Tuesday, June 8, 2010

FANS revisited

Ok, I have taken a few days to reflect on my Saturday efforts and I am quite content with how things worked out. I looked back at what I wanted to accomplish, my primary goal was to improve in the fueling area and to pace myself more conservatively. I did have a secondary goal of 50 miles in 12 hours but that was more to see if I could and I know now I can even though I failed on this day. Can I do so on a trail like Ice Age, I now think it is possible where before I did not. So how did I do?

Not that it counts for anything but I did end up with a couple of race PR's of sorts. My first participation in FANs along with the ~43 miles in 10 hours (it will be officially recorded as 12 hours) and I crossed the 50k point (per my Garmin) in around 6:48, considering I was taking it easy that was nice to see. My best 50k is 7:45 and in almost all of them I have had issues with fueling, hydration, cramping and/or injuries so it is nice to see time improvements (yes, I know this is a much easier course).

So what worked?
  • Pacing
  • Fueling combinations of Perpetuem, Heed, Clif Shot Bloks, EFS Liquid shot and granola bars (options are good)
  • North Face Fireroads - no issues outside maybe cushioning
  • Les's foot lube - no blisters
  • Garmin counting loop times and avg mile pace within each loop.
  • Running around friends
What didn't work?
  • S-Caps - no adjustment of my intake for the weather
  • Ginger chew - too many S-caps may not be fixable with ginger chews.
  • Pre-race prep - what pre-race prep?
  • Race shorts - chafing was an issue
On the pacing front, I recognized I was going faster than I intended to early on and I cut back. I actively kept track of each loop and tried to keep them within certain time ranges. I felt up to the start of the crash (midway through loop 17) that I could have gone faster but I wanted to hold back until later in the race. I was enjoying the slow easy pace with the planned walking breaks. It was fun, I was even bowing to the walking tree (by the cedar bridge) as well as my walking post (by Mt. Nokomis) to show my appreciation for getting to my walking points.

On the fuel front, I tried some new products and I think they worked. I had plenty of energy through 40 miles and felt great. I ran one of my faster loops during loop 15 without trying to run faster. When I walked I could walk at a decent clip with no extra thoughts that I needed to go faster required. I liked the Perpetuem the most but the other items will provide choices which I think will always be a good idea to have available.

How many calories did I take in?
1. Perpetuem ~ 2 1/2 liter bottles - 540 calories
2. HEED ~ 5 1/2 liter bottles ~ 500 calories
3. EFS - 1 bottle ~400 calories
4. Granola bars - 100 calories

How many did I take in at McNaughton probably closer to 900 calories over 15 1/2 hours. So the 1540 calories taken in over 10 hours is an improvement. Who knows maybe it was too many, but to have energy sure felt good.

The end happened so quickly, that too is an experience to file away and hopefully avoid in the future. I learned what happens when I don't adjust my S-caps for a cooler day and take them at a rate that would be better suited to a hot day. Now, I know if make the same mistake again to drink in water until things get back to normal. I also failed to have available extra warm clothes or a rain jacket. It rained most of the day and I was starting to get cold and even though I wasn't even that uncomfortable, I simply noted that a jacket or long sleeve shirt would have been nice. They may not have helped me avoid my final fate but I will never know as I had left them in the car (which wasn't available) for after the race. As to the hypothermia, from my perspective it came on very quickly as well. I was running ok until loop 17 and then I was walking ok up to the final mile so it hit in well under an hour. It may have been developing for awhile but it didn't seem like I was having issues until that last mile. Looking back though once I stopped after loop 17, I was a bit out of it with my thoughts. How do I know, first, I changed my clothes in the medical tent. There is no way I would have done so if I was thinking clearly, I would have gone into the port-a-pot. I am not a public person, period. Second, I was there for almost 2 hours, drank 5 cups of coffee and 2 cups of warm water and it seemed like no more than a 1/2 hour. And last, I was rationale and coherent (I think) but I was almost too talkative at least for me and I don't remember much from the conversations. Oh well.

So although I didn't make the mileage goal, I did gain knowledge on two things, pacing and fueling. I look forward to taking the lessons learned into Afton and I can think of nothing better than to have energy there and set a 50k PR.




3 comments:

Chris Swenke said...

Given what you learned what do you plan on packing for Afton? This is my first go around at a 50k and I'm picking up bits of knowledge as I go.

Thanx,
Chris

Mike said...

Chris, good question.

My initial thought is I will be a little less concerned about fueling and probably a lot more concerned about the weather. I have found I can get away with a lot if I am running less than 6 hours, it's beyond that time that I have to pay attention. Afton can be hot so hydration and electrolytes will be a bigger concern, for me I think.

I will give it some additional thought and post on it in the next week or so.

Mike said...

I should have added that Afton will take me between 7 and 8 hours so I will need to do something for fueling beyond electrolyte drinks.

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