|Dan took some photos along the course during his run.|
After a high quality dinner and a total of about 3 hours of sleep my alarm went off at 3:40am. I seriously long for the race morning when I don't have to pump before the race! I downed a nutilla, some water and by 4:30 we were out the door heading to Lory State Park for the start.
Dan and James dropped me off with hugs and kisses and promises to see me at the 25 mile turn around. I grabbed my handheld water bottle, 3 gels, a fruit straw, waved goodbye and headed to pick up my bib. I turned on my GPS watch...oh and it just kept turning off then turning on. A few years ago I may have been completely lost, but going into a 50 with the experience I know have I just shut it down and let it go. I scanned the crowd for anyone I knew, looking in particular for Nick. I finally spotted him a bit in front of me and knew I'd meet up with him once we got going.
10, 9, 8....go! And we were off! The first bit was a course change due to the recent fire, but in all honesty I didn't really go over the route like I should have so I just followed the crowd. We headed down a dirt road on the back side of the hogbacks. I looked to my left and saw a beautiful sunrise, the sky brilliant shades of pink behind the hogbacks. It was hard not to smile. I kept an easy pace and quickly caught up with Nick. He was running with another friend, Jeremiah, who turned to me and goes "Ah, you're the girl from Apex! I knew you had to be training for something." We ran together for a bit before Jeremiah took off. Nick and I ended up running nearly the entire race together.
We turned and headed up some single track running when we could and hiking a good bit of it. I knew this first climb was the worst. We pulled into the Horsetooth aid station after the first climb and all I could think was "this is going to be a really long day!" My legs were tight and sore and my stomach was beginning to fall apart and we still had 39 miles to go. Needless to say I was ripe for a bonk and on the third climb I definitely bonked. Nick got ahead of me, but I kept him in my sights, determined to catch back up. I finally caught back up to Nick around mile 20 and we cruised into the start/finish together around 5 hours and 10 min.
|James waiting for me at the 25 mile turnaround|
|From near the top of Horsetooth|
|Nothing celebrates a good run like a Dales!|
|James tailgating at the race!|
Week May 6 - 12
Miles Running: 62.6
Hours Hiking and Running: 14