Monday, February 07, 2011

Another great time at Orcas. It started out a little slow, Kris and I missed the 4:00 ferry and had to wait 3 hours till the next one. Fortunately I had an audio book "4 Fish" and learned about the extermination of Atlantic salmon and the successful domestication that brought them back, a little genetically altered. Friday night at the lodge was fun seeing everyone show up, getting something to eat, then the Oly crowd headed to our bunkhouse. I scored a lower bunk with drawers so I was very happy. By 10:30 lights were out and we all konked out. Kris, Heidi, and I woke everyone up at 5:30 in the morning. Kris and Heidi were doing a super early start since they had to leave early afternoon and they wouldn't just run the 25K. I got up early to cut bagels and muffins for the breakfast I host every year. Breakfast went great, John and Alex (won the ultra series last year but now injured) helped alot. We were all bad at making coffee. At the start of the 50K, I ran into Glen but didn't catch up to him till about 3 miles in. We ran the first loop together until the downhill when Bushwaker showed up and I took off. I felt great after the first loop, and had a good climb up the powerline, Bushwaker passed me right away, good training for Hard Rock! I topped the powerline and had a great downhill chasing Joesph down to the lake. But I hadn't been drinking enough and I was about out of water for the loop around the lake. I stumbled through this bad patch, mad at my poor planning. I started to recover after the water stop and climbed the 3 miles to the top of Constitution with Joesph. It was great to see Glen near the top taking pictures and even better seeing the aid station at the top. I chugged down some fluids, ate some food, grabbed a cookie and headed down. My dehydration showed on the downhill. I just couldn't get the wheels turning. But I felt good so as it started to level out, I ran better. When I got down to the last lake loop, it looked like I might be able to finish under 7hrs.
I was running strong, but at the back end of the lake, we were sent on a new trail so the finish was farther away than I thought. I didn't care, I was happy I was running strong at the end especially after not training much before the race. I finished in 7:07, sixth in my age group, a half hour slower than last year. I guess the course was a little harder and longer than last year and I was a little bit slower. As usual, great food, music, beer, and bonfire after the race.
It was a great start for what I hope is a fun ultra season!