Monday, August 23, 2010

Leadville thoughts

I keep starting my race report, then I delete it. I could very easily just say "The first 95 miles were easy. The last 5 were the hardest of my life." I blacked out a lot of the race with maybe 3 hours of accumulated memory in brief flashes. I'm missing large chunks of time. I'm not a big fan of 3 page race reports that detail every step. Here are a few thoughts.
My GPS died at mile 9... thankfully.
I felt the worst from mile 10-30. After that every mile felt better and better. Mile 70 felt better than mile 1.
I was the most positive I've ever been in a race. I went off course 3 times (typical Lucho head in the clouds. I'm starting to think I can get lost running on a track. But Hal Koerner went off in one of the same places) but I just laughed it off and got back on track and forgot about it.
I wore $4.00 thrift store shoes for the first 60 miles. When I went to switch them out after the last river crossing, the whole side of one shoe split apart. They had exactly 60 miles left in them.
My nutrition was as close to perfect as I could ever hope. I ate 1300 calories in the first 1:50 then held 400 an hour (average) to the finish. I lost 1.1 pound for the entire race.
I remember this quote in crystal clear clarity: "Damn... that thing is big". That was from my pacer Tim when we ran by a llama at 12,000ft altitude after 55 miles of running (sort of a surreal experience). For some reason that stuck in my head and made me laugh. We ended up laughing and talking non-stop for much of the last 50 miles. It felt more like a fun training run than a race.
Ass-Caps are life savers. And not the candy with the hole.
Tim found a sweet bandanna. 
I saw a girl pee standing up in the middle of the road.
If someone ever says to you "Do you need warm clothes?" Say "Yes, thank you." and then take them.
When shit goes bad at the end of a 100 mile running race it REALLY goes bad. I was passed by Jeff Beuche with 1.5 miles to go and he beat me by 21:00.

 And to add some post race plans. I want to focus on lifting weights and getting strong and balanced again. I can't see myself racing again this year but I can see myself training seriously very soon. Next year I am looking at the Leadville 100 MTB race and then running a sub 2:30 marathon as a 40 year old (yep... the big 40 next year). As for another 100 mile running race... it was very hard for my wife to see me completely effed up in the medical tent after the race. She said that she stayed awake for hours watching me sleep, worried. No race is worth even a second of discomfort for my amazing wife.


GZ said...

I was sort of cracking up when I heard you popped at 95 miles. As in - "yeah, my name is Lucho and I need to work on that last five miles of my hundred mile race."

How TF does one train for THAT?!

Well done man, because DAMN that WAS BIG.

Fred (aka ace) said...

I was just wondering if you'd gotten around to posting your thoughts, and I was really intrigued about what/how you determined your nutrition/hydration for the event. But again I'm most happy to find you enjoyed yourself for 95% of the race even when running off course. Awesome job man! Just Awesome!

Footfeathers said...

There are A TON of details and edge of seat competitive moments. If I ever get another laptop, I'll be thrilled to write the full account...

Efficiency, holding back, and power. That sums it up too.

Lucho said...

GZ- I have NO idea how you train for the last 5 miles of a 100 mile race!? I think it has something to do with staying awake for 24 hours then repeatedly hammering a spike in to your quads for the last half hour. My problems were all about hypothermia... I spent an hour in the med tent under 3 blankets by a heater throwing up and cramping with violent shivers.

Ace- You can look at what the average person can consume in terms of grams of CHO per hour during moderate exercise... about .5 grams per pound of body weight. So for me that is 75 grams. On my long runs I was trying to find the right ratio of maltodextrin to fructose. I ended up with a 3:1 ratio of Carbopro and powdered Gatorade. My stomach could empty this at roughly 80 grams CHO/ hour. So I started with an educated guess and then refined it through experience. For the entire race I drank 75% of all of my calories with gels as needed. I relied quite a bit on streams and refilled my bottle from them too many times to count. This allowed me to carry less weight (just one hand held bottle for much for the race along with pockets full of gels and flasks full of powdered drink mix) and still hydrate VERY well. My nutrition for my first hundred was text book.

J.P. Patrick said...

Funny Lucho quote, "Tell Brandon he needs to slow down! I didn't catch up to him until mile 9!"

You looked great out there! You passed me four times and once I got the Brandon quote out of you! The other three times you were just cruising in your own running world!

Nice job, Tim!

Lucho said...

Tim- Ya.. I do remember many times you telling me to relax. I wanted to hammer and crush that dude on Power Line and you laughed at me and told me to chill. When we passed him he didn't even look up. The last 50 with you is less of a blur. I also remember you saying "After the race I'm going to drink a beer so fast it won't fizz" and "I could gnaw the top off a beer bottle right now". Definitely one of the best racing experiences ever thanks largely to you! Thanks my friend.

JP- I don't remember seeing you one time. Sorry man.
We need to have a year end party soon. Maybe a few cases of IPA, BBQ and a bunch of the local boys talking war stories?

PatrickGarcia said...

Lucho=Big Balls. You beat us to the line by too much to get a chance to say hi though :) Unbelieveable man, rock solid.

GZ said...

Ack on the med tent.

Love to hear the coaches point of view on how to prepare for this nutiness.

Matt said...

This post is the epitome of common sense. The llama comment is a laugher, in and of itself sure, but the context of it just sorta resonating like nothing else.

I am not worried about you, dude.
Clear as a bell. In fact, really, with the black outs and all, the vomiting, it's just one big (unhealthy) bender of sorts.

Yeah, let me have an eight-ball, and a large quantity of alcohol, go at it for a few days and let my wife watch me "deal."

No thanks.

Your race plans sound very solid.

Lucho said...

G- I plan on a blog post of my training soon. I counted back and averaged just 61 miles per week of running for this. But I also rocked the bike hard and the weight training (I gained almost 10 pounds in the 20 weeks before).

Matt- Wow... the 8ball and alcohol reference is quite relevant here and I love the brutal truth. I've done both in excess and I have to say... I've NEVER been as fucked up as I was last night. Everything in moderation.

Footfeathers said...

The most pivotal point of the race (the difference between 18:15 finish and 19:19 finish) was mayqueen where we declined arm warmers (warmer clothes), grabbed the inadequate lights, and didn't pause long enough to fuel up for the last 13. To put it in perspective, those mistakes caused us to run a 3:04:36 half marathon (pretty flat) to finish. We were at mayqueen at 8:15pm and finished at 11:19pm. Would've also helped to scope out the last 4-5 miles of the course, as the uncertainty and confusion wears on the already tapped mind.

From 50 to 90 miles we likely ran stronger than everyone on the course. At mile 90 we were on pace to run 15 mins faster than Duncan over the last 50 miles.

Anyone who says ultra running is easy is a daisy floating on a shallow puddle where the depth of existence is the surface.

Tim dug deep, got very quiet, and crossed the line like a man with well deserved pride.

Lucho said...

Thank you Tim, but you made all of those things less significant by making the race so much more fun and positive for me.

jason said...

Maybe it's just a given since I haven't seen it mentioned yet, but the big thing I was wondering about was sleep. Were you actually moving the entire 19+ hours, or did you grab some Zs somewhere along the way?

Brandon Fuller said...

Enjoyed seeing you and Tim on Hope. Was excited to share our first 100 together. Not sure what's in your future or mine but we each made it in our own way since accepting the challenge. Congrats.

Lucho said...

Jason- I wish I could have slept a bit! But no, I think the longest that I was not moving was about one minute to change my shoes.

Brandon Brandon Brandon... dammit man you started out too fast. I was pissed to see you go through May Queen so quickly! But at the same time I think you have gigantic brass balls for hanging tough and finishing! There's always next year!

Brandon Fuller said...

F' that fast stuff. I never got the chance to find out. Other weaknesses reared their ugly heads before it.

Maybe you can take me shopping for some $4 shoes...

n8 said...

my anxiety level went up a bit to hear you say you were in the med tent yakking and shaking...someone as well trained as you doing that makes a leadville noob like me worry. im going to spend this coming winter running long and thinking about that.

Anonymous said...

i would have to agree with your last statement of this post, esp. if you are true to the rules on your sidebar.

Anonymous said...

Congrats Tim!

I suggest you also take up MMA for your 40th and beat up some 18 year old kid.

Lucho said...

n8- Me? I was a newbie too! All I can tell you is to not take chances with the cold and never put yourself too far from warm clothing. You'll alright. I counted up my mileage for the last 20 weeks and I averaged 58 miles per week of running. That's very doable for almost anyone.

Donna- Ya, I'll honor that.

Thanks Simon.

Wynnphotography said...

Outstanding Job... But really outstanding with knowing when enough is enough... so many people dont give a rats about whats really important in life... you know whats up with your last statement..

Good on you

kerrie said...

so what did you have those first two hours to get those calories? 7 powerbars or 9 red bulls or 14 gels or a Mcdonalds happy meal?

you really should have taken advantage of those llamas when you saw them and sacrificed one and worn it as a suit to stay warm. i saw that on t.v. once.

Spokane Al said...

I was thinking about your race report as I ran two hours this morning - my effort seems kind of pitiful in comparison.

"No race is worth even a second of discomfort for my amazing wife." That one is worth remembering!