Sunday, February 27, 2011

Bedford Creek 18km

Avg Pace: 7:05min/km

Fairly early on and still happy. 

What a day out up the Blue Mountains. Woke up at 4:45am to leave Ashfield at 5:30am and arrived at Ingar Camp, Wentworth Falls around 7am. Its pretty much all highway up to the Falls, but then a 10km fire trail down to the camp ground which was slow going. I was surprised when some light rain started falling. The views from Tablelands Rd were amazing. Got sorted and the race kicked off at 7:45am. The race director in describing the course for those of who hadn't been there before said, "It's not flat."

Bedford Creek Elevation
And 'not flat' was right. We started on a 500m ascent so I was already hammered in the first few minutes. By the time I got to the first descent I would have had my heart rate up around 85-90%. That was followed by a steep 1.8km downhill which was smashing my quads, I found the downhills quite difficult, people were scooting past me while I was trying not to fall on my ass. We soon hit Bedford Creek where there was a few rocks to step on and get across - I saw someone put their foot in the water and I thought how much I did not want to do that, running with a wet shoe would suck. Then uphill, I must have started power walking the hills around here pretty much straight away. There's no point in trying to run up them (for me) because its just going to destroy me - my heart rate was high enough just walking. I don't know if the winners run the hills, but it seems insane if they do.

Coming back. Those two guys behind me caught and passed me on the downhills.
I lost a lot of pace on the downhills. I could feel my shins, quads and ITB just burning. Its something I need to work on a lot, I felt like I was going to fall over so felt like I was braking too much which was putting all the extra pressure on my legs. I mostly got passed (mostly) on the downhills.

Around the 5km mark we hit some beautiful, but slow going single trail stuff. I really like the single trail, (Turpentine walking track) but its quite slow for me. A lot of the time I couldn't see where my feet were landing and it got pretty steep in one section. Coming back down through there was tough and the guy in front of me who'd I just spent the last 15mins trying to catch up to disappeared through here and was not to be seen until the finish.

It was a tough, very hilly run. Towards the end I was doing the 'run to this marker, rest, run to the next point' strategy. Beautiful part of the world and would love to get up there to train more often. Some great views down into the valley, although its hard to enjoy when you feel like you're lungs are on fire. It rained on and off throughout the morning, quite a bit towards the end - but I barely even noticed or cared!

Running Wild have put on a great series of races, I just wish I could have gotten into a few more. The Mt Solitary 25km in April is my next trail run, so I'm really going to need to find some big hills before then.

Blue Mountains National Park. Awesome.

Google earth. You can see the track we followed.