Sunday, October 18, 2009

2009 Vulture Bait 50K Trail Race

Just realized I ran my last OUS Race of the season, its going to be more then 6 months before I run another Ulra!

It was another wonderful day on the trail. I was really tentative about how to dress in the cold but things worked out far better then I expected. Temp at race time was -1C but there was no wind and the Sun was out. I wore a short sleeve compression shirt with a long sleeve tech over it and to top off the upper body it was my Sagoi shell. In a real leap of faith I wore shorts ! Before this race the coldest I have ever run with shorts was 8C so I now know I have a new benchmark when it comes to running in shorts ... always my preference. It didn't take long before I took the Ball Cap and Gloves that I started with. If I was a bit warm I undid the shell a bit and when I cooled down I did it back up. I think I am prepared for the Road 2 Hope in Hamilton in a couple of weeks ... it will probably be allot warmer.

After the looking at the Toad data and with the upcoming BQ attempt I decided on a little different strategy at VB. They say that on the average when you compare the trail to road running you add 1:00 to pace. So if I can do a 6:00 pace on the trail it should translate to a 5:00 pace on the road. Instead of going out easy I decided to go at a comfortably faster pace and hold it to the 42.2K mark. The first half ( 25K) of the race was done at a 5:50 pace. The next 17K was a bit slower but I did manage to get to the 42.2K distance with a average pace of 5:59 on the Garmin. When I have been going out "easy" I have managed to get past 40K feeling fresh , the last 10K of a 50K race has always been a challenge and my goal over the winter is to train for the last 10K . Anyhow going out fast a VB made the last 20K tough .... really tough. I managed to keep going without walking with the exception of the odd hill but it felt really really hard. I took a 90 second break at the 42.3K aide station. I was quiet dizzy and a bit unstable , I was OK but suffering the affects of pushing it. There was a fellow at the aide station with a radio watching me rather closely ... like they were accessing my condition. It made me feel a bit weird but I knew exactly what was going on and what I had to do going forward.

I had some minor to major tummy issues at the Toad and Haliburton. Again I used VB to try a different nutrition/hydration strategy. I decided not to Gel every 45 minutes on schedule and I skipped the Eload Caplets. I had Heed in my water bottle and stopped a nibbled Jubes, Gummies and drank a bit more heed and water. I had some Gu2O powder in a flask that I was carrying and I had spiked it with table salt ... too much table salt. At the 42.3K aide station I mixed it up with water and started drinking the salty solution. I really wanted to see if there would be any benefit to using salt tablets. I don't think it made me a whole lot faster but I do believe I felt allot better after taking in the salt. So I am sold and will be buying some salt tablets for future long runs!

Last year at VB I went down 5 times. I was determined not to repeat that this year. I more or less kept to my self the whole race and didn't listen to music. In the "technical" sections I kept my eyes glued to the next foot fall. I didn't go down but I did stumble 4 times in the last 6K of the 25 K loop . With about 3K to go I had the closest call , It took me a good K before I shook it and picked up the pace for the last couple of Ks to the finish!

VB was my first repeat 50K event. It was a good measure of just how far I have come in the past 6 months with my Ultra Running. My goal was to shave at least 20 minutes off last years time but I managed to almost double that margin and finished 39 minutes better then last year, I was pleased.

I was hoping for a top 30 finish but there were allot of really fast folks on the course.... some very amazing times . I was 38 out of 82 finishers and my gun time was 5:13:38, in my age category males less then 50 I finished 18th out of 30 and I was the 29th male out of 55.

Garmin data....


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