The taper week leading up to the Kal Haven Trail Run was a dysfunctional mess. I did a whopping total of three 2 mile runs to the little creek near my house. I have no real reason for the sporadic low volume running, other than my tendencies to self-sabotage. The entire week, I tried convincing myself that I was looking forward to the race. Only in hindsight do I realize that my head was never in it in the first place.
The run started out great. I was with a good group consisting of past and current members of the WMU Running Club and some cool folks from Gazelle Sports. The frist 10 miles were trotted by effortlessly. Other than a few people stopping to pee, we ran in a tight pack. Kept a steady intake of GU and water coming in, but was starting to feel a little off. I kept thinking about dehydration, and remembered that I soaked through two shirts at work the night before. With a couple miles left until the halfway point at the town of Bloomingdale, I decided that I had to go drop a deuce off trail.
Yadda Yadda Yadda, hiding in bushes a couple feet from passing strangers, yadda yadda yadda...
I hopped back on the trail(I wish there was a better word for that trail. Its less technical than a sidewalk) and tried to catch the group. That would prove difficult since Alex and Evan decided to drop a couple sub7 miles after I stopped.
|Nick(left), Me, and Robbie pulling into Bloomingdale. Robbie kicked ass in his first ultra|
and was great company in the second half.
After noticing a couple rocks in my shoe, I stopped on a bridge, the only scenic spot on the 34 mile trail. I shook the rocks out of my MR00s, but not before dropping one off the bridge. Fuckin' A. Who drops a shoe, honestly? Luckily ir didn't fall in the creek and I didn't have to walk too far to get it.
The next hour or so was a death march of alternating between "welp, this sucks. I might as well walk" and "if I run, this will be over faster." As one person after another jogged past, I realized that I just didn't care. It was no longer a race for me. Whether it was physiological, psychological, or some combination thereof, I just didn't feel like continuing. After a cup of Gatorade from an aid station, I puked up some nasty thick contents of my stomach. Instert nail A into coffin B.
A little more walking, and I heard someone calling my name. It was Robbie. He came along and I finally started running again. We ran the last 4-5 miles finished together. It was a blessing to have somebody come along and run the last parf of the course with me.
My time was 4:50 or something, which was good enough for 29th place. I'd like think I've gotten faster in 2 years, but in 2009 I ran the course in 4:23. This isn't the abysmal failure from a numbers standpoint, but I can't help but feel dejected. There was a time when I started races with determination. This further engrains my belief that I'm less a runner and more an outdoor enthusiast. I'll have to continue the search for what I truly enjoy doing. Running is an wonderful hobby for me to express myself, but the details of where, and why are immensely important.
After the race, however, was a wonderful afternoon of beer and mexican food and more beer. Awesome pub crawl with friends from school. Drinks and dancing until 2am, followed by a bike ride the next day. On the positive side, I gave up halfway through an ultra and still finished in the top third, went on a lengthy drinking adventure, and then had a nice bike ride the following day. I'll stop bitching.
|Okay, so I'm not the serious downer I was talking about. |
Just have to get my mojo back.