Monday, May 11, 2009

Pleasurably Sore

After running the Gnaw Bone 50K on Saturday, I awoke yesterday (and this morning) pleasurably sore. No injuries, no blisters, just a full body achiness that signifies a hard run has been completed. It was a tough race through the mud, up and down hills, and across streams. I finished in 6:35 and felt good (22nd place overall, 9th in age group). That is almost 30 minutes better than my time last year (2008 race report here). I think I ran faster for the whole race last year, but getting lost twice took its toll. This year I paced myself a bit better and paid close attention to the trail markings. I didn't go off course once! It really does feel good to stay on course, pace yourself, and have something left in the tank for the last 5 miles. I passed a lot of runners in the last segment from Ogle Lake to the finish (~6.75 miles).

Reasons why this year went better than last year:
-Kept a close eye on all course markings (ribbons and signs)
-Started out with a medium-slow pace for first 10-13 miles
-iPod music kept me motivated
-Carried 2 water bottles
-Used trail gaiters

Tips for next year:
-Stay at a hotel in Nashville area instead of Columbus
-Run harder when wide muddy trail turns to single track

This is turning into one of my favorite races. I still don't like all the relay runners zooming past me and I don't like mixing non-ultra runners (half-marathon and marathon) with the 50K and 50 mile racers. Call me old fashioned, but I think ultra races should be for ultra runners. They have different goals and attitudes. Plus, those darn relay teams eat up all my aid station food and drink! I'm sure it's a huge money-maker to have all those extra runners, but it takes away from the ultra experience. As long as I am race director of the Clinton Lake ultra, there won't be a non-ultra distance in the mix. I might consider adding a 50 miler, but there won't be a 10 or 20 mile run. And definitely no relay!

Now I need to clean the mud off my shoes and decide if I'll do the Dances with Dirt Devil's Lake 50K on July 11. I'll decide after the Buffalo Trace 7-Day Stage Race. Plenty of time to make my plans for the rest of the year during that event.


GTI said...

Nice job, Chris! I'm glad to see you're conquering your general fear of course markings. I had a long bought with orangeplastictapeophobia myself all last year, but I, too, seem to be recovering nicely.

Chris Ⓥ said...

Thanks. I'm already back to "almost normal" training after the race. Those first couple runs (Sun and Mon) were terrible. This morning was OK. Not sure I want to do the Devil's Lake 50K in Baraboo, WI on July 11, but if friends go, I'll probably do it too!