Sunday, June 26, 2011

Mount Washington Road Race 2011

I thought it would be a good idea to post about this race before the USA Mountain Championships take place this morning in North Conway, NH at Cranmore Mountain. Unfortunatey, I cannot race so I will quickly share my MW experience. Going into MW I had low expectations due to my limited mileage (since 5/1), lack of racing (3 races since 5/1) and hardly any track work (1 workout). However, my fitness has improved of late and the nagging left hammy has improved as well. Someone asked me what my goal time was and I said I would take sub 1:16. I find it difficult to guage or predict a time for this race because I have only raced it a handful of times and mostly as an aging master.

After a 3 mile warmup in the rain, I put myself in the 3rd row (every year same place) and waited for the start. I felt decent, fairly rested and well hydrated. As the gun went off, I just took it out tried to remain relaxed. Shortly into the race, my legs stiffened up and felt horrible. I told myself to relax and not worry but knew it may be a difficult run. As we hit the climb, I could see many runners who I wanted to be with and tried to hang as best I could. However, as we hit the 2nd mile, my left calf was really not responding well and it was becoming an issue. I was not in oxygen debt and felt great otherwise but the calf would not allow me to increase my pace. I basicallly slugged along and as I hit 3 miles (sorry no splits) and actually turned around and started running down the mountain. It was at that moment when Reno Stirrat passed me and offered encouragement to continue. I wanted to run down and just end it but turned around and went into a one minute power walk until I got the balls to run again. I am glad I did because the calf loosened up and from the halfway point to the summit, I actually raced and felt good. I wish I could find my splits on that tiny piece of paper but it doesn't matter. I finished in 47th place with a time of 1:17:52.


  1. "until I got the balls to run again."


  2. I like the way you willed this one. Good job.
    What could stop a marathoner's legs from running at 3/4 miles? If you are interested in another competitor's impressions of the climb, please read my G4S Q+A with M. Sullivan after Mt. Washington road race.