Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Pre-race Jitters

I would be lying if I said that I'm not nervous about Saturday. All I have to do on Google now is press "B", and Google proposes "Bear Mountain NY Weather". I've been looking at the chances of rainfall for Saturday steadily climb from nearly 0% a few days ago to 70% as of 10 seconds ago. Rain sucks for two reasons: your feet get wet and it's hard to dress comfortably, especially because the temperature will climb from 10C to 24C. Taper is going ok, although I feel sluggish and tired. Well, that might be last night's beers with Chris.

I'm not sure I have a race plan. Run when I can, hike when I can't. Eat a gel on the half hour, a Honey Stinger Waffle on the hour, salt as required and drink plenty. Don't waste too much time at the aid stations. I will wear my old stinky Crosslites, since I'm not comfortable wearing the new ones after only one outing. They would probably be fine, but why risk it? Because of the course, I have no firm time goal. If you were to waterboard me and force me to make a prediction, I would probably say between 11:30 and 12:00. I pulled that number out of my ass, using a technique know as wishful thinking.

I can't say that I've been mentally stable this week. Not being able to run a 50k race prior to Bear Mountain has left me without a confidence builder. I'm going from a soul destroying 30K race in March to this. I've been looking at my training log extensively, trying to decide what makes me run well in ultras. If I'm totally honest with y'all (I've been watching Friday Night Lights), I feel like I haven't really improved since 2009, when I had most of my best races: first I broke 20 minutes on 5k in April, then my first 50 miler at Sulphur run with nice splits in 10:06, Niagara 50K run in 4:45 with perfectly even splits, and then a solid race at Creemore. After that, things went ok but not great, with maybe the exception of Susitna. I had a lot of fun, but I can't think of a race that I've been real happy with since then. Well, maybe that 15 miler in Phoenix last Winter, that was solid.

My point is that I'm a bit gun shy. I'm afraid to go too slow and not be happy with my race and I'm afraid to go too fast and blow up like I did at Sulphur in 2010. I'm pretty sure I learned something at that race though. I remember the effort level pretty clearly and I'll stay under that for sure. Doh.


Johnny said...

Chillax. Remember, we do this for fun. You're going to do great, so just enjoy it. Derrick wouldn't set you up for failure, so just listen to his game plan and execute.

We've recently started watching season one of Friday Night Lights and are really enjoying it.

Derrick said...

" I'd like to think that I'm at a better place in my training than I was two years ago. My training has been solid, I feel great, I feel strong.

This should be an awesome, fun filled trip though. Should be a hoot and a half."

Johnny said...

Look at that. Derrick just pulled a jedi coach move, using your own words from a month ago to motivate and reassure you.

Wow. I'm just in awe at this moment.

slowrunner said...

just go and have fun! you will do great!! if i can do it, anyone can! i probably hold the time for 'closest to the cut-off' with 13 hours and 57 minutes!!

Sara Montgomery said...

It'll feel good on the brain to just get running. Bring on the hoot and a half. See you there.

chris mcpeake said...

Now I wish I was driving down with you even more. Not only do I not get to run Bear this year but I am missing a golden opportunity to really mess with your head.

Hey isnt that what friends are for?

JD said...

Chris, don't you see that everyone else is trying to lift my mood while you try to intimidate me with ridiculously high mileage by making double entries in Attackpoint?

Morgan said...

Oh crap, it's this weekend isn't it? You'll do fine JD, let's have fun. Road trip!!