As the Race Director, Thank You for your patience in our delayed opening this year. I was strongly considering career relocation options over the past 6 months and wasn't sure I would have the opportunity or privilege to RD 2015 GLER and held off on opening registration until those issues were resolved.
We anticipate that our GLER Team will hold another highly competitive and enjoyable set of trail ultra-marathons again late this August.
Green Lakes Endurance Races
100 km & 50 km trail races
Saturday August 6 BOTH RACES START AT 0600AM
Affiliated with the Road Runners Club of America
My 2013 GLER 50K Race Report......Let’s see, where do I begin....
My 2013 GLER 50K Race Report begins with the Annual UM meeting last August 26th, 2012. Since GLER had been cancelled for 2012, a FatAss Run and Annual UM meeting were held on that date. At the meeting, I won one of the drawings which was for the entry fee into any one of the UM races for 2013. Originally, I had planned on using it on the Mind The Ducks (MTD) 12 Hour Endurance run. I knew I had more miles in me than what I had run at my USATF age group record run in 2012 (I had trained to average 5 miles per hour for that race which I felt was doable based on my 2011 MTD total miles of 57.675 and I was on track (no pun intended!) to do that - But I didn’t train for the heat! Big mistake! - 4 hours into the 2012 MTD run, the heat got to me and I was bent over on the side of the course - SICK! - I lost valuable time and pace working through this issue and, as a result, I could not get back to my 5 miles per hour pace, but I was still able to complete the race and set the American age group (65-69) record that day. I broke the record of 48.7198 miles at 11:03 hours into the race. I had run 48.7898 miles, but I wasn’t done yet! I continued on and broke my record 5 more times. I stopped with 12 minutes left in the race and 51.471 miles completed.) Unfortunately, the MTD race for 2013 was cancelled earlier this year and my plans to try and beat my American record this year ended! I was so disappointed,...but not for long!...I signed up for the 2013 GLER 50K instead and decided that I would try to better my 2011 GLER 50K time of 6:54:32. (When I looked at what Ultra Signup predicted as my finish time, I was even more determined to beat my 2011 time. They predicted that I would finish over 7 1/2 hours (can’t remember the exact time now but I know it really got to me). I realized that I was 2 years older - I was now 66 years old, but what the computer didn’t account for was that I have not peaked as a runner yet :) - I started running at 60 years old and ran my first Ultra at 63 years old.
Friday night before the race, I had 6 runners from out of town (Rochester & NYC) stay at my house. Katherine Fleming, Dave Farrands, Egils Robs, Mary Harvey, Joe Delano, and John MacKenzie...I already knew Ultra runners are nice, but being able to spend this time with these runners was extra special. And, they were so nice to my dog - Morrie (who thinks anyone who comes to my house is there to be with him) and my two cats - Terra (very social cat) & Cotta (who bonded with Katherine as they shared a bedroom together). Can’t wait to do this again. The 3 runners from NYC even stayed over until Sunday morning. We had fun socializing and getting to know the new runners Friday night before the race, and then we were up, ate, and ready to head out the door by 4:00 AM Saturday morning to Green Lakes State Park for the race - we were all signed up for the 50K....There is so much more I could write about here about the time spent with these runners, but I will stick to my “race” report - I will just say I really enjoyed spending this time with my “new” friends and my “old” friends.
My training for this race included running 1 loop training runs of the GLER course after deciding where I would walk and where I would run and where the tricky spots were on the course, down hill path, etc. I would do these 1 loop runs in ~1:25 (I would do the first 5 miles in just under 1 hour and then relax a little and recover during the last 2.75 miles.) Then I did some 2 loop runs, always running the first loop around the same time (1:25), and then I would do the second loop much slower between 1:45 - 1:55. I never ran 3 or 4 loops together. I was thinking that on race day I would try to start off with one of these 1:25 loops and then slow down and be reasonable with my pace - but I also knew that if I started out that fast that it might come back to “bite” me since I had not done anything close 4 loops back to back during my training. By Wednesday, prior to the race, I ran my last training loop run in my Hokas and I noticed I was tripping in the grass on the Serengeti - (I had worn the Hokas to the PGA tournament at Oak Hills in Rochester on Aug 6th and noticed that when I walked in the short rough on the course which was similar to the length of the grass on the Serengeti - the Hokas were getting stuck in the rough and would cause me to trip slightly - but they were great as far as being on your feet all day at the PGA) - since I wasn’t sure if the grass on the Serengeti would be cut some by Saturday, I decided not to run in the Hokas and left them in the car race day. Instead, I decided to run in my Newton Gravity running shoes (which aren’t waterproof) and put my other Newton Waterproof trail shoes in my drop bag.
Start of the race: 100K (20 runners) & 50K (100 runners) started together this year.
BTW - I left my “Darth Varder” rain outfit that I had on at the start of GLER in 2011 at home this year (although in 2011, we were running in Hurricane Irene - 5” rain fell during that race) - I learned very quickly that day in 2011 that it is better to be colder and wet than being comfortable at the start of an Ultra. It doesn’t take long for the body temperature to rise. Saturday, at the start of the race, I had my hydration vest half filled with water and I carried Endurolytes and Shot Bloks and a banana in my vest.
My 1st two loops were paced just right (for me that was - I’m sure Katherine and Ken might have wanted to be moving a little faster though) and I felt great. Katherine, Ken, and I were running together - the weather was perfect. When we got up onto the Serengeti, I noticed that the grass had been cut (could have worn my Hokas but too late - they were back in my car and I wasn’t going to go get them) and there was a lot of dew on the grass - I should have started out running in my waterproof Newtons but too late now. The view on part the Green Trail was so beautiful on the first loop with the fog in the distance (Katherine had her iPhone and got a picture of it). Stopped at aid station #2 for some “sugar” - said hi to Greg and off we went. While running, I took Endurolytes every 1 to 1.5 hrs and Shot Bloks every 3 miles, and at aid station #1, I would also have 1 packet of Salted Caramel Gu (awesome) and grab a cookie. During the 2nd loop I was feeling some hot spots from my wet socks and wet running shoes so I decided to change socks and put on my waterproof Newtons when we finished the 2nd loop. Katherine changed her shoes and socks and put on her Hokas. I made a “pitstop” at bathroom in the Great house at this stop. I had a little trouble getting my wet socks off and changing into a pair of dry socks and dry Newtons. After the 3 of us “sugared” up at the aid station, we headed out on the 3rd loop. I got down the stairs in back of the Great House, and my right thigh muscle right above my knee started pulsating (I could actually see it) - it was pretty painful - I would have to slow down and try to rub it out while running. At this point, I wanted Katherine and Ken to go on ahead - I didn’t want them to hang back for me - they had PRs they were going for...They wouldn’t run on ahead - they stayed with me (with hindsight, I wish had made them run on) ...I tried to run through the pain and occasionally it would feel better, but then the pulsating would come back. We got to aid station #2 (4 miles away from when this first started) and Ryan O’Dell gave me 2 Salt Sticks to take to help me with my muscle problem. He told me they would eventually kick in and help, and Greg filled my water vest and off we went. The eventually, the Salt Sticks helped lessen the pain of the “charlie horse” in my right thigh. When we got to the campgrounds and the big down hill portion of the loop, I decided to run the downhill in back of Katherine and Ken (the previous 2 loops - I ran in front of them down the hill portion ( I love downhills) and I had clear view of the trail and saw all the roots and stuff on the trail (and, more importantly, I was focused on the trail). Unfortunately, on the last part of this downhill coming around the corner and down to Round Lake, I got a little to close to Ken, and in addition to that I was distracted by acknowledging one runner running up that hill, and I tripped and barely caught myself - pulling some back muscles and my right calf muscle. I am so thankful that I didn’t fall, because I would have wiped out both Ken and Katherine, and it would have been entirely my fault --- running to close to a runner while running downhill - VERY BAD.... (In all my practice runs on this down hill section, I never had anyone running ahead of me and I learned a very valuable lesson Saturday. Someone was watching over me! (Was that you Linda? - she is one of my angels in heaven)...I don’t even want to think of what could have happened on the hill....Well needless to say - I’m mentally, as well as physically, struggling at this point...I knew I was slowing Katherine and Ken down and it wasn’t fair to them...Finally after finishing the 3rd loop - got to the aid station and got more water in my hydration vest - I knew I had to have Katherine and Ken leave me and go run that final loop with out an “anchor” (ME). We got down the stairs and I said goodbye to them and I watched them disappear ahead of me - I felt relieved that they had gone on, but now I was really hurting - both legs had different problems now and I had a pulled muscle in my side. I did versions of running then walking until I got to the hill portions going up from Round Lake to the Serengeti...Then I went back to my planned loop (although a little slower pace) - unfortunately, on the last section of this uphill almost to the power line - I fell “UP HILL” - my weight landing on my left arm and left knee but at this point felt most of the pain in my left hand - I just whined a little bit, picked myself up and headed up to Serengeti to get to the aid station - I was able to keep to my plan run and walk sections for the Serengeti and when I got to aid station #2 - I sat down just for a very short time because I knew that could cause me to stiffen up - Actually my plan is always to get in and out of aid stations as quick as possible. Greg asked me if I needed any water and I said no, that I got water back at aid station #1 and so off I went - The Green Trail (except for the portion along the hedge row) is my favorite part of the GLER loop and also the big downhill from campgrounds to Round Lake and that was still ahead of me and I felt better knowing that. Well, I knew I didn’t like the hedge row, and this time on it I ran out of water - I should have gotten water back aid Station #2 but I thought I had enough and didn’t even check it there. So now on top of everything else, I have 2.75 miles left to cover with no water - one good thing was that I would be off the Serengeti in a few minutes...I got down to Round lake without needing any water, and now I started looking at my watch trying to calculate whether or not I had time enough to get to the finish line and beat my 2011 time of 6:54/6:55 (couldn’t remember exact time). (Now this may not make any sense to you reading this, but at this point in the race, I have this scene from “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” running in my head, where two guys were sword fighting and the one guy would get an arm cut off and he would put the sword in his other hand, and he would start fencing again, and he also got his legs cut off, but he kept coming back for more)....well this is what I felt like at this point - my right leg, my left leg, my hand, my arm, and now no water.....and I’m still thinking I can do it...set a PR in this race....needless to say - I walked - I ran, etc, etc, came out to the beach with less than 1/2 mile to go, panting like my dog “Morrie after he comes in from chasing his Orange Peanut”, still thinking I can do it, and when I finally came around the path to where the “Chalk Messages” (loved them) were on the pavement, I saw the time of 6:42:59 change to 6:43:00 on the clock at the finish line, and I “sprinted” to the finish line because now I had a new race going on in my head and that was to get to the finish line before the 43 on the clock turned to 44...and crossed finish line at 6:43:49 .... PR!!! (2011 time 6:54:32)...Katherine and Ken, your PR should have been a much faster time!!!! Thanks So Much for Helping Me Get Mine!!!
On race day, before, during and after, it was great seeing so many of my running friends and new running friends running GLER. Christine (thanks for delivering the Endurolyte tabs to me before the race), Deb, Nicole, Eric (met him during a training run at GLER - this was going to be his 1st ultra - he was doing ~ 1 hr loops in training and he looked very strong as he flew by me Saturday - lapping me of course), Roger (Good Luck at Oil Creek this year - doing the 100 miler, again - the 50K was tough enough for me), Tom, Bill, Ken, Luana (way to go 100K finisher) - and of course, my house guests, Mary (the only person I know that can get stung by a bee at the same spot on the course during two separate loops - once on her stomach and once on her tongue - and she kept going even continuing the “down the slide at the playground” routine as she and John passed it on the course during each loop), John, Joe, Dave, Gil and Katherine (her conversation during the 3 loops we did together made it so easy to keep going - the loops seemed to fly by - I always thought that if you talked while running that it would sap your energy faster. But not her - she never tired - it was just so much fun to run with her - and she even did the 14 miler at Letchworth State Park the next day with Christine and Joe - according to my “Fitbit”, I was averaging 5500 steps per day for the next 4 days - after my 65,000 steps on Saturday).
I want to thank everyone involved in this day: The race director, Tim Hardy - thanks for taking over the duties as RD of GLER for without you GLER might have ended forever; all the wonderful volunteers at Packet Pickup and manning the aid stations - they are pros - they know how to get you in and out as fast as possible with everything you need to keep going - a special thanks to Ryan O’Dell for the Salt Sticks on the 3rd loop - my day might have ended too soon without them; Leone timing (Sue Leone - it was so great seeing you as I finished my 1st loop) ; Doug Hardy for taking all the photos of the finishers; Greg - thanks for all the training runs & the support during the race at AS #2 (and for getting the Endurolytes to me). I hope I didn’t forget to thank anyone !!!
Congrats to all the 100K runners and the 50K runners!
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OTHER ULTRA MARATHONS
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