First. 2018 Many on the Genny is already open. Nothing to think about there.
As for 2017. I’ve now done 15 ultras. I have favorites.
But MOTG is the current leader.
Why? It was perfect.
I was kind of dreading the race. The day before – part of me didn’t want to go. I was planning on starting – but pretty certain I wouldn’t finish. I thought I was injured.
My foot felt pretty awful after running a Ragnar (ultra team) trail relay the weekend before. The Papliteal on my left knee was also aggravated – which is what took me out of my 100 attempt last year. I could run on the foot – but if the knee thing happened again, there was no way.
I love Inaugural races. Especially when trail friends are the race directors. So I had to start – and just see what happens.
I did no preparing. I would wear my Orange Mud vest – but figured I wouldn’t be out there long enough to need much other than water. I didn’t have any gels, or bars to pack. But I did have chocolate covered almonds. So I carried those and some salt tabs.
I started out easy. Often running with friends. The first 20 was a lot of back and forth, and never really alone. It was all on trails I’d never ran on before. Along the gorge, by waterfalls, through water crossings. Great single track, awesome downhills – all runable.
I didn’t mind the road sections – a great opportunity to bank some time, and just take it easy.
I skipped the first aid-station… I hadn’t touched my water… or almonds yet. And I was nearing 2 hours in. oops? but I felt fine.
I ate a pickle and a potato and Aid-station #2. Started taking salt tabs and excessive water intake somewhere between there and mile 20 (Aid Station 3).
There were only 5 aid-stations, but I found the spacing to be pretty perfect. Enough time for me to drain my water, then refill soon after.
I caught up to Kendra and Greg (and Charlie) after the 3rd AS, and ran a few miles with them. They lost me on some hills though, but I was happy to be alone.
Now on the other side of Letchworth – I had run some of these trails before for Sehgahunda. A bit more rugged and technical. Probably 100 creek crossings. Still great single track, and still all pretty much runable. It was here I started thinking – everything is great.
This is my kind of race. Hills that don’t drag. Trails that you can coast on. Mostly single track. You forget how awesome Letchworth is until you see it all in a day.
My goals for today:
- Make it to mile 35. Even if I had to walk there.
- 35 was my finish line. And I guess I’d keep going if I got there.
I got to the 4th Aid Station – Mile 30ish. Still feeling good.
Usually I hit some kind of low point in the 20’s. But nope. Legs felt fine. Had energy. Always felt like I could run. I only had 5 miles till I reached my goal. Only 1 more hour.
It was this section that was the hardest for me. I was getting impatient. I was running low on water. I was out of water around 34 – but had to be there soon. Until I came across water jugs on the ground… Not a good sign.
I filled my water. Life was good. Where was AS 5?? Whatever. I didn’t really need anything now – Just the water.
The folks at the Rochester Running Co tent promised me chocolate and pickles. I was still impatiently running to get there. This is taking forever. But I’m still running. I think this is the most running I’ve done in an ultra??
Still taking forever….
Photo by Jim McLaughlin – RRC tent / AS #5
I think it ended up being mile 37?
Jonathan handed over some chocolate. I snagged a few pickles. Water refilled. And I left as they blasted “The Final Countdown.”
5 more miles? Nah. I’m gonna say 3 more miles. Yeah – Eric and Sheila wouldn’t make this a 40+ race.
The trails looked familiar. I was still convinced I only had a few miles left. Then reality would set in… but I was still running.
Still running and felt good. Definitely the most miles I’ve ever “ran”. Definitely the best I’ve ever felt. It was in these miles that I remembered the day – and decided… I love everything about this race.
I know the trails leading into the Mt. Morris Dam pretty well. And was excited to know where I was exactly. Only a mile or so left.
You pop out of the woods into the parking lot – and round your way to some open grassy picnic area. The Finnish was through some wood gate – where I got high fives from Eric.
40 miles is a great distance. Or 43. or whatever it was.
I hung around the finish seeing friends, and waiting for others to come in. Rochester friends. Buffalo friends. Even Zayne from Connecticut. This race got everyone out – and everyone together, for a pretty perfect day.
Finish Line Sky
Thanks Eric and Sheila for everything you do.
Twisted Branch 100k… in 5 weeks or so.
If you need something to do mid August – this is a point to point trail race. It’s tough. It’s awesome. Pretty sure there’s always a full moon. With a 20 hour cutoff this year – I think finisher numbers will be high.
Get in while you can! or come watch me suffer.
Cool running people and their websites – check them out:
Rochester Running Co
Goose Adventure Racing
Running Inside Out
Mountain Peak Fitness
Red Newt Racing