Intervals (GPS Interval)
Type Distance Time Total Time Pace Avg HR Max HR Notes
1 Interval 1 mi 12:39.64 12:39.64 12:40
2 Interval 1 mi 13:43.40 26:23.04 13:44
3 Interval 1 mi 12:14.47 38:37.51 12:15
4 Interval 1 mi 12:10.40 50:47.91 12:11
5 Interval 1 mi 10:19.54 1:01:07.45 10:20
6 Interval 1 mi 10:41.68 1:11:49.13 10:42
7 Interval 1 mi 12:13.55 1:24:02.68 12:14
8 Interval 1 mi 12:55.86 1:36:58.54 12:56
9 Interval 1 mi 10:32.65 1:47:31.19 10:33
10 Interval 1 mi 12:07.45 1:59:38.64 12:08
11 Interval 1 mi 10:42.14 2:10:20.78 10:43
12 Interval 1 mi 16:55.72 2:27:16.50 16:56
13 Interval 1 mi 11:34.90 2:38:51.40 11:35
14 Interval 1 mi 13:25.79 2:52:17.19 13:26
15 Interval 1 mi 11:48.76 3:04:05.95 11:49
16 Interval 1 mi 12:47.18 3:16:53.13 12:48
17 Interval 1 mi 10:48.59 3:27:41.72 10:49
18 Interval 1 mi 11:48.14 3:39:29.86 11:49
19 Interval 1 mi 15:22.60 3:54:52.46 15:23
20 Interval 1 mi 12:08.57 4:07:01.03 12:09
21 Interval 1 mi 11:14.31 4:18:15.34 11:15
22 Interval 1 mi 11:31.58 4:29:46.92 11:32
23 Interval 1 mi 11:13.36 4:41:00.28 11:14
24 Interval 1 mi 17:10.69 4:58:10.97 17:11
25 Interval 1 mi 11:56.37 5:10:07.34 11:57
26 Interval 1 mi 13:57.72 5:24:05.06 13:58
27 Interval 0.4 mi 5:23.45 5:29:28.51 13:29
As I write this the next day, I'm about as sore as I ever remember being. I can barely walk and it really too a big effort to get down the stairs. Everything hurts, but specifically my quads, my ankles, the instep on both feet, my PF and my right knee are the worst culprits. Other than that I'm pretty OK. :-)
Doug, Greg, Cuch, Ox and me all doing our first 50 trail race, though Ox had run 50 before.
Went down the night before and got a hotel, ate some pizza in the room and pretty much lights out. Slept OK, not great. Up at 4:00, showered, went and got a muffin from downstairs, which opened at 4:30 for runners. Left at 5:00 for the 6:15 start. It was on this drive that it sort of hit me most - 50 miles? I have trouble at the marathon distance, and that's when I'm trained. The deal that I made when I signed up is that training for this would not consume my summer/fall, so it didn't. I ran some, but no more than I would have been running anyway. Only 2 longish runs and nothing back to back. About the only thing I did do right was get on the trails in training, though that's what caused my PF (leading to a circular lack of training).
Arrived at 5:30ish, took our gargantuan bins of everything we had prepared for aid over to the start/finish area, where we would loop 4 times. We knew that were two aid stations on the course, and knew we came to the school, but I didn’t know the school actually had an aid station as well. Therefore, I was probably completely overprepared.
Got my bib, got my shirt, got in line to use the bathroom . Couldn’t really go, so knew I might have some issues out there. By the time I got to the start it was 6:15. Thankfully, it was delayed until 6:26. They separated marathoners (affectionately known by all as funrunners) and the dude yelled go and we went. I can’t believe I’m actually doing this.
Off in a line across the field into the woods, headlamps everywhere (it’s pitch black). I had two on, as I really have trouble seeing the trail at night (I found that out a few weeks ago in training). My strategy was to break the race down by treating the first two loops as if they weren’t happening. I joked that I was just sleeping late. Saw Cuch, Greg and Ox all at various times on this first loop, though Doug was already long gone.
Immediately at 0.75 after a left turn we start climbing, and the snakeline all slows to a walk. Thios surprised me that this was the case this early but I went with it. Lots of singletrack and generally windy and uphill in these first three miles of the loop, which would give me trouble later. For now I was fine. Oh, also, there was mud and water on the course very early in places there weren’t on the training run. This worried me, as it was going to be a long day negotiating all of that.
The first notable thing is the real water crossing, which we were prepared for. I’d say it’s maybe 200 yards long, and the water gets as high as upper-calf and it was COLD. Basically no choice but to just plow through. It’s at mile 3.25 or so, so the rest of the 46.75 miles would be run with wet cold feet, and we cross that water 4 times of course.
First aid station at 4.25, everything OK, filled my camelback, grabbed a few crackers and off to the right up the singletrack again. Next checkpoint is 7.5 at the next aid station. Repeat process. I probably spent too much time at the first few aid stations. The volunteers were great, but because it was still relatively congested, they were a little overwhelmed, so things took longer. Plus I was just trying to figure the whole thing out. I had heard that if you do fueling wrong at the beginning, you can’t recover. I tried to take a Gu every 45 minutes or so, usually between aid stations. I also took salt about every 30 minutes, which involved me either fishing it out of my camelback at aid stations or fishing it out of my back pocket on the run. All took time, but remember, I’m still sleeping.
Eventually I emerged from the woods, and back down the field to the school for the first 12.5. I think I was 2:16 on this loop. Took me about 7 minutes here to get refueled, change my shirt (which I did each loop) and I had to use the portapotty. (which required me running across the field off course). I was behind Greg and Doug, and ahead of Ox and Cuch I think. Off into the woods again.
Not much to mention about the second loop, just loop 1 repeated. It did start to get spread out, and there were stretches just completely alone, had to find the trail and pay attention, etc. Up the singletrack, to the water crossing, plow through, aid station 1, aid station 2, back to school. It started to become helpful to break the race just into those segments. Back to the school, 25 miles down. Emailed Diane to let her know, change shirts, etc. As I was arriving, Greg was leaving with Jim (pacing him loop 3) and this surprised me because I thought I would be further behind. Even though that sounds close it meant I was really 5-6 minutes behind. I felt pretty shitty, and couldn’t believe I had 25 miles left to go. Most notable were that my feet were cold and my ankles/instep hurt. My PF was there, but was mostly at bay because I had been able to run on my midfoot. I had thoughts that I might not be able to finish, but thinking I was catching Greg gave me hope. I should note that the last mile approaching the school, you are on the same path as people headed out for the next loop. On my way in I saw Doug, which meant he was at least 1.5 ahead of me and looked great. Amazing, I thought.
I had thought if I could just get out on loop 3, everything would be OK. I was just under 5 hours, maybe 4:55 as I left, so I was still loosely on 10 hour pace. I had read multiple p[laces that the third loop was darkest and hardest, so I tried to accept that.
Off across the field, into the woods. Saw Ox and Cuch, which meant they were at least a mile plus aid station time behind me. Again, I had hope, I was holding my own. On this loop, the singletrack in the first few miles gave me trouble. For the first time, I noticed something weird with my breathing/heartrate something. I just felt “fluttery” is the best way to put it. I had a hard time keeping my breath, but I was running 12 minute pace. It didn’t add up and sort of worried me. I slowed a bit, walked some of the singletrack ups and tried to relax. Coming out of the singletrack at 2.25 or so I felt a bit better. Aid station 1, then I was able to recover a bit. Felt better and was able to pick up pace. Somewhere around mile 30-31 or so, I saw Jim and Greg ahead of me and it surprised me, because I hadn’t been flying or anything. Also, they were among the first people I saw on this loop, and I was sort of lonely. Caught up to them and ran with them for a bit until the second aid station at 32.5. Coming out of there we ran together through singletrack, but when I hit the larger path I picked up a bit. So at mile 34 or so I was feeling the best I had felt all race. As I headed back on the last mile, saw people headed out on loop 4, and I yelled encouragement “last time!” That feeling of it being the last time gave me a little shot of energy. Saw Doug and he had his standard 1.5 miles on me that he had gotten on the first loop. He STILL looked great. Got back to the school in 7:22 or so, repeated process. Greg was coming to the bins as I was leaving, so I had a few minutes on him. Never saw Cuch or Ox. Left right at 7:30, so 2:30 (my average pace so far) would get me 10. In fact, I could do better because I wouldn’t be stopping at the school again.
It was pretty mind numbing to go out again at that point when I could just elect to call it a day right there. But at that point I thought I could walk the whole last loop if I had to and would still make cutoff. Interesting that when I would come up on someone or they would come up on me, especially on the 3rd and 4th loop, everyone would be hung up on “going to get that jacket”. Stone Cat has nice jackets that they give (on top of the shirt) but only for finishers. It’s a silly thing but is a real source of motivation.
Took off again at a shuffling pace. Really had to break this loop down, almost mile by mile. Get to the left turn off the joint path where I can walk up the hill, that’s almost a mile, check. The singletrack here really gave me trouble. The fluttering started again, and was much worse. I had to slow and walk parts of this. It occurred to me that I may have been on the verge of a heart attack or something. I’m sure I wasn’t, but that’s what I was thinking.
When you think about it, on top of the simple stress of running 50 miles, there was this. Probably 12 Gus, 20 salt tablets, 15-20 ibuprophens, sports cream on my legs at every loop, 6-7 Camelbaks of water and whatever I could consume at aid stations. I’m quite certain I was doing something very bad to my body in order to keep going.
Anyway, slogged through. Got off the singletrack again and was able to run. Made it to the water, and I was actually looking forward to it because it was like an ice bath. It numbed the pain for a while. And I swear the water got deeper every loop, but it may have been that I was shuffling. Into aid station 1 at 42, I was all alone and had all of 10 people’s attention. I told them they were all great but I would be really happy to never ever fucking see them again. They took care of me, actually seemed to worry about me a bit. I remember the guy that filled my Camelbak escolrted me out of the aid station and told me I had to go – he knew I had to keep moving, and I may have lingered a bit because I was confused. Off up the singletrack again, with only thought getting to the next aid station 3.25 away, which puts me at mile 45. More running, some walking, but really was able to do OK. Came into 45 aid station alone again (almost the whole last loop I was alone). I was wobbly, and couldn’t stop sort of weaving like I was drunk when standing there. Didn’t need water this time, so I spent less time. Guy asked me if I wanted to sit, I said “Hell no”, he said “good answer”.
Off I went, maybe 4-5 minutes off 10:00 pace. I knew I wasn’t going to make that, so I think my mind may have given in a bit. I was so close, and if I wasn’t going to make 10, what was the difference between 10:08 and 10:30? Ran, walked, ran, walked. Got passed by a few people looking relatively strong “looking good, let’s go get that jacket!”.
In here, I got worried about my health again. Fluttering was back, and I realized that I could not see very well out of my right eye. It was like there was thick smoke in the air, but there wasn’t. Huh, this is not at all right.
Then at mile 48 I turned briefly to let a guy pass, and I saw Cremer 100 yards behind me. Fuck, really? I tried to go faster but couldn’t. He blew by me like I was standing still, I swear he must have been doing 8:30 pace. The last time I saw him, he looked like shit. I remember wondering whether he was able to do a line of coke at the last aid station or something. He later told me that was all fake, he just wanted to pass me and gap me so I wouldn’t come (I have done this to him before). Asshole.
Anyway, more running and walking, got back to joint trail, 1 mile to go. Turned out of the woods down the lawn and I really started cranking my 15 minute per mile pace to the finish. 10:17, a pretty slow last loop. And I could give a rip. Give me my GDDMN jacket.
First order was to get my bin back to my car and change clothes, specifically my shoes. My feet were in fine shape, no blisters (this is amazing because they were wet and it was my first run in these shoes). They were just frozen. Got changed, then waited for Ox and Cuch to come in. They did, Cuch was pretty much on one leg and practically had to be carried to the car. We had plans to hang out and go get dinner on the way home somewhere, but we unanimously wanted to just go home.
There was a sign on a tree at about mile 12, which made it mile 48 and it just said WTF. And that pretty much says it all.