What can I say? It's a very hard 31 mile trail run. There is no other trail that I've ever run anywhere that is consistently, relentlessly, and ridiculously technical as Flatrock 50K in southeast Kansas. Oh wait, there was that stupid Canadian Death Race thing but that doesn’t really count because 1. It is in Canada and 2. I didn’t even finish it and 3. While the worst of it was worse than the worse of Flatrock, there was more runnable terrain at the Death Race than at Flatrock so it doesn’t count.
Okay, before I exaggerate how hard Flatrock is too much, and start to dream up a really big one, at least I can say that as I entered the trailhead after a little 1/5 mile jaunt on the road I yelled out “Now everything I ran and trained for in the last 3 months has nothing to do with the type of terrain I will cover in the next 6 hours”.
My favorite mental image of Flatrock this year is my poor friend and training partner, Andy, who finished bleeding in more ways than one. But he was still very happy!
I wanted to arrive at the turnaround (half-way point) about 3 hours in and I pushed to make it happen. But it didn’t happen. Not even close. 3:15 or so and I was already tired. I tripped a lot and stubbed my toes a lot and turned my ankles a lot in the return-trip. But I enjoyed every second of it. I think I know how weird that sounds but probably not. I finished in like 6:54 which was slower than last year even though I believe I'm in better shape but who knows.
Thankfully on the return trip I fell in with a pack of other people (long time Flatrock finishers like Dennis Haig and Teresa Wheeler) slugging along and stayed in the train all the way to the end.
This is my fifth consecutive finish. Only 5 more to go and the Hall of Pain. What more could a guy ask for in life?