Sunday, October 10, 2021

2021 High Bridge 50K: Race Wrapup

It was an overcast day for yesterday's High Bridge 50K in Farmville. The race did not disappoint! Conditions were perfect from the get-go. Yes, there was a threat of rain, but it didn't begin pouring down until after the race. We arrived at the finish line and then were bused to the start 31 miles away.

This event attracts runners of all different levels. In fact, according to a pre-race show of hands, there were more first time ultramarathoners present than otherwise. The race started at 8:00. I began at the back of the pack as I always do. 

Before long I found my pace, which just happened to coincide with the pace these guys were running. 

I must have followed them for 24 or 25 miles before they found another gear and left me behind. I knew this race would be a good test of my fitness. Everything seemed to be going well until the very end, when I had to negotiate about a mile of uphill before entering the town of Pamplin. 

I had been running hard but now I had to dig really deep. During the pre-race briefing, Steve Englund, the race director, told us he had three goals for us going into today's race: Have fun, stay safe, and finish. 

He promised to be there personally for each of us as we crossed the finish line. So you can imagine my joy and relief when I finally got a glimpse of him. 

Thank you, Steve! 

My body held up really well, thank the Lord. Nothing ever "hurt" though today I am feeling stiff. I am happy with my pacing, execution, and endurance. There was a ridiculous amount of top talent here, including this muscular guy. 

Hey, you got it, flaunt it. I almost took my shirt off, too, but I didn't want to embarrass him. 

I would give the race 5 stars out of 5. 

The race was managed and executed flawlessly. 

Lessons learned? I need to be tougher. I need to run more by feel than by time. My workouts need to be longer. 

I can still improve. So can you. 😀