catching up, again

Whoa, it’s been awhile. I fully intended to write a race report about my first race of the year, Phunt 50K, that I ran nearly six months ago. Oops!

Well, I still would like to share an abbreviated version.

It was kind of cold (upper 30s) and a double-loop course. It started to rain as I neared the end of the first loop. The course got sloppy. Many people dropped to the 25K distance. I feared missing a cutoff once I learned they had them (uh, as I started the second loop) — and came really close. In fact, a volunteer at the last aid station asked me how I was feeling, and said he was supposed to start pulling people one minute ago. He asked if  I thought I could finish within the eight-hour time limit. Glad he let me keep going, I had plenty of time!  (07:42:31)

Phunt 50K
During the first loop, when it was still dry.
Photo courtesy of RunningMadPhoto

I was nearly last (only five people behind me), but I think most of them I managed to pass in the last few miles. There was at least one person who got pulled at an aid station (I saw it mentioned in a Facebook comment), and a lot called it quits after one loop. I’m proud of myself for pushing through. And the finish time is EXACTLY the same as my NorthFace 50K a couple years ago. Crazy!

Phunt 50K
Ah, here’s the mud! Photo courtesy of RunningMadPhoto

After Phunt, I took a little race break except for a 5K in February. But I was working on bigger things …

Like running a marathon on my birthday!

B&A Marathon
Around mile 19, after we’d been running into a headwind for 12 miles. Ouch!

The B&A Trail Marathon (right up the road from me in Severna Park, MD) originally would have been a race where I tried to run fast (for me). But after Phunt, I had a fracture scare (shin). Turns out it was muscular, but I took a few weeks off as a precaution. So I went into this marathon a little bit undertrained (only made it to 17.5 miles in training). It worked out fine, though. My friend Dan was much more undertrained and was looking for a race buddy. (He’s a seasoned ultrarunner, though, and knew what he was getting himself into.)

We took it easy and stuck together the whole race, which otherwise would have gotten quite lonely. It’s a small race with a 1,000-runner limit for both the half and full marathons … but only 300 do the full marathon. It was a beautiful, though chilly, day, and I was happy to start my new age group with my 13th marathon finish!

That ended up being my last long run before my next big adventure race.
Big Sur Mararhon


More on that later. Hopefully it won’t take me another six months for a race report!