Friday, September 5, 2014

Jay Peak 50k... second time around

I ran the Jay Peak 50k again this past weekend. It is one of my last races/ long runs before the Bear 100 and it went great! All I remember from the last time were UPS and DOWNS... it was constant climbs, which is why I signed up again this year- perfect training for a mountainous 100 miler. I went up the day before to check in and hang out around the mountain. Took the tram to the top to get some pictures- gorgeous views all around. Glad I went up the day before too because the day of the race you couldn't see a thing from the top because of the clouds.

The next morning I woke up in my tent around 4am with lightning and thunder and quickly got up and packed everything up before I (and my tent) got drenched. By the time I was finished and jumped in the car it was pouring. I arrived at Jay Peak Resort with the rain still coming down... it was going to be a long day! But then with about 5 minutes to the start it stopped! The rain was gone but the humidity stayed, it was about 70 degrees and 95% humidity the entire day. It was also super cloudy... no views at the top. 

The course changed a bit since I ran it two years ago at the inaugural race. There were more single track and a few more ascents which I think slowed down everyone's times. The race starts at the bottom of the ski mountain on the cross country ski trails- about 2 miles then comes out to the real ski trails- STRAIGHT UP!

After about a 1/4 mi of this hill we go back to single track on the Long Trail for another 1/2 mi or so to the top of Jay Peak. It was windy and cool up there.... great volunteers froze up there all day! Then you start the rest of the course which is basically up and down and out and backs all over the mountain. Great views and I love being able to cross paths with people on all the out and backs- makes it a bit more social and fun to see the same few people all day. 

View from one of the climbs

Quite a few fire road type trails with big climbs

The leaves were starting to change colors already!!!

The race has 2- 15 mile laps so the second lap we lost a ton of runners and it really thinned out. The race for me went pretty uneventful- I wore my Hokas for the first time and absolutely LOVED them for the downhills- NO knee/quad pain! Either it was the training or the shoes :) I used Tailwind for the first race and it went great as well- no nausea/GI issues... win win! I also ran the same pace for my first and second laps, which is a huge improvement for me! I really try to start slow and get faster as the race goes on and I could tell I was really picking up the pace towards the end of the race. I was really happy with how I felt and ran this race- it was a great confidence boost for my training for the Bear 100. I also finished 3rd place female! Woo!!  Bring on the Bear!!!

Super muddy but my Hokas worked well!

Runner "tan lines"... also wearing my new Recovery Oofos Sandals :)

Great race but the most uneventful finish line!!

SUPER close to Canada!