Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Stone Steps training run

Went to the Mt. Airy Forest in Cincinnati on Memorial Day for a fun run – the Stone Steps FA 50K. Temps were expected to reach the low 80’s so it was good chance to try to transition into warm/hot weather running.

About 15-20 runners attended this very low key event. A bring-a-snack table was set up along with a do-it-yourself time sheet where the 2 loops on the course meet. Dave Corfman, co-RD for the 50K Stone Steps race scheduled October 19, introduced us to speedsters Tom Possert & co-RD Andy Jones, lined us up for a picture, gave us a few tips & then off we trotted.

At first I was still having some low level pain in my right ankle from a sprain 2 weeks ago, but the endorphins soon kicked in & I didn’t notice it again till the end of the run. The 1st 5 mile loop went OK as I stayed at the very back of the pack. 1:05 for 5 miles was slow, but I was already dripping with sweat & drinking heavily. The sun rose higher & then I started having trouble keeping hydrated. As I was running slower & slower, it took longer to complete each loop & my bottle would run out sooner each time. After about half the 50K, the heat had already sapped my strength & it also felt like I just couldn’t get enough air. And to think I could run in the summer for once . . . . I guess the unusually cool weather this year made me forgetful.

Since my registration has already been sent in for the next 2 races, I still plan to attempt them, but they’re going to be much more of a challenge to finish than I originally thought. My next race: Another Dam 50K in Englewood, Ohio. Two years ago I attended this race -- that was my first & last attempt to run an ultra in June. I don’t think it was unusually hot for that date, but I do remember the sun was intense & that there were large portions of the course that were not shaded – I was lucky to finish. I think I said after that race “never again”!

My previous plan to run in DINO's Brown County 15K this weekend to check out the course & work on some speed looks doubtful -- may just give my ankle & body a rest for a couple weeks . . . will see.


Jeffro said...

About the time I say I'll never do a race again is just about the time you can be certain I'll do it again.

You said the AD 50k is more like a road race than trail race, so I can probably wear road shoes?

ed said...

I’m not quite like that, AD50K will be the only one I’ve gone back on after such an experience.

The course that I ran on 2 years ago will not likely be the same one as this year. Some of the course was flooded the night before & also DURING the race. The RD had to make changes on the fly, so we did run a lot more on roads than originally scheduled -- although in one location we had to blaze a new trail on our own thru the woods to get by the quickly rising water. Some types of trail shoes can also handle paved surfaces well -- that would probably be the best option. Of course if it’s muddy, there’s no question which is needed.

Good Luck at Brown County! I’ll be resting . . . . . . looking forward to hear of your experience.

Josh said...

Sounds like nice day out at Mt. Airy ! Wish I could have made it...still on the recovery track.

ed said...

I was looking forward to seeing you there on your home turf! Yes, it was nice -- a typical fun run – a part social run, a chance to run without pressure and a time to try/work out new things.

You’ve shown a lot of discipline & patience in your recovery. With the runs you’ve been able to do, it sounds you’re at least maintaining fitness thru this ordeal.