Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Some Like it Hot= Afton 50k
photo credit to Jen Pierce
What more can you say about the Afton trail race. It will be hot every year, its just part of the race no different than all the great hills during it with names like Meat Grinder. The heat is part of the race. I guess in a way that's cool. This was the third year in a row I have done the 50k. I have always loved running out at Afton State park but until three years ago I had done either one of the MN Voyageur races just a week or two later or was coming off a 100 miler. I am glad I finally got to it as it is a classic in my mind and one I do not plan on missing for many years. With John, Alicia and all the Afton race crew doing such a great job from start to finish it is a must for all runners.
Going into this years race I have had a up and down training cycle going on. Over all it has been good but the 3-4 weeks leading up to it had not been what I dreamed of with thinking of doing the race way back in December. That said I was looking forward to seeing all the great local trail runners out there and seeing what I could do. When the gun( John saying go ) went off I took off down the hill. I felt good and was ready to roll. As we started the first climb I was feeling OK but knew I needed to play it cool and not hammer. But as I found out the whole day I was able to hammer the downhills and felt so in control in my Salomon S-lab's. After a quick #2 potty stop about 7 miles or so in I was feeling pretty good but could tell the clouds where breaking and Mr. Sun was ready for us. I went back in forth with a few runners the next 3 miles or so but then saw no one for a long time. I passed the 25k mark in like 2:11ish and headed out for lap 2. It was midway on lap two and one more potty stop that I could tell the combo of my lack of stellar training over the last few weeks with the temp's getting super hot was going to get me. I decided to just do as my buddy Paul says "Get er Done" and make it thou without killing myself. I was slowing allot over the last loop. I ended up getting to the finish in 9th place and 4:50. Solid but I know I can do allot better. I guess there's always next year.
Now I need to get my head and body in line and put together a great few weeks of training as I have until mid September till my next race at the North Face 50 miler in Madison area. I am looking forward to it. I really want to run Western States 100 miler next year one more time and I need a 50 mile time to enter the lottery. So this next race is real important. As I say it's about the journey just as much as the destination. See you on the trails people !!
You will find lot's of great pictures from the race at the races blogspot. Click here for the link. Thanks to all the people who where out taking these great pictures. They add so much to the race as well. And lastly it would not be a blog post from me without a a closing video. This is from USA mountain runner Ricky Gates from his European trail running tour back in 2008. It's more about adventure's we should take while we can in life.