Monday, April 6, 2009

JT GOES ULTRA

Hi everyone.

If you have followed this blog, you might be aware that I have been a triathlete for about 25 years. But that means I came to tri's in my early 30's. Before that I ran. 8th grade cross country. 10 and 11th grade cross country. The past two years I have gotten more and more into training on trails and its like returning to my roots. I love it.

So..to say I loved competing in the Fools 50 K Trail race Sunday, would be right on the money. It was a blast. I had failed in the middle of winter to complete the Buckeye Winter 50K. (only went 18 plus) The conditions were pretty brutal, but I convinced myself that I could get it done as I prepared to start the race at Pine Hollow.

Having completed 3 Ironman distances, I still had never run more than a marathon at one time. Sunday, I would try to break that barrier. Gorgeous Morning. Sun was peaking over the hills. Temp about 30 ish. Wore my long sleeve compression tee underneath the Buckeye Trail jacket . Went with running shorts and my trusty Addidas trail shoes. There were 4 sections..all color coded and I have to say Lloyd Thomas did a great job marking the course.
Having lost 2 toe nails to long trail runs in recent months, I was curious to meet a guy who wore those new fangled shoes with the open toes. Just wild to look at. He says he never has toenail issues. Hey, it works for him.

Met Tim, whom I see at North Chagrin and David Wank, who has an ultra under his belt. He was doing the 25 K. Andy and I ran together for about a mile as the group thinned out. I was ready with an abundance of GU Roctane packets and determined to be disciplined on taking one every 50 minutes. 6 IBuProfen tablets waited for use. I had a collapsible water bottle which was easy to carry..only 14 ounces... just right. Heres some of the runners at about mile 4, before we went through the ledges section. It was just a fantastic day, weather wise.

I had on my Garmin 305 but not the heart rate monitor. I concentrated on easy strides and just power walked any of the hills. (there were plenty). On steep inclines I might have looked like Hitler Youth swinging my arms so much. Muddy in spots, but nothing horrible, I made it to the first 25K in 3 hours, 16 minutes. In my mind, I was thinking the race would take 8 hours, but since I did half in the above time, I was energized and starting calculating what I might finish in. I set the goal to do the second half in 3 hours and 45 mins or less to break 7 hours. Here I am getting more water at the halfway mark. At that point.. 4 Gu's 3 ibuprofens taken, one salt pill and 4 cups of Heed, plus copious water. The Roctane Rocked!!!! Real pick me up. I will always used those from now on.

Getting to the halfway mark, David Wank, who had finished the 25 K in 2:19 came with me and encouraged me while running the next mile or so. I really appreciated that. I told him there was no way in hell I would not finish.

20 Mile mark, I even called "The Bride". "Honey, its me. I am at mile 20 and I just want you to know I will finish this sucker". The Bride said, "Thats great..good luck..bye". I worried on the extreme downhills that my tightening quads would start barking, but overall they held up well. Had a little hip flexor issue but fought through it.

I just ran and enjoyed the day, mostly to myself. Would fall behind one man and woman team, then catch them, then fall behind. See sawing all day long.

Before I knew it, I hit the mythical marathon distance. 26.2 miles. 5 hours, 40 minutes. By then, i was thinking just about 5 miles left and 7 hours will be easy. But I started leaking oil and the last 5 miles took 1 hour and 20 minutes. The final stretch of trail before we broke out onto the grass for the 200-300 yards to the finish, I thought would never end. I thought I was gonna break 7 hours, but missed it by a minute and change.

7 hours, 1 minute, 35 seconds and happy to down fluids at the finish. Will I do another ultra??? Absolutely.!!!! Now, can someone tell me where I can get a good massage.
Ohhh Yeah, Life's a Blast!!!!

24 comments:

IronBob (swimming upstream at IMAZ 08) said...

Way to go. You are right about the massage afterwards. Nothing like it after a hard days "work".

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

You ROCK!!

btw, we wore those freaky frog feet shoes for kayaking on vacation. Weird getting used to. I can't imagine running in them...

Wes said...

Great job, JT! I love The Bride's enthusiasm. I think that's a stellar way to return to your roots. I can't wait to do my first Ultra!!

Missy said...

I really gotta try this trail thing, I swear! Congratulations - you have to be happy about that. Looks like a perfect kind of day too.

Benson said...

I'm not worthy!
man, you did some nice work there.

JenC said...

Awesome job JT!

Lily on the Road said...

JT, how exciting is that??!! You set your goal and went for it! I'm so very proud of you!! You've set the bar, I bow at your blistered feet!

Brian said...

Nice job out there. Don't worry about the time. You can work on that for the next one or the next couple. :) Just need to get you a mountain bike and then you can do some of the xterra tris

jcarneyjr said...

Hey John fantastic race. Huge finishing so far under the goal time. Congratulations. If you want a great massage send an email to my friend Pam who is really good and will work out the knots. Her email is pam4prosperity@yahoo.com

Donald said...

Sweet! Way to go, JT! Believe it or not, your last 5 miles didn't sound that slow to me - 15 min/mi isn't that unusual at some of the races out here. Congrats on accomplishing your goal, and I can't wait to hear about your future trails.

Charlie said...

Well done. Great photos.
Hope to be on your heals soon.

Bruce said...

Congratulations on finishing the 50K. It was nice to read someone else view of the same race. I liked the trails but they were much different then the ones I normally run at Mill Creek Park in Youngstown.

Kim said...

Yay!!! Glad you made it to the Ultra distance--congratulations!! Great race report!!!

Rainmaker said...

Awesome job! Serious congrats to you for knocking that out and doing so basically on the money for 7 hours. Great pics and solid write-up too!

Btw, I believe that massage location is called...the bride.

Eric said...

Great job JT. Be proud of that finish. Can't wait to hear about the text ultra.

rocketpants said...

Congrats on an awesome race!! Great job!

Lloyd said...

Well done! Thanks for the nice recap.

Congrats on your first ultra. Recover well.

Lloyd

Jerry said...

Great Job JT...you knocked that one right out of the park!!!

Steph said...

great job JT!!!!!!!

Mnowac said...

Nice job JT! That is great. I too love those Gu Rocktanes, they are truly tasty. Wish they cost a little less.

Tim Harber said...

Great job, John. We could't have had a better day for a trail race.Punxsutawney 50k in Sept.? Again great job. Tim

Kevin said...

Contratulations ultra man

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Melissa said...

Congratulations on your ultra! I'm very curious to know more about the collapsable bottle.