My First Ultramarathon?! – Part 8 (Timings, Timings, Timings)

Tuesday, October 21st, 2014
Aurora getting up from the Hercules Hoist at Spartan Ohio 2014

Sorry, I have a lot of photos of the Hercules Hoist. So here’s another one!

Picking up from last time

Let’s talk about cutoffs.

You had to pick up your bib for the Super by 3pm, and cross the start at 3:15pm. You had to pick up your bib for the Sprint by 6:30pm, and cross the start by 6:45pm.

I knew I’d be fine to be finished with the Beast by 3pm – that part I wasn’t worried about. But finishing another (originally thought to be 8 but actually) 11 miles in 3 1/2 hours – that worried me.

If it were a straight running event, sure, no worries. Even with the miles from the morning, that still should be great and totally doable. But with obstacles, in *dramatic voice* the woods, with the mud and all that jazz – I don’t know! At my level of fitness (and trail capability), I think it sounds tough.

So, the tentative goal I set in my head was to be finished with my Beast around 1:15 or 1:20. I’d love to start my Super by 1:30. (That totally didn’t happen.) That was the reaching goal, but I also had a “uh, I better freaking do this” goal of starting the Super course at 2:30 – which is pretty much exactly when I started.

1:30 came and went. 1:45 came and went. Finally, I rocked out my finish a little before 2. I was hoping I’d get on the course in 10 minutes. That also totally didn’t happen, as I spent way more time changing and warming up than I expected. I kept thinking I’d be warm enough, leaving the fire, and then turning right back around to that fire to warm myself some more.

Once two thirty was rolling around, I had no choice. I ran to the start.

Part of the reason I was so cold was a lack of gloves and socks. As I mentioned, I thought I’d brought more than enough clothing. …And I was incorrect.

What I hadn’t thought about was that my gloves were going to be totally done for after the first race. I had to take them off to change, and I so could not get them back on. Toweling them off, warming them by the fire – none of that helped. It was all over for the gloves.

I’d also brought 4 pairs of socks – thinking one for each race, plus an extra pair if anything happened. So, I’d be golden. Not so much, because I totally layered on 3 pairs before I even started, since I was cold in the morning. (And I lost some socks in the whole shoes falling off in the woods thing.) So, so much for all that.

But I was getting through. And it was time to start the Super, which is where I’ll start next time.

I'd love to hear from you! So whaddya say?