Hadn't planned on this race and didn't expect much after racing hard on an 'A' race road half-marathon last week. My legs were still feeling it mid-week, but I wanted to kick off my MoMa trail training with a nice long trail run. I had planned on spectating my friend Tim (Lucho) who was looking for the win. This is the first race in the Leadville Leadman Series. Laurie wanted to run it, so I figured what the heck I'll give it a shot with no expectations. The no expectations part was pretty nice. The race is basically a huge trail climb from 10,200ft to 13,200ft with one mile of downhill in the middle of that climb. It's an out and back. I felt pretty good the whole time. I got to see the marathoners (who had some miles added in but eventually synced up with out route) and see a lot of friends, which made it worth it. Here is my race report with some
good photos: http://blogtimko.blogspot.com/2012/07/leadville-heavy-halfmarathon-2012.html
I actually felt really pretty good and took it super easy from the start, treating it like a training run, as I didn't know what to expect going up Mosquito Pass. Once we started up Mosquito I still felt great. I was hiking, but hiking much faster at a very low effort, than many people, and passed quite a bit. On the switchbacks going up, you can see people above and below you. I couldn't help but think "This is kinda bullshit, if JV were here we'd be B-lining right to the top!" About that time, the 1st place marathoner passed me. He looked like he was pushing. It wasn't Lucho and I knew that unless he was forced to the hospital after wrestling a mountain lion, he wouldn't be too far behind. So, I looked at my watch as I know he'd want a split. 9 minutes later Lucho bops up behind me, "9 minutes" I say. Shortly after, I see the first marathoner coming down, then Lucho. Lucho is FLYING downhill screaming at the top of his lungs "Hokas baby!!!" - I said something corny like "Time to Fly" and continued up. I hit the top of the pass and was very anxious to get down. I didn't have any splits or know what times I'd need to do to hit 3:30 or so and don't like doing any math in my head while running. People were pussyfooting around taking pictures and eating at the aid station, I just did a 180, took a piss, and started down. I took in the views on the way down though, and thought, THIS is what I love to do. I was cursing road running the whole time.
I felt fantastic! I probably ran those first 2 miles down Mosquito a little fast/reckless but I was having a good time. I saw Shad, Kendrick, Amy on their way up and we exchanged our form of 'encouragement' which usually meant 'stop being pussy and RUN!'. When I got to the bottom of the pass, it was about ~3hrs. I had had about 200 calories at this point (110 of UCan and 80 of Gatorade) and kinda got a 'you're going to crash' warning. I had a emergency gel so took it. I started to feel a bit like crap and hiked more than I didn't actually need to up the 1 mile climb. By the time I got to the top though, I felt pretty good. I kept thinking the whole race 'Imagine this is a 50k, pace accordingly' -- and I did...until the last 2 or so miles, I picked it up a bit. On the last mile of road to the finish, my legs felt last weeks pavement pounding. fucking roads.
Jesus I missed trail running. No more road running for the rest of the
year for me.
My buddy Lucho came in 2nd in the marathon in 3:45, he's after the Leadman record this year.