STRAVA Summary

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Burning River Training Run Part 1.

12 hours of driving for a training run, some would think I am crazy. Of course many already do. Either way I had decided that it was necessary to go down to Ohio and take part in at least one of the organized training runs for Burning River. This one was the first and would encompass the first 19 miles of the course. The only other one I can make is the last one, which funny enough, takes in the last part of the course. Still debating on whether or not I’ll get to that one yet.
Roger had backed out of making it for the run, as work had not gone well in Marysville and it looked like he was going to be stuck there until at least late Saturday. But a funny thing happened on the way to …
Joan and myself had left Barrie at about 2 pm, shortly after she got off work and it turned out to be a fairly good drive. The border crossing went very well. I decided to try the Rainbow bridge for a change and low and behold there was no one in front of me. Scooted through quickly and on our way down I190 to I 90 and off to Cleveland. Just passed Erie Joan’s phone rang, the number was a Tennessee number so we ignored it. With in seconds my phone rang and it was the same number, so I answered it. It was Roger and he said he would make it after all and would meet us at the hotel at about 10 pm.
We arrived shortly after 8 and after unpacking walked over to the Olive Garden for dinner, that was good! At exactly 10 the phone rang and sure enough punctual Roger was very much so. We went down stairs to meet him and discussed the following days plans. We would meet at 5:30 and head to the arranged meeting spot.
I didn’t sleep well, the room was too warm although the bed was very comfy. Got up and ate my oatmeal and got all my gear together, met Roger downstairs and off we went in Rogers company car. We managed to find the Shadow Lake picnic area quite easily, but were the first ones there so naturally started questioning whether or not we were in the right spot. Gradually others started showing and socializing for a bit we all jumped into a couple of vehicles and headed to the start area at Squires Castle.
There were about 30 runners ready to run the course on a nice morning. We were lucky as apparently it had rained for the past 2 weeks straight. A couple of the runners were doing 40 miles as one was celebrating his 40th birthday. After a few instructions on the protocol for the run, we left at a very nice and slow pace. The plan was to run a 6 minute k at the fastest and settled in at about a 6:10 or slower pace. The first part of the course (9.6 miles) is all road and it was very pretty area and beautiful houses and horse ranches all along the route. The first aid station is in Gates Mills, a very small pretty town where we regrouped as some runners ran off faster and others were slower. After a quick break we back on the run for the next 4.8 miles to Polo fields, again this was similar to the first 4.8 miles on rolling hills. Before we knew it we were at the halfway mark, where again we regrouped and refueled. From here we hit the trails, which started off as a bridle trail which was a little rougher than I thought it would be and Jim Chaney, the organizer, said there was a river crossing coming up soon. We spent a lot of the time chatting to others as we ran talking about our approach to Ultras and what our “secrets” were. Before the first water crossing (yes first), Roger had to take a bathroom break and this gave me a good opportunity to take a long walk break. The sun was getting warm and we had hit the trails at a good time, it was much cooler in the bush.
Not long after Roger rejoined me we hit the first river crossing. As it turned out it was more of a stream, but we still go tour feet wet. Through out this third section of the undulating trail we would cross the same stream, six times in all I think. Before long we had arrived at Harpers Ridge aid station where one gentlemen had left his vehicle loaded with goodies and water for everyone. Soon we were off again and on to the shortest section of the days run to Shadow Lake. This would also be the muddiest. It was more downhill than the last section but everyone was surprised by all the mud. There were also a lot of deer tracks on the trail. We actually scared one up in front of us.
We finished the run in about 3 hours and 15 minutes, about an hour faster than I plan on runner the actual race, so that made me feel good knowing that I was “taking it easy”.
Over all a good run and well worth the drive. Even Roger enjoyed running it even though he is foreign to trail running. He is looking forward to the next one. I believe he is almost as excited about the race as I am.

1 comment:

chris mcpeake said...

Just wondering is the trail section etc. after 9 miles runnable in road shoes or do you think trail shoes would be better. I had heard from people that the first 16 miles was mostly road. Trying to figure out if I should run in road shoes early and change them at one of the aid stations.

probably cya at sulphur. Its going to be a mud fest