With October 13 and the Escalante Canyons races approaching, we join our runners in anticipation of a wonderful event.  Forging ahead, though, I want to share an experience we had in the aftermath of last year’s Escalante Canyons Marathon.  As always, race preparations fell on the shoulders of a small group of local volunteers, and, as we do every year, we scrambled to ensure that runners would have the best race experience we could offer.

To achieve that, one member of our race committee put in an especially strenuous effort.  After race day, we noticed that he seemed exceptionally fatigued, then the shivering started.  We finally realized that it wasn’t simply a matter of over-exertion, and two days after the race he was Life Flighted to our regional hospital with a life-threatening diagnosis owing to severe dehydration – he’d been so busy the week before the race that he’d forgotten to drink anything.

A week in intensive care was followed by several weeks in the hospital and rehab before he finally rebounded.  Needless to say, this year others are stepping in to prevent him from repeating that episode, although he’s still working hard in support of the ECM.

I’m sharing this with you for two reasons.  First, hydrate!  Second, we want you to know that even after last year’s scare, none of us – not even our Life Flightee – considered discontinuing the Escalante Canyons races.  We love this event, we love seeing you all cross that finish line, and we love the way it brings our community together.  If we’re going to fall in the process, we’re going to fall forward, as you do with each of your running footfalls to go the distance.

We got off to a slow start this year, but please know that we’re as dedicated as ever to making this one of – if not THE – most memorable races you’ll ever run.

Hydrate and carry on!