Running Reflections: Miguel on the Miwok 100k
CFR Member Miguel G ran his first 100k race last weekend at the Miwok 100k in Stinson Beach, California. This article originally appeared on Miguel's blog Run Moo Run. Congrats on a great race, Miguel!
My first time writing about one of my races. I'll give it a try.
Going into Miwok100k, I was sorta stressed. I have never ran that distance before. The closes I've ever come to that was 60k. I'm new to ultra running. I started on this krazy need to run trail and high mileage when I moved to New Zealand for a year. I moved there to run. Before moving there I was a road runner. Marathon and half marathons were my go to distance. I would often come across a runner that would tell me about running further than a Marathon, I would ask them; why run that much are you crazy? Haha, now I get asked that all the time.
Getting back to Miwok, I can honestly say the training up to this race was on point to get me across the finish line. And it did. I remember telling Sage/Sandi, I will do what you tell me to do to make sure I do well. My goal was simple, I just wanted to finish. The distance scared me. My training began, I've raced other shorter distances leading up to this race.
I would ask other runners and treads to tell me about Miwok. I kept hearing the same thing over and over. Take your time, it's a hard course. It's not a fast race. And weeks of looking at the profile for the course, I kinda mimic the course on my training runs, Sage/Sandi would hand me a weeks worth of runs and I would set out to make sure I was doing it right.
We land in SFO Friday evening with very little time to drive over to look for the starting line. I hate looking for the starting line in the morning(Plus we had to check in at 4am). when we got there it was a bit chilly and misty. I thought to myself; if this is the kinda of weather I will have tomorrow morning I'll do great.
Morning of, I check in and feeling good and a bit nervous. I had a half a muffin and a cup of coffee. Not enough I know. I said hi to Eric, another RMR runner.
I lined up closer to the front I didn't want to start at the back didn't feel like walking to much. And didn't want to start at the front, I knew those guys would set the pace fast off the start. So I decided to set my own pace. Must of been a good pace, I had 8-10 runners running with me. I did set a faster pace than I want for the first 50k. But I was consistent. Up and down. I attacked the uphills at a good pace, no need to walk (I would run by myself on the climbing the others would walk it) the down hills I was saving myself. To early in the races to stress myself. Plus I had a long ways to go. (I used our leaders model; no need to walk if you can get there faster if you run) Ryan Smith. Happy to say I probably walked a total of 10 mins. So I get to the 50k point, and I am way a head of schedule, my partner is not there yet, I wait for him. I needed the mixer of sport drink(Carbopro) he had, the race had tailwind and that was a bit sweet. I knew I was going to fast and needed to slow down. But the first half was the hard part, so they said! Haha ok, I was feeling awesome. But I did slow it down. Anything could happen in the next 50k. I focused more on just getting to the next aid station. I was knocking the miles off like a boss. But I didn't want to get to cocky, Ive heard everyone talk about the 50 mile, and how hard one can hit the wall. I am happy to say I never hit the wall. Trust me I know the wall, I often visit the wall a couple time on 50ks races. I remember getting to the last aid station and there was a group of 6-7 runners that kept each other going for the last 50k. We all arrived to the last aid station together. I remember them get what they needed to finish the last strecth, I watched them all take off, one of them yelled back to me and said; you can relax you'll catch us I'm sure. I smiled and said. I'll you in a bit. I got some info from a guy helping out at the aid station, he told me its 6.7 miles and your done, 4 miles of full exposed to the sun. Then the rest is a straight shot down hill. He's like; be careful it's very technical and slow take your time your done anyways. And it finally hit me, I had surpassed my goal and I was feeling good. So my last goal was to hunt down the last runners. I did, I lingered behind them for the 4 miles on the ridge. They start to slow down they were tired. As for me, I had so much energy and feeling strong. When I seen the guy in front go into the redwoods I new I had to make my move. I did, I turned on my top gear, I pretended I was going down Gregory canyon back home chasing down the RMR guys/ladies. All I remember is yelling the whole way down as I passed runner and hikers and more runners. It was a full sprint for 2 miles. I left it all on that last stretch. When I finished, I waited there by the finish line to thank everyone that ran with me the last 50k. I stood there proudly wearing the RMR shirt. I didn't win or place but I had one heck of a race. Zero aches, no cramps, no bonking. Best race yet to this day..... (I over heard a guy say; he must run a lot of 100ks, I responded; no it's my first. He said, you are one to look at. Made me super happy that someone thought I was awesome)
Fuel- I knew that I needed to fuel early and often, I stopped and ate at every aid station. PBJ mini bites and watermelon were my go to foods, I used a total of ten Vfuel gels, 6 salt tablets, 2 caffeine pills, and at the last aid station 2 cokes. I used KT tape to help support my knees and IT band. I think it worked had zero aches or problems along the way..
Thanks to my awesome coaches and my family and friends that support me on my krazy adventures..