With Coyote Two Moon quickly approaching, I needed to get some miles under my belt. I haven't done anything long since October so I decided to run Jed Smith 50 mile on February 7th. This run is located at Gibson Ranch in Sacramento and is put on by the Buffalo Chips running club. I have never done this run before but Barb Elia has run it many times and encouraged me to sign up. The course is a 3.3 mile figure 8 loop with paved and dirt paths. I went online to ShadowChase.org to the pace calculator early in the week and figured out if I ran 10 minute miles I could finish in 8:20. This was my goal (which I wrote in my log book, to make it official).
I also choose not to wear my garmin so I wouldn't be a slave to the pace portion of my watch.
I went up with Barb Elia and Linda McFadden. Linda and I were both doing the 50 miles while Barb ran the 50K.Here I am at the start. We brought our stuff (change of clothes in case it rained, ice chest, food and a chair) and placed it across from the aid station. The event was very low key and at 8:00a. a small group started. The speedsters took off. I fell into a nice rhythm. I was running what felt like a fast pace, which usually means I am running slow! The 50 mile consisted of 15 loops, I know 15!! The first loop went pretty fast because I had know idea what the course was like. My thought on this is, ignorance is bliss! I liked the course, it had hills placed at the right time to change up the pounding on the legs. The aid stations were nicely spaced and they had this wonderfully nice man encouraging us at the Y before the loop. I figured each loop should take about 33 minutes. Well, I started running and each time I passed the clock I was on the half hour so I figured it was all good. My plan was to run 10 minutes and walk for 1 minute for the first 10 loops.
Photo taken by Anthony Brantley.
All during the day, I was trying to focus on hydration and nutrition. My goal was to consume 20 oz. in an hour and eat something each loop. As the day warmed up, I switched to plain water and started taking one bottle per loop. I have a tendency to drop off on the hydration as the day progresses. Overall, I was happy with the hydration portion. I could have eaten more. I wished I had brought some GU. I don't know why I didn't. On loop 11 I left the aid station walking and drinking soup broth. I continued with the 10 and 1, but threw in a few more walks. I limited myself to walking 50 steps then back to running. When I came in from what I thought was loop 12, I was informed it was loop 13. Only 2 more laps. Wow, I was glad to have miscounted. The clock said 6:39. Loop 14 was deadly, my legs felt like lead but I had a good energy level. I started my last loop at 7:17. Loop 14 turned out to be the slowest lap. Barb and Linda were yelling at me to get moving to make in under 8 hours. I headed out for the last loop. I thanked the nice man and the Y intersection for his kind words of encouragement all day!
I rounded the second to the last turn and there was Barb. I really wanted to walk a bit but she kept yelling, run, run. I really had no choice. I crossed the finish line in 7:52:52, first woman in the 50 miler. Wow, I was glad to be done. It was a nice PR for me.
Here is a photo of the three of us at the finish (Linda, Barb and myself)Linda finished behind me in 8:53. Overall, it was a great day. My legs didn't feel all that bad in the following days.
The first place man, Todd Braje won the race in 5:30 (a 6:37 pace). That just seems so incredibly fast. He lapped me to many times to count!!
I will be heading out to the hilly trails in the next few weeks to get some hill training. I will definitely need it for CTM.