A good way to start the report is by being happy, I’m happy with the results and glad that I still had some in the tank at the end, the race was a great prep for the upcoming 50 miler. WildHare can be described as a collection of twisted turns with 2 hills, short ones but they get harder with every loop. The 50km consisted of 4 loops, with the terrain not technical but the roots can get you, especially in the latter part of the course.
This is where I tell you, if you are interested in the needy and greedy details keep reading, if you are not well… I finished in 12th place overall with a finishing time of 5:05, it was a PR of 1:29. Consistent training, lots of running and Olga’s Training regimen have made all the difference this season. I have 2 more races left and I’m excited 🙂
Now, onto the details: I left with Luis on Friday night, we stopped by to grab some dinner and drove to Warda TX, which took us about an hour and 30 minutes with some traffic. We arrived at Bluff Creek Ranch and as always the usual Joe and Joyce warm running welcome, very much like getting to your favorite family place. We picked up our packets and drove around until we found a camping spot, it turned out to be a good aid station spot to put my supplies in. We set up our tent, chatted a while and off to sleep we went.
The race was very uneventful for the most part, my nutrition was spot on. I ate 2 honey stinger waffles, 1 GU gel, 4 slices of oranges, 1 banana, 1 packet of honey stinger honey chews. I was a bit low on fluids but nothing to worry about, I drank 4 and half bottles of water (a little more than 2.6 litters of water), should probably have been 5 and a half.
First half of the loop consists of nothing but twists and turns and a few up and downs mostly covered by trees, the trail is not technical and you have to work to keep the momentum going from the constant turns. One of the two aid stations on the course is placed midway through the loop, the second aid station is at the start/finish line. The fun continues after the first aid station where there’s a real nice downhill that, if you are not picking your feet up you could very much end up with broken bone. The trail continues with its up and downs but there are a few more open spaces this time; I remember I struggled through them last year so the weather really did help this year. The two hills I mentioned previously are both in the last section of the course, the first one is about 100 meters at a steady incline, the second one is at a much steeper incline and about twice as long. Like I said, nothing too technical, the loops just take a toll on your legs and the hills feel much longer each loop 🙂 The final part of the course ends up looping around the small lake and a straight line to the finish line after that.
Loop 1: Fast loop
Usual down to earth countdown by my running friend Jorge and off we ware chasing the rabbits 🙂 I was expecting an out and back, turned out the loops were just longer and there was no need for an out and back like previous years. As a result ended up running the first and second loops faster than I should have. No one to blame but myself, always have gone out faster than expected, but I have been getting better at controlling it.
Loop 2: Think I can run 50 miles today
Not realizing the first loop was actually shorter than I thought, I somehow thought that I should be running at the same pace as the first one. By this time the 25k’ers had started so there were more people on the trail to pass which is always a confidence booster. Towards the end of the second loop I made a conscious decision that I would maintain a steady pace on loop 3 so I could use the remaining energy left on the last loop.
Loop 3: Ok maybe not 50 miles just focus on finishing
Other than settling back into pace, this loop was pretty uneventful. This loop was more of a mind game than a physical one, one where I started noticing the effects of having gone out too fast and trying to tell myself to settle down.
Loop 4: Love hate relationship
This is the part of the race where I always realize that running and I have a love/hate relationship. I love getting to this point but hate having to push out of the comfort zone and is usually the part where I ask myself why the hell am I doing this up until I get to the finish line and realize the reward of getting to the finish line.
Had an awesome time racing this weekend, as always Joe and Joyce put up awesome events, thanks to Luis, who’s quickly becoming addicted to running and thanks to my wonderful wife Lety for being there and putting up with incessant running, who’s now only getting to write about what we eat 🙂 You can read more about her writings @ Lety eats