Javelina Jangover 50K 2014

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Bad ASS shirt
Anytime rain is in the forecast for a race my mind drifts back to last year’s Zane Grey 50 Miler.  That one still stings.  But for the Javelina Jangover 50k I was looking forward to the rain.  The lower temps and a run-able course made my mind spin with thoughts of a PR. But I had to remind myself, not to go out to fast!


My wife and I carpooled to McDowell Mountain Regional Park with Chris, a fellow runner and accomplished bow hunter, and his wife.  We got to the park, picked up are bibs, and begin to get our gear ready for the run. I was excited to be back on the Pemberton trail, last time I was there was for the JJ100.

Looking West from the parking lot
Looking East Near the Start line
The skies were beautiful, any direction you turned to look you were in for a treat.  I snapped a few photos, caught up with a few friends and eagerly awaited the start of the 50k.  The 75k runners were off and the 30 minutes between the start of their race and mine felt like seconds.  I was nervous, but in a good way.  It begin to rain a few minutes before the gun went off. 

 

My Garmin has had a crack in it for a while now, so with the fear of it being water damaged, I had it in a zip-lock bag.  So after hitting start I tucked it in my pocket and patiently headed out onto the trail.   I was running blind so to speak and enjoying the rain. The thick storm clouds covered up the moon so my headlamp was definitely needed.  I kept a good rhythm.  Finally the rain subsided and I took my watch out of my pocket and placed it on my wrist.  I was at mile 5 and very happy about my pace.   

 

75k Start
The electrical storm was amazing as flashes of lightning lit up the whole sky. I overheard one runner counting down the roar of thunder.  I laughed, when a rod of lightning flashed over the McDowell’s, and another runner yelped “YOWZA.”  It really made for an awesome backdrop, and I was grateful that it was off in the distance; I was enjoying the race and did not want it to be called off due to weather.

 

The 50k consist of two 15.4 mile loops.  You run the first clock wise and second counter clockwise.  As with JJ100, this was one of my favorite features of the race since you can see the leaders and watch the race unfold.  Also it is motivating to cheer on other runners and also get words of encouragement.  I ran nearly every step of the first loop. 

As I entered the aid station I quickly handed off both of my water bottles to be re-filled.  My wife, who I am so glad made it to the race, brought my drop bag over to me.  I decided to change my shirt.  I was soaked and it felt good to put on a fresh shirt.  I was grazing over the aid station table while also explaining to her how I had fallen with less than a mile to go before the end of the first loop, when she interrupted me and said “stuff your pockets and go!”   I was caught off guard but also flattered.  She was right, the clock was running.

I left the aid station in good spirits and confident knowing I was on pace to smash my 50k personal best of 5:54:32.   I was running steady but feeling fatigued.  My hips and knees ached.  I attribute it to the 21 mile training run on the Mogollon Monster 100 course the weekend before.  I would not change a thing, I had a blast up in Pine, and was having a solid race so far.  I caught up with Chris and we begin to chat and run together.

 It was nice having company.  Chris asked if I had turned off my head lamp off at all.  I hadn’t but decided to try it.  After my eyes adjusted, Chris and I, spent the next few miles hiking and running under the moonlight.  It was cool and made the experience that much more enjoyable.  After falling a second time, I turned my headlamp back on. 

 The last 4 miles consisted of running surges, walking, and my world famous dry heaving.  Soto and Widener brothers know what I am talking about. It’s funny how seeing the finish line gives you a second wind.  Suddenly I had a little more pep in my step and crossed the line in 5:27:37.  Good enough for 12 place and a 26 minute 50k PR.

 So glad I decided to run this race.  I don’t think I will run JJ100 this year, but will be back one day to chase a sub 24 hour finish and a Western States lottery ticket.  (As of writing this only 30 spots left)

 

I love this sport

Me and Chris Lopez
 

Ran the Jangover and had to get Hungover...
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


















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