Monday, October 24, 2011
Ogden Valley 50 miler 2011 Race Report
Ok so first of all I was still pretty nervous for the 50 miler this year. Even though I ran it last year I trained way different this year. Last year I was doing 30-40 mile runs for my long runs. This year I ran three marathons and only trained for them. The last one I did was 2 weeks before the 50 miler.
Friday night was the regular sleepless night. I’m pretty sure I didn’t get more than an hour of sleep with the tossing and turning and having to wake up at 2:30. I woke up had some sour dough toast and a peanut butter honey sandwich. I finished double checking my list of things to bring which included, Antacids, Imodium A.D. oranges, hammer perpetuem drink, Vaseline, headlamp, baby wipes, reflector vest, band aids, ipod, headphones, arm sleeves, jacket, compression socks, flashing signal, phone, beanie, sunglasses, gloves, pepto tablets, handheld water bottles and my running hat.
I arrived at mountain green at about 4am. I was the very first one there. Last year I spent the night in a hotel near the start line but this year I just slept at home to save money and be able to sleep in my own bed. It was 50 miles from my house in Lehi to the start line in mountain green. Finally the race people started showing up and one by one other racers started arriving. I started getting all my gear on. The temperature was right about freezing. I had the thought to grab some socks (which I never run in) but I must have forgotten them. So that started stressing me out. Cause when I got out of my car it was soo cold. I was almost ready to start asking other runners for some socks. I went to the bathroom a few times. Checking out all the other runners. Trying to guess if they were advanced ultra runners or novice like me. Then some guy came up to me and introduced himself and said that he had found my blog in trying to find anything he could about the OV50. He said that he had enjoyed reading my blog and even asked me if Jimmy Joe would be pacing me again. It was cool knowing that something I had done and written about had influenced somebody I didn’t even know. So we made our way over to the road. Turned on our headlamps and it was time to start the journey. 3-2-1 go. 50 milers start off quite a bit slower than all the other races I run. But I quickly made my way up to the front with the leader. After about a mile or so we turned and headed up the canyon. I knew I needed to start off slow and hold back but I also wanted to stay up front with the leader. We were able to keep a pretty decent pace considering the first three miles had about a 900 foot climb. After a few miles this guy came up behind us. He was carrying no water bottles or pack or anything. He just cruised right by us. So I decided to leave the other guy and try to keep up with this guy. After a mile or so with me behind him he stopped to go pee and I was in the lead. But it was short lived. He soon came cruising right past me with ease. I guessed that he would be the winner of the race. After a while I decided to ease off the pace a little. By the time we reached the 5 miles of up hill the two guys that had taken turns leading slowly got further and further away from me. It was still dark and cold. But now was the time to head down the canyon. The next 5 miles had about a thousand foot decent which was fun. I ran around 7 minute miles down the canyon. It was hard to go much slower than that. At the bottom of the canyon I had a choice. Left or right. The course was different this year. Which I found out after the race started. So I had to make an educated decision left or right. Cause I didn’t see an arrow on which way to turn. I turned right. For the next to or 3 miles I kept looking back hoping to see someone to verify I was going the right way. But I couldn’t see anybody. I thought about yelling up ahead to see if the guys in front of me could hear me. Or even flagging down a car to see if they could tell me if there were other runners ahead. Finally at a gas station I saw an arrow and an aid station. Which consisted of 3 or 4 vehicles that stopped every few miles to take care of us. I was so happy to see them. I absolutely did not want to have to turn around an run and extra 6 miles if I was going the wrong way. They left me and said we are going to go catch those two guys ahead of you. They left me and off in the distance I could see their tail lights so I wasn’t too far away from the leaders. By this point my toes had thawed out from the cold and I was feeling pretty good. Had some consistent 8 and a half minute miles. Still pitch black outside I made my way through Huntsville on some back country roads. There was one point where I almost missed a turn, but luckily I saw it and turned right. The course did double back at that spot and met up with the original road. I was doing good until about mile 20 or so. The sun finally came up.. I started taking some gu’s and getting nutrition in me. By mile 20 this was the point where I was starting to get real tired and real nervous as to how the rest of the race was gonna be. Last year I was doing 30-40 mile long runs for most of the year. This year I had only trained for marathons with long runs no longer than 20 miles. At about mile 22 my pace slowed and I started getting real tired. Dropping down to 10 minute miles. Still taking my walk breaks about once a mile. I knew if I could just get to mile 27 that’s where I’d be meeting up with my little brother jimmy joe that would be pacing me the last 23. I had made pretty good time up to this point hitting the 26.2 around 4 hours or so. I was worried he wouldn’t be to the aid station yet but by 26 and a half he came driving up in his car. I was pretty excited to say the least. I tried to say something to him but I was pretty chocked up and couldn’t get much out. He turned around and went to the aid station to wait for me. When I got there the volunteers were so great and motivating. Treating you like royalty. They were so great. I changed my wardrobe. Taking off the running pants and the jacket, beanie and headlamp. Switched over to hat and sunglasses. Ran inside the church and went to the bathroom. Drank some beef broth soup and we were on our way. This was the first time I had to go number two. Which is a big difference from last year. Last year I was so sick most of the race probably went to the bathroom like 10 times. This year I took some immodium a.d. and antacids and it seemed to keep things under control. It was so good to have my pacer with me. It was like a fresh start. One thing was kinda weird when I got to the aid station they told me I was in 5th place. The whole time I knew I was in 3rd. they told me the first female was even ahead of me. After thinking about it I’m positive that they missed the turn in Huntsville and cut off 3 or 4 miles and passed me there. I mentioned it a few times to the people putting on the race but they just kept telling me that she was an all American. But it wasn’t worth the fight so I said whatever and kept going.
The next ten miles were still pretty hard. My hamstring was acting up making uphill’s extremely hard. This part of the course was pretty flat with slight uphills. the scenery was breathtaking. The fall leaves, the country roads, the reservoir. It is such an amazing course. I had about 4 miles where I started to get extremely chaffed. I had forgotten to put on some glide or Vaseline and it was starting to hurt bad. And affect my running. Finally one of the aid vehicles stopped and I vaselined up and was good as new. I think it was around mile 37 or so that I took another imodium and it was real weird. It got stuck in my throat and I kept drinking Gatorade and it stayed there. Finally I started gagging and I told jimmy joe to hold on. I then spewed out about 2 water bottles full of Gatorade. When that little session ended we were on our way. I did get pretty dehydrated after that. I only had a little bit of over sugared Gatorade that was only making me sicker. 3 hard miles of that and finally and aid vehicle stopped and after I got some water in me I felt great again. Well as good as could be expected. The whole time I’ve been munching on pretzels, gu chomps, sport beans gu’s. pretty much I was taking anything that had caffeine in it. At 11 am I took some more ibuprofen. April finally arrived with the kids. It was great to see them. Having tons of support helps so much in racing. It’s like you can feel the collective support from everyone you know and love from your immediate family to your friends on facebook. It helps so much knowing that there are so many that care for you and want you to succeed. We rounded the lake and it was time to start the hardest part of the race. The five miles of uphill. With about a thousand feet of climb it was sooo hard. Jimmy joe finally came up with a system of run for 30 seconds walk for 30 seconds. It helped us climb the hill much faster than just walking the whole thing. Mile 44 had 424 feet of climb. I was running on pure will at this point. Finally at the top of the hill I knew it was 5 miles of downhill and we were done. This was by far the funnest part of the race. After doing 13 and 14 minute miles uphill. The 7 minute miles we were doing downhill felt like we were flying. I hit my runners high and cruised down that hill. This was also the part where doug (my brother in law) was taking video and april was taking pictures and my dad taking video as well. So it was perfect timing. We hauled down that canyon and it was amazing. We got to the bottom and rounded the corner and we had about half a mile to the finish line. With about a quarter mile we really picked up our pace for the big finish. I crossed the finish line with my awesome little brother right behind me and my family there to greet me. I let out a yell as I crossed the finish line. And felt great. My runners high was still there. I gave my wife a hug and kiss and was so happy to be done and to have completed that journey. I crossed the finish line at 8 hours and 10 minutes. 9min 42 sec average mile. I was ecstatic with my time. 2 hours and 10 minutes faster than last years race. Officially I took 5th place overall. Which was pretty cool to. I still think I took 3rd place but whatever. I stoked about the time I got. And striders does such a great job at putting on the race and taking care of their runners. I think I’ll have to make this part of my racing schedule every year. So this completes my 2nd season of running. With 3 marathons, 3 half marathons, one 50 miler and some 5k’s. Now I’ll take it easy for a month or so then it’s time to start training for Boston in April.
Here is some clips that i took during the race.
Here is a video Doug did.
here is the video my mom put together
and here is the video my dad put together