ATY 2010-revised

Looking back at my run, I can say I am very pleased.  I had some setbacks that kept me from going on and taking 3rd, but for the mileage that I did I am quite satisfied.

My training for this run was very good.  I did tons of track and pavement running to get my legs used to the flat terrain.  I peaked at 98 miles 6 weeks before the event, and tapered nicely from there.

My plans to run 200 miles changed quickly as I realized how fast I would have to be in the 1st 24.  Realistically, I should have planned on doin 180 instead.  Davy Crockett did 115 miles or so in his run, then covered 72 miles the 2nd day.  Even though he slept and blasted 27 miles in the last 6 hours, it still translated to an overall walking pace on day 2.  There was a lot of this going on.

I went out very conservatively.  I made a point to start walking early, doing my 1st one in the very 1st mile even.  While I didn’t get one in every mile, I took so many that I lost count.  Phil McCarthy (competing in the same 48 hour as me) didn’t look like he was walking at all.  He hit the 50 mile mark in about 7:50, while I hit the same mark a little more than an hour later.  I didn’t plan to catch him.  Phil is an internationally ranked ultramarathoner, and has been to the Surgures 48 hour in France, an invitation only race.  While I was way behind, things would change later on in the race though.  Running conservatively really helped me stay strong the 2nd day and keep moving well during the 2nd night.

Continuing through the 1st night, I reached 100 miles in 22:21.  I was rather exhausted at this point, so I laid down to sleep.  I got back out onto the track at the 24 hour mark, just as the last day of participants was joining us.  From here, my plan would be to push through every 10 miles and take a good break.  I was eating and drinking consistently, and felt pretty good.  I noticed Phil McCarthy was walking a lot more, and he didn’t look so hot.  Apparently he suffered an injury and would not be able to keep running.  I had a chance to move up in place.  As the day wore on, however, my energy levels waned and my legs fell apart.  At about 30 hours I felt like I was going to die.  It was at the point that Jeff Hagen walked by and reminded me that “it never always gets worse.  You will get a 2nd wind later.”  He was so right.  After a while, my energy levels picked back up, and I found myself running again.

I pushed hard to get to 130 before sunset.  I had planned to sleep for 2 hours after this and push hard the rest of the night.  I had a hard time sleeping though, so I got out of my sleeping bag and got back out onto the course.  My new goal was 150 by 39:30 (12:30 AM).  I pushed onward.

My legs started to hurt really bad again and I hit another bad low around 140 miles.  I tried to keep going but doing so seemed counterintuitive.  Heidi was walking with me at this point, and I convinced her to let me lay down and rest for a little bit.  She had planned to wake me in 15 minutes, but I jolted awake after a 3 minute sleep.  That was the best 3 minute nap I’ve ever had!  I threw my shoes back on quickly and got moving again.  It was at this point I noticed a naggin pain in my ankle.  Tendonitis.  Crap.  I knew that I wanted to keep pushing to the end of the race, but doing so would probably put me out of training for a couple of months.  I decided to compromise and stop at 150.  That is a good distance at a 48 hour run, and was not far from where I was at.  I ran 150 miles in 41:20:19, just a minute faster than my time at Cascade Lakes Relay.  I went out the next morning and hobbled a couple more laps to try and get Alene Nitzky to push hard for 5th place.  She got one more lap than I, finishing it with about 90 seconds to spare.

This was such a special race.  The staff and volunteers were so helpful and generous, and the family feel was there.  Martina Hausmann finished 2,000 miles on the course, only the 2nd person in the history of the race to do so.  Ethan Pence, 13 years young, finished his 1st 100.  Dan Baglione set a new 80 year old age record.  I will come back to this race as much as I can, it definitely has earned its reputation that has stood for so long.

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