Just so I can keep track of this for my own records, this route started at the usual spot at the Visitor Center (at Westmoreland State Park). From there I headed out to the Laurel Point Trail where I detoured to the top of the River Trail. At the bottom of the River Trail I headed back up Laurel Point Trail and then back down River Trail again. I then went across the beachfront to the Beach Trail (aka Stairway to Hell) and back to the Visitor Center. From there I went down the Big Meadow Trail to the beach and back, twice. Mileage I can only guess at about 6 to 8 miles.
This was the far end of the beach:
Okay, for the run itself, it was a bit tough but ended up with a fun little jaunt in the water. The first big loop (Laurel Point, River, and Beach) was rough going. I did my best to power through the hills (namely Laurel Point) but it was rough. Going up Beach and down River was a tie in the pain department. For my second round of pain, I ditched the iPod and headed down the hill to the beach. I wasn't sure what the tides would be like but I figured I'd try to get my feet wet. I was lucky enough to catch it at low tide as it was going out and did a bang-up job getting wet. In fact, I did quite well keeping the water below the knees. Until I saw the snake on my second loop. And that's when I called it quits. Yup. I'm a chicken shit. Even more so when I saw two lizards on the way back up the hill that made me do my little Heisman dance.
The undiscovered country:
Outside of that excitement, I did my best to not scare the other people out there enjoying their day. But instead, I went topless about 20 minutes into my run. Yup. Sorry folks. I went topless. Too bad all the hot chicks on the beach didn't copy me.
Temps were about 65F with a slight breeze. Sun was out for the most part but there were a few clouds here and there.
Fluids and Fuel:
I had a lunch of spaghetti with meat sauce and two slices of bread with water about an hour before the run. During the run I had a bottle of water and a bottle of Hammer Fizz for the first big loop. For my beach repeats I had a bottle of Hammer Fizz for each as well as half a bag of chews for each repeat. My recovery was Hammer Recoverite mixed with chocolate ZICO.
The forbidden trail off the beach:
Aches and Pains:
Nothing really hurt much as I ran until my last beach repeat where my right hamstring was getting a little tweaky.
Stripped off my shirt about 20 minutes into my run. Listened to my iPod for the first big loop but ditched it for the beach repeats. Although I did take my phone for the last beach repeat to snag some photos. I also wore my Saucony Peregrines for the last time. Figured if I got them nice and soaked in the nasty-ass river water, I'd retire them.
Codename - Don't Choke
As I made my way down the hill for my last beach repeat, I damn near choked on one of my little gummy chew things. After I coughed up the offending chunk I began to wonder if I'd choke next weekend at the HAT 50k. Dear God, I hope not.
This was route my route back:
Big Loop - 57;04
Aid Station - 2:53
Beach Repeat 1 - 26:07
Beach Repeat 2 - 24:19
Finish - 1:50:24