For the 3rd week in a row this would be Matt's longest run ever. There is very little elevation gain/loss on this stretch of trail, but the views are still pretty and the buffalo abound (not so much on this outing, but still). The goal (for me) was to push the pace a little and really use it as a training run. We all stayed together and chatted for the first few miles and then I upped the pace a little and Adam and Scott fell back. Matt stayed with me until about mile 10 and then I sped up even more (it was a race to the toilet at the ranch!!!), but he stayed within a couple minutes of me. I hit the turn around at the ranch in 1:29:49, mile 10.68. Matt was right behind me and Scott and Adam were only a few additional minutes behind that. We were all doing really well.
When we started back I intended just to put it in cruise, but Matt set a solid pace and I realized I felt super good, so I kind of took off. And then I just put it on auto-pilot and made sure I fueled every 30 minutes and my pace just stuck. At first I hoped to run a negative split, but that wasn't going to happen so I shot for keeping it under 3 hours. With a mile left I knew I would be cutting it close. When I hit the fence and turned to go up the hill I had 2 minutes and was certain I wouldn't make it. I didn't think there was any chance I could still run the hill after maintaining that pace for so long. But up I went at a trot. Half way up I know I could better 3 hours and just kept the pace on. As I crested the top I nearly puked, but I was under three hours. EDIT: It just hit me that I had my split times wrong. I didn't realize while running and just figured it out now. I actually ran an even split on the way back, not 5 min over like I thought. That makes me super happy. I gave myself about 1.5 seconds of celebration and then dove in the bushes to relieve my upset stomach (for the second time). Matt came in about 10 minutes or so after me, then Adam after that, and finally Scott. I think overall everyone had a great run. It was a perfect day out there. Thanks to my homies for tagging along and doing so well. Once again, I'm completely amazed by what Matt does, even as he pushes his longest distance.
I'm feeling confident about my 50 miler next month and that I can PR out there. I did the math and if everything goes well I should better my current 50 mile PR by more than 30 minutes. Below are a few photos of the boys along the trail.
Wasatch Front from Antelope Island
Scott doesn't do well with gels once into a run. Hahaha.
So sly at the turn around at the ranch.