Today’s breakfast: cinnamon raisin bagel w/ peanut butter, coffee, orange juice, and water.
I woke up with a bit of a headache this morning. Hopefully it’s the weather causing this and not dehydration because I’ve been making sure to take in lots of fluids.
I got to the race start around 7:30 this morning and the rain was coming down. Luckily, Ryan had left his rain jacket in the car from Sunday, so I had that to put on to keep warm and dry until start time. At that point, I let Chris (volunteer) “keep it warm for me” aka borrow it while I ran.
The course for this stage is mostly grass and trail, but has a short road section as well. You head out from the start, run on a bit of gravel, then onto the grass over to the short bit of road and then down into a grassy meadow starting downhill, then running a gradual uphill to a large flat opening, where we ran around the perimeter and back out to the wide grass trails, up a short hill, then around a corner to go down another hill, across, and up a much bigger grassy hill. After this section, the course enters the forest trails, which are very nice with a lot of small ups and downs and a couple larger including one long gradual gravel uphill, which was not so much fun. There was also a steep downhill in the trails that got progressively muddier as the rain kept coming and the runners ran down, loop after loop. After another km or so in the trails, you emerge close to the start/finish line, where you pass through and start the next lap. Repeat for a total of 6 5km laps.
The start of the race was wet, but felt good. I maintained a good pace for the first loop (of 6 loops in total), and headed into the second feeling strong. I kept of decently well for the next couple laps and was lapped for the first time around the half-way mark. In the 4th lap, I started to get tired. At 18km, my legs were getting a bit fatigued, but held on.
As I mentioned earlier, I woke with a headache. In order to make sure that I wasn’t dehydrated, I decided to wear my camelback today and to also take some fluids from the aid stations to keep me fully hydrated. It seemed like a great idea, but I think I took in too much Gatorade. The final 2 laps were miserable. I felt like I was going to vomit and had to take many walk breaks so that the feeling would pass. It never did fully pass until well after I was finished, changed, stretched, had my legs massaged, and had some food. Then I was ok.
I finished today’s 30 km stage in 3:14:19 (my unofficial Garmin time). I had been hoping for 3 hours, but my stomach/upper GI did not allow that to happen. I think I did make a smart move taking it a bit easier once it wasn’t going that great because I still have 4 more stages to run and need energy and strong legs to do so.
I haven’t seen the official standings yet, but I moved down a place to 4th female today. I’m still top rookie female (out of a whopping 2 of us), but my overall placement dropped. We’ll see what tomorrow evening has in store at the 10 miler hilly road.
Today was tough. Three stages down and 4 more stages until I am One Tough Runner.