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Bandera - (translates roughly to "buttkicker") (Read 601 times)


You'll ruin your knees!

    As soon as we finalized the family ski trip plans, I breathed a sigh of releif in that the ski trip, while dangerously close, would not conflict with my desire to run Bandera for the second year in a row. We returned from Taos Ski Valley on 1/7 and I headed for Bandera on 1/12. Mind you that since the middle of November, I have run exacly 4 times, twice the week after Thanksgiving and twice the week of skiing, never more than 9 miles. I felt that my December off from running might be a bit agressive for a taper. However, I did start a strength training program called Crossfit and was convinced it would benefit my running. I camped out in a tent at the start/finish line the night before the race. Temps were warm (mid 50's), but the rain didn't hold off...almost all night, oh well, they put on a great pre-race dinner so at least I was well fed. Up at 5:30 am for the "where's all my stuff" dance, a quick bite, some coffee, greetings to old friends and howdy to new ones and we're off. The race offers a 50K option and a 100K for those who don't get the 50K right the first time. The sotol cactus across bare legs is an early wake up call. Heavy overcast skies, fog and temps in the 60's get everyone's attention. I run with friends the first 10 miles, hit a major aid station and fall back. WOW, the mental part of this race really showed up early! What am I doing here with all these real runners? I have no business at this race on my training base...(read: I'm going to have to up the mileage a bit on my 0 MPW training program - ugh!). I make a deal with myself that IF I can make it to the 50K mark, I'll take the option offered by the RD to drop from the 100K to the 50K and not earn a DNF...that is IF I can make it to the 50K. Deal? Deal! Final Answer, Man-Law. Done! OK, I can put that behind me now and enjoy what's left of my race. With that peace of mind, I begin a mental inventory...feet? OK. breathing? OK. knees? OK....hmmm, starting to see a pattern here. Seems I ain't hurtin' anywhere, I'm hydrated (carrying 2 bottle pack, 1 water, 1 Clip-2), I'm really feeling OK. Well, PICK IT UP, MAN! So I run. Seems like not all that long and I'm nearing the 20 mile point and feeling pretty durn'good! Fuel up at another aid station (have I told you how good we eat at ultras?). Chicken noodle soup, mac-and-cheese, briskit tortilla...it jus'don git no better'n this! Now I'm in my last third of the 50K and the fuel is kicking in! Feeling pretty good, I run much more than I thought I would be able to do, very rough terrain and muddy/mucky conditions. At times, we were mucking through trails with 2 inches of gunk stuck on the bottom of our shoes. That made even the rocky stuff really slick! Finish the 50K in about 7 hours 55 minutes, pretty slow for a 50K (did this in 7 hours last year) and headed out for the next round in a cold rain. Just before the turn, a cold front moved through and dropped the temps into the mid 40's (bout 20 degree drop) in a span of 15 minutes! This cold air was not alone, as a drenching rain accompanied it and me for about 15 minutes! I am still moving pretty well and would for the rest of the day, passing a few runners but mostly running alone. Night falls before I get to the 40 mile point and where I had a drop bag with my "night" stuff. I anticipated this being a long day and had a small handheld light in my pack which proved quite useful in this difficult terrain. I reach the 40ish mile aid station and am greeted by a warm group of volunteers with more great food (I swear I gained 5 lbs during this race - not counting the mud on my shoes!). A good stop for fuel and fun at this aid station and I am back out on the trail, alone again and would be for the next 5 miles, which would take me most of an hour and a half in the muddy darkness. At 45 miles, another well-stocked aid station and I meet up with another runner who would rather run with someone than alone so I agree to match pace with him. We would stick together for the next 5 miles, another aid station and I move ahead, ready to get this done (by the way, it's probably after 10 pm by now). The condition of the trail kept me from pushing as hard as I wanted, as the footing was horrible and pushing would likely mean a nasty fall. 5 more miles alone and my partner from the last section catches me at the last aid station, called the Last Chance Saloon (manned by my running club and yes, they will serve liquor, beer, wine...to those who dare). We again team up, and tackle the largest two climbs on the course together and cross the finish line together at about 1 am with a time of 17 hours, 36 minutes or something like that. We sit around in the finish area (heated tent), relishing being done, contemplating how to get the mudd which is caked from ankle to knee off our legs before we crawl back into our sleeping bags for a few fitful hours of listening to the rain pelt the tent. Up again at 7 am and break camp while the wonderful race crew is preparing for the 100K awards breakfast...did I mention we eat at these things? Ham and eggs with fruit, pancakes, sweetbreads to our heart's content! Another awesome race...I was quite pleased with my performance, although it was 1/2 hour slower than last year, I felt it a success given my lack of training. The only post-race issues are two large blisters on my heels, a new issue for me as I have not had blister problems before. Anyway, I believe the crosstraining I am doing is paying off more than I thought! If you are interested, here is the link for the race website...http://www.tejastrails.com/Bandera.html. I don't know how much altitude change there was. We spent all our time between about 1100 and 2000 ft above sea level, seems like all of it was up/down/up/down/repeat! I failed to mention they offered a 25K option as well. If any of you fancy a trail run and doing one Texas, Bandera is an incredible experience. (not me, just showing terrain) Lynn B

    ""...the truth that someday, you will go for your last run. But not today—today you got to run." - Matt Crownover (after Western States)

      Oh, Lynn! You *so* make me want to try my legs at an ultra! Smile

      Roads were made for journeys...


      Now that was a bath...

        Great report Lynn! I sneaked a peak at your log the other day and was wondering when we would get the review Smile Hey, I have a question for you. What do us vegetarians do? Do they provide a food option without meat? Anyhow the whole thing sounds fabulous and I can only hope that one day I find the courage inside me to attempt an ultra. We have a strong ultra community here in NZ and endurance running/mountain running is very popular here because of the terrain. (manned by my running club and yes, they will serve liquor, beer, wine...to those who dare) Cool! Claire xxx
      • jlynnbob "HTFU, Kookie's distal tibia"
      • Where's my closet? I need to get back in it.


        Needs more cowbell!

          Hey, I have a question for you. What do us vegetarians do? Do they provide a food option without meat?
          I'll eat your meat if you eat my veggies--deal?! Big grin k

          I shoot pretty things! ~

          '14 Goals:

          • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

          • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)


          Needs more cowbell!

            Lynn...again, you are amazing. I am in awe of this accomplishment. You da man!!! Big grin k

            I shoot pretty things! ~

            '14 Goals:

            • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

            • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

            dillydoodles


              I felt that my December off from running might be a bit agressive for a taper.
              What an amazing story! Congratulations Lynn. Your idea of fun is well beyond anything I could imagine. I'd be whining if I had to sleep in a tent in the rain, let alone run for 17 1/2 hours ... uphill ... in chilly rain! At least they fed you well. Thanks for sharing your adventure. Most impressive. You kicked butt even after your unusual "taper", LOL! ~ Arlene


              You'll ruin your knees!

                What do us vegetarians do? Do they provide a food option without meat?
                Did I fail to mention pb&j, rice and beans, vegetarian sauce for the spaghetti, m&m's, chips/pretzels, soda, grilled cheese sandwiches, I could go on... Thanks Claire, Lynn B

                ""...the truth that someday, you will go for your last run. But not today—today you got to run." - Matt Crownover (after Western States)

                bas


                  Lynn, I'm impressed as always! Great race, great report! bas

                  52° 21' North, 4° 52' East

                  Mile Collector


                  Abs of Flabs

                    Great report Lynn! The food kinda makes me wanna do an ultra then I realized there's a massive amount of running involved Roll eyes I peaked at your log the other day and was wondering when your next race was. Did the aggressive tapering help?
                    Scout7


                    CPT Curmudgeon

                      That's the problem with PA.....We have trail runs, and some are pretty rough, but they're all generally shorter. There's a 50 miler out near State College, and a 50K near Reading. Would LOVE to do those, though.
                        As always, a great report and great run. However, I'm still not persuaded. Although, I do like how you are fed on an ultra. Much better than the gu/gatorade of a marathon.
                        My Masters (>50) Race PR's: 5K - 20:17 10K - 42:36 HM - 1:31:22 Marathon - 3:20:48