Average Pace per Mile : 12:34
Age Group: I placed 2nd!
Gender Placement: 6th female finisher
Overall Finish: 37th place out of ???? I'm really not sure how many runners were out there. The website has not been updated with official results. I took a photo of a monitor at the finish line.
Weather: It was around 45 degrees at the start. It warmed up to about 70 at the finish.
10-15 mph wind, but since I was on the trail (thick trees), it wasn't an issue.
Let's talk about the race!
The weather was great! But I made a mistake, at the very beginning of the race. Don't ask me why, but I was wearing a pullover. It only took me 2 miles to feel warmed up and I was ready to get rid of my sweater.
By mile 10, I ended up taking the sweater off and bunching it up into a ball and carrying it. I had my handheld water in my right hand and the sweater ball in my left. ANNOYING! It was my favorite lululemon pullover, but if it was any other one, I probably would've just tossed it in the bushes. I eventually got rid of my extra baggage when I got to mile 22, the "pit stop", where I had a bag of clothes, extra shoes, socks, and petroleum jelly. Once I got to that area, I rested for about 1 minute. I didn't need to change shoes/clothes/sock, nothing. I took it just in case. About 10 feet away from the bag areas was a fluid and aid station. Ultra races have the best food. Think 10 year old slumber party (snacks)….gummy bears, animal crackers, soda, pretzels, M&M's, etc.
My fuel of choice for ultras or at least this one---- chips and PBJ sandwiches. I also drank some heed. It's an electrolyte drink similar to Gatorade. It's not my favorite, but I drank it, I didn't consume any GU's. That's a first for me. I really hate GU's, they weigh my stomach down.
What else? What else? The trail itself was not easy or hard. The trail was somewhere in the middle. Now, the distance was hard, but the trail was not, if that makes any sense. There were so many tree roots and rolling baby hills. I spent 95% of the race, looking at the ground because I did not want to trip. I stumbled at least 10 times, but never fell down.
This is where the trail ended. After running 31 miles, I had to run up a flight of steep stairs. Ouch and Ouch.
I enjoyed running Rockledge Rumble and I would love to run it next year! Now, that I'm familiar with the trail -- spending six hours out there makes me feel that way :)
I feel like if I race it next year, I would do a few things differently.
1. I would start off a lot slower. I said I was planning on running slowly, but I raced the first 13 miles of the race. I started passing runners on the trail 2 miles in, that was a mistake on my part. Miles 14 - 21 were not my favorite. I needed to conserve my energy. By some miracle, around mile 22, I started to get my second wind. I felt great and pretty much ran strong to the finish, from that point forward. I took walk breaks and that helped.
2. Next time, when figuring out my goal time, I will account for stopping at aid stations.
I'm happy that I finished the race and most importantly had a great time. It's not everyday I get to run on trails, so when I do, it's a real treat! Today, I'm feeling a bit sore. Tomorrow, I might go for a slow run or I might cross train. I love ultras and I can't believe I've only ran three of them. I'm registered to run Cowtown 50K, in Feb. so that will be my next BIG race.