Sunday, November 11, 2007

Mendon Ponds 50k Race Report

Disclaimer: If you want to read a good race report you should skip this one and go to Mike's Blog. If you have grown accustom to my drivel, read on.

About 2 weeks ago I got an E-mail from Mike asking me if I had ever run an ultra in New York, I hadn't. He had seen some info on Mendon ponds and thought it would be a fun one. I didn't have anything else planned so I decided to come along.
I got to Mike's house Sunday evening and we left for the 4.5 hour drive to Rochester at about 2:30 AM Saturday morning. We got there in plenty of time for the start, so I took a little nap and got ready for the race. Mendon ponds is a 10k loop course repeated 5 times. According to the website there are 5500 feet of gain throughout the race (1100 feet per loop.)Mike and I before the start
I had decided that I would run with Mike, as long as I could keep up. His 50K PR was 6:32 and I thought he could break that, even on this tough course. We started off at a comfortable pace, just trying to pick a pace that we could maintain throughout the entire race. We knew that to beat 6:32 we would have to run each loop right around 1:18 but we weren't really focused on the time, just the perceived effort.Everyone trying to stay warm at the starting line

The course was very pretty, with a wide verity of colored leaves covering the trail. Pretty to look at, sure, but not so easy when your running down hill trying to look for roots and rocks. I can't see all that well in the first place, and when you toss thousands of leaves on the ground it doesn't help. Mike, on the other hand has the eyes of an eagle, so he was smoking me on all he down hills. He ran a very calculated race, making sure to walk the same spots every loop and maintain and even pace. This translated into very even splits through the entire race. He never hit the wall or had to slow down. He easily cruised to a new PR by 17 minutes, on a course which the RD said "If your trying for a PR, forget it!". way to go Mike!!
Mike gave me one of Chef Bill's PURE FUEL energy bars to try on the second loop. I had the Cranberry flavor. I ate it half way through the second loop and it gave me a nice pick-me-up starting the third loop.

Mike and I with RD Larry zygo

This was a very well put together race. The course markings were excellent and the volunteers were great. You couldn't ask for anything better for only a 20 dollar entrants fee!

After the race we got a chance to talk to a family from Montreal. Mryna (the mother) ran her first 50k today, She has run Boston many times. She did great. She fell twice, but was able to recover and finish strong. Her bright Orange shoes were mesmerising on the trail. I think her two daughters, Gaylee and Adeline and her husband ran one of the shorter distances. Some of the nicest people you'll ever met! I hope to see them all at a race again soon. Maybe Boston next year? If only I can knock 33 minutes off my marathon time by then.Mryna and her Orange Shoes

(all photos courtesy of Mike's blog)


Anonymous said...

I didn't realize that was her first ultra. Wow. She did good, and they were such a nice group of people.

Thanks again Josh for getting me to the PR!

Kim said...

Awesome race report Josh!! And good for you for sticking to Mike's pacing plan. You're a good guy.

Notice I said guy. Not gay.

Addy said...

great job on the impromptu 50k and getting a new state! Sounds like you guys had a good time out there :D

Anonymous said...

Josh, Josh, Josh, WHAT A KIND and humble human being you are!! One does not come across individuals like you so often and it's a great pleasure to have met you and Mike... And, all those races, in just one year, considering your age!!! WAO, You truly IMPRESS ME and I am speaking from a professional point of view.

For Boston, let me repeat this: In general, younger people have the speed but no endurance, and the older one gets the less speed but the more endurance they’ll possess. I suppose you agree, LD winners are not in their 20s and track runners are not in their 30s ... But empirical evidence shows that the best marathoners come from track and they build endurance onto that. All this is to tell you, a marathoner (not an ultramarathoner) needs a combination of both speed and distance. But seeing how much distance you ran in one year it is obvious to me that you lag in the speed training which is a crucial component for qualifying, If you are not doing track workouts please do, and if you are, perhaps you need to review what you are doing and make sure your workouts are tailored to your own VO2max, your own HR max and min etc
I am so sure, in no time, with good quality training, Boston will be under your belt. Not only will you qualify but I am confident you’ll do record time IN Boston. You already possess something many in your age group cannot withstand and have no patience to acquire: The mental strength and ENDURANCE !!
Please keep in touch.. I'll often visit yours and Mikes' blog…
Myrna Saliba

tony said...

Josh...way to add another state and ultra towards your incredible goals! Not to mention how awesome that is helping Mike to a PR! Great spending some time talking on Friday night, too!

Rob "Buckeye" Powell said...

Cool race report. Boston here you come????

Nick said...

Great Report Josh. Good to hear you guys had a great time.

Josh said...


You did all the work, I just tagged along.


Yeah, I know what you said, but I also know what you were thinking ;)


We had a great time! 10 states down 40 to go!


Thanks for the tips, so glad we met!


Talking to you on Friday night was "Sweet" I could have stayed up all night talking with you and Mike about BR and MO!! Let me when you run that section we were talking about. I can't wait to hear how you feel about it after you run it on fresh legs, in the day time! I don't think you'll beleive the differnece!


We'll see about Boston, I need some of that Powell speed!


Thanks! It was a great weekend.

Anonymous said... - [url=]site[/url] site