Sunday, July 20, 2008

El Scorcho Is A First Class Event

Congratulations to Ryan for organizing and running a top notch event last night. The volunteers, the course, water stops, food, timing, parking, all worked flawlessly literally in the middle of the night. Ryan, dude - I'll be back next year for sure!

It was 9:00 pm Saturday night, t-minus 3 hours to race time, and I was at home wondering if I should shower, eat another pre-race snack, or take a nap. I ended up doing all of the above, got up at 10:15 pm and headed out to Ft Worth.

I arrived about 11:15 pm, easily found parking, and ran into fellow DFW runner Kevin while walking to packet pickup. We also found Ryan who had been out there all day setting up, and was looking at an all-nighter on top of that.

At midnight, Ryan sent off the 50K runners. That's some serious mileage. About 10 minutes later, he set us 25K runners off. El Scorcho was underway. 5 loops of a 5K course in Trinity Park just off downtown Ft Worth. Beautiful course lit by an occasional streetlamp but mostly by a full moon. One section ran alongside the Trinity River with the Ft Worth skyline standing silently along the other bank. Long stretches of crushed limestone paths weaved their way under a canopy of tress spread throughout the park. There was even a slight, gently breeze at times!

Under strict orders to maintain my LHR training by running under 144 HR, I wasn't sure if I could keep my HR low enough long enough - it usually climbs the longer I run as the body weakens, and I haven't run longer than an hour fifteen or so without this happening. Well imagine my surprise:

1st 5K - avg HR 143
2nd 5K - avg HR 144
3rd 5K - avg HR 144
4th 5K - avg HR 144
5th 5K - avg HR 146

I've gone from obsessing over pace to obsessing over HR! For the entire 25K, avg HR 144, avg pace 12:16/mile, total time 3:10:34. I think that's one of my slowest, if not the slowest, races I've ever run, but I'm thrilled with the base building at 64% - sorry for the HR mumbo jumbo, but it's a big deal for me to finally maintain some decent mileage burning FAT instead of glycogen! I carried 3 and only ate 1 GU all night, and I finished the race almost as fresh as I started.

After the run, I had some pasta with marinara sauce (yum!), watched some more runners, probably 50K-ers, and then headed home. I pulled into my garage at 4:40 am, showered, and got in bed by 5:00 am. Perfect!


jeanne said...

awesome!!!! you are inspiring me...that i'm actually BETTER OFF running slower. except, i've been building my base now for 4 years.



Anne said...

You have every right to be happy about that level of HR consistency. That's not easy, especially on a darkened course. It sounds like a very well organized event indeed. And it sounds like you had a really good time. Hooray!

TxTriSkatemom said...

I saw the newspaper article about that after it was sold out. I contemplated going out to watch, but then got lazy. It sounds like a definite for next year, though!!

Oh, and i'm about to embark on LHR training myself so I will definitely be pinging you for advice. thx for the link, too!

GandaMan said...

Thanks for the kind words, amigo. I look forward to seeing you at future races. El Scorcho is waiting for you next year....

peter said...

Congrats on your low HR. Are you barely alive at that pace? What happens when the sun starts to come up? Do you have to find a dark place? Are there more of you? A midnight race is not something I've tried yet.

David said...

You have moved to the dark side without a bicycle. How do you do that? And slow is fine but extremely slow is bizarre.

What is your expected outcome again? Finish a race before the grass needs another mowing?

Sorry ... I can't help myself. I am just too befuddled by your plan.

DawnB said...

congratulations on maintaining your LHR Rich and thank you for finally giving more info. I will read up when I have more time.

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