Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Day At Kennesaw Mountain

I would have preferred to do this training run at a 50K event, but since my weekends are during the week this month, I had to do this 30 mile training run by myself. I packed my car with cold drinks and snacks and drove up to Kennesaw Mountain yesterday for a long training run. My plan was to run 30 miles or 8 hours whichever came first. I parked at the Visitor's Center and got started around 8:30 AM. It was going to be a hot one with temperatures peaking in the mid 90's but the dew point was in the 60s. So it was humid, but not as bad as it has been this summer. The plan was to run outbound for an hour and then run back to my car/aid station to restock and use the Visitor Center restroom.

On my return on the first out-and-back, I saw a high school cross-country team out for a six mile trail run. They were zipping by me, but about two miles from the Visitor Center I caught up with a kid who had obviously gone out too fast. I power-walked past him on an uphill and didn't see him again. Didn't see him again until about a quarter mile from the Visitor Center. I could see and hear his teammates at the end of their run. About this time I heard footsteps behind me. I could also hear cheering for Brandon. I looked over my shoulder, and there was the kid I had passed. Did I maintain my pace and let him pass me for his cheering teammates? Heck no! I picked up my pace and maintained about a 10 yard lead.

An hour or so later in my run I got to thinking maybe I should have let him pass me. Then an hour or so after that I came to my senses. If Brandon doesn't want to be beat by a 51 year old lady he needs to do more training.

Even though it got hot (like it will at the Javelina Jundred), I was able to maintain a pretty good pace, finishing the 30 miles in 7:37. I did get one blister on the ball of my right foot. I really need to solve this blister problem. My next long long run is in two weeks, but this time it'll be at the FATS 50k in South Carolina so I'll have some company.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day 26.2 Fun Run

The running cult I belong to has three free marathons each year, New Year's Day, Memorial Day, and Labor day. Today I showed up for the ultra runners' version of a fun run. The race started at 7 AM and the sun hadn't quite come up yet, but there were some folks that had started an hour or two or even three hours earlier because they had things to do later in the day. This race was run on the honor system, you had to do five marked loops and then write down your time on the clipboard when you finished. Since most of us were ultra runners, there was an ultra type aid station with water, Gatorade, cookies, granola bars, potato chips, etc for us at the end of each lap. It was kind of fun showing up as a 100 mile finisher because I now felt like I had all kinds of street cred! The loops were uneventful until the third loop when I took a detour to K-Mart to use their restroom. I did my business, then was on my way. About 1.5 miles later I realized that my fuel belt (with my phone inside) was still hanging on a hook in one of the stalls. I turned around and fortunately it was still right where I had left it. Now I had the problem of my laps being messed up, so I just made the decision that on my last lap I would turn around when my Garmin said that running back would give me a 26.2 mile run. After I finished I wrote my time of 5:15:35 on the clipboard, got my medal out of the tupperware box, and sat around with some of the other finishers to swap stories and wait for the remaining runners to finish. All in all, a pleasant way to spend a holiday morning.

Aid station before the start

Relaxing after finishing

Finisher's Medal