Arrived at Grasso Park right around 6:30 on Saturday morning and got ready to hit the trail. I brought 1.5 liters of Skratch Superfuel, 1 liter of water, 3 gels, and a few electrolyte tablets. I did some stretches and was ready to rumble. My goal for the start was to take it nice and easy at a tempo pace. The weather was cool along the creek and there was plenty of shade. I stumbled across a race around mile 3 and saw a group heading straight toward me. The lead cyclist waved me over and I cleared the path for the racers. I didn't see any more racers on the track, as I was well past their turnaround point and about a mile ahead of them. I passed a couple of aid stations, but true to the spirit of an unsupported FKT, and knowing the aid wasn't for me, I didn't stop or use the aid. I took my first gel at mile 7 and bio break at 7.5. Legs and lungs felt good at that point and I was cruising at a nice pace. I could feel myself going a bit too fast for comfort, but I wanted to push my body in the tempo. There is a long, exposed section of the trail from about mile 6 to 11 where there is little shade, few people, and slight hills. I made it through that section and chugged along the path. Hit the Boneyard at mile 14.5, tagged the slide, and headed back. I knew that the out was downhill which meant the back was going to be uphill. It's not brutal, but it'll get you. Unfortunately, it got me. I took another gel at mile 15 and pushed forward into the unknown. As I entered the dreaded stretch between miles 17 and 23, I could feel my energy draining. I hit mile 18 and told myself to make it one more mile, and then another, and then another. I knew my pace was still going strong, but it was unsustainable and I was going to have to walk at some point. I made it to mile 22 before I succumbed to a lack of energy and started walking. The heat and gradual uphill climb that didn't feel uphill was just too much. I took another gel while I walked and finished my Skratch. I alternated walking and running for the next few miles while I drank more water. I ran in the shade and walked in the sun. I reached the crowds again and activity of all types had picked up. At mile 27, I missed the exit ramp. I ran right past it and continued on for about half a mile before I had that dreaded feeling of uneasiness. I took out my phone and realized I way off course. Now the running began! I know I looked a bit weird, with my bag in one hand, my phone in the other, and frantically looking around for the trail. Was I really going to be deterred because of one wrong turn? Fortunately, I found the trail, and took the correct turn back onto the path. The little detour added an extra 1.1 miles and more than 15 minutes. I put my bag back on and ran the rest of the way with my phone. I wasn't going to lose track of the trail again. Made it back to the park in approximately 4 hours and 46 minutes. My goal was 4'30" and I would have reached it if not for the detour. Oh well. Happens to the best of us. Nice trail and a great day to run through some cities!
out & back
4h 46m 1s