Prickly Pear 50K Report

What an awesome race! I traveled to SA with Stephanie and Meredith on Saturday am. McAlister Park, the race site, was right off the highway, so it was very easy to get to. The early morning hovered in the 50s, which to me is perfect weather.
We met up with Moogy at the starting area, and he had our packets waiting for us. We got nice tech shirts, always a plus. We said hi to Bill, the RD, and before we knew it, we were off in to the wilderness of suburban San Antonio.
The first 6 or so miles were in darkness, so we watched a pretty sunrise. The first part of the course I named the “Prickly Pear” section. Lots of large prickly pear cacti along the nice very easy single track, and not a hill in sight. The first aid station was after a little section where you were reminded this was a suburban park, but still very pretty. Next you entered the “forest section”. This was probably the longest section. The recent rains made everything extremely green, so it was just lovely. Still flat and easy. A really nice touch you don’t usually find in trail runs were mile markers. After the forest section, there was the levee section. This was along a big flat levee, which lead to final part of the course which was a little forest and a little suburban park. The last 2 miles included 2 water crossing and the course’s only hill. The 2nd water crossing was waist deep (after the run, I learned if I had not gone right down the middle of the crossing and veered right, I could have only got wet to me knees).
I finished loop 1, and really enjoyed the course. Lots of variety of scenery and very easy and runable. I started loop 2 with a gel and felt it come up from my stomach into my throat. I thought this was temporary, but I continued with waves of nausea for the rest of the loop. I normally have a stomach of iron, so my best guess is the Heed that the aid station served just didn’t agree with me. I did my best to force another gel and fluids, figuring if I got a little bit of calories I could make it to loop 3 then just do water. I ran solo a lot, except for running into the folks doing the 10 mile course. It was a relief to finish loop 2, because I knew I could make loop 3 on just sipping water and get the awful waves of nausea to end.
Started loop 3 and ran the whole thing without seeing another 50Ker. I tried to enjoy this one. The sun was coming out, but I was still quite comfortable. About mile 26 or so, I realized the nausea had pretty much ended. I guess a good lesson if it ever happens in a longer event. I stuck to sips of coke and water for awhile and it pretty much completely went away. Kinda a bummer, because this course was a total PR course and I had ideal weather for me, so I could have ran faster I think. On my way to the finish, I knew Meredith, Steph and Moogy were all done, and they cheered me in and got my an icy cold soda.
The real fun started after the race. We got the best finisher medals I have ever seen. Really nice etched glass with a leather ribbon. There were beef and chicken fajitas with homemade tortillas, beans and rice. There were kegs of beer, but I didn’t want to risk it, with having spent the better part of the morning queasy. We had a blast with the other Austinites. The awards started and Steph, Meredith and I all got etched glass beer mugs. A super cool prize I will use! We also won some raffle items.
The drive home was easy and had it not been for insane Austin traffic we would have made it in a little over an hour.
This was a ton of fun to do. The easy, soft course was a nice break from some of the ultra challenges I have taken on. It was very well marked, good and frequent aid stations, and one of the best post race spreads I’ve ever encountered. It was great fun to see so many club members out at this one.


49 Replies to “Prickly Pear 50K Report”

  1. Yeah for a fun race!! I can’t wait until the RHR 50-miler. We will have sooo much fun running the 50-miler. Clea loves the idea of running the 50-miler…

  2. Clea, don’t listen to her! She’s trying to suck you in. Before you know it, Mer will have you on a plane in July on your way back to Vermont to run another 100! 😉

  3. Capital 10K sounds about right for me . . . Yikes, I was sore after this weekend! Still, what great fun. Thanks to all of you guys for putting up with me.

  4. Great job Clea!! And WHAT an amazing photographer from your prior post. And I agree w/ Mer…50 milers are FUN. They hurt less, you get to enjoy more scenery, more time w/ your friends. Did I say that they are fun!Bad Moogy…

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