I've done a handful of 50K races (31.1 miles) but the next common ultra marathon distance is 50 miles and that seems like a big leap. This race is a 12 hour event so I should have time to cover 50 miles if I really want to, but I at least should be able to run something farther than a 50K. My longest distance run so far was at the 6 hour race in March where I ran 32.9 miles. This inaugural event, put on by Guerrilla Running sold out before race day with 50 athletes competing. Lots of Maniac family are here.
Pros - 15 minute drive from home, I know the course, its 1.5 mile loops around Capitol Lake so I will never be far from aid stations, I can quit whenever I am ready.
Cons - Its 1.5 mile loops around Capitol Lake and I can just quit whenever I am ready. I will have to do 21 loops to cover the 50K distance.
Same flat Course as this year's Run for Rett and Road-odend-run relay. I can run on packed crushed rock or pavement.
The heat wave makes for a change in plans. Its supposed to hit 95 degrees later today. I will start off faster than I should, to get more miles in the cool of the morning, then I know I will slow a lot later on. New goal is to keep going for at least six hours, then see how I feel. 50 miles seems like a bad idea in this heat.
Start - 6AM, sun just rising and temps are in the mid 60s. Running with M761 is always a nice way to run an ultra. Good pacing and nice conversation will make the time go by pleasantly. We start off at close to 9 minutes per mile pace.
Loop 1 - Watch the sun rise
Loop 2 - Slap some mosquitoes
Loop 3 - Swallow some gnats, quite a cloud of them in places
Loop 4 - OK, I'll never remember something special from each lap. Basically we would stop at the aid station each time alternating between a quick water stop and a longer water, food (peanut butter and jelly sandwiches - good, fig newtons hard to swallow after a while) sunscreen, electrolyte pill, cold sponge or cloth, ice cubes under the hat.....
Mile 20 - The first 20 miles go by quickly. Some right hip discomfort and some right foot pain, but really not to bad. Bald Eagle sighting. It is getting much warmer, especially on the "back" half of the lake. More shade and a little breeze on the front half, brutal sunshine and calm the second half. After each aid station visit we have been walking a little and each loop the walk gets longer, though we have run the whole rest of the way.
Mile 25 - Starting a loop and I see Tammy out for her Sunday run. She joins us for a lap and a half and it is nice.
Mile 26 - Still with Tammy and M761 when Jody and the boys drive by. They will meet me at the aid station and it is a real nice diversion. I feel very good for being at mile 26.
Mile 27 - Halfway through the loop and Tammy veers off to go home. This is the hot part and I say that I want to walk. But I keep running. OK this is going to be hard. I will tough out this lap and if I can run the rest of the way I will allow myself to relax for the final laps. A lot of effort to keep running, but I am able to do it.
Mile 29.5 - Around and around but I can sense that the end is near. I need to walk again. M761 keeps on running, good for her. I have no need to push it in the heat. I walk, then run a bit, then walk some more with Tony C. He is a very accomplished ultra runner. He is one lap ahead of me and taking it easy, he will go on to run 59 miles today, training for a 100 mile race in two weeks. Nice company. We are leapfrogging Marie and Tory and that is fun too.
Mile 31.5 - All I need is one more lap and I will have a personal record. I'm by myself, but then there is Bill driving by to check on me. He is wearing crocs but decides to run/walk with me for my final lap. I'm in no hurry and we take our time going around. Its an oven on the back half and although my legs and energy level are OK (not great by any means) I think it is wise to call it a day. I got my distance record and time on feet record.
Mile 33.5 - Done. 22 loops. 6 hours 23 minutes. I stick around for a while hoping to cool off. Then I realize that it is 90 degrees out and I am not going to get any cooler. Go home, shower and nap. Back to the race at 4:30PM as a spectator. Amazing to see so many still going. The Prez gets his 50 miles and I realize that there is no way I would have made it that far. After the race there is a really great spread of food from the Cascadia Grill with the award ceremony and raffles. No prizes for me but the finisher's medal (dog tag) is very nice. I would like to do this race again, especially if it is 20 degrees cooler. I did not get bored with the course, probably due to the running company I had for the whole race. Great organization and volunteers. Only point of issue is that anyone with a Garmin GPS had final mileage almost a mile farther than what was recorded. The loop is certified, so maybe I should have taken the most inner track that I could each time to get a better reading. I'll go with the official distance on this one as I always do for races.
6 hours 23 minutes
36th of 46 participants
25th race of 2010
First 12 hour event