Last Chance Ultra 50k…my 3rd Ultra! Stockton lake skirts most of this beautiful course, creating gorgeous flowing switchbacks on a trail that is 90% single track. The route is a loop just a tad bit over 10 miles, ran on repeat. Multiple times I said allowed while racing, “it’s so beautiful out here”. I drove myself the morning of the race so that I could think in silence. The full moon was glowing brilliantly orange. I thought it was going to be a mud bath type of run…the night before it had rained HARD at my house for hours on end, but the trail was nicely packed. My mind wasn’t completely on the race AND I knew that I had to get myself there. Plans made in the past were thrown out the window, and I was going to run “the thang” on complete feel. My thoughts were to get my mind in the game, so that I would be able to get to that point where you zone out….think nothing. That’s what I was after! I ran the first loop too fast, but just right for what my new plan had called for. I averaged a 9:02 min per mile pace. I felt good, meaning my head was now in the game! My teeny tiny 5’0 mama was there at the beginning of my second loop to cheer me on. She’s so cute! She wanted to help me refill my pack but was afraid of getting in the way. (I had brought 2 packs to make the transition quick, and YES I go through that much fluid, but one of my packs had sprung a leak during my morning drive and drenched the passenger seat with sugary goodness). I loved that she was there Even if she just stood there smiling at me. I quickly filled my fluids, grabbed a handful of Gu’s and jogged away as I yelled out I loved her.
Seeing her allowed me to hold onto a strong 2nd lap. I averaged a 9:59 min per mile pace. My mind did manage to reach the “void” this lap. The only time I remember thinking anything on this lap was when I would pass people and wanted to rattle some positive vibes in their direction..giving small words of encouragement. These were the 50 and 100 milers….they still had a distance to go, and I knew they were probably already nearing the pain cave. I wasn’t there, remember- I was in the “void”...a state of almost non-existence (being there, but not really being there). I was brought back to reality when I noticed a runner in front of me eat the dirt. They fell and fell hard! I offered my help and of course they refused (I seem to notice trail runners do this often…we are a stubborn/ strong headed bunch LOL). For the next 1.5 miles I remember intensely focusing on my footing before making my way back to the start for the beginning of my 3rd and final lap. My boyfriend and my kiddos were there this time. My 14 year old daughter curled up in a coat not saying anything, but clapping. My mom screaming her “woooooo wooooo woooo’s”. My 3 year old, loudest of them all, roaring like a dinosaur (literally….roaring LOL). My boyfriend running around trying to take pictures. As I headed off on my final lap he asked “how are you feeling?” I replied, “I'm hurting” (last night he mentioned to me that he has never heard me say those words). 1 mile in and my butt stopped working…snap your fingers (that’s how quick they went)! When the glutes don’t work the effort becomes significantly harder….(you can quote me on this for any of your future races). My legs felt like lead…NO heavier than lead (I don’t know what’s heavier than lead). My body curled into a forward crescent shape. My eyes went from a car length view in front of me to a straight down at my toes eyeshot. There was NO WAY that I was stopping- I knew that others were in more pain than me …and for some odd reason I felt that if they were suffering then I needed to also. Actually, to finish the lap that is what I thought about. This is NOT how I usually run, this is not “why” I run, but it is how and why I ran this 50k. I finished that last lap with an average pace of 11:35. I grabbed 2nd female, 6th overall.
Now to ready for this next race- The Canyons Endurance 100k! I need to get my booty built