The Day I Gave Up

I truly thought that at the end of the day Saturday I would be able to say – I RAN 50 MILES!

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I went into Saturday with very high expectations for myself.  The reality of the day was not at all close to the goal I had set for myself.

In the past few days my emotions have been all over the place – sad, disappointed, embarrassed, angry, frustrated.  I took a couple of days and stayed away from all forms of social media – very rare for me because I enjoy checking in and chatting with others.

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I pretty much feel like little Linus right now and I don’t really know how to fix it.

Heartland 50 – The Race

The race started right on time – 6:00 AM.  There were only 39 people signed up which means a lot of time spent running alone.

start
start

You can see that it is just a small group.  

I started out nice and easy – and after about 3 miles, settled into my spot and just ran along.  

Mile 12 (race photographer) – 

mile 12
mile 12

You can see from the pictures – it was very pretty to run through the Flint Hills.  But, I really didn’t see much – I was focused on trying to find the smoothest patch of gravel to run on and not trip over the rocks.  

FYI – Did you know that cows run?  I always thought they just plodded along but at one point about 10 of them ran from one side of the road to the other and then really took off.  

mile 17 - first station with crew
mile 17 – first station with crew

Coming into mile 17 was the first time I saw Chris (he was my crew) and the first Port-a-Potty!!!  I didn’t eat anything – I never do even though I know it isn’t good.  Chris refilled my water bottles and I kept going.

mile 20
mile 20
mile 20
mile 20
mile 20
mile 20
mile 20
mile 20

From mile 17 to 25 is the part that I hated last October.  I actually didn’t mind it this time and it went fine.  

I came into the turn-around at mile 25 (actually 25.45) with almost completely consistent 10:00 minute miles.  I was feeling OK.  I had already decided that I would slow down some  during the 2nd half.

messing with my Garmin
messing with my Garmin

I ate one orange slice while the guys filled my water bottles with fresh water and ice.  I told Chris that I would probably slow down some – I didn’t want him to start freaking out if this 8 mile stretch took more than 80 minutes since he would be back at the aid station.  

(The course is an out and back – 25 miles, actually almost 25.5, at the turn and then back the direction you came from.)

easing back in after aid station
easing back in after aid station

Clearly, just walking at this point.  The first few miles after the turn were hard for me but it was fun to see other people as they were coming to the half-way point.

About mile 30, things were just BAD.  I don’t really know what happened.  My run was slower than my walk and even though it was in the mid 80s I wasn’t sweating anymore.  I drank both of my water bottles and at around mile 29, refilled them with the cooler on the side of the road.  

The last few miles before the final aid station that crew would be at were awful.  I was dizzy and just trying to get to the aid station.  Even with the sun and temperature I was kind of cold.  

mile 33.5
mile 33.5
mile 33.5
mile 33.5
mile 33.5
mile 33.5
almost to the aid station
almost to the aid station

Chris came over to get my water bottles to refill them.

This was the point where I fell apart.  I ate a small slice of watermelon and for some stupid reason sat down for a minute.  

Chris was worried because I told him I was dizzy and he could tell I wasn’t sweating anymore.  He thinks that I was already dehydrated at this point – I don’t really know.

They had all kinds of food at this aid station – including BBQ, tortillas, so many cookies…..Chris said the people ahead of me (it went from 7 to 9) all ate lots.  UGH!!!  Just looking at the table of food was making me queasy.  

For the first time all day, I hit pause on my Garmin – 

not 50
not 50

And, that was the end of my day.  I don’t know why I didn’t force myself to keep going.  In the past couple of days I’ve even tried to blame Chris – I told him that as my crew he should have kicked my ass and told me to finish the damn race!!  (Of course, that isn’t Chris’ nature and he was worried but…..)

So now I have spent almost 4 days being mad at myself and trying to figure out why I didn’t/couldn’t do what I set out to do.  Even if I had to walk the last 17 miles, I should have done it.  

Heartland 50

not really my records - just the ones from the day
not really my records – just the ones from the day

I hate that I didn’t finish.  

Chris keeps saying that I pretty much hate everything about that race and he might be right!  The rock roads, the huge hills, and the vast amount of time spent completely alone all add up.  

I thought I was prepared for it all this time.  Training wise I think I was good.  Fueling – not at all and that was probably my biggest hurdle.  Mentally, I don’t know what happened.  I was sort of past the point of rational thinking when I quit.

UGH!!!  I waited about writing this post hoping that I would feel better about things but I don’t think that is going to happen.  So, I will just wrap up by saying that I don’t know if a 50 is in my future.  If I do another it will be a loop course – even that at this point seems impossible.

Happy Wednesday!  (hopefully)

Kim

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