Well, this race did punch me in the face...but I didn't get knocked down. I finished in 4:09:18 and in 3rd overall. My Garmin was messed up so I don't remember many splits, outside of hitting Hwy 67 (Mile 7) in 52, and the half-way in 1:59. I'm happy with how the race went, and I only really got down and beat up in the final 5 miles.
Now for the long story...in drive-by fashion because time is currently limited by Edwin:
- I thought for sure that I would be passed in the last 5 miles, but I kept running all the 'flats' (there aren't many of these) and the downhills (at a slow rate to avoid falling), and hiking the hills as much as possible. I knew two veteran Glacial Trail runners were behind me (Bruce and Joel), but somehow I never got caught and made it in to the finish in 3rd place.
- I ran the final 26 miles on my own, after seeing David Smith (the defending champion) and Chris Rubesch (the Superior 50 record holder) take off ahead of me. I knew to stay away from those guys, but the next group behind me just didn't quite fit my pace, so off I went on my own. From that point forward I knew it wasn't likely I'd catch the top two and I ran 'scared' of getting caught in the end. I'm pretty damn happy I ran for 26 miles in 3rd place.
- My parents were my 'crew' and it worked great. I even got some splits from them regarding where 2nd place was (Chris), and those splits were always between 2:30 and 1:45. The course never allows you to see even a minute ahead of you, so I never saw Chris after mile 16.
- I've always had issues with my left shoulder (levator scapula muscle), and since I've gotten into the habit of holding Edwin on the left side the majority of the time, this race was brutal for the shoulder. It's still sore and really achy, especially at night. I need to fix this.
- The course was beautiful! Most of the leaves were still on the trees, which was an added bonus because that meant there were fewer leaves covering up the trail!
- I'm pretty sure this is the most low key event I've ever run. The finishing chute consisted of 5 orange cones, a table, a clock, and the RD Robert. That kind of event almost guarantees I'll be back every year! The beer and chili after the race didn't hurt either.
- I'm definitely taking some time off from running in November and December...but having such a good run and surprising myself with my finishing time has me thinking about the next run...perhaps Chippewa?
- Above is my favorite picture from the weekend. I'm entering the 'Butler Lake' aidstation, trading water bottles with my dad. He and my mom cut a vacation a day short to come home and help me out. He has a smile on his face and is even running in stride with me! Thanks to Todd Egnarski (a member of the LPTR's) for the picture!