Thought I'd use my time wisely and go for a test run at Lake Anna State Park. It'll be the site of my next scheduled race and it'll be my main race leading into my A race for next year. And based on how things went today, I'm a bit depressed. I was hoping to do a long loop in less than 2 hours but I still clocked in at 2:15. Coming in under 2 hours for a long loop would give me the pace I need to run 4 long loops (32 miles) within the 8 hour race time limit. So even though I piddled around, got a little lost, and generally didn't stress out about things, I'm a bit stressed now knowing that I'll need to continue to push the envelope a bit to get that 50k mark by February. If memory serves, I haven't run sub-8 for a 50k since last year. Not good. But progress needs time and so do I. So I'll continue to train as best as I can.
Outside of the slow pace, I didn't do too much on this run. Had to dodge two cyclists that snuck up on me while I was daydreaming about some conspiracy theory as to why a pontoon boat was sitting in the lake looking abandoned. It wasn't but I let my imagination get the better of me while I was making my way through the woods. Along the way, I dodged plenty of horse shit and quite a few mud puddles. I had forgotten how poorly the course drains and how many damn roots there are out there. Thankfully the rocks aren't too bad and I only rolled an ankle once.
The elevation was damn near a joke coming off of Oil Creek. The start has a decent incline and the hills on the power line section were tough. There were a few rollers in two sections but generally speaking, this is an easily runnable course. I just need to keep that fresh in my mind when I do it.
What was left of a barn's foundation.
This was the little pond near the start.
This was a pretty cool view on the trail. Hard to see but giant drops of rain were falling through the sun.
Temps were about 65F to 75F. Humidity was moderate to high with a few sprinkles of rain here and there. Sky was mostly overcast with a few rays from the sun.
Fluids and Fuel:
Breakfast was two waffles, two eggs, yogurt, and iced coffee. During the run I had about 30 ounces of plain water (I somehow managed to pay attention to that), most of a bottle of Hammer Fizz, and an apple sauce pack. Recovery was the rest of my Hammer Fizz followed by a lunch of a Caesar salad, black bean soup, baguette, iced tea, and iced coffee.
Aches and Pains:
I rolled my ankle early on a rock buried in the leaves but it didn't bother me. My problem toes (one on each foot) bugged me towards the end so I lopped off what I could after my shower. Outside of that, things felt fine.
Wore my Nathan hydration pack and stashed my Amphipod bottle inside. Brought along my phone, map, and a few other essentials. No gaiters so I got rocks and twigs in my shoes. Shoes started to bug me towards the end of the race so I may need to go with my Superiors instead of my Lone Peaks.
I tried, really tried, to keep it under the 149 mark to stay in Zone 2. It just didn't happen. So I tried to keep it as low in Zone 3 as I could but I'd often find myself struggling just to keep it under 155. As I neared the end, I said screw it and just ran it back in since it was mostly downhill. I think I averaged 165 to 170 over the last 5 minutes.
Finish - 2:14:50
MIN HR - 82 (at the start)
AVG HR - 148 (wow, I guess I did make it on the average)
MAX HR - 183 (probably when I ran face first into a spider web just as I thought I saw a snake)