean Sullivan describes our fund raising for first responders education at the Fire Rescue International conference later this year:
"AIU's goal is to help fire-rescue departments adopt protocols to treat adrenal crises. An adrenal crisis can happen when a person with adrenal insufficiency gets sick, is injured, or has trauma of any kind. You can imagine how important it would be for a paramedic to have the training and medicine to treat this. However, as it stands now, very few states have protocols in place, and even more important, very few ambulances carry the liquid hydrocortisone injection (Solu-Cortef®) necessary to help a person in crisis.
The good news is, as the message has gotten out to paramedics and firefighters, the response has been overwhelmingly positive--they want to help make these changes! I had the opportunity to talk with a number of these good people at a conference a few weeks ago, and again, they're in the business of saving lives--and want to see changes made that will enable them to do just that. What was very helpful, too, is that they pointed us toward the people in their circles of influence who can help us achieve this goal."