Sunday, April 6, 2014

Diez Vista 50k Race Report

In November, typically I fret and implore for snow “please so we can ski”. Then it’s already March bringing bouts of indecision whether to spring-ski or to mountain-run “should I get a snow tan or get my legs ready for running?” And then I daydream of ridges and scrambles with friends, with growing impatience for the snow and ice to leave. There’s a narrow window within each turn of season to make the most of every delicious activity. I mean, yes – it is fascinating to see hardened cyclists on the sea-to-sky highway in sleet and -7c. And I know many ‘pure runners’ in the community who race year-round … but for me, life is a perpetual succession of exciting build-ups and wistful recollections between sports. 

So, where were we?

Sasamat Lake, Belcarra Regional Park, Saturday 6:30am

Ah yes. I just ran DV50 with lots to say about it. But first, let’s check-in with our interviewees from the previous post (see Tuesday, April 1).

Josh: had stomach issues and wasn’t thrilled with how his day went, but pleased enough to beat his previous finish time. Finished 5:04, good for 3rd place AG male.

Sarah: also had tummy issues and problems trying to take-in nutrition, but still had lots of fun. Finished 5:32, good for 2nd place overall female.

Jacek: DNS. Still recovering from Achilles tendonitis (get well soon!)

Jackie: said “I just couldn’t get going in the first 2 hours” ... but she found her groove after the Vista trail. Finished 5:52, good for 3rd place AG female.

Josh and Jackie, pre-race good luck hugs

Ten lookouts

Leading up to race day, it seemed there was a collective nervousness.  Many shared feelings of “omg not ready!” Especially, after reading several blogs about how some were actually spot-on with their training and eager to test their might. Me too nervous, but having previously declared that I wouldn’t get overly concerned about my lack of running-specific fitness, and that I would train through the taper phase, then I was fully prepared to accept whatever the day would bring.


Wednesday night power hike on Lynn Peak with Graham, Aran and Jason

Mountaintops + friends = happiness!
Photo by Jason Work

Classic beauty

I’ve done DV once before. Long time ago, with an agonizing finish time. And swore I would never again enter a spring ultra … oh well haha.

Nonetheless I toed the start line with a time in mind, if solely for the purpose of relying on a goal to pull me through the lowest points – which for me were going to be the gravel roads, and basically any section that requires good running form. For certain, I was expecting hamstring cramps coming down Eagle on the back half.

I had a stellar day. None of my usual crashes, leg cramps, or throwing-up. I even had decent turnover on the flats, and surprised myself racing the descents (which I rarely do). I ran the first half conservatively, holding back the jets and forcing nutrition down. Then progressively pick it up until I was going full gas. Aiming for 6hrs, I finished 5:46, good for 4th overall female. 

Beautiful BC forest - Photo by Jay Klassen

This race is a classic beauty and why so many want to experience it. The views are uplifting, the technical sections keep you alert, and the many playful bits allow for top speed. I can’t say enough about the organization and the volunteers. I especially appreciated the communications from Wendy along the way, and the group’s encouragements on the FB page.

Sarah (2nd place female) with Wendy (race director)
Ed (winner and record breaker), Chris (2nd), Jason (3rd), Daniel (3rd AG)



A few more pics on instagram

PS: I aim to explore more in that area. I ran parts of the Swan Falls trail (video) with friends a couple of times, but hostile weather turned us short of the summit, twice. The Dilly Dally loop is 25km, 1150m elevation gain, and on my radar for next weekend!



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