Some adventures in road and trail running.
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Sunday, September 9, 2007

Mckenzie 50km: Good but not Great

I had a good 50km but not great.
15th overall. 4:37:26 (8:56 per mile). Winning time: 4:10
Splits: Wagon Road - 53:16
Carmen - 46:17
Trail Bridge - 49:11
Deer Creek - 47:45
Buck Bridge - 28:57
Finish- 52:01

There were lots of good parts to the race.
I was happy with my fueling sticking close to the 100 calories every 20 minutes.
I drank more than ever again. I actually peed quite soon after the race which is not normal for me :-)
I had no stomach trouble.
Seems I may have this part of racing down...finally!

I really enjoy the lava dancing that you get to do as you pound through the more technical sections of the McKenzie course and I was lucky enough to avert any dirt dives.
My wife Trisha and 2 kids, Cole and Leah, were at all the aid stations attempting to keep my butt moving. We also had a great time before the race camping at Dave and Lynn's Flowerdale Farm. Man do I LOVE fresh fruit.
20 minutes of soaking in the beautiful but COLD McKenzie River after the race. Definitely counts as an ice bath in my books.
Getting the chance to see and talk to all the friends in the running community and making some new ones. Also watching the race and series awards is always inspiring. Congratulations to all the winners but especially to my co-workers Caroline and Dave!!

I did make some mistakes on race day:
  • I stayed with groups too long. If I would have been pacing I would have had my runner catch up to the group, "rest" at the group pace for about 5 minutes and then pass with confidence with no looking back. I was lazy. I caught a group and settled into the slower pace and stayed there for more than 30 minutes...twice! This hurt me for my first and fourth split.
  • I took too long at aid stations. Not sure why but just could not seem to get my act together in the stations. Instead of 1-2 minutes I was consistently 2-4 minutes. This time adds up over 5 aid stations.
I have pushed my body harder this year than any other in my running "career".
Sure I could whine about a twisted ankle and missing training in July this year.
I could bring up the miles and fatigue still in my legs from Waldo.
Please just smile when I am sure to bring these up :-)

But that is what makes the Oregon trail race series so tough and so rewarding.
You have 7 races over 6 months (Feb to Sept). You need to pick 4 of these races and race them to have a chance a placing in your age group or overall.
You have hard races pretty much back to back (3 weeks apart which, believe me, is close for ultras) starting with PCT 31 miler or 50 miler at the end of July, Waldo 62 miler in mid August and then McKenzie 31 miler to wrap things up.
Everyone in the series has had injuries to deal with and deep muscle fatigue to overcome. That is what sets the winners apart as really strong, smart runners.
I plan to keep learning and training to be like them. They inspire me with their strength and stamina.

McKenzie 2007 was a great way to end the trail series: beautiful course, great weather, well organized and great volunteers as well as lots of great prizes and swag!!
The race was satisfying but I am not satisfied...bring on the 2008 series :-)


olga said...

Hey, I am with you - I'll do my best to run all the Series races, and may be even talk Monika into letting me run PCT:) Local stuff is real fun! And it's a string, so a special goal. I'll see you next year at all of them, and have fun this nexy weekend at AC100 with the crazy Roosters! Tell Trisha thanks again and again, what an amazing person she is.

Matt Nahorniak said...

Hey Darin,

I just stumbled across your blog. Cool. Nice job at MRTR, PCT, and especially Waldo!

Jas took a bunch of pics at PCT and MRTR. Enjoy!

The saturday MRTR race:
http://www.imagesta album/pictures. html?id=20876645 40&code=29866369&mode=invite&DCMP=isc-email- AlbumInvite

The Sunday invitational:
http://www.imagesta album/pictures. html?id=20876638 89&code=29866682&mode=invite&DCMP=isc-email- AlbumInvite

PCT 50/50