Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Race Report: NCR Trail Marathon 2-person Relay 2006

I hesitate to label this as a race report because of my approach to the event - I determined that I would keep to the heart rate limit of 150 that I've been using for base training. Nonetheless, since the organizers label the event as a race and I paid an entry fee I'll stick with the header.

Back in 2003 I ran the full marathon. Since then I have run the relay with my teammate Jim Simpson doing the first leg me doing the second. While this sticks Jim with the cooler weather, it gives him a fair split time for a half-marathon (and on the two previous occasions let him run along with our mutual friend JK - JK missed this one as he tries to rehab his Achilles tendon).

My congratulations go out to Jim, who (on an unfairly long course) came in with a personal best at 1:59:22. This year I used his camera to snap a couple of pictures as he crossed the timing mat and ran up to me to pass along our timing chip, so we preserved the moment!

Almost immediately after the relay hand-off I had to throttle back - it's hard to start an event at such a slow pace. It was even harder to stay throttled back as runner chix blew past me; not only was I not going to impress them with physical prowess (if that were even an option), but I lost sight of them all too soon!

The day was fabulous for a light run. The trail is crushed stone, mostly running alongside a river in a protective depression/valley. It was sunny, and by the time I was running the temperature was around mid-fifties rising to a bit over sixty. There was no noticable wind. The volunteers were friendly at the aid stations and road crossings, and I had a lot of breath available to thank them. Water stations were a bit too far apart for me, so I had a water bottle with me; many other runners relied entirely upon the stations.

I did occasionally pass someone: there were some marathoners who flagged so much that I went by them, and some second-leg relay people who had had a faster teammate than mine but were themselves going at a slower pace than me. A few steps along after passing one fellow I heard him query: "Is that Brent?" I looked back and recognized Nav Mundi, a friend from Toronto. Neither of us had any idea that the other was going to be at the event, so that was a very nice surprise. Nav and I ran together for a few miles until somewhere past my mile 11 (his mile 24).

I had to walk the minor hills at the end of the course to keep within my heartrate limit. I had company - a few other people were too slammed at that point to tackle them at a run. My final time was 2:19:42, but I think the course layout mistakenly had the first leg a couple of hundred yards longer than the second. My Garmin said my leg was short, and Jim tells me that a lot of people running the first leg (including him) had theirs showing the first leg as too long.

My thanks to the organizers and all the volunteers.


Anonymous Nigel. said...

Being passed by runner chix is not a problem. The view is usually worthwhile. Having them disappear from sight is a problem, although that might bring your heart rate back to normal.

11/28/2006 07:45:00 am  
Blogger Wendy said...

Good for Jim! Too bad he didn't email you the pix to post. Nice for you to run with Nav, and vice versa. (And good job stickin' with the plan.)

11/28/2006 08:09:00 am  
Blogger David Rotor said...

I would hazard a guess that while your garmin recorded your leg as short, each and every time you run your legs are short.

11/28/2006 12:44:00 pm  
Blogger Brent Buckner said...




11/28/2006 03:28:00 pm  

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