Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A Hot Morning At The Redwood 30k

Some of you have e-mailed me or left comments, wondering what happened to me. Well, I'm still around, life has turned upside down, but I'm still running. More on all this next time.

How Not To Prepare For A Race
The Redwood 30k was always scheduled to be long run rather than a race for me. I knew it would be sandwiched in to a weekend of three straight DMB concerts at the Greek Theater. Friday night was the first show and, as usual, I refused to sit during the concert, but rather chose to dance (sometimes violently). Most of the time I probably looked something like this.

Needless to say, I went to bed exhausted only to wake up a few hours later to head out to the race. Races seem to start much later out West it seems. When I was waking up I appreciated the 8.30 start time; later on I would change my mind on that.

The Race
The drive over to the Oakland hills was uneventful, except that I had to turn around half way, since I had forgotten my hat as well as my ankle guards. In the end, I got there just in time to register and use the outhouse. I ran directly from there to the starting line and it was time to leave pretty much immediately.

Even though it was only 8.30, it was starting to get warm. Two things I don't get: isn't the Bay Area supposed to be around 67 degrees at all times? And why do heat waves always have to hit when I run races?

As I was considering these questions, I walked up the first big hill taking my sweet ole time. It's funny, I had just started to make a good number of friends in the Georgia trail running community to the point where I would always know people in races and had friends to catch up with. Now that process will have to start all over again.

In any case, it already started getting hot, and as we know from my disaster race at Pacifica, the heat is not my friend. I never really pushed the pace and took my sweet time at aid station 1 (4 mins) and aid station 2 (10 mins!). The food was really good, the people really nice and I was in no hurry.

The first 20k were run mostly run exposed fire roads and single track. The last 10k finally took us into the forest. But it was a brutal final 10k, somewhat reminiscent of the infamous powerline section at Sweetwater (though not as difficult, but much longer).

In the end, I posted a mediocre time of 3:41 and was completely beat up by the course and heat. Not my best race, but I had lots of fun and am looking forward to the next one.

Thanks to Sarah, Wendell and all the volunteers for putting on a perfectly executed event!

P.s. Next time, I'll bring my camera again.


Scott Dunlap said...

Sorry I missed you! It was definitely a hot one. I'll see ya at Skyline...


David Ray said...

A bad day running the trails is better than a good day . . .

It's starting to cool off back in Georgia. Maybe you'll see some of the same.