Had a blast yesterday at the Warda 50K. It didn’t start until 900, so it was nice not to get up at 4am for a change. This was a good thing, since the night before I went out with friends had a couple glasses of wine…pasta with chunks of heartburn inducing garlic in it, and I didn’t even start getting my race stuff together until 1030. I barely fell asleep and Mike came in and woke me up at midnight and more insomnia followed. Not a good pre-race prep, when I was already feeling tired from a busy week. Woke up and met Meredith and Pete at 630 for the drive out to Warda. Got there with plenty of time, and I was pleasantly surprised at how nice the setting was…lots of pines, longhorns, and packet pick up at the ranch house (complete with a litter of lab puppies). We were off at 900, and I decided to do my best to make it a good day. After loop 1, I mentally divided the course into 3 sections: the pines, the field, and the hills and bridges. First part was a little rocky and rooty through a gorgeous tall pine forest. After an aid station, we had a trip around a big field, and then back into the pines, but this time with lots of hills and some truly crazy bridges. It was like a roller coaster ride. Had to do this loop 4 times.
Loops 1 and 2 flew by. I threw on the ipod for loop 3 and stubbed my right big toe twice, which always gets me. My feet hurt and I kinda worried..how on earth could I run Bandera if 20 miles into a trail run I was having issues. I started loop 4 and really felt fine. I think the loop aspect of the course had just played tricks with my mind on loop 3. I had a feeling I was the lead woman..which in a race this small isn’t really that impressive, but I did think, it would be fun to bring home a winner’s trophy on my birthday. I knew to do that I couldn’t wimp out and walk at all on loop 4. Just keep moving! I did just that and toward the end I saw Mariella, a runner from Houston who always runs very strong. I thought I had to pick it up if I wanted to stay in front and managed to finish strong. This was really a big training run, but it was neat to win a race on my birthday! I had a huge PR, and most of us agreed the course had to be short. Meredith wanted to call it 28 miles, but Pete and I are sticking with 30! Got another wood plaque to take home. Had a quick change of clothes and puppy petting session and headed home.
Got home and felt like garbage, so I worried more about Bandera. I need to go double this distance and I need to feel like 50K is not so taxing. I think it was really a lack of refueling after the run, because once Mike and I got some food I felt much better. I had the BEST CARROT CAKE EVER. Mike got me a whole cake from Upper Crust. No nuts, no raisins, just lots of moist carrot cake and fresh cream cheese icing. I got a terrific gift. A beautiful framed photo from our Zion trip.
I’ve definitely got some things to work on for bandera if I am going to finish. My feet just cannot hurt as much as they did yesterday. I am hoping my new Hardrocks will fix that problem. I ran this am (it was not fun), but it forced me out on tired legs and I thought some things through. I really didn’t walk at all yesterday except up a couple hills and walking out aid stations. I will be walking more at Bandera and that will help. I also have a couple more long runs and I hope that toughens me up a little. I really wasn’t too sore this am, which is a good sign. Just very stiff. Overall, a race was a great way to spend my birthday. It’s hard not to appreciate another year when you are out there running and going through ups and downs. Definitely more ups though!