Wednesday, December 03, 2014

BW50K, and Some Potential Subtitles

The main start of the BW50K.      John McCarroll photo
I ran the fifth annual Buckeye Woods 50K on Sunday, November 30, 2014. For the title of this post, I had planned to also add a subtitle. But then I started to come up with too many. So instead I decided to list them all here in the body of the post.

Here they are, in absolutely no particular order, along with explanations...


 
Subtitle 1: Falling for the Course

I double-dog-dared myself to fall when I told Ron Ross that I most likely had run this course more than any other person on the planet, and that I had never fallen, even once. The reason I believe I hold this distinction (most runs, not not falling) is that I've run all four previous BW50K's, and also several training runs. So guess what? I fell on the very next loop. It was right where we never expect to fall, but so many of us do. I'm talking about the section where we turn onto the pine path out and back section. Yes, there are roots under those pine needles. And then I fell once again on the last loop, just for good measure. Nothing was broken either time. Except my pride, of course.

One of the early loops with John Pavlick and his daughter Katie.
I don't know the doggy's name. Photo by John McCarroll

Subtitle 2: I am the Reason I Could Run at all

Yes, the reason is I. Ibuprofen, that is. It's sometimes referred to (by runners, of course) as Vitamin I. I take some on occasion, trying hard to not ingest more than three or four tablets during a week's time. And I almost never take even so much as one before or during a run. But what with all my recent problems, including pain in both feet these days, I took a couple I's the previous day, and also some today before and during the run. And yes, I think that was a major factor in being able to run at all this day.


Subtitle 3: We Almost Cancelled it

Having made the promise that the weather was guaranteed or your money (it's free) back, new RD(she took over from I founded and directed the race for four years) Suzanne Pokorny and I almost cancelled the race. It was 61 degrees, for Pete's sake. The weather most definitely did not cooperate for this event for the past years. I wanted to announce that today's run would still be held, even if the weather's nice. Which it was. We did apologize to anyone who would listen,


Subtitle 4: A Timely Start

About eight of us took the 7:00 am early start option. Early starts are generally supposed to be for folks who may need extra time to complete the course. While that really wasn't a concern for some of use, it was for others. Including me.


Subtitle 5: Not the PW

There wasn't any kind of cutoff, and with the shape I was in, I really didn't have a time goal. My 50K Personal Worst time of 6:30 (at Buckeye Trail about 12 years ago) did loom however. After averaging roughly ten minutes a mile for my first three loops, I actually picked it up for the fourth. It helped to have Renee Harden as a companion for that one. She had won the 25K by averaging about 7:10 per mile, and then did a cooldown 5 miles at a somewhat slower 9:30 pace with me. Then it was time to gather my wits and change my shoes for the final ten miles. I knew they'd be slow, and of course they were - something on the order of 12 minutes per mile. I was extremely lucky to have two companions for these laps as well, however: Michelle Wolff and Maureen Oblander. We completed the fifth lap and began our sixth in 4:59. I suddenly realized that a goal of sub-six hours had been thrust upon me; I had an hour to run these final five. Looking at my watch with about a mile to go, I mentioned to Maureen and Michelle that we could do it, but we'd need to book. And book we did. I pulled ahead for that final sprint (such as it was), but all three of us made it in 5:59.


Subtitle 6: It Didn't Kill Me

Of course I was tired and sore. And of course my injuries hurt. But I remained vertical, and as of a couple days afterwards, I remain away from the morgue.

Yes, it really was warm out there. This was somewhere in the middle of the run.
That's Caitlin Oblander, on the way to her first ultra, with me.  Photo by John McCarroll

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