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Dan Greig lives and works in West Auckland, and is a keen runner, being mad enough to take on the toughest of challenges. In 2008, he faced up to his hardest one yet: the Wasatch 36-hour Race, a 100 Mile Endurance Run which is held in Utah.During the run, he took Lyprinol® supplements at hourly intervals, to support his breathing and to support his joints ticking over.Dan has been taking Lyprinol® for over four years and he believes it helped him to keep going when others were grinding to a halt. Unfortunately Lyprinol® was unable to prevent his feet turning into a mess of bloody blisters. Scientific research has shown that Lyprinol® supports lung function and healthy airways, joint mobility and general activity. Here's his amazing story
I am a fifty year old ultra distance runner; I have competed in numerous ultra runs around New Zealand. I have also competed in 160kms runs over the Serra Nevada Mountains and the Rocky Mountains. My goal for 2009 is the Angeles Crest 160km run over the San Gabriel Mountains South East of L A. I have used Lyprinol since 2003. Lyprinol® helps me to deal with the stresses that I have to endure while I am training. It helps me to recover from my long runs and keeps my joints well conditioned. I have injury free running.
The 2008 Wasatch Front 100 mile Endurance Run, started at 5:00 AM sharp on September 6, 2008. The Wasatch Front 100 Mile Endurance Run is held in Utah the first weekend after Labor Day each year. The run stretches from Layton, Utah to The Homestead in Midway, Utah and covers some of the most beautiful scenery the Wasatch Mountains have to offer.
There is a cumulative elevation gain of approximately 26,882 feet, as well as a cumulative loss of approximately 26,131 feet throughout the course. This is a premier run that will test the endurance of any runner. The Wasatch Front 100 is one of the most uniquely challenging ultra running events in the world. It is a study in contrasts: peaks and valleys; trail and scree; heat and cold; wet and dry; summer and winter; day and night; Desolation Lake and Point Supreme; “I can't” and “I will!” Dickens had the Wasatch in mind when he wrote, “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.” The primitive and isolated nature of the course is both its beauty and its challenge, for it requires the individual runner to rely primarily on himself or herself rather than the Race's support systems. Wasatch is not just distance and speed; it is adversity, adaptation and perseverance.
It’s hard to adequately explain the emotions that run through your mind 5 minutes before the start of a 100 mile run (162.5km). Being the first New Zealander to enter the Wasatch. The excitement about what you are about to undertake, the expectation of the beauty of the scenery that is going to unfold before your eyes, swallowing you and then spitting you out a 100 miles (162.5kms) later. The fear of failing to complete the journey, all those months of training, pre race preparations and all that you must overcome just to survive the Wasatch course. You must consider the altitude, the risk of getting lost, the tortuous rocky running surface and the long down hill sections running on a surface known as ball bearings. You climb 4500ft in the first 8 miles reaching and altitude of 9500ft. The view is spectacular over the Great Salt Lake as you head along the high ridges and then head into rough and rocky conditions while consistently climbing short sharp sections and then dropping down- only to head up again. I was always conscious of keeping my heart rate down as there was a long way to go but plenty of time. I met up with my support crew for the first time at Big Bald Mountain which marks the 39.6 mile distance. At this point I had been on the trail for thirteen and a half hours however I wasted little time in the aid station and got back out on the trail feeling good. Back out on the trail I realized that I had blisters forming and sat down at about 45miles and pop them with the pin from my race number. There were more blisters to come. The next aid station was Alexander Springs at the bottom of the ball bearing surface area. This is where I stopped for some running repairs on my feet with duct tape. I reached Lambs Canyon, the 53 mile mark just on night fall. I had been running for 15and a half hours, and I was feeling great despite having very sore feet. I tried to think about my feet as little as possible in the now cooling temperature, which was about to turn freezing. It was time to put on warm clothing and a head lamp for the beginning of the second half of the run.
This next section I ran about thirty miles in the dark, this section is where one sees a lot of the casualties of the run, in the various aid stations positioned along the course. I found just with a very quick look around the aid stations, I was encouraged to be in and out of them as fast as possible. There is only so much suffering that you can witness in one night and there were some very damaged people out there. For safety you are weighed the day before the run and then you are weighed again at medical aid stations set up out on the course. If you have lost too much weight, you are likely to be dehydrated and therefore you have to drink to get your weight up. If you have gained too much weight you can be pulled from the run as weight gain is normally associated with the condition of hyponatremia (low salt syndrome) with accompanying neurologic symptoms such as staggering, visual changes, inability to concentrate or think clearly disorientation which leads to the body gradually shutting down its system. A good rule is to avoid sitting in the chairs at the aid stations, keep standing and eat your food while heading out of the station.
The course takes you into a beautiful Aspen Forest. The silver trunks of the trees give a beautiful reflect in the head lamp. In this section you also run at the highest points on the trail. It is like running on top of the world as the highest point you reach is 10500ft. This is at Point Supreme, at which I still had twenty four miles to run till the finish and had been going for twenty five hours. It is an inspiring sight to see the giant mountains rise around you in the light of the second sunrise of the run. It was obvious to me exactly why I was out there running the Wasatch and only a few get such an experience. This sight was the final piece of inspiration to continue on and complete the run. The runner moves into a physical and mental level which is hard to leave. It seems the longer this goes on the better it starts to feel.
Reality soon came back to me as I realized that I still had some of the hardest sections of the course to go and I needed to become even more focused than I had ever been. This is the time when I was careful to keep my intake of water, electrolytes and GU at the same levels as I had done for the previous parts of the run as I realized that this monster was going to take me thirty something hours to finish- cut off time for the run is thirty six hours. While trying to focus, the next thing that I dealt with was nausea due to the motion of running for such an extended period of time. Putting enough food into the body for a great length of time is an achievement in itself.
As the temperature heads back into the 30s the next six hours were going to be tough. Along with the scree and the steep descents, getting down off the mountain was the toughest section of the course for me. Physically I felt in good shape, my legs still felt strong but my feet were looking like hamburger patties which made the descents challenging. They call the run heaven and hell and I think I was in the hell section for most of the last 3 hours, still forcing myself to run as much as possible. Finally reaching a level surface to run into the finish at Midway in sixty seventh place and in a time of thirty one hours seventeen minutes and thirty two seconds. My feet are a mess but I feel great.
I would like to acknowledge the crew that helped me in the Wasatch 100.
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