The Runner’s Flat 50K

Yesterday, I did the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I tried my hand at my first ultramarathon, tackling The Runner’s Flat 50K. My recap is as follows:

The Course

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This is a segment of trail. The course was a beautiful 10-mile loop. The 50K added a .3 loop around a bag drop/aid station. There was a nice segment of all new trail blazed just for this race. There were a few issues: there was one new segment that had a ton of toe-biting stump segments that tripped up a lot of people and, when the course was done, my Nike+ GPS watch clocked in at 29.77 miles. Overall, though, this was a great course for a first-time ultramarathoner. Pretty flat and pretty fast. The course was marked very well with pink flags in the right and caution tape to direct us when there was a big fork in the trail.

The Organization

The Runner’s Flat is a great group of people and their volunteers were awesome! The race had about 150 people between the different events (10 mile, 20 miles, 50K, and a kid’s run), so it was fairly small. Still, everybody knew what they were doing and there never seemed to be any confusion.

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The aid stations were stocked, as you can see, with all kinds of good food. Bananas and Huma gels were my go to (review/rationale on that later this week), but they also had oranges, pretzels, M&Ms, other gels, water, Gatorade, and Coke. This was much different than the aid stations I’ve seen at marathons…and I liked it! After the race, instead of medals, they gave out beer glasses, to be filled for free at Single Speed Brewing, and enjoyed with chili and live music.

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The Results

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I wasn’t sure exactly how it was going to go for me. I’d never done a trail race and I’d never done an ultra before. So, like I posted on Friday, I just wanted to finish and not feel like I had one foot in the grave at the finish line. I ran most of it but, by the end, I was pretty much walking any uphill segments. Also, I took my first ever fall on one of those toe-biters I mentioned in the course review. I feel pretty good, then, about my 5:12.09 finish time. And I am able to navigate stairs and was able to work today without being super impaired! The winner won in 3:21! That’s flying! And, again, I managed to stumble to a 3rd place age group placement! And I feel I should get some bonus points for having people compliment my beard. I told them I heard there was a Rob Krar lookalike contest.

Overall, I am very happy with this race and my performance in it. I will definitely consider running it again next year!

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All photos taken from The Runner’s Flat 50k facebook page.

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7 thoughts on “The Runner’s Flat 50K

  1. Congrats on your first ultra. That’s a fantastic accomplishment, and you did it in amazing time! Did it leave you completely addicted to trail racing? I know once I started racing in the woods, it made road running less and less appealing!

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      1. I have been doing trails since I was 13… But with a 13 year hiatus in between now and when I stopped 🙂
        When I picked running back up in April of 2013 the majority of my time was spent on the trails. Since then I’ve had a couple injuries, but it brought me back to cross county skiing in the winter as a nice transition. Trail running definitely keeps me motivated and inspired, and it seems like once you make that transition, it’s hard to get back on the pavement!

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