Monday, February 4, 2013

My Uncomfortable Uwharrie Mountain Run 2013

Sean Andrish, Alison, JB
Yesterday I ran the Uwharrie Mountain Run.  I didn’t run any races in January and had only run one small uphill 5K since my DNF at Hellgate 100K in early December.  I have been enjoying just going out to Doughton Park running from the Longbottom area every weekend in January.  Training has been going well with several fast long runs(16-18 miles), some solid mountain workouts, and some good track workout.   The back has been mostly manageable, just becoming more irritated in the last week.  I started having some exceptionally sharp and harsh pains just under my right shoulder blade about a week ago.  My back pain tends to bounce from side to side and up and down.  It is seldom consistently just in one spot.  So that left me a little concerned going into Uwharrie.  I had been hoping to go for really fast time yesterday, but had begun to doubt that in the days before the race

Race morning was rather crisp with the temperature at the start around 17 degrees.  Once we were off, the cold was never a problem and I could have actually done with a few less clothes.  Sean Andrish and I took the lead fairly quickly after briefly going up the wrong trail in the first ½ mile.  I knew in the first 3 miles that it was not going to be an especially fast day.  I was tight, uncomfortable, and the right leg wasn’t functioning correctly.  I turned the right ankle 4-5 times in the first 5 miles as I was not feeling the ground fully with that foot.  Plus both of my plantar fascias were aching.  Oh well, I figured that I’d try to stay relaxed and hope for the best.  I was prepared to face another DNF.  Sean and I stayed together for the first 14 miles or so.  It was good to talk a little off and on, plus a nice distraction from my discomfort.  I didn’t talk as much as I am sometimes known for in races.  I was just too distracted with own discomfort.

On Longbottom loop with Jan Kriska
I had finally loosed up some and the right leg started to feel mostly functional after about an hour.  Around 14 miles, there is the steepest and longest climb on the out section.  As climbing comes quite naturally to me, I pulled away from Sean a little on the long climb.  I had enjoyed Sean’s company, but I was hoping that things might come around a little more and I could possibly surge a little on the return trip for a sub 6 hour time.  I hit the turn around in 2:55 and thought I might be able to get under 6:00.  My feet were aching something fierce though and this rocky, technical trail was not helping.  The best part of the day really had to be heading back into all the 40 and 20 mile runners.  I was surprised by the number of the runners who greeted and encouraged me by name.  That was simply humbling.  I wanted to run a fast time for all the runner’s encouragement.  But my body just was not cooperating.  It was a long day as I was never really comfortable.  The last 12 miles was all about thing in small pieces and don’t look at the watch.  I try to lose track of time and distance, just keep moving efficiently.  I was glad to see the finish in 6:05.15.   I was ready to sit down and give my feet a rest.

Me looking normal?
Alison was waiting at the finish after winning the 20 mile race for the women.  Congrats to Duncan Hoge on winning the 20 mile race.  It was great to see Shannon Johnstone and Anthony Corriveau at the finish.  I think I’m known for enjoying some post race socializing which I indulged in yesterday.  My back began to relax fairly quickly after finishing so hopefully things are going in the right direction with it.  Strangely, my back has actually hurt less after the race than in the days before.  My plantar fascias are going to need a few days to recover now.  Otherwise I don’t have much else that is very sore.  Up next is something fast, the kickoff of the La Sportiva Mountain Cup at Moab’s Red Hot 33K.  I plan to do some Mountain Cup coverage on my new website,  I hope you’ll check out some races that I’ll be putting on this year at Beech Mountain, info on my website.  The first is a 4.7 mile ~9% hill climb on April 6th.  Then the USA 10km Trail Championship on June 29th, more coming soon this race.

40 Mile Results
1. Jason Bryant - 6:05.15
2. Sean Andrish - 6:19.20
3. Sebastian Welterlin - 6:30.04

20 Mile Results
1. Male: Duncan Hoge - 2:47.32                Female: Alison Bryant 3:17.45

At Mt. Rogers with Jan a couple of weeks ago.
On the way up to Mt. Rogers Summit

More of Alison’s quotes taken out of context: 

“Size doesn’t matter to me, obviously.”


  1. Congrats on a great 40 win! I couldn't believe it when you passed me on your second leg before I could even get to Dennis Mountain.

  2. Hey Rob, Thanks. I'll try to keep things going as my big racing season gets going.

    Thanks as well Scott. Everyone's encouragement on the way back was just simply awesome.