What a great race! Very well run, well marked, and a very challenging course. As noted in my previous post, I dropped from the 50 to the 25 a few weeks ago. At the time, I was glad that I did, but, in hindsight, I wish I had stuck tot he 50. That 2nd loop would have been pretty ugly, but I definitely had gas left in the tank and could have gone back for another round.
With that said, I took the 25 miles very easy. I barely ran any of the ups and didn’t push too hard on any of the downs, just cruising anything flat. I simply enjoyed being out – not goofing off, but not pushing it either. I went from being signed up for the 50, dropping to the 25 and shooting for a sub 5 hour, to almost not going at all, to just going out for a fun run. Work has been hectic, to put it mildly, and I hadn’t been able to train like I wanted to before the race so I was pretty scared I was going to just fall apart and limp in, but I was able to run hard into the finish and felt pretty good after the race with no soreness or too much fatigue in the following days. So, I guess in some regards I’m really happy with the race, but in others I’m a bit disappointed as I could have either run the 25 miles quite a bit harder, or stuck it out and slogged through another loop. It was another middle of the pack finish – I think around 60th out of 120… (5:38) so nothing great, but a nice day out on some amazing trails in great weather! And all systems seemed to be in working order. Stomach was great, thanks to Vi Fuel, energy was steady, muscles felt okay, etc… the only thing I know I really need to work on is my uphill running/hiking. If I can get that a bit more dialed in then I’ll be in good shape, and I’m hoping that this race helped!
Anyway, a fantastic race put on by the Gnar Runners! (click photos for larger version)