Couldn’t sleep last night because my system was still amped from racing. I ate a little bit for dinner and then crashed early but had trouble falling asleep. My average HR was 174 – completely red-lined from the start. The finish of the race was so much fun. There was another runner on my heels for most of the race – I could hear him breathing right at my back – when we turned right off of Wildwood trail to Wild Cherry trail, he was literally on my heels. One thing that I’ve enjoyed in these races is running at high speed through technical terrain with other people in your personal space. Something I don’t experience on long solo runs.
There are a few sections of Wild Cherry where the trail has been shored up with 4×4’s along the sides with a packed gravel base; making for a relatively smooth surface. During the first race of the series, I used this section to recover slightly – and I was passed by a few people. Last night I dropped the hammer. In all 3 of those short sections I accelerated on the descent. And the other runner was still at my heels. When we exited the singletrack and turned onto Leif Erikson (fire road) I made the decision that there was no way he was going to pass me in the last quarter mile. I cut the apex of every turn and stayed in front of him, not giving any runway for him to come around me. I saw the lights, cones and timing clock at the finish – and dropped the hammer again.
My HR spiked to 191 at the finish; a heart rate I haven’t seen since college. I wanted to lay down on the ground and curl up into a little ball, but then found a chair at the Nike demo tent, sat down, stared at the my feet in a haze and stopped my watch. I had no idea my HR could get that high any more – with the standard calc for finding Max HR, I should top out at in the mid 180’s.
As a bonus I won the Petzl headlamp in the raffle!
22nd overall (out of 78)
6th in my age group (out of 16)
An excellent night of racing!
*kudos to the runner pushing me. Thank you!