Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Well.. that was interesting: 2012 Kettle 100(k)

I'm not sure what to say about this one yet.  I'm still not really sure what happened.  I started out a bit too fast, but feeling really good through 15 miles, when all of a sudden the wheels just fell off in the sun going across those silly prairies.  It wasn't too hot out.  It wasn't technical, hilly, or hard.  My legs just didn't want to go anymore.  They weren't cramping or anything.  There was no real pain.  Everything was just harder than it should have been.  I'm fairly sure that I was eating enough, and I wasn't dehydrated, so I'm not sure if it was the lack of a taper, my being sick, dead legs from too much racing on not enough training, the sun, the heat, or whatever else.

The first 15 miles went by in a breeze!  I left the start line with Jeremy, and we were moving quick, but, I thought at the time, comfortably.  By Tamarack, Jeremy was a few minutes up on me, but I was fine and running a comfortable pace with Logan and Ron Bero into Emma Carlson at 15 miles, where Alicia refilled my pack and I used the facilities.

I spent 6 minutes or so at Emma, and when I went to go, I just had nothing.  My comfortable pace had slowed a ton and everyone was passing me.  By mile 25, I was even walking some of the flats.

I spent a ton of time at the 50k turnaround, and a bit more at the major aid stations on the way back, but I was tired and, most of the time, really needed the rest.  I finally hit a second wind around mile 50 and was able to start moving quick again into the 100k turnaround, but by the time I got there, I had already talked myself out of spending any more time out on the course.  It was just getting dark, and I didn't have the will to spend 12 more hours out there.  It's not that I couldn't have finished, it was that I didn't have to finish.  The Gnarly Bandit series only requires the 100k, and with Black Hills 100 a short 3 weeks post-Kettle, that was a dangerous thing to know.

I now know that I can't go out "comfortably", because my "comfortably" is initially way too fast.  Maybe that'll fix whatever's plagued my last two races.  Time to put the watch back on until I'm tired.  I need to implement a speed limit.

Black Hills will be a much harder race and I need to do better.  There is absolutely no reason why I should ever be moving at a pace faster than 10:00/mile out there (which I was below through mile 15.8 of Kettle--a 9:54 pace including walking and two aid stations).  I really have no business being faster than 12:00/mile at any 100, so it's time to relax a bit.

A big thanks to my crew, Alicia and Tony Oveson, for sticking it out there with me.  Tony drove down for the event and really helped me out during the day.  I still feel bad for bailing on the race just as he was about to step in and pace.

As always, it was great seeing everyone out there.  Joseph Altendahl ran his furst hundo in a blazing quick time.  Jeremy Lindquist took a nap at 100k, then stuck it out for his second finish in as many tries.  Both of those animals were well sub-24 hours.  Logan Polfuss dropped, changed his mind, dropped, changed his mind, dropped, changed his mind, and then admirably slogged to a finish.  And all 10 remaining Gnarly contestants did enough to stay in the series.    

See you all at Black Hills!


  1. I must be slacking if you posted a race report fast than me. You probably made the right choice, I don't regret finishing Kettle last year. I just regret the last 25 miles death march that sidelined me for 6 weeks following.

  2. In your defense, I only ran 63 miles and it was completely uneventful aside from the whole "this is hard" thing, so the race report was just a little thing.

    Saw that you ran last night and the knee was better! Go give Bruce hell at Grandma's this weekend. I'll fix you up with Tony Oveson's number as well.