Yesterday I ran out at Afton with Londell, he saw my post on Saturday that I was heading out there and offered to go out there with me, it was nice to meet him and he provided me lots of information that should benefit fit me for Superior. My thanks to him and I owe him a ride to a future outing.
One thing he made me aware of that I hadn't given any thought to was that for the 50, we start in the dark. Good to know now as that would have been a helluva newbie mistake. I guess I will need to get that lighting system worked out sooner than later. He suggested a headlamp on the hand and one on the head, made sense to me to have two lights and now I know that I have to work on running in the dark even if I think I can make the final cut-off pace. I saw Matt is doing another Afton outing on Friday, I might go out there and try to join him for a few hours but I am doing a half marathon with Karyn on Saturday so that might not work out. I think I will see how the week goes and what time the sun sets.
Back to Sunday, It was interesting to run for 3+ hours with someone else, I have not run with anyone other than Karyn for years and we only run occasionally, more this year than we have ever in the past. Actually she became an official trail runner as we ran in the river bottom on Saturday which we have done before but she wiped out for the first time. It was strange to see her diving forward, water bottle flying, and hitting the dirt. She was not hurt and got up laughing which I was relieved to see. I always run trails alone and never have given much thought to my wipeouts and what I would do if I broke something or was seriously hurt, I guess I figure I would muddle my way through.
I enjoyed running with Londell as it did make the time pass quicker and he ran a pace that was fine for me. I am not fast and he had run 18 on Saturday and I had gone 13 so we just ran at a fairly leisurely pace. It was also hotter than I had thought it would be and I messed up a few things as far with my planning on Sunday, nothing serious but I had meant to bring a PB sandwich as I wanted to try that on a longer run and see if it gave me any issues. I did wear my Camelback and actually finally figured out how to get it tighten downed so it was tolerable for bouncing and chafing. I also had on a single bottle waistpack and I carried my normal two bottles, so with all of that I was good for my electrolyte. Londell wore a Nathan and it looked like it had many advantages over my Camelback, front pocket, shoulder strap differences that looked like it would easy to wear (less bouncing and no chafing). He also mentioned the dual wastepack was a good idea. We talked about fueling for longer races, water hydration systems, Garmins, heart rate monitors, the terrain of Superior versus Afton. I told Londell, that I like the rocky, rooty sections on trails as they help me focus and get through boring stretches of just grassy hilly sections but the question would be for how long would I? We talked about many other things during the run making for a very enjoyable morning.
No decision yet for Superior but a few of my fall considerations are now off the board. We have a wedding on the 20th so Bohemian Alps and Rock Cut are off. Quad Cities on the 28th is also out as that is my daughters birthday so that wouldn't be a good weekend for me to be selfish over running. Besides, it would be on the roads and I am thinking I would prefer to avoid them if I can. So what to do for the fall, Superior is teed up with almost a perfect training taper with my western marathons. Otherwise, I can use those to build base, work on speed and additional distance in September and then do Glacier. I figure Glacier might be like Chippewa and if it is that wouldn't be a bad first 50 course or I could always wait until next year.
The only decision for this week is to save $10 and guarantee a spot for Superior or wait and risk not getting in. Decisions, decisions.............