2016-07-24 - Rosaryville 50k-ish Trail Race

~28 miles @ ~16.3 min/mi

"... and it's just so humbling!" As we approach the end of today's hot-and-humid Rosaryville 50k ultra-friend Stephanie and I are discussing ultrarunning, and why ultrarunners tend to be such profoundly NICE people — in general friendly, optimistic, trustworthy, caring, helpful, kind, welcoming, etc. Dr Fonda postulates that part of it is the humility that the sport develops (or demands?), even among the fastest of the elite: the realization that to succeed at such a challenge depends on so many huge factors outside oneself. There's no room for arrogance at the finish line!

Awesome and ultra-modest John Hord provides a great example of that, one week after succeeding at the Vermont 100 miler. Stephanie and I run the first half of today's race with him, then wait to applaud his final mile. After sprinting up the hill and across the line, John sits down and lets us cool him with ice, as he curses the fool (himself!) who made him race in this crazy summer weather. We laugh, hug, fist-bump, and pose for photos.

"Call me Ice-Z!" I tell dear Adeline Ntam before the event. The strategy of eating massive amounts of ice at every aid station works well, as it did last week at the 2016-07-16 - Catoctin 50k Trail Run. Stephanie and I trek together at a good pace, walking most of the last few miles to keep a twingy knee happy. Other runners trip and fall, but this time we're fortunate enough not to. A lady walking along tells me that her glasses got broken in a tumble and she can't see the roots any more. "That's ok," I tell her, "my double-vision makes roots enough for us both!"

Race Director Ron Bowman and all the volunteers do a wonderful job, and even the mountain bikers along the trails are polite and cautious as they pass. My GPS glitches and misses ~10 minutes of the final lap, and the course is likely short by a few miles, but who cares? It's a beautiful day for a run in the woods. Dr Fonda and I finish together in about 7:37.

(trackfile) - ^z - 2016-08-14