Thursday, January 31, 2013

Uwharrie Mountain Run Pre-Review 2013

Its Uwharrie time again. The race without grace. Everyone looks like a semi-retired Sasquatch with lumbar issues trying to navigate this course. The 20 miler option was the final straw for my torn brevis in 2012. I was over trained and naively confident about last year's run. Never again. This year I am bravely under trained and sagely terrified. 

I have prepared quite carefully. I have been frugal with long runs, only once attaining 15 miles. No onsite preparation this year, instead I have carefully mimicked the course, including aid stations, with 3 miles of sidewalk in my subdivision. My clothes and gear are carefully laid out in my closet, under my bed, some in my car, and I think my shoes may be on the back deck. 

I have no business running this event. I blame Der Scott. He goaded me into signing up by mercilessly mocking me on FB. I feel like Uwharrie is my first major step back into distance running. It is the horse that threw me. And Umstead marathon is only 4 weeks out. If I can survive crawling though the Ophir mountains for 20 miles, I might restore some of the confidence I am going to need to finish my favorite race next month. Three more months would do it. I think I would be strong enough to reasonably attempt both races by then. Alas, like killer African bees they have already arrived. And they are deadly. No buzzing though. Neither Uwharrie or Umstead really buzz. And no wings. And killer bees don't have parking hours or rangers. Otherwise a fair simile. 

I could probably derail myself rather fantastically with either of these races. My only hope is to approach them with the same caution normally reserved for the bees. My hole card for the Uwharrie 20 miler is the time limit. There isn't one. Or its 8 hours. Same thing. I was disappointed not to break 4 hours last year. This year my target is 6. In fact I will consider this race a failure if I do not finish between 5.5-6.5 hours. Anything faster confirms my imbecility. Anything slower most likely indicates a copay and a backless gown. 

I figure running the downs and the flats and walking the ups may leave my ankles intact enough to continue training for Umstead. I have run nothing but trails (and some barefoot sidewalk 1.5 milers to and from the Redbox)  for the past 6 weeks. I need to be able to switch to the level surface of the bridal trails. My legs are very unused to repetitive ground. I guess I need at least 2 more long runs after this debacle. So step 1, stay alive. Step 2, stay healthy.

I am anxious to run this one. I put my chances of a finish at 70%. Uninjured finish: 50%. But that's not bad. Well prepared racers have a 35% chance of injury in this race. There is a 20% chance you will get lost. And a 2% chance you will accidentally interrupt moonshiners. So without further adieu, Uwharrie 20 miler 2013.

(Race report goes here) (hopefully)