On October 3rd I lined up to run one of my favorite trail races in the southeast... The Stump Jump 50K http://www.rockcreek.com/stumpjump/
The best thing about this race is that it's right here in our own backyard. We are able to train on the trails weekly.... so there are no surprises going into the race with the terrain. An added bonus this year was that Dean Karnazes made an appearance and wowed us with a little speech/book signing the night before and then he ran the race!!! If you don't know who Dean Karnazes is.... check this link out. http://www.ultramarathonman.com/flash/ He is a super stud in the ultramarathon world.
Trey and I decided we'd run the most of this race together. Since I was just coming off Ironman Louisville... no record times would be set today! We started pretty conservatively and built up to a nice pace (for 50K). We both have our strengths on the trail. Trey's is the downhills and technical areas. Mine are the rollers and hills... though... I AM becoming much faster on the descents!!!
After the Rock Garden... Dean Karnazes caught up with us. We all stopped at the next aid station for hydration and fuel. I couldn't believe that I was running with THE Dean Karnazes. WOW. Before we left out of the aid station... I noticed that Dean was using the same gel as I do... E GEL by Crank Sports. http://www.cranksports.com/products/eGel/ This made me feel like I had a solid choice for nutrition to see someone who is such as endurance athlete using the same product. We ran with Dean for a bit and I was on such a high that I must have picked the pace up because when I looked back at Trey he told me "go on... I'm not running that speed". SO I DID. The next 45mins were run alone with Dean. We talked about normal type stuff like our children, places to visit, races to do, nutrition and so forth. This guy is sooo down to earth and it made for the best Stump Jump I've had to date! Eventually Dean split from me and went on, but DANG... that was cool!
I ended up coming across the finish line 8mins faster than my 2008 time!!! Trey came in not far behind me. We both had a good day on the trails despite my recent Ironman and Trey's lack of training for this event.