Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Rock Creek Night Race 30K

Saturday night, after a long weekend at Ministry Conference in Haviland, I made my way up to Lake Perry for the 8:00 pm start of the 30K (18.6 mile) trail run. The first 20 minutes or so it was light out but then twilight set in for about 30 minutes or so. It was harder to see during twilight than the pitch darkness. I tripped more and saw others wipe out (ouch!) during this twilight time more than in the light or darkness. It was warm and humid again with no breeze felt in the woods! Anyway, the course is tough with lots of ups and downs, hills, rocks, roots, twists and turns. I never actually fell all the way to the ground but I did run into several trees full speed, which didn't feel too good. I used a headlamp and a handheld LED flashlight to see where I was going. Usually during these long runs, I will find someone with about the same pace and talk for a long time. I don't think I said one word to anybody the whole night! (Other than "Yikes!" out loud to myself when the guy behind me whiped out running downhill on a rocky section.) I also was aware that I was in the pitch dark thick woods, alone, and at times miles from the next aid station, and it didn't bother me one bit (which is significant progress)!

I finished in 3 hours 47 minutes and 23 seconds, which is a 12 minute and 13 second per mile pace, which considering the terrain and the high mileage week, 8 days straight without a day off, I'm okay with it. Allen did very well and came in only 10 minutes behind me.