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Wild Hare 50 Mile Run - RunUltra Marathon

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Warda, Texas
United States
Tejas Trails
80F / 27C
Total Time = 9h 54m 25s
Overall Rank = 13/35
Age Group = N/A
Age Group Rank = 0/0
Pre-race routine:

Well, I have to preface this race with a few things real quick.

Exactly a week before this race I did a 50K in Louisiana in 5:10:07. Definitely not my hardest effort, but a good effort none the less. I wanted a fun challenge so i signed up for both these races, on back to back weekends.

On top of that I invited my friend Ben to come do his first ultra at the Warda race. Before I could warn him, he was signed up for the 50 miler! AWESOME! There's not too many things more fun that watching someone finish their first ultra :)

The weekend started with Ben driving down to my place and us leaving there around 12:45pm. We hopped on I-35 and headed for Waco where we turned off onto 77 which was a straight shot to Warda, TX (a super small town just SW of Austin).

After a small detour due to both of us just zoning out, we arrived around 4:45-5:00pm, just in time to get our tents set up and grab our packets. This was my second weekend in a row to camp at a race, which I've found to be a total blast, and really add to the fun of an ultra :)

After getting our packets we decided to head back into town and grab some Subway and hit up the local Wally world to grab some necessities (toothpaste and candy).

When we got back to the campsite Ben mapped out all his gear/nutrition and got everything organized. I pretty much just watched since I was kinda/sorta winging nutrtion. We set our tents up next to a pond which was RIGHT on the run course. This way we could drop by our tents each lap and grab any food/drink we needed. We were about 3. miles from the finish line.

Finally around 9-9:30 we hit the sack and tried to get some sleep before our adventure the next day :)
Event warmup:

I made some coffee which was delicious.
  • 9h 54m 25s
  • 50 miles
  • 11m 53s  min/mile

Since the course was loops that's how I'm gonna do the report.

Intro lap:
This first lap was to be 5 miles. We started promptly at 0600 in the dark. I had a small handheld and Ben had a headlamp. I was figuring we'd have to use them for at least the first 45mins or so. Joe (the RD) shouted go and we started. Off into the darkness we ran.

Ben said his plan was just to hang with me as long as possible and then figure it out from there. My plan was to run a comfortable pace and then re-evaluate around mile 35 and start making goals from there.

Ben and I were just hanging out in the train of headlamps bobbing around in the dark as we ran through a field and rounded a small pond. Within a few minutes we were entering the nice single track in the woods. I looked back and noticed we were just ahead of the main train of people, which I hate being stuck in, so I was way happy with our placement.

We were running a very very comfortable pace. Quickly two guys caught up with us, and I could feel their feet behind me which annoys me beyond belief in a 10+hr race, so I pulled off the trail and let them go. We'd see 'em later :)

A few times we'd pop out of the woods against a fence line and the sun was just shedding some light. There was a very light fog which was gorgeous in the morning light.

Soon we were pulling up to the first aid station at mile 3.5 and feeling great. I asked Ben if he needed anything. He said no, and we headed back out. After a few hundred feet we cut across a field and back onto the trail.

Before we knew it we were passing our campsite and grabbing some more food, and heading back for the start line. The 50K race was set to go off at 0700, and they were all lining up as Ben and I ran through to complete our first small loop of 5 miles.

Lap 1:
The sun was up at this point so no more lights were needed. We did that small field section at the start and were quickly back into the wooded single track section.

I think by this point we had picked up another runner named "Pete". Pete turned out to be an Aggie (which I couldn't hold against him since being an ultra runner trumped being an aggie).

Soon enough we pulled out of that section and through the first aid station again at mile 8.5. Both of us were still feeling great and making good progress. This time we were running the whole 7.5 mile loop so the rest of this loop was going to be new to us. We cross another cow pasture and all the sudden came to a very steep benchcut drop! We navigated our way down it while it twisted along the side of a 100-120ft "cliff". I knew this section would hurt later!

The trail dropped us off at the bottom of the cliff and we were then running along the edge of a field. The trail looped back around and brought us next to the cliff and up a nice little climb. The trail was really wide here. We hiked our way up it and were quickly back to running at the top.

The trail again dropped back down via steep benchcut to another pasture. We ran all the way around the edge of the pasture. The last section of the pasture was a loong straightaway. We ran all the way back to the tree line. Here there was a bridge crossing a creek that was semi steep. Here was the 2nd climb of the course which wasn't too bad, but definitely doing to be walked! :)

Once at the top we began running again. The trail twisted around a bit, and before we knew it we were back at the campsite grabbing more food. Pete waited for us here. As soon as we had what we needed, we headed back to the start/finish line. Once there we refilled our bottles and I dropped off my gloves and arm warmers cause it was really warming up quickly! Off to start loop 3!

Lap 2:
This lap started at mile 12.4. We were both still feeling really good so we just maintained pace here. I can't remember if it was this lap or the next one, but I let Ben lead a bit through the wooded single track section. He kept mentioning how this was his favorite section. I noticed he was pushing the pace just a litttleee bit, but enough for me to notice. There were a few times a small gap opened up, but by the time we reached the aid station we were "training". If he was going to try and keep that pace I was decided that I'd let him go. We left that aid station and began the next section 16.9 miles in. We walked out of the aid station and began running again.

By this point, in my mind I had really broken up the course which really helped. Here's how I broke it down. The first section was the wooded single track which brought us into the first aid station. The next section was the cow pasture which brought us to the steep drop into the first field which was the third section. The fourth section was the larger field with the long straight away against the fence line, and the fifth section was everything past that to the finish.

After we left the aid station we crossed the cow pasture and dropped back down into the first field. Then onto the second field and I noticed Ben had slowed just a touch back to our original pace. I was happy to see that, because I didn't want him to blow up later.

We made the 2nd climb out of the fields and ran the rest of the 5th section back to our camp site. We re-fueled and were back on the trail for the start/finish line. Once there I made the decision to pull the shirt off cause it was warming up even more. Ben followed suit and we were quickly back on the trail!

Lap 3:
This lap started at mile 20. Everything was still looking pretty good for both of us. Our nutrition was going well and the legs were behaving nicely :) I believe was Pete was still with us here.

We crossed the small field at the start and were soon back in the wooded single track. It was this loop where I began to tire of this section. It was super twisty and lots of small rocks. Ben loved this section so I just let him do his thing again!

We were soon back at the first aid station at mile 23.5. Once back on the trail we did the drop into the field section and up the first climb. We dropped back down and into the second field. We rounded the whole thing then it was back up the second climb and onto the 5th section.

Again, before I knew it we were back at our campsite. I was really surprised at how fresh I was feeling. I didn't have any major aches or pains and the legs weren't too tired. We re-fueled and headed back to the start/finish. I believe this is where Pete stopped to tape his feet, so we headed back out without him.

Lap 4:
This lap started at mile 27.5. I believe everything was still going fairly well at this point. I think this is where Ben expected things to fall apart. We entered the wooded single track and things continued as before, except this time I led through the woods. We had started something which was rather clever on our parts.

Ben loved the wooded single track section, and I loved the open field sections. So I started leading the wooded single track to keep Ben from going to hard here, and he lead through the fields to keep me from going too hard.

We were soon back at the first aid station which was mile 31 or about 50K. Looking back now, I feel this is where the pace started to fade just a bit. Ben was slowing down, but still running! I was debating in my head on whether I should go off and try to break 9 hours, or finish with Ben. I obviously made the decision to stay with Ben, which I'm happy I did now.

We were still running almost all the flat sections and only walking the two climbs and the aid stations. By this point dividing the sections of the trail up was really helping.

Ben and I made our way back to the camp site and sat down for a few minutes on some stumps while we re-fueled. Each time we came by here I made sure to get my food as quick as possible and get back on the trail to wait for Ben. I wanted to keep him from sitting down too long, because I know how hard it can be to get back up!

I also think Ben was realizing at this point what kind of pain we were in store for on the next two laps! In a sick way this excited me, cause it's difficult to explain to people what it feels like to run 40+ miles. Ben was about to find out first hand! :)

We made it back to the start/finish and filled up on fluids. Off to start lap 5 which would be the ugliest of them all.

Lap 5:
This lap started 35 miles in. Back to the dreaded wooded single track (for me anyways!). I think I may have possible led this section, but could be wrong. Ben was hurting a bit and I didn't want to push the pace. His knee had started to bother him, so when it would flare up we would walk it off. I honestly couldn't believe he was still running like he was! He had really quickly picked up the ultra runner "shuffle/run".

We kept telling each other once done with this lap only ONE left! Back at the first aid station we were 38.5 miles in. We walked out and walked about halfway through the cow pasture. It was here that Olga past us, and as usual she was walking faster than we were running! haha. I told her, "We've gotta learn to walk like that!"

This lap kept getting worse for Ben, but I knew if we just broke it up into the sections and if I got him back to the campsite we'd be on the last lap before we knew it!

Soon enough we were back on the long straight away in the last field. Once to the bridge crossing the creek, we walked up the second climb and were back in the wooded single track. The lap before this one, we both had some mild stomach issues. Neither one of us ended up eating anything on that lap, but were now able to eat again. (for the most part)

We got back to the camp site and Ben sat down to grab some food. I quickly grabbed mine and got back on the trail to wait for him! Once he was done we walked/jogged our way back to the start/finish.

Lap 6:
Well, this was the final lap. We were 42.5 miles in and only had 7.5 to go! This lap started out preetttyy ugly. I had been keeping an eye on the watch for awhile, and knew that it was possible for us to break 10 hours. I really wanted Ben to get that, but didn't tell him. I just pushed the pace when I felt I could, and walked with him, when I knew it was a bad idea to run. Finally we had finished the wooded single track which seemed to take forever that time and were now at mile 46!

We grabbed some h20 at the aid station and began to head out. Next thing I know, I hear Ben say, "Where running at the tree".

Yes! I liked this. From the pace we held the previous 3.5 miles I knew we wouldn't break 10.

When we started running I could tell Ben was refreshed! We ran all the way to the steep downhill and back into the first field. We shuffled all the way around the edge and walked the uphill as always. We dropped back down and began the last trudge around the second field.

I was constantly keeping an eye out on the watch cause I knew it was gonna be close! My plan was to get him through the field and up the last climb then push the pace as much as possible through the 5th section.

Once we had walked up the last climb it was on! We were running pretty much everything. When I noticed Ben was keeping up no problem I knew we'd break ten hours :)

When we came around the camp site I grabbed a beer out of my cooler and we headed for the finish line.

We crossed at exactly the same time. 9:54:25. 12th and 13th place.

Ben had finished his first ultra like a true ultra runner!

Post race
Warm down:

We crossed the line and headed over to the aid station stuff to grab some food! I found someone with a bottle opener so I could drink my IPA while Ben got some post race sausage. I had an awesome cheeseburger and got to chat with Olga and Larry about their awesome Hardrock experience :)

For the most part, Ben and I just enjoyed getting to be around other people like us and talk about what we love.

Event comments:

Tejas Trails puts on awesome Texas trail runs.

Last updated: 2010-10-30 12:00 AM
09:54:25 | 50 miles | 11m 53s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/0
Overall: 13/35
Performance: Good
Course: Texas single track road with maybe a mile of jeep road. 1 5 mile loop, followed by 6 7.5 mile loops.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Too easy
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2010-11-23 2:31 AM

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Plano, Tx
Subject: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run

2010-11-23 8:31 PM
in reply to: #3222649

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Waller County, TX
Subject: RE: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run
Good job going sub-10 and having fun with a buddy.

Another ultra is in the books.

2010-11-23 8:58 PM
in reply to: #3224186

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Plano, Tx
Subject: RE: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run


Edited by tribullbutter 2010-11-23 8:59 PM
2010-11-23 8:59 PM
in reply to: #3224186

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Plano, Tx
Subject: RE: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run
jkron - 2010-11-23 8:31 PM Good job going sub-10 and having fun with a buddy. Another ultra is in the books. Outstanding.

Thanks! If you ever need some pacing lemme know
2010-11-24 8:02 AM
in reply to: #3222649

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Subject: RE: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run
Another awesome job out there.  Trail running, ultra stuff has really caught my attention.  Also just can't justify the cost of IM stuff, just not worth it to me.  I like the pricing on running and ultra races I have looked up.  Great report as usual. 
2010-11-24 1:28 PM
in reply to: #3222649

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Extreme Veteran
Denver CO
Subject: RE: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run
Fabulouso! You are a truly talented athlete, it never ceases to amaze me. Way to pace a buddy; that is just as satisfying as a PR isn't it?

I really, really think you should come do the Leadville marathon next summer. It'll be my return to real mountain trail running and it has everything you could hope for from an event. The people are great, too. Cross CO off your list!

2010-11-24 1:55 PM
in reply to: #3222649

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Subject: RE: Wild Hare 50 Mile Run

Great way to run with a friend, encourage him and help him break sub 10.

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