Sunday, April 15, 2007

McNaughton Park Trail Run Race Report

50 miles, 12:26

I had heard from many people that this was a tough course…they weren’t kiddin. This race consists of a 10 mile loop repeated. The 50 and 100 milers started at 6am Saturday morning, while the 150 milers had already been running for 12 hours. The park had seen a lot of rain recently. The course was muddy and the water was high. The loop has many short steep hills, one which requires the use of a rope to climb. That was fun the first two loops but after that, not so much. I can only imagine how the 150’s felt after pulling them selves up that damn rope 15 times. The first loop went by smoothly with a moderate amount of slipping and sliding, but after looking at my watch I know it was going to be a long day. I felt good but I could only move so fast over all those hills. I made sure to take in food and electrolytes early and often. At the start of the second lap it started to rain and with all the runners on the course the trail started to get extremely muddy. There were about 3 or 4 down hills where I didn’t even bother trying to go down standing up because I knew I where I would end up so I just got a running start and acted like I was on a slip and slide. Karl Meltzer past me on the third lap (Ok, It might have been his fourth, but who’s counting, right?) He had a big lead over Akos Konya, who passed me about 4 miles later. I have never been so honored to be lapped. Coming out of the second loop I was covered in mud from head to toe, I even had mud all over my face from wiping it with my muddy glove. Going into the third loop my joints strated to tighten. This is the thing that slow me down the most in my races. My legs weren’t tired and I felt like I had a lot of good running left in me but I just could move my legs fast enough. I don’t know what causes this; maybe I need to start stretching more. At each aid station on the third and fourth loop I stopped and stretched out my legs which seemed to help. The rain stopped after the second loop and the course conditions had improved drastically. By the fourth loop my joints were really tight and I walked for the first half of the loop. I was still feeling good but I needed to give my joints a rest. I started feeling a lot better after the first 5 miles of loop 4 and went strong for the last half heading into the final loop. I always feel best when I cross the start/finish line in a loop race. I figure that is a good thing because it’s such an easy place to drop out of a race. As I left for my last lap I started thinking about my finishing time and calculated that by maintaining a 15 min/mile pace I could finish in 12:30. I kept that number in my head and kept chugging away. I didn’t have any more trouble on the last lap and was able to maintain that pace finishing in 12:26. I was happy with my finishing time. Although It took me nearly 2 hours longer than my first 50 miler I ran a better race this time, more consistent and no big blowups. I don’t know any finishing times yet but in the 2006 race there was only 1 runner that finished the 50 miler in under 9:00 and only the top six finished under 10:00 and only four finished in under 24:00 for the hundred. Caulk this one up as time on the feet.

“I now know why Illinois is so flat. They took all the hills that are supposed to be there and put them ALL into one spot in Pekin IL ... and called it ‘McNaughton Park’.”

-anonymous McNaughton Runner

5 comments:

Mike said...

Awesome work Josh! I was wondering what your nutrition went like this day? Was there aid on course during the loop? Or just at the start of each loop? Did you take S caps or something like that? Drink? Water and other stuff?

No blisters or elsewise?

Did you change socks or shoes during the day or just do the whole shooting match in the same garb?

Sorry for all the questions, but ...you know.

Addy said...

Wow...what a race!!! Those hills with the mud sound absolutely insane. Congrats on doing such a great job out there in those conditions. Any pictures?

Josh said...

Mike,

You know I don't mind all the questions, I'll ask you all the same ones I’m sure.
There were 3 aid stations total on the 10 mile loop (start/finish, and two out on the course.) I carried a handheld with me that I kept filled with water; I probably drank 2 bottles per loop. At most aid stations I tried to get at least two cups of heed for electrolytes and ate cookies, potatoes w/salt, cheese-its, fig newtons, ect.. I brought clean socks and shoes in a drop bag but I figured if I changed them they would only stay dry for 30 minutes tops before they were wet and muddy again so I didn't bother. By mile 30 I didn't really want to take my shoes off anyway, for fear it might aggravate any damage I had sustained to them. When I finally did take them off at the end they looked no uglier than they usually do (which is pretty ugly.) I always glob on Vaseline all over my feet and in between my toes before a race. I never get blisters and the Vaseline helps repel the water on wet runs, its golden.

Josh said...

Addy,

Thanks! I didn't take any pictures and there are none posted on the website yet but as soon as I find some I will post a few.

Kim said...

A very good time on your feet!! Great time for a tough course!!!!