Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A New Challenge Awaits - Woodstock 50

After volunteering at Western States 100, I was so overwhelmed and inspired by these amazing 400 athletes, many of which I saw face to face helping them across the American River at the Rucky Chucky crossing. Monday, I tried to shake some of the feelings. By Wednesday, though, the path was clear.

I texted my coach Jeremy...

I couldn't stop thinking about the amazing weekend and how these ordinary people had worked to do something extraordinary.

It was time for me to do a 50 mile race. So then the hunt was on for a race. Jeremy suggested a handful. Suann and I spent one evening texting back and forth discussing a million races. Amazingly, a lot of them were timeframes that would not work for my race directing life. When I'm directing a race, starting 3-4 weeks before I don't run as much, and I tend to not take the best care of myself (eating, sleeping, hydrating) during that stressful time. Bad timing to do a 50M or hit peak training weeks.

Other items that were considered: big course time limit (12-13 hours would NOT work at my pace), not too rocky (I'm a tenderfoot), and gentle climbs (since big climbs would slow my pace even more!)

Peace, Love, and 50 Miles

Enter the Run Woodstock event. They are all about a weekend of "Peace, Love, and Running." September 7-9, in Hell, Michigan. That sounds like something I can get behind. After my last 3 big races I had participated in had a very competitive field - fantastic runner Max King won Gorge Waterfalls 50K, Jemez 50K/50M was filled with an amazing group of ultrarunners, and Chattanooga Stage Race brought runners who train numbers of miles I can only imagine.

They have fun with their event. I'll be running 3 PINK loops, on their very pretty colorful course map. They also have the Hallucination 100M, the LSD 100K (Long Slow Distance 100K), and every other distance down to the 5K.

Other details:

  • 15 hour time limit
  • Fairly non-technical gentle course
  • Fairly flat (for an ultra) course - 3900 feet total gain / loss
  • 3 loops - I don't think I could stomach some courses that are 8ish loops!
  • Should be good weather - mid 50s to low 70s

Booked and Committed

While the decision was made, I wanted to lay low as I watched my iron levels go back up. I've confirmed now that we have that under control after treatment.

I've done some speedwork and two-a-day workouts the last few weeks. I've done some midday heat training. I've upped my midweek running. I've been putting in weekend back-to-back trail runs. I'm secure at 35-45 mile weeks. It's time... A New Challenge Awaits.

I signed up this morning, I booked all of my travel, I'm working on getting a pacer for the third loop set up, and I'm proud that I have given myself permission to reach for something bigger! 8 weeks to race day!


  1. Go Libby Go! Way to step it up! You will do great!

    1. Thanks, Gene, for always being there with an encouraging word! I know I'll be hitting you up for advice as the training continues!!

  2. Yahoo! This race sounds ideal! (I want to do it, too!) You have the drive, Girl!*

    1. Road Trip! We could all use some "Peace, Love, and Running"! They have a half marathon and full marathon too.

  3. Wow, what a fun sounding race! :) Looking it up to see where it is/what it's all about!

    1. LOL, just added city/state to the post. You're right. I didn't even say where it was. Hell, Michigan. Yes, really. I'm going to Hell. :-)

  4. How exciting! Go Libby! I've committed to Rocky Raccoon in February for my first 50 miler and am anxious to see how yours goes. I'm sure I'll be asking for pointers. You are rockin' and rollin' girl...good job!
    I'm considering the New Years Double also and hopefully it works out that I can run it and see you there.

  5. fantastic! I can't wait to hear about it! I'm considering a 50 miler in the spring! I haven't run a marathon yet, but that's in December. I totally don't care about the race, I want some regular higher mileage. I figured once i got to where I was ready, at any time, to run a half-marathon, it was time to up the ante. Except, I'm not that thrilled about a 26 mile road race. Still, I'll do it. One step at a time, right? ;)