“I ran the 135-mile perimeter of O’ahu in 31 hours and 9 minutes. This was the furthest and longest I have ever run, and my third attempt at completing the route! I started at about 4:30 pm in the Torin 4.5 Plush. I’ve had really good luck with this shoe so far and ran a 100-miler in them on New Year’s Eve with no blisters or feet problems, so I knew they’d be reliable for the start! I ran the first 40+ miles in them, up the west side of O’ahu and around to the North Shore.
I changed into an older Torin model after that and put on my moon socks to match the full moon that night! Those older shoes are a lot softer, and it felt good to have some squishy cushion under my feet when they started to ache from all of the concrete. I ran solo for most of the night, cruising and jamming out to music. My friends crewed me in a big white van and would pass me hydration and calories and tell me bad jokes. The sight freaked a couple of people out because they just saw a girl running by herself in the middle of the night and a white van following closely. At one point, there was a guy who yelled, “Miss! They are trying to abduct you!” Being abducted is not funny but those interactions really made us laugh and I appreciated people stopping to make sure I was okay!
I brushed my teeth and changed shorts and shoes again after sunrise at about 75 miles to start the new day fresh. I put a pair of pretty much brand-new Torin 4 Plush on and it felt super good to have some fresh youngs on! (I like to call my new shoes “my fresh youngs!”) Unfortunately, as soon as we took off on mile 75, it started raining sideways and my feet ended up getting soaked. I should have put some dry shoes on when the rain stopped but I didn’t want to take the time to switch shoes again!
I took it pretty easy in the late morning/early afternoon because I ran pretty much all the way through the night. At mile 100, I took another break and changed back into the Torin 4.5 Plush shoes that I had started in and I wore them for the last 35 miles!
Completing this run meant a lot to me. Two years ago, I attempted it with a friend, and I stopped at 102 miles. It was the first time in my life that I ever quit something that I set out to do. In October, I attempted it again with a lot more ultra-experience under my belt but stopped at 107 miles because finishing probably would have meant rhabdo and a trip to the ER. But this time I was determined to finish, no matter how long it took me, and luckily, I have some really amazing friends that were willing to crew and pace me for as long as it took!
I learned from my last attempt where to push and where to hold back and it felt so good to finally get into those higher miles that I had not yet experienced. Turns out, when you get past 100 miles, everything just hurt more, in case you were wondering. The last 20 were the hardest miles of my life but I’m really proud of not stopping during any of them and maintaining a faster-than-death-march pace.
I keep describing this process as a really hard video game that you work hard to get far in, but then all of your progress gets deleted, and you have to go back to the start. Recover, train, repeat. Get past all of those boss levels that kicked your ass the first time, then keep going.