More Mind Numbing Reflection

A Day in the Life8 Comments

Still reflecting on the SJS50. I had a lot of time today on the drive…

On the positive, I finished my 2nd 50 miler and was no worse for the wear. A little gimpy the next day but not bad. I hurt way worse after a hard marathon effort, such as Boston 2010. I could not run for a week. I don’t feel that type of pain after this race. That course was tough and even though I finished in 12 hours, it was still huge to finish in the top 35% as opposed to my first 50 where I finished top 83%. In a sense, I moved way up. I also finished strongly which mentally gives a lot of confidence about the big race to come.

On the negative, where do I start? This was not a goal race for me and I did not treat it as one. That’s not to say I didn’t work hard, study, taper, etc. However, I just didn’t have that laser focus that I get when its time for the big show. I sort of let myself enjoy the race. There was no real interest in putting myself into total debt over this race. For example, when I didn’t feel well, I relaxed instead of pushing harder through it.

Going back over my splits, I wanted to see where I lost the time. So my splits, followed by the amount I wish I would have seen and why.

Aid 1/Alpine: 1:31 / – 5 minutes. This was about 5 minutes too fast. Just ran too hard. Everyone else I know was behind me by about this much.

Aid 2/Williams: 1:45 / +15 minutes. 3 poops in there, plus a drop bag aid station. Can’t fix the bathroom thing. Bad day for that. Need to get faster at transitions. First drop bag ever. Had to do a sock change (so did all I suppose).

Aid 3/Carson: 1:42 / +20 minutes. Slow to get moving on the road after the aid station. Was kind of resetting myself and eating after all that crap from the last segment. Then slow powerhiking up Wager. Just lost time as people went around me hiking faster. Back to practice. Maybe 3-4 minutes per mile lost over 3 miles.

Aid 4/Divide: 2:47 / +15 minutes. Slow at aid station. iPod, then food, then socks. Slow powerhiking up to CT. Wasn’t excited to do more of that. 2 miles or so at 3-4 minutes per mile again. Once that was over, I was happy and moved well. Probably would have run faster if I were with faster folks at that point. People around me were up and down.

Aid 5/Slum: 1:58 / +20 minutes. Sloshy gut on the first few miles. Should have run it and puked if needed. This was the big nutrition fail. Kind of waited it out because I knew it would be better in 30 minutes. Alternating walking and running moved the pace up and I just lost 3-5 minutes per mile over 5 miles of rolling terrain. Should of just HTFU but wasn’t motivated I guess.

Aid 6/Vickers: 1:41 / +15 minutes. Just fucking dead on that climb. No heart power. Legs were good. Probably a full on bonk there or just beat down from prior efforts. The -5 from aid 1 might have saved me 5 but it cost me 15 here. But splits show I wasn’t too far off I guess. Inline with the other offs above even though I felt 100 times worse here. Lowest point of the day.

Finish: 0:47 / 0 minutes. Happy with this one.

This should have put me in at about an 11 hour finish or so. That would have been more to my liking. But it wasn’t meant to be that day.

So the big themes:

1. Power hiking slowness. Just wasn’t keeping pace with folks around me. Thought I was decent there but in the league I was racing in, I have work to do.

2. Bio breaks and aid stations. Just costs time. Its nice to relax but we are racing here. Need to keep working on those transitions. They are going to happen.

3. Bad gut. It was an improvement over the prior 50 but still needs a bit more work. Going to swap my salt tablets for a different kind that was recommended. I had a ton of them on hand but not exactly sure how many I actually remembered to take during the race. Need to be more methodical in race…as I am before race.

4. Water. Not mentioned above but thinking I need to rotate in the hydration pack for the 100 and maybe the 50 to force more fluids.

Talking to my Dad post race he asked something to the effect of…ready to do 100 now? I quickly answered yes. I finished that 50 — and while I pushed harder than I would have in the first 50 of a 100 — I didn’t have to stop yet. Sure, it was nice to stop. But I could visualize myself continuing on for more time on my feet and it didn’t scare me. That’s the real win in the SJS50 I think. Confidence for 100. I feel like I need to return to the 50 miler again sometime to prove I have a better performance in my back pocket.