|Mile split wrist band|
|Big smiles 14.3 miles in|
at aid station 3
(photo credit Holly Marrow)
|EDU 50, 14.3 miles in|
A few of my bigger goals that I latched on to during the race was to get to Mile 11 in under 2 hours and Mile 22 in under 4. So this is all very heady I know. I did enjoy the scenery and was able to chat with some racers along the way. But yes I was focused. When I saw Sean and Josh C. at about Mile 12 we actually ran close to each other for a good 3 miles. These are the times when the mind starts the tricks. "Stay with Sean." And that's when you look down and think, "But your mile split says 9:45 so not too fast." Maarten and Magdalena awaited at Aid Station #3 (Mile 14.4); he had some nice flat Mountain Dew waiting by special request, which Josh slugged down a bit of too, and I grabbed a couple of gels for the trail having spent a full 60 seconds at this station - I had programmed in my second fastest mile for mile 15 with 8:50, followed by some moderate 13:00 to 15:15 ascents for miles 16-18, and I was able to stick with it overall.
|Some of the many tools of 50K-ing|
Darn ego. Another Mustard pack. And another Trevor/Jordan piece of advice suddenly remembered: "double gel at Mile 17!" - so I did just that. It can be like a slow train wreck - watching the ebb and flow of how your body responds to the fuel we feed it - and then the mind and ego gets in your business...Trevor's EDU 2016 comment huffed aloud at about Mile 10 that year was also haunting me, "The Blacksburg blow up is about to begin..." and I was monitoring the tell-tales - so I slowed down when I felt the leg tightening up again. Aid Station #4 was a Godsend where I invested almost 2 minutes refueling - stuffing down an extra electrolyte capsule and stashing yet another grape electrolyte Fizz for later. I think I had my Snickers (thanks Kirby!) there too (or was that A.S. #5?) - it's hard to remember now.
|Approaching Aid Station #6 - Photo credit:|
Kristen & Jordan Chang
|Watermelon, pickles, Popsicles|
at the Rave Station (#6)
Photo credit: Robbie Poff
|Steve England and Kirby Walke|
Walkabout Outfitters at packet-pickup, Fri, 6/16
|EDU 2017 racers just before the evening's Downtown Sundown 5K|
Post Script: It's been a tough week mentally and physically. It was not until Friday night, 6 days after EDU 2017, while chatting with Kirby that he reminded me: "Dude, you're having post-race let down and depression - it's a normal part of the process," after I was commenting about my status, and inability to run faster than a slug this week. Yet more wisdom, and a great reminder to us all to slow down, get in some nice walks in, read a book, enjoy a summer concert, and sleep in a bit!