Monday, March 08, 2010
Green Jewel 50k
It's been two years since my Green Jewel 100k run. I missed last year's event because I was out of town. No such excuse this year. The 100k option was removed after the first year. I can understand some of the reasons why, but I still would've preferred that distance. 50k is just too short. Or so I thought.
I started with Ladd and Chuck, and also ran some early miles with Tim McGinty and Joe Salwan. Nice company, all. Dan DeRosha was our crew, and Suzanne had also come along to run. That start was a cold one - it was in the low 20s. As the sun rose, the temperature did too, eventually reaching 40 or so by the time I finished.
As always, the run takes place primarily on the all-purpose trail through the Cleveland Metroparks. Those parks have to be the best anywhere. Their beauty on this cold day, with snow piled everywhere except the path and the roads, was unsurpassed. In fact, there were a few places where there was snow and ice on the trail, but that didn't slow us down much.
After about 12 to 15 miles, I got ahead of the other guys, and would wind up running the rest alone. The wonderful aid stations were about 5 miles apart, but even so, it was great to have Dan as our crew. I was able to take my weird Vitargo mixture, and it certainly didn't hurt.
I ran a fairly steady 9-minute or so pace. I tried to not waste too much time at the aid stations, but there was indeed some time lost there. I believe I passed the marathon distance at something on the order of four hours. Just a little while later I crossed Broadview Road, and I knew it was all downhill from there. I did my best to pick it up and finish strong. As it turned out, I did pick it up a bit, with those last five miles faster than 9 minute pace. In the process, I passed some other runners, and no one passed me. Except for Chuck. He had picked it up even more, and passed me with about 3 to go.
I finished in 4 hours, 50 minutes. That isn't too bad, but two years ago I think I came through this point in about the same time, and went on to run another 50k!!! Such a thing simply wouldn't have been very possible Saturday. I was something like 19th, which means that 18 or so people were faster on this day. Oh well - I'm still happy with it.
For some odd reason, I was able to get up again on Sunday morning and do the Sunday Hinckley run thing. It was a slow one, but sometimes I amaze myself.
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