I drove out to Indiana on Friday night and stayed with some FUN and FAST runners from the Buffalo running club in Central Illinois. This was my second time running Tecumseh so I knew what I was up against, but that doesn't mean I was smart enough to learn from it. I felt good going into the race but I was only 6 days removed from a Trail 50K PR performance in Georgia so I didn't really no what to expect. I pushed the pace early on with an ambitious goal of sub four hours. My pace worked for the first 1/4 of the race. I was running just under 9 minute miles, but I was already wasted with no chance of maintaining anything remotely close to a sub 4 pace. After all, this is a tough marathon course with 3,500 feet of gain. I was talking to one guy during the race about ultras. He said this was his 3rd time running Tecumseh but he didn't think he could finish a 50k, if you can finish this marathon, there are plenty of 50k's you can finish. I backed off big time after that and started walking the hills and taking it easy. The middle part of the race was slow but steady, trying to recover from the unmaintainable pace I subjected myself to the first 6.5 miles. By mile 21 I got my second wind and was able to pound the last 5 miles around a 9 minute pace again. I passed a boat load of people in the last 5 miles, at least 20. It's always nice when your the one passing people rather than being the pissed off runner getting smoked. I came to the finish line in 4:39, a lot slower than I would have liked, but better than last year by 15 minutes.
The race had good organization, volunteers and aid stations. It had an ultra feel to it, although it was a large trail race with nearly 500 entrants. Not much else to report about this race. I started off to fast on tired legs and paid for it, it happens.
a HUGE congrats to Marla (what else is new!) For an awesome performance and another win! Beating over 100 talented women in the process with a time of 3:47! I don't like getting chicked but if it has to happen I'm glad it's by someone as fast and cool as her :)