Sunday, August 10, 2008

Dirty Girls

What a day did , my first Marathon and Ultra Distance in the same race!

The day started early , the alarm was set for 04:30 am but as is usual I was up 30 minutes earlier. Had my usual Oatmeal / English Muffin with PB and OJ. Jumped in the Hot Tub for an hour, out a 5 and 30 minutes later I was on the road.

It was a little over an hours drive to Mansfield. A beautiful morning , lovely sunrise ... very red sky. I remembered the saying " red sky in the morning , sailors warning. I wondered what kind of a day I was in for ! Arrived about 6:40. There were lot of campers just staring to stir. Picked up my race kit and made my way back to the car , set up a lawn chair and chilled in the Sun until just before race time.

1st 10K

The race started a 08:00 , off we went first few hundred meters was on a single track so it was slow. As is usual there was lots of joking around , 1/4 of k in a fellow announced " Only 5 hours and 58 minutes to go". Trails were really good, hard packed sandy single track to single lane gravel roads. There was more up/down then I anticipated , most walked the big hills. I had a 5 minute unplanned stop in the woods around 7K , I had started my day with an upset bowl and this was the first of 3 stops that I had to do. It ate up about 10 minute overall attending to this problem. First loop was done in 1:03.

2nd 10K

Blew by the aid station and headed back into the woods, it looked like the weather was about to change. Did a hammer gel washed it down with a bit of water. Did loop 2 in about 1:05 , had a brief 2 minute nature call but it was much shorted then loop 1. Cumulative time at the end of loop 2 was 2:08

3rd 10K

After two loops the weather definitely was changing , stopped at the car and grabbed my hat , also the Jelly Beans , grabbed a 1/3 of a bottle of heed and off I went back into the woods! No sooner did I start the third loop then it started to rain! I felt the most at peace on this loop , I remember hearing the rain in the leaves no one was around ... a moment of Zen 2.5 hours in. By the end of the third loop it was really starting to rain heavily. Third loop was slower at 1:20 , I walked allot more in this loop then I would in the next ... not sure why! Stopped for a a washroom break , more head an some chocolate chip cookies. Cumulative time at the end of loop3 was 3:28

4th 10K

I found a rhythm in the forth loop , it wasn't fast but it was steady. My feet were soaked and I was concerned about how my feet would do , it was really raining heavily during this loop , I was afraid that it would get slippery but it wasn't too bad , the sandy soil made for good drainage! Stopped at the half way aid station , tried some coke. For some reason I really thought I had slowed down , at the 35K aid stop I looked at the Garmin and it was 4:06 ! I really lit up .... 4:06 maybe , just maybe 50K in under 6! Finished the 4th loop in 1:15 , 5 min faster then loop 3 !!! Cumulative time at the end of loop 4 was 4:45..

5th 10K

Started out not knowing what to expect and was pleasantly surprised that it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be! I didn't think I would make the 6 hour cutoff for 50K but I was confident that I would easily make the 47.5K mark and I did just that in 5:46. As I passed by the Marshall at the 42.5 K mark I had a small celebration .... Ho rah I proclaimed , I just did my first Marathon Distance ! At the half way aid station I paused for a photo with the Styrofoam Dirty Girl. It was 5:26 with 5K to go , if the course was flat I could have made it but there was a really big uphill at 47.5 K that I knew would be a 5min walk and that was it was resigned to 47.5K. Took it easy that last couple of Ks and came in at 50K in 6:10.

The first two laps I was fighting sever stomach cramps, the third lap it improved and the last two it wasn't bothering me! I had never run more then 30K but I really didn't know what to expect. 30-50K wasn't all that bad , more like an extension of how I usually feel in the 20-30K runs that I have been doing since spring! The last lap I didn't have pain , just an ached through my entire skeleton ! I was wearing a compression short , the chest felt chilly and tight , breathing was laboured ... my chest was feeling tight. After I was done the achey feeling really hit me. I went to the car to change and had a tough time manoeuvring. After spending 10 minutes dressing I made my way to the start/finish and grabbed a Burger. Went back an sat next to the car, at the Burger and washed it down with Beer.

The awards were really cool , very cool as a matter of fact. The race director called out names , you were asked to tell everyone your name and where you were from and what your results were. When the swag was handed out names were drawn , you had to pick a gift and give it to someone. First place finishers were called to the podium , after the 2nd and 3rd from all category's came up and were toasted !

Got home around 5pm, took a couple of Advil then had a shower and a meal , was in bed by 7 and slept 12 hours .. best sleep i awhile. Today, I feel good , a little bit of soreness in the quads... a couple of tender toe nails and some chaffing. Probably be a day or two and I will be back at it , maybe even a race next weekend.



doonst said...

Great story Ron way to go! Never done a marathon and jumped right in to ultras? Wow!


Vava said...

Amazing! Great description too. 50k is out of this world: terrific job!