Friday, October 26, 2012

Ghost Train Rail Trail 100 pre-race thoughts

I really should be writing a review of the new Merrell Bare Access shoes.  Merrell sent them to me two weeks ago and I've worn them almost exclusively as my every day shoe.  They are an awesome shoe and I have a lot to say about them.  Even so, I just can't concentrate.

All I can think about is whats going to happen in 2 days.  This weekend I'll be taking on what might be my biggest challenge, as far as Ultra-running goes.  At 9am Saturday morning I'll toe the line at the Ghost Train Rail Trail Ultramarathon.  The race is run on a 7.5 mile stretch of trail starting in Milford NH.  The idea is to do "out and backs" of 15 miles.  Anybody doing an "Ultra" distance of 30 miles or more starts Saturday.  On Sunday there is a 15 mile race, while the remaining Ultra folks are still on course.  The longest official Ultra distance is 100 miles, but the RD has decided that after that, if anybody is dumb enough, bonus miles can be run.

I'm dumb enough.

My plan is to stay on course for the full 30 hours and see how many total miles I can get.  I have never run longer than 100 and it has always been one of my running goals.  Since the course is extremely flat I am excited about the prospect of running a PR (Personal Record) and then taking it easy and seeing how far I can go.

I know that my body is ready.  The last 6 weeks of training have gone well.  Besides the PF in my foot, which I seem to be managing, I have no aches and pains.  The big question for me is if my head is ready.  Going into this feels like preparing to go to war.  I'm trying to prepare for the worst.  I am trying to get ready for my muscles to hurt, my hips to ache, my feet to blister, my stomach to sour.   To be cold at night.  To trip on roots and rocks.  To chafe in terrible places.  To puke on the side of the trail.  And to keep on going through all of it.

As Ken Chlouber always says at the beginning of the Leadville 100, "I commit, I will not quit".


Glen said...

Nate, I've been curious. How did this run go for you? Sorry to ask if the result wasn't what you had hoped.

Nathan Sanel said...

Hi Glen,
Thanks for asking. I ended up stopping at mile 60. I had absolutely nothing wrong and I was at 11 hours. I just got bored. Seriously bored. I actually won the 60 mile distance, but it didn't feel that apecial. The people there were awesome and the course was pretty easy, except for the plentiful roots that liked to grab your feet after dark. I was planning on writing a race report, I just never got around to it!