Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Saturday, June 12, 2004

Today's Mop Run


I finished 2nd. That surprised me a bit. In retrospect, I shouldn't be surprised because I struggled a lot the last 40 minutes or so.

I felt fine running for the first two hours. I kept a moderate, steady pace. I drank water regularly and had a few shots of gu. I saw Eric Saggars around the two hour mark. He was walking and looked tired. I remember thinking, "well, I feel a lot better than Eric."

Soon after seeing Eric I began feeling tired. But, I knew that would happen. I felt tired, but not dead. The last hour would be tough, but I didn't think I'd have much trouble.

Then my calf muscles started hurting. They didn't cramp, they just got stiff and sore. Running became uncomfortable.

At about the 2:20 mark I realized I'd better look for a short route back to the finish. I picked a return route that was as short as I could come up with. It took me through an area with almost no controls. So I'd sacrifice points. But it was better to give up points than be overtime (there was a 3 hour limit with a big penalty for finishing late).

What happened?

I think what happened is that running on pavement made me change my stride just a bit (I almost never run on pavement and when I do it is usually for no more than 10 minutes at a time). Two+ hours with a slightly different stride caused problems.

Well, despite some troubles I had a lot of fun.

I haven't lived in Lawrence for a good 15 years. The town has changed a lot. I spent most of the race in the west part of town, which is where most of the growth has been the last ten years of so. I don't know my way around the west part of town. I had to pay close attention to the map. That made it fun. I probably would have scored more points if I ran in the older parts of town. That is the part of town I know well. But, it wouldn't have been as much fun.

posted by Michael | 5:12 PM


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