Friday, September 13, 2013

Evergreen Lake 32 Mile Prediction

I am running the Evergreen Lake 32-Mile trail race this Sunday in Hudson, IL. I did the race 2 years ago (here's that race report), but it's changed a little and now is supposedly a 32 mile race (instead of 50K). I finished that 50K in a time of 5:30. Can I repeat that achievement? Run faster? Slower?

Temperatures will be about the same (except no rain). The course should be in good shape. Unfortunately, I'm not in that great of shape. I'm healthy, injury-free, but I haven't been running much since the August Howl at the Moon ultra. I hope to break 6 hours and maybe come close to that 5:30 finish time of 2 years ago. If I was a betting man, I'd predict a finish time of 5:45 for me. This is my first of three consecutive ultras for this fall racing season. I'm treating it as a hard training run. Great opportunity to get in an extra long run with friends--and full aid station support!

My friend Gregg is also running. Maybe we'll start together at an easy pace. Gregg seems to be in good shape lately so I may have a hard time keeping up with him!  I plan on starting out easy, then progressively move faster as the race goes on and other runners tire. No heart rate monitor for this race, but I'll have my trusty GPS watch and should have a sense of how far I've gone, my average pace, and how far it still is to the finish line. If I hit 26 miles and feel OK, I'll try to push the last 6 miles.  If I get all techy, I may even set my Garmin "virtual partner" to a 10:45 pace (which would predict a 5:44 finish for 32 miles). I'd be happy with that finish. Real happy.

In my mind, if this goes well, it will jump start my fall training and set me up for two more good races: Farmdale 30 miler on October 12 and McNotAgain 30 miler on November 9. Followed by a relaxing marathon stroll with my brother in Seattle on December 1.

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