Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Pisgah 50k

I had a fun time this weekend at the Pisgah 50k.  I didn't really start getting tired until the Ridge Trail at about 18 miles in, which makes sense given that my longest run was 16 miles in training.  By the top of the Ridge, I was fairly certain that I was going to quit at the Kilburn aid station.  I reached the summit and told myself to slow down and enjoy the views before I bowed out in a couple miles.  I felt a little guilty giving the Elijah salute when I knew I wasn't going to see this one to the end, so I gave a half assed effort and quietly said woo.  When I did this, something inside made me realize that I was being a wuss.  I got fired up and really let a proper salute howl out.  I asked for the Bossman's help and immediately a tree branch yanked my hat off which made me laugh.  With a new motivation, I hauled down to the Kilburn aid station.

I hit the aid station the first time at 3:57.  I fueled up on a Coke and made my way out on to my least favorite part of the course.  My left hip and ankle were killing me.  I couldn't cruise on the downhills because of the pain.  I made it to the first set of bridges before the sharp left turn that would take me to the uphill portion of the loop.  A runner named Dave passed me here and asked if I was doing all right.  I told him something like I was just pooped.   I contemplated quitting again.  I thought that it would make more sense to walk back from here rather than start the difficult section and add more mileage.  For some reason I kept going.  With each step I took, I started getting pissed at the quitter in me and basically told the quitter to go "f"himself.  I got a second adrenaline rush and was able to really cruise the harder part of Kilburn Loop at a good clip.  I made it to the aid station at 5:00 even.

I fueled up again at the aid station and walked up to the parking lot while eating a double stuffed Oreo.  Dave caught me again (I had passed him back in my adrenaline fueled push on the latter half of Kilburn).  We chatted about the race and people we knew.  He's from the Keene area and is good friends with Pat (Manny), who is friends with Boj.  Kevin Bacon doesn't have shit on Boj - everyone knows him.  He tried to convince me to roll with him up Davis, but I just didn't have the energy to stick to his pace.  I soon found myself alone on Davis.  I walk/limped up the hill for an eternity before I finally started descending.  I was able to muster a run.  Another runner caught me right before I made the sharp turn on the pre - Hubbard section.  We exchanged "good jobs".  Despite his quicker pace, he looked pretty haggard which was encouraging to know that everyone suffers in this race.  I made my way up Hubbard.    I actually (Nick Cash) caught someone on the mini-climb after the vista turn-off.  She said she was walking it in from there - her legs had had enough.  The climb up Hubbard wasn't as long as I was anticipating, but the muddy downs felt forever.  I was starting to doubt that it would ever end when I saw the logging activity.  I hit the turn and knew I was going to make it.

Long races must have been invented so people could get the feeling I had on Greg's road.  I knew I had conquered a grueling course on a day when a few miles earlier, I was certain I wasn't going to finish.  I got fired up when I saw everyone at Greg's house and maybe let my emotions flow into the crazy zone.  I spiked my borrowed water bottle (Jonny's bottle and Greg's quick draw device) and high-fived everyone I could.  I blitzed up the final hill while Gina drove by cheering and beeping.  I don't know if I've ever felt better on the road section.  I hammered.  The finish was sweet.  I didn't break 6 hours, but I got a 15 minute pr.  I broke the line at 6:29:xx to the cheers of Gina, Dave, and the rest of the finish line crowd.  It's three days later, and I'm still enjoying this race.

Yeah Fyffe!

Bringing it home

In the chute.  Dave in red cheering.

Crooked, tired, and happy


  1. Awesome job Glenny! Way to not give up when you were at your lowest. I'm a proud big brother.

  2. Great write-up and congrats! Awesome job digging deep when the desire to quite rose up!

  3. Excellent job. Best feeling coming out the other side of a near stopping/quitting bout.

  4. Great work! I'll remember your resolve when I'm hitting the wall at Nipmuck, and power through that BS...:)

  5. Wicked exciting race report! I'll be reading this again before the Hartford Full next week to get me in the right mindset. Congrats on staying tough and finishing up strong!

  6. Nice work Hammett!

    1. Thanks Barlow! Awesome to hear from you. Can you still dunk?