Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Sunday's Run - Suck Fest

Oh. Dear. God. What was I thinking. 20 miles? Really? And not only that, but with women? That are faster? I must have had too much to drink this weekend. Or maybe I hit my head in the shower.

Okay, enough with the whine, let's get on with the show. I'll try to keep it objective. Try.

We started our run with introductions. Kris D. brought along a friend, Julia. Bidi B showed up shortly there after whipping her car into the parking lot. Her need for speed would last the entire day.

After introductions, we were off. We met/parked at MM 4 on the trail so we headed west toward the train cars and MM 0. It was an easy run at a decent pace. We chatted, ran by some people walking their dogs, and generally had a good time. At MM 0, we walked a bit, talked more, then turned around and headed back.

Gradually Kris and Julia pushed the pace a bit but not too terribly. I was still able to keep up and didn't want to slow people down too much. I love how people always say they run slow then crack out a fast pace. It's all relative. On the way back to the cars we saw the same people walking their dogs, talked some more, and finished up the group run.

And while I often complain about how fast people run and how slow I am, I also know it helps me push myself faster. It was great to see some new faces and hear new stories. Just hope I didn't scare anybody off too much (I even managed to keep my shirt on).

After we got to the cars, Tabitha and I reloaded our gear for another run. I harassed her about taking too long in the aid station when I should have had a giant cup of STFU and filled my own hydration pack instead. More on that in a bit.

So Tab and I pushed on for another leg of the trail. This time we headed east and agreed to run to MM 8 before deciding if we'd go further or not. If we turned at MM 8, it would give us 16 miles total. More than the 14 miles on my plan but I've already determined I can't stick to the plan to save my life. So pushing to 20 miles (turning around at MM 10 instead) was fine with me. I wanted more miles and so did Tab. Little did I know how much it would cost.

On this section I felt decent. Until a half mile in. When I realized I didn't refill my hydration pack. I ran with it for the first 8 miles. I generally only last 10 miles with my pack. So even though I had sucked down some fluids at the car, I knew right off the bat that I would need to ration my water. I did have the smarts to grab one of my handhelds but it was only half full. My lack of fluids would end up being the source of my demise. I would eventually run dry with only half a mile to run but the entire 12 mile run was a constant battle to not drink as much as I wanted or needed. I felt like I was in the desert or something conserving my water. I felt like a complete idiot for going into this race without a plan. And that lack of a plan, truly the lack of respect for the distance, is really where I fucked up bad. Aside from screwing up my fluids, I didn't really factor in my fuel or electrolyte needs. I just ate what I wanted when I felt like I needed it. No nutrition plan at all. Same with electrolytes. I knew I'd run low late in the run so I grabbed some pills but they only helped so much due to the lack of water in my system. And I took no source of caffeine even though I had a giant bottle in my car.

In case you couldn't tell from my tone so far, the wheels fell off. Then the axles. Then everything else. The first 4 miles our were okay. The 2 miles after that I could feel myself slowing down but again, I felt okay. I was 6 miles out so far and doing okay. We turned around and I slowed down a bit more. With 4 miles left, I knew my tank was empty. But I dug deep and pushed on. I continued to push until my hamstring cramped up. I pushed until my calves cramped. I pushed until my gut screamed bloody murder. I pushed until my head started to hurt. I was such a zombie that I knew Tab was saying things to me here and there but I couldn't quite understand what she was saying. My mental faculties were not quite up to par. How far gone was I? Far enough that I knew if Tabitha dropped her pants and flashed her boobs I wouldn't have even noticed. My head was down and every time I stopped to walk it sucked. Not because I had to walk but because it felt so good and I knew it would really suck when I started to run again.

Yay me.

In the end, I somehow found enough in me to make it to the car. 20 miles. Well, technically it was more like 21+ with the detour. I don't know how, but I did it. Maybe it was the magic rock Tab gave me. Maybe it was some switch that I flipped. But I think what really kept me going was that I knew the faster I finished, the faster I would be able to stop. The Richmond Marathon didn't hurt this much. My last 50k didn't hurt this much. I was beyond fried and even now still a bit foggy. And no, I'm pretty sure it wasn't the half a beer I had when we finished.

Temps were 40F to 45F. The sun was out for a bit at the start but heavy clouds moved in later. Slight sign of snow at the very end. Light wind for most of the run.

Fluids and Fuel:
Breakfast was yogurt, coffee, and a small bottle of Ensure. Before the run I took an e-Gel. During the run I had my hydration pack which ran dry at about mile 19.5. During the aid station break I took in some water and some Hammer Endurolyte Fizz. I also had some bagel with salt on it. During the second leg of the run I had two Honey Stinger Waffles and some of my Hammer Gel (I think I had some during my first leg too). Recovery was half a beer courtesy of Tab (it tasted like ass but I was thirsty enough to drink some), some flat Coke, and the rest of my salty bagel.

The only gear to take note of was my Ruez booty short underwear (no chafing and no freezing of the nibbles n' bits). I'll review them when I can find some time to do so. I also tested a replacement for my whistle's necklace. It seems to work just fine.

Aches and Pains:
Feet were sore. Right hamstring start to cramp up with 6 to 8 miles to go. Calves started to cramp up with 4 to 6 miles to go. Head started to hurt with about 4 miles to go.

Mile 1 - 10:46
Mile 2 - 12:24 (includes pee break - only one of the run)
Mile 3 - 10:53
Mile 4 - 10:25
Walk Break at Turnaround - 3:52
Mile 5 - 10:25
Mile 6 - 10:45
Mile 7 - 10:41
Mile 8 - 10:39
Aid Station Break - 12:52
Mile 9 - 10:35
Mile 10 - 11:19
Mile 11 - 15:40 (gun range bypass)
Mile 12 - 12:16
Mile 13 - 11:15
Mile 14 - 11:44 (turnaround point)
Mile 15 - 14:10
Mile 16 - 10:41
Mile 17 - 14:03 (gun range bypass)
Mile 18 - 15:05
Mile 19 - 12:48
Mile 20 - 14:13
Finish - 4:17:42

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