Saturday, August 28, 2021

Hotter n Hell 50-mile skate 8/28/2021

50-mile skate was easier than expected: much of the chip n seal surface was improved.

People seemed even more encouraging this year.


Good visit w/ Ann and Wesley.


first 13 and last 16 miles had decent surface. 

The middle 20 miles were half skateable.


The dreaded 5 miles of Hwy 44 is mostly repaved with smooth stuff.  Headwind was brutal, but it felt good exceeding the expectations of cyclists who were unqualified to judge my performance.  I was vain.


A steady cyclist picked me up with 8 miles to go.  We were the fastest thing in sight against south wind to finish--it was glorious.


I skipped first and last of the 5 water stations.  20-oz bike bottle was enough for me. 


It was a great weekend in Wichita Falls. 


_GPS data

Distance: 48.93 mi

Time: 3:12:40

Avg Speed: 15.2 mph

Elev Gain: 768 ft


https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/7385386569



Saturday, May 22, 2021

Hachie 50k 2021/05/01; Waxahachie, Texas—Pandemic Fitness

_goal

9:00/mile pace for 50k.  Similar to my PR set at 2017 Hachie 50 when I traded my run fitness for a different lifestyle.

_COVID-19

I struggled when the US shut down.  Mentally too weak to bike solo at needed intensity, weekly skate and daily run saved my fitness and sanity.  

Working from home gave me extra 5 hours a week + schedule flexibility.  I discovered morning runs helped w/ dinner and sleep.  

_preparation

I prepared for the 50k using Stryd’s 18-week marathon training program, which estimated 8:00 pace for 42k.  

I sought advice from Logan Sherman, who won 2015 Dallas Marathon.  

10 weeks into the 18-week training, I ran 55 miles/week.  Body protested as I replaced an easy 70-minute run by the Plano Pacer 15k race.  Next day, my fatigued ankle failed to clear a curb and crashed.  I started skipped/shortening sessions.  Knee pain started.  I integrated massage into routine.

Week 13.  My weekly volume was reduced to 49 miles.  Knee was less of a concern.

Week 16.  45 miles.  Long run at 2-hour.  Body back to equilibrium.  Felt the load was low but still hopeful for 9:00 pace goal, which would be enough to win the undercard race in the past but not this year.  Each distance was sold out.

I acquired Fenix 5 Plus to replace the FR 635 that always lost satellite signals during lap 3 at Hachie.

_feel-old trip

At check-in, multiple volunteers commented on how good I looked for my age.  (~ you're tall for a midget)

I barely trained for the race in 2017.  4 years later, I worked my butt off, and ended up marginally faster.

_pre race

I missed the highway exit driving to pick up bib as I talked to Voon about lymphoma.  Casey had big plans for long races just a month ago.  Now pumping poison into body was the priority.

I was the only one wearing a mask at packet pick up.  

Start time confusion in 2018 was a unique memory as I faced a small apology queue.  2021 I watched Director Paul Box going through a micro-panic over another time change due to weather. 

Marriott did not have their shit together.  I followed the emailed info to use the phone app.  The physical hotel staff did not follow the chain’s protocols.  I went with it, very glad being fully vaccinated.  

_start

I asked the intimidating guy at the very front: 

“how fast are u going?”

“6:30 pace.”

I ran with an overweight guy planning on 8:30 pace.  

By mile 3 there were 9 racers in front.  Half of them seemed incapable of holding their pace.

IRC Meghan wasn’t there due to sciatica.


[slippery road (photo off FB)]

Stretches of mud sections were fun: I raise the cadence and tiptoed through them, leaving my pack behind.  Relatively low crash risk as long as no one was immediately in front.

_20k

Calves lost their bounce as expected.  Something didn’t change.  Mud felt slicker at normal cadence.  I was mostly alone by this time.  I ignored pace, focusing on holding 190~200 watts.

_mile 20

Weakening started but not intensely.  I reduced wattage by 5, fearing bonk.  Quads felt stiff but were cranking out reasonable pace. 

The 6:30 guy no longer ran like a god for his final lap; his limping was still faster than my marathon pace.  I laughed.  I felt blessed for the event to utilize my modest talent.  Everyone was positive.

Alex’s legs also lost their bounce but was holding steady for his 50-miler.


[couldn't believe Alex chose Alphaflies (photo off FB)]


[another dude ran 50 miles without carbon inserts (photo off FB)]

_mile 25

I was stoked to feel equally weak as mile 20.  I experiment w/ little surges, no disaster.  I pushed above 200w.  Electronics working.  Legs held.  Relieved.  Happy.  

[sprint finish]

_result confusion

The timer told me I got second.  That couldn’t be right.  James joined the argument; he also disagreed 2 of us got the top 2 prizes.  


[settled for 3rd and 4th (photo off FB)]



[few days later, this came in the mail]

I hung out with friends from WRCC and IRC afterward.  Pizza, beer, mud, sweat, sunshine.  Life was good.

_#

Garmin Fenix 5+
Distance: 30.72 mi
Time: 4:34:40
Pace: 8:56 min/mile
HR: 157/177 bpm (unreliable optical sensor)
Cadence: 181/232 avg/max spm
Stride length: 1.00 m
Power: 199w (Stryd)
Ground contact time: 252 ms

Official
Distance: 50k; 31.07 mi
Time: 4:34:40.22
Pace:  8:50 min/mile
Place: 7th overall.  6th male.




Sunday, March 1, 2020

Cowtown 50k 2020/03/01; Fort Worth, Texas—Coronavirus

2019 was to be my rebuilding year.  2019 Cowtown marked a promising start, then body never recover from accumulative fatigue.  My race performance declined through next 6 weeks.  I took the summer off.  Life continued to happen; worthwhile things decreased  asymptotically.  Coronavirus eroded lives the week of Chinese New Year.  Hotel business was worrying.  Existence fragile.

_Cowtown goal (as of 2019 Xmas)
target A: 4:48; 9:18 pace for course PR.
target B: 5 hr moving time + bathroom & beer shots.  5:10:00 finish.
target C: 5:30: full burger at mile 27.  5 additional minutes for each can of beer.

[discouragingly windy]

_logistics
Pre-race: big lunch pizza was good.  Forced noodle dinner was too much.  I felt bloated after just 1 gel.

Altra Escalante turned out a good decision for 2020.  2019 I wore One v2: too little cushion for my fitness.  It’s hard to accept the plantar fascia was still angry 16 months after the fateful 10k race.

_faster than planned start—never a good sign
I stayed with 3:55 marathon pacer for 7 miles before hiding behind a tall stranger from the wind.  The big dude slowed to 11 min/mile pace for the climb—perfect for me.  I ran by feel.  I was surprised how few people passed me on the hill.

_miscalculation
I reached half marathon line with clock showing 2:02—exact pace I wanted, failing to notice the chip time was 5.5 minutes quicker.  The damage was done by the time I realized my mistake.  I went into denial and grew hopeful I’d hold sub-9 for entire 50k. 

[Irving Running Club]

_outsource pacing to pacers
Cara and Danielle were solid at 8:55 pace.  I turned my brain off and follow them.  I was lucky to have help.  I wished they were larger windshields.

[photo by Tory, 4 seconds behind 3:55 marathon pacer]
The legs wanted to go faster.  The brain knew better.

Weather turned nice.  Beautiful sunshine.  Everyone was encouraging.  I skipped beers and gel; GI didn’t feel great.  I missed 2014 fitness.  I was more hopeful about life in 2014 in general.  I thought about eating the durian with Celine in Montreal.

_weakening
Inevitably, legs didn’t feel great when marathon pacers and I parted ways at mile 25.  Shaheen smiled and waved to me; she’s only 4 miles ahead; this gave me hope.  I hanged on to Oprah pace, reaching 26.2 in 3:55.  Then muscles refused to fire.  They were doing so well just 3 miles ago.

[falling apart after marathon]

_disappointment
A simple decision: "do I fight to hold 11 min/mile, or do I save the legs to shorten recovery."  I wanted to do well at Hachie 50k.  Giving up 5 minutes means little for Cowtown at this point.

This was the right condition to finally stop for burger after years of telling the cook "next year".  I thought of what to say to express my gratitude.  The grill guy ain't there.  花開堪折直須折,莫待無花空折枝.  My heart sank.

I walked the hills.  7 runners passed me before finish line--difficult to swallow.

_#’s
Rank:46th, 3rd in age group
4:52:55
Pace:9:25/M

5K Rank:59
5K:27:37
5K Pace:8:51/M
10K Rank:53
10K:54:59
10K Pace:8:49/M
15K Rank:52
15K:1:22:38
15K Pace:8:50/M
13.1M Rank:50
13.1M:1:56:17
13.1M Pace:8:50/M
30K Rank:45
30K:2:45:56
30K Pace:8:54/M
23M Rank:41
23M:3:25:31
23M Pace:8:55/M
26.2M Rank:39
26.2M:3:54:52
26.2M Pace:8:57/M

Javier and Shaheen each won 3rd overall in gender.

[3D finisher meal, Guinness not included]

_feeling down
I was pleased with finish time but disappointed by the final 5 miles.  I was disappointed Irving friends weren’t running.  I felt helpless against Coronavirus.

A thoughtless act put me in a world of hurt for past 3 weeks.  I was unable to put it out of my mind.  I was angry I let it pollute the morning.  I desperately tried shifting to celebration mode: “Dude, there ain’t that many sub-5-hour 50k left in your legs.  Cheer up!”

_Surprises
After swallowing vegi soup and ice cream, I felt resigned and went through the motion of visiting Kimbell.  An impossibly elegant young girl behind the gift shop counter smiled at me.  I recalled friends who looked that way decades ago.  Humans don’t age gracefully.  “What’s with you geeks' fascination with long straight hair?”  I tried to recall the year I was last asked that question.

A few walls later, I saw the unfamiliar Monet on loan.
[“Water-Lily Pond” Thank you, Sotheby’s]
My mood changed.  I recalled the emotion first time I heard “未來的街頭" in Firebird on Interstate 95.  Things turned out differently than I anticipated 3 decades ago.  “van Gogh Cezanne Picasso” I went to the paintings in the order in the song, thinking of how Monet handled Paris Salon’s rejection.

A day after race, tornado came to Tennessee
[Asphalt Beach Skateshop]


Saturday, November 9, 2019

Rockledge Rumble 30k 2019/11/09

_prep
I’d just show up and stay around 11:00 pace based on memory: the course wasn’t too difficult in 2017.  Race was canceled in 2018.

Forecast said 40F start.  50F by 10am.  I decided to dress for 40F walking pace.  It’d be too warm after an hour, but I was anticipating a 2:15 run.  Would be fun to have another dehydrated ab photo.

The course change was explained at the start: back half would be more technical .  “How hard could it be?” 

_crash #1
We started 15 minutes late.  I stayed with a cluster that formed after half mile of pavement.  I was in no rush.  The single track was simple as I remembered.  1 girl went down.  She was OK.  Another went down.  I wondered what tripped them.  Then I fell.  Left shoulder was sore from breaking the fall.  I couldn’t find the tripping agent.

Everyone skipped rest stop #1, Murrell Park at mile 4.8.
[wished I could lose the arm warmers; photo by Mark Olateju]

My pack broke into 2.  I didn’t see the front half for 40 minutes.  All the sudden they caught us from behind--wrong turn.  I decided to stay back.  I didn’t want to be stepped on if I fallen.  Soon my pack was down to 3, including Sam from Irving, the only runner I recognized.

_half way, Twin Coves at mile 9.8.
Racers lingered.  I left after filling 10oz water, not feeling thirsty.  I was horrified to be 40 minutes behind schedule despite running at pace.

_bad in math
30k < 20 miles.  My trail pace was approx 11 min/mile = 10 min/mile for guestimating purpose.  My neurons short-circuited that into 10 mph, so I thought the race would take me 2~2.5 hours.

_crash #2
Sun stayed up.  It felt warm.  Middle miles of the course included more roots and rocks.  My ankle wasn’t cooperating.  I finally crashed after kicking 1 too many rocks.  I slowed down, accepting my limitation from spine injury.  I was grateful I managed to compete beyond what surgeon predicted in 2004.

I was roasting after 14 miles.  Mark was still there to encourage runners.
[dehydrated ab photo from overdressing; photo by Mark Olateju]

_4th quarter humbling
I was running alone for the final miles except this faster guy who walked his business phone calls.  Not everyone was lucky enough to focus on the race.

_#’s
Official gun
time: 3:26:48
distance: 30k = 19 mi

GPS:
time: 3:25:53
distance:17.90 mi


Saturday, October 26, 2019

The Colony Half 2019/10/26—first run race in 6 months

My plantar symptom started in October 2018.  I treated it the same way as 2011: reduce running volume; it’d go away in 6 months.  The symptom intensified after each hard effort.  I limped after February Cowtown 50k.  I raced almost every weekend after that—most were shorter than marathon.  Tired of weekly limp, I skipped paid-for races to rest plantar fascia.  I focused on wheel sports after Hachie 50 on 5/4.

After mostly 10~20-mile weeks, I drove toward The Colony’s start line not because I was ready but because the race was paid for.

_plan
Run by feel: low to mid 8 minute-mile pace.  Try to hold sub-8 for final 8k.  SAG if foot becomes an issue.  The goal was to stay healthy: no crash, no catching cold.  I was to play APA single’s qualifier at 1pm.

_equipment issue
I found a good parking spot 50 minutes before the race and discovered I failed to pack planned racing shoes.  I also mistakenly took backup shoes out of car.  I freaked out.  My parking neighbor Justin lent me his spare Brooks.  I was elated.  He said it’d take him 2 hours to finish.  I could leave shoes at his car.

I stopped by On booth.  The rep helpfully offered demo shoes of correct sizes.  I encountered helpful people everywhere.

I walked out of porta potty at 8am.  The race started just as I reached timing strip.

_pacer
I decided to follow the 1:45:00 pace group.  The 2 pacers were triathletes carried the group meandering through 4 miles of residential streets.  I felt they climbed too hard.  I got dropped at every climb.  A few in group struggled with wattage required to stay close.  It was tempting to offer advice but didn’t want to rock the boat.

The website stated:
"Over 50% of this 13.1 mile course runs along The Colony's shoreline trail on beautiful Lake Lewisville.  Participants will enjoy a gently undulating, crushed granite trail in a picturesque & natural setting"  I didn’t fully agree with “picturesque,” but a few lake views were pretty.

I was too arrogant/lazy to read course description and was surprised by gravel and mud.  I was very happy not running barefoot or with Crocs.  On’s sole design carried extra mud compare to conventional soles.  Never thought I’d work this hard at 8:00 pace.

By mile 10, I was the only one remained from the original group.  I didn’t want to disappoint the pacers, I started to dig.

Justin caught up from behind, not noticing I wasn’t wearing his shoes.  He had a good day and went faster than planned.  I focus on my running.  I was depressed by my fitness.

Mile 12 and 13 markers showed up late.  The pacers admitted defeat and informed us of the lateness.  Justin took off.  I wasn’t in a hurry and sped up by feel, finished 12 seconds behind Justin.  I missed out on age group podium by < 10 second.

_#’s
Time: 1:45:17
Pace: 8:02

_slow recovery
The body didn’t feel right for remaining of the day.  I struggled with my 8-ball shots.  I lost the final match to an inferior player.

_next day
My legs were stiff.
Pool game recovered more.

Mark ran 8:22 pace off the bike at Waco 70.3.  I was happy for him.


Sunday, October 6, 2019

A2A—38-mile race +49-miles stroll 10/06/2019

My fitness declined starting 2017 as life priority changed.  I decided to regain running fitness in October 2018 after developing plantar fasciitis.  Unrecovered by May 2019, I gave up foot races and started biking.  Skate fitness improved as side effect.

Trishop closed its door; I lost sports social circles.  Windhaven sidewalk became less skate-friendly as new apartments completed.

I held weekly Sunday skate for the few who could make the time.  Coming back from ankle injury, Jorge decided to challenge A2A 87.  I wanted him to succeed.  Kurt and Nicolas had non-skate priorities.

I scaled down A2A ambition also because of the 3-week Europe trip.  I wanted the Italian culinary experience.  I chose give up on racing weight.
[despite looking underfed, I felt fat 8 days before A2A]

My final Windhaven session came to an abrupt and exciting stop due to sidewalk littered by a Red Bull Soapbox Race.  Not cool, Red Bull.
[had just enough urethane to stop]

A few days later, a fallen branch brush my face due to my poor chainsaw skill.  Would’ve been worse without helmet and eye protection.
[everyone assumed I crashed skating]

_A2A goal
Skate with Jessica.
Finish 38 quickly and safely.
Skate with Luke.
Hug Colleen at CP5 possibly for the final time.
Cross finish line with Jorge.

_start line in the dark
Candy was in skinsuit hesitantly.
Parker’s wrist was in bandage due to a recent crash.  His legs operated at more human level after overnight skate with Sam.
Bob wasn’t well enough to start.  Made me sad.
Georg brought his beautiful Yvonne and perfect toddler.
Sonic was all positive energy and made me feel fatter.

_gun at 7am
I let the fast boys and girl go.  I followed a Junk Wheeler who lost steam after couple miles.  I took over, dragging Sandra and Eddie.  Parker passed us.  I let him.  Lennie took off too late.  We sucked both back in.  My pack also included 2 Junk Wheelers, Lauren, Jesse, Jessica, Serkan, and Herb.  Herb skated conservatively instead of encouraging everyone to sprint downhills.  Serkan looked like Francisco.

The real Francisco & 2018 NSIM winner Ken Kuwada attacked at mile 1.
[Breakaway worked; photo by Marc St. Pierre]

I didn’t see Scott whom I invited to my pack the night before.  He swore 17 mph would be too fast.  I wondered if he had a bad start or a great day.

_check point 1
I was surprised to see Candy distributing water and banana.  She hitched a ride instead of crossed the start line.
We caught Oswald and Michael.  Their legs seemed fried but recovered quickly.

_check point 2
Gator back improved in patches.  It made Butt Pucker Hill at mile 23 slightly faster.


[the 30 mph left turn was easier than it looked; neither braking nor puckering was necessary]

I felt our wattage dropping.  I held back on my pulls knowing I had 38-mile competition.  Jesse and Lauren spent minimal time in front.

[Herb lost contact climbing out of mile-31 hill]

_38-mile race
Jesse moved to the front and took a turn.  He breathed hard.  I offered to tie, not knowing who else were racing 38.  Jesse ignored me.  I wanted to race but didn’t want stupid risks at the final intersection.

Jesse took off.  I chased.  A Junk Wheeler dragged Lauren and pass us.  Rest of the group was out of sight.  Jesse breathed harder.

I attacked on an incline to test 8 legs.  A gap opened.  I accelerated, wishing I was more fit and less fat.  I felt Lauren and her windshield closing in.  I maneuvered between 2 cars at the intersection without provoking middle fingers.  I went full throttle.  I didn’t look back.

Scott Knecht won averaging 18.5 mph with Peter’s group.  I was happy to see how happy he was.

Jack Study brought his young skaters and finished under 4:20.

_#’s
Time: 2:16:54
Speed: 16.8 mph
Placement: 2nd


_check point 3
I was sad the bicycle shop closed.  I grew attached to its bathroom.

Candy informed me of Luke’s progress.  I greeted everyone I knew, used porta john, grabbed supplies, shared electrolytes with Herb, then started in time to catch 49-milers who merged with Parker, Sam, Serkan, and Herb.

I went to the front and told Ted I’d pull before CP4.  He acknowledged and stayed 20 meters behind.  We agreed that’s not how drafting worked.  He reduced the distance to 4 meters for our second attempt.  Rest of the group seemed content staying behind Ted and Anna.  I went to the back where Serkan cramped.  I offered to take him to CP 4.

_check point 4
I waited and was delighted to see Luke and Jorge together.  Luke and I caught up while Jorge wore ear bugs—Jorge looked less sharp with each climb.  I knew how that felt.  “Shit’s gonna get real real soon.”

A crack grabbed Jorge’s wheel.  Blood oozed out of his hand.

[I didn’t insist Jorge check his skates before he continued; I still feel that’s my mistake]

After decades of A2A, Luke and I finally encountered our first train at the bottom of the hill.  Jorge didn’t get to enjoy rolling over the tracks at full speed.

Jorge headed toward store to buy water.  I gave him my bottle.  I marveled how the event changed its roles in my life.  I wish parameters were different so I could utilize what Sonic and Parker had to offer.  The more connected we became, the more aware we were of missed opportunities.

Serkan and Eddie joined us after stopping to fertilize.  A lighter Eddie refused to acknowledge he had bodily functions.

Luke and I tried to think heavy but couldn’t reach manly speed at Silver Hill.
[39.2 mph felt slow for this section]


_check point 5 
We stopped.  Pickle juice was delicious. 
[Colleen patched Jorge up]
The skin opened less than blood volume suggested.  I was sad Colleen was moving away.  I declined beer after brief struggle; I felt responsible for Jorge’s safety.


[It was great to see Jonathan, who’s multi-year career effort paid off.]


_check point 6
We grab the final water and banana without stopping.  Serkan and Eddie were recovered.  They left.  Jorge slowed with each mile.

Luke went down tripping on 1 of the thousand twigs.  He continued after couple seconds.  Jorge ran on fumes.  We rooted for him.  Watching Jorge’s struggle, I was envious of all the experiences he would acquire.  Mindfulness promises a path to separate pain from suffering.  I wonder which I’ll miss more.

[Jorge gets the A2A experience, photo by P Peterson]

_#’s
Time: 6:35:52
Speed: 13.3 mph
Intersections with police protection: more than previous year.  Thank you, Anna.

_finish 
For the 2nd time Francisco criticized my wheel choice, trying to be helpful.  I suppressed: "easy for you to say; you have a wheel sponsor" while feeling ungrateful.  Francisco offered to send me discount code for wheels more suitable for the course.

Jorge and I returned to finish line at advertised time but missed the award that started early.  I talked to Dan the legend who shared his wisdom on wheel and on life.  I was more disappointed in missing the chance to congratulate Scott than missing my podium photo.

David and Michelle gave us a ride to a burger joint Mr. Jones liked.  Dave bought everyone dinner.  I limited my answers on questions to endurance sports so the dinner would end before midnight.

_Monday 
I slept poorly.  I ran to Centennial Olympic Park and CNN in the dark.  I debated whether to breakfast downtown before joining the traditional Flying Biscuit.  The decision was made for me: I received a work call.  Sunday JBoss upgrade went badly.  Hilton coffee and packaged cookie weren't terrible.
 
I Facetimed mom and discussed father’s real estate decisions that led to where we were.  I joined Jorge for the trip home by changing to an earlier flight.  The AA staff was unimpressed by my A2A shirt and assumed the facial wound came from skating on the road.  She waived the $75 change fee, enough to pay for 2020 A2A registration.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Hachie 50k; Waxahachie--salvage

_goal
After Feburary Cowtown I was hopeful to average 9:00 pace for this race.  I raced too much since and lost fitness each week.  Now Hachie I thought 10:00 pace realistic and expected top-3 hardware as a master.

_familiar race
It’s tempting to cheap out and drive to the event in the morning, which required 3am wake time for the 6am start.

I picked up package Friday afternoon and stayed at Fairview with Marriott points.  Bought a pizza next to the video store with movies from last century.


[“Dumb and Dumber” reminded me of Stephen Hawkins]

I forgot to pack XPS 13 and was pleasantly surprised hotel Netflix worked.  I got out of bed at 4am.  Took my time with breakfast.  Arrived in time to see the 50-milers’ delayed start.  The lead solo guy seemed relaxed yet ran faster than all relay runners behind him.  He broke the course record by 45 minutes despite mud and water-crossing.


_start
50k started with 200 meters of mud in the dark.  Everyone was cautious.  I followed lead guys with headlamp to know where to step.

Gina Pape caught up to me.  A guy carrying too much water and food passed us.  I was 5th.  I wasn’t concerned—only 1 of the leaders seemed old enough to be a master.  I stayed behind Gina; she had good headlamp.

[the peaceful stretch; photo from FB]

_running mates
Gina and I had incompatible climbing pace.  She delayed at water station.  I held constant moving effort.  Tuan caught me using big calves.  He looked my age.  I considered my chance if it came down to a sprint finish.  I bet he couldn’t go sub-3-minute-mile.

Jason Holloway joined.  3 of us ran together; we talked about club politics and ultra runs.  My 2 running mates had the foresight to park their cars along the course for easy supply.  Tuan was unconcerned about the minutes he lost for these breaks; this made me feel better about my pee stops.

_failed electronics
For 3rd straight year, Garmin 630 lost satellite signal after first lap.  At one point it told me I was moving at 43:00 pace.  Tuan had no problem with his Fenix 3 and informed me it’s time to upgrade.

[630 thought I stopped for 20+ minutes]

_familiar faces
I was happy to see Meghan at the start but decided not to chat in order to focus on wardrobe and light decisions.  I ended up leaving multiple items on the ground and was re-united with them at lost-and-found after race.

I saw Stephanie running toward me.  I instinctively wanted to turnaround to chat before remembering we were racing.

Some volunteers and racers greeted me like I was Norm in “Cheers.”  I wonder if they really remembered me or mistook me for the skinny half-naked Asian who won 2018 marathon.  The positive energy helped my fading legs.

3 of the top 4 racers failed to hold the pace.  I started 3rd lap in 2nd.

[I wanted to stop and give him an apple; photo from FB]

_unfit
The wall came at mile 23.  My heart rate dropped.  I accepted my fitness and anticipated to lose my  spot.  Tuan caught me.  I followed him but was unable to keep up 9:45 pace before water crossing.

[4” puddle followed by 6” puddle]

The eventual winner had a 9-minute lead at U-turn #5 but disappeared at 6th and final U-turn.  I lost 1+ minute/mile to Tuan after he dropped me.  I finished 6 minutes ahead of female winner Stephanie from Baltimore.  Jason and Gina faded badly during the final 5 miles.


_#
Garmin 630 w/ lost GPS signals
Distance: 26.65 mi
Time: 5:05:17 (including perceived stops)
4:39:25 (moving time)
Pace: 10:35 min/Mi
HR: 144/162 bpm
Cadence: 176 spm

Official
Distance: 50k; 31.07 mi
Time: 5:05:06.4
Pace:  9:49 min/Mi
Place: 3rd over all.

[50-milers had to go 19 more miles after 50k]

_afterward

I visited Chautauqua Auditorium per Bob’s recommendation.

[Waxahachie Community Theater building stage for “Mama Mia!”]
Talked to a long time runner Art who made me feel I needed to reduce life stress by setting much lower goals.

The drive home was slowed by 2 accidents on I35.  Then the NTTA fuckers closed 2 lanes to turn the Dallas North Tollway into a paid parking lot.  The drive soured the weekend experience.

Japan House buffet with Cherns was nice.  The owner greeted us at beginning and end but didn’t bother us while eating.