It's a hot day in the Gobi desert. Today's stage was 42.5k of canyons with river crossings, mountain trails and gravel roads. The area itself is very remote but this is the fist race of Racing the Planet where I have seen other people. Usually We are in areas where there is only the participants of the race on the course.
I did OK today, I felt great the first 20k then I was in a lot of pain everywhere for some reason, I kept telling myself hurting was good, being hurt not, since I wasn't hurt only hurting I kept going. I am not sure why I felt the heat more this time, it could have been that it was snowing in Calgary when I left.
After some pain killers at the 30k mark I felt better and increased my pace, I am becoming an expert on positive thinking, when I am forced to slow down because I am tired or hurting I tell myself I am lucky since I can now enjoy the view in more detail and even take great photos. I arrived at Tiznap Valley after 5 and a half hours and third female to cross the finish line.
Other change from previous races is that We are sleeping in local homes instead of tents, we sleep in our sleeping bags on the floor but we are shelter from sand storms and the desert coldness.
Since last night We have been very warmly greeted by the local villages, They have gone out of their way to come and cheer us and perform fantastic dances.
The villages are humble but clean and since It's communist everybody has access to running water and electricity. I wonder what the locals think of this crazy, weird looking and incredibly tall foreigners that are staying at their village. It is nice to see everybody dressed in their Sunday best, quite the contrast since We are all hanging out in our shorts, t-shirts and hotel sleepers.
There are a lot of first timers on this race and that makes It a bit unique, I get asked constantly about tips, like I am the veteran, Stefan Dani of Toronto is a participant, He said that He heard me talking about this race at an event and decided to sign for It, He is fit but has never run this distance before, at camp last night He said He was ready to blame me and curse my name every step he took, when I arrived He was already in, I asked him if he happened to mention my name during the race, He said He forgot, to busy running and taking in the breath taking scenery, that and the fact that He finished 9th overall and will probably win his age group, Stefan is 46, I am sure He never dreamed of participating on anythign like this, it reminds me of a song that I heard not long ago, It is by Bon Jovi, It says "wake up, where ever you are, this is the life You are suppose to live".
There are 135 participants in this race I hope that we can in place convince 135 more people to wake up and go for their dreams.