Saturday, 2 June 2018

Sulphur 50K - 2018 edition

It's now been 3 years since my first 50K and my secret goal was to PB, or at least go sub 7 hours.  But alas, the weather gods had other plans.  I felt very well trained, running similar mileage to 100K a year ago. Then I watched the daily high go up and up on the forecast..and I knew my only goals were to have fun and not have the day turn into a sufferfest.

I was determined to get to the start EARLY and have a repeat of last year's insane rush to the start.  It was overcast but not as horribly humid as in 2016.  The first 10K felt fantastic, the cloud cover and breeze kept it from being too hot and I ran straight through the start/finish without stopping.  

The 2nd loop was my favourite - it is no secret that I hate seeing people when doing training runs, but the awesome thing about Sulphur is that there are so many familiar friendly faces.  I saw K guiding Tim (nice to finally see you in person, Tim!) and David and Steve running the 100 mile.

I was hitting or surpassing all my usual time standards (15K in 2 hours, half marathon in under 3 hours) then suddenly...passed 25K in 3:37 so dreams of sub 7 was gone. Normally when goals slip away, my mental strength to do anything besides finish goes out the window as well.  I gave myself a little pep talk, I could still manage my 2nd best 50K time if I kept pushing. Passed Vince on Martin Road, he told me that Greg was at the finish when I was finishing up 30K.  Yes, Greg was there...handing out medals! 

Impulsively, I asked if Greg would run the last bit with me, to meet me at the aid station at the lollipop start.  Then I set off on the final 20K, a short countdown until I picked up my pacer. I came around the corner to see the lollipop aid station and saw Greg talking to Kathy, I refilled my bladder and we started out.  Literally two seconds later:

So graceful. At least he didn't actually face plant.
I told Greg there would be lots of walking on the Three Bitches, of course, but since it was the first time since 2015 that I didn't have giant blisters on my feet, I would run the glorious cornfield downhill, the best part of the course. 

I forced myself to keep moving on the final climb up Martin Rd., Greg ran ahead to get some video.

The girl did get her beer.
Another successful training cycle almost complete - 2 weeks until my 40th birthday, and 3 weeks until my birthday goal race: 40 miles (for 40 years) at Many on the Genny.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome job on a tough day - you earned that barley pop!
    Thanks for the link, too; was a pleasure to see you out there, and all the best for your 40/40 race!