or: The Race of Ill Omens.
Prior to last year’s Cedro Peak 45k, things didn’t proceed smoothly for me. This year my Jeep’s transmission died as we were driving to the race. I’m not a superstitious person or a believer in omens though, and the rest of the day went according to plan.
This year’s race was a low stress event for me, as I was running the race with my wife in order to pace her to her first ultra-marathon (or even marathon) finish. Consequently, I was able to stay in training run mode the entire race and never suffered through any real low points at all. I’d say burping up tequila after the tequila shot “aid station” was my only low point, but that hardly counts.
Nutrition-wise I drank Tailwind throughout the race with only one gel and pretzels to complement it. It felt great trying it for the first time in a race setting and gave me zero problems all day. I purposely erred on the side of too few calories (only 200 per bottle per hour). I’ve tried 300 cals/hour in a race setting before and found it to be too much, so I thought I’d start lower and experiment. It did turn out to be too few calories, but Tailwind is so mild in flavor and so easy on my stomach that I don’t think it will be a problem to add in another half or full scoop to each bottle in order to get to the 250-300 calorie range.
The Cedro Peak has a very low-key, local event type of feel to it, though this could be my own bias as it was only a 20 minute drive from our house. I don’t mean that in a negative way, as every detail of the race was handled well – perfect course-marking, stocked and staffed aid stations and a great trail system. It could be the distances – 45K (slightly less than that this year) and 45M – just aren’t standard race distances. There are miles and miles of trails available throughout the area of the race, I have wondered both years why some of that wasn’t tapped into to make these a more standard distance.
I’d really recommend this race to anyone in the area, especially anyone who is training for a longer race (like the Jemez 50M). This course is challenging enough to be a good tune-up race while not being so brutal that it will wipe you out for weeks afterward.
My confidence and anticipation for Jemez is even higher after running this race. My fitness and climbing feels as good as it has ever been and I can’t wait to give an all-out, race effort at the end of May.
Main gear used:
- Altra Superiors 1.5
- Ultimate Direction AK vest and bottles
- Tailwind (berry from my stash and naked from the aid stations)