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North Face Endurance Challenge - RunUltra Marathon

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Sterling, Virginia
United States
88F / 31C
Total Time = 6h 36m
Overall Rank = 66/232
Age Group = W40-49
Age Group Rank = 4/19
  • 6h 36m
  • 31.07 miles
  • 12m 45s  min/mile

The race info said it was 5.69 miles to the first aid station and another 6.7 miles to the second aid station. Them there were two more after 2.69 and 4.1 miles but then you were on the return trip and you had to redo the 6.7 miles before you hit the second aid station again. I debated btwn wearing the back pack or the belt. I don't like the back pack but with the weather report I knew that even with two bottles in the Nathan I would have to be careful on that last 6.7 stretch. It turned out to be VERY long. We were all wondering where in [email protected] it was. There were actually people out there today that weren't carying water at all and then they had the nerve to ask others for some of their water. Don't ask me to risk my health because you were stupid. If you dropped your bottle and it fell off the side of a cliff I would give you water but if you were just too lazy to cary it, unless you are cleary in a medical emergency you won't get mine. Sorry.

I have been having stomach issues all week and have been very clogged up. I was hoping the prerace nerves would solve that problem. Unfortunately it did not and I knew that I would have problems eating on the course. This was a big concern. I took in very few calories but am not sure it made a huge difference. I also only peed once on the course which is very unusual for me. The Coke at the last two aid stations was an absolutely glorious.

Stayed in a pretty good place mentally all day. I sure found out what the difference is between a marathon and an Ultra. That last 4.8 miles was a kicker. I wasn't reduced to totally walking but I seriously slowed and lots of people passed me. No major physical problems. Hip flexors were just wasted towards the end, had a couple of hot spots on my feel but they did not materialize into anything (wore the trail shoes), couple of sore toenails that may turn black again.

The battery died on my Garmin at 6:33 and 31.9 miles. There was total agreement amongst the participants that this course was a tad over 32 miles rather than 31. Nearly impossible to make a trail race exact on distance but today would have been a good one to be a tid short rather than long.
What would you do differently?:

train better. I knew I was undertrained going into this but considering the course turned out to be much more difficult than I was expecting coupled with the weather I am quite happy with finishing my first Ultra.
All of the experienced people commented on how tough the day was so I knew it wasn't completely a lack of fitness on my part.

I would really like to start walk breaks early on but on single track when you are in a train at the beginning there just isn't any way to do that without disrupting everyone. Then by time if thins out enough that I could I'm in a rhythm of just running and walking the bigger hills and then I don't want to loose that rhythm so I just keep running. I need to figure out a way to do that. When running roads it seems to be a bit easier to 'run your own race'.
Post race
What limited your ability to perform faster:

Heat, Humidity, lack of training, distance between aid stations.

Last updated: 2010-05-02 12:00 AM
06:36:00 | 31.07 miles | 12m 45s  min/mile
Age Group: 4/19
Overall: 0/232
Performance: Average
Average HR 142
Course: More challenging course than I was expecting. The first 6-7 miles were relatively pretty moderate with pretty good footing which was what I was expecting for the entire run. It was not. Things got much more challenging. Overall, a lot of the single track was very similar to the single track in Umstead.
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

2010-06-06 8:10 AM

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Extreme Veteran
Ft. Myers, Florida
Subject: North Face Endurance Challenge

2010-06-07 3:33 PM
in reply to: #2903231

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Subject: RE: North Face Endurance Challenge
Good job.
2010-06-07 3:51 PM
in reply to: #2903231

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Cypress, Texas
Subject: RE: North Face Endurance Challenge
Awesome, well done.  I've stood trailside and watched (parts) of a North Face event before.  Those things are tough
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