Moab: I had been looking forward to racing Moab. The race I knew would give me a decent benchmark of my fitness. Lynnette and I drove down Friday night ready for a relaxing weekend. The morning was cold around 20 degrees but with a clear sky promising warm weather later in the day. I started with just shorts and a singlet figuring I would warm up. The first few miles found inviting patches of sun intermixed with cool numbing shading. I thought how the cold would soon be past but it seemed to go indefinitely. Finally by the first aid station near mile 5 I was starting to warm up. I was in first place by this point but only by a few seconds. I clicked off the mile up to the overlook somewhere 10 miles into the race. Down below the racer’s cars still lined the road for quarter mile looking like the mini Hot Wheels I used to play with.
I continued to cruise as my body resounded. I was eating and drinking well but did not feel as strong as other years. I know my base is not as good as previous years but I could still race well. Midway at mile 17 or so I had about a 1-2 minute lead. Not very much really. Soon I was on the most adventurous and enjoyable part of the course: the slick rock trails of Gold Bar Rim. I ran up and down the slick rock jumping cracks and boulders and bounding down drops. I followed the trail ribbon mostly successfully but my tired body was finding it difficult to follow it precise. At one point 20 yards off course I had to down climb a 10 foot rock section. Around mile 24 my lead was abolished as both Kevin Koch and Eric Bohn passed me battling it out for 1st. I could just watch. A mile later, Karl Meltzer passed me as well. My rough patch between miles 23-27 was finally over. I started running with a purpose again hopping to chase down one of the lead runners. The fantasy served to help keep me running with speed.
I crossed the finish line tired but knowing I had raced well and was content with my effort. My training right now must continue through May to be a fine line of putting in the miles amongst school and life. For now a winter and spring foundation must grow as speed and fitness await for the summer.
Up next: Salida Marathon