I first registered for Hardrock back in '10 after I had staggered across the finish line of my first Leadville 100. I'm not exactly sure why. It just seemed like a cool, burly, and scenic race. I guess it must've appealed to the hiker in me.
Of course, I wasn't selected, but I didn't really have any expectations that year since my odds were so slim.
I've registered every year since-- it's become a fall ritual, but the lottery has only ever brought me disappointment. The race seemed to be growing in popularity in proportion to the number of tickets I accumulated, so my odds always hovered around 8-10%. This year, with 16 tickets to my name, my odds finally improved a bit, but I still had only a barely 1 in 5 chance of being selected.
I was trying very hard not to get my hopes up.
So, instead of staring at my Twitter feed, and neurotically hitting refresh all morning long, I went skiing with my family at the local mountain. When my name was pulled from the proverbial hat I was probably snowplowing down the bunny slope holding my two year old son, Ethan, between my legs-- my quads on fire. It was his second time skiing in as many weeks and, while he enjoys it, he's probably most accurately described as a sack of potatoes at this point.
There's no cell service at Ski Cooper, but later when we retreated to the Nordic Center for lunch, I couldn't resist, and logged into their wireless network.
And there it was: my name.
I was simultaneously elated, shocked, and humbled. I'm still not sure I believe it.
Thanks for all the emails and messages of congratulations and support.
And congratulations to everyone else who was lucky enough to be chosen this year. It's going to be a great race, with a great group of people. I look forward to toeing the line with all of you in Silverton this July. For all those who didn't get picked: hang in there. Your time will come.
Me? Well, as my wife jokingly said tonight, "Shit just got real."
I'll be 42 come July. And the plan is to be in the best shape of my life.
Training starts: now!