The cautious optimist


I am leaving on a jet plane. Heading to Akron today, then State College, PA tomorrow. I am racing on Saturday at Tussey Mountainback 50 miler. It is the national championship for the road 50 mile.

I am feeling cautiously optimistic. My training has gone great. I have had 3 long road runs where I felt strong, fast and confident. My last long run I ran 25 miles in 3 hours. September was my second highest mileage month all year, I did a training block of 4 100+ mile weeks and my body has never felt better. So why cautiously optimistic? Well, I haven't had a successful race since Miwok 100k in May. Western States ended in a bad way and I had no choice in not finishing. Cascade Crest 100 was a poor choice as I didn't really want to do a (nother) 100 miler and I stopped because continuing seemed silly to me. Therefore, I just don't have the race confidence I have been able to maintain through most of my ultrarunning career. I mean racing 8-10 per year means I am never without a recent race under my belt, even if it was just for training purposes; it is still a race even then.

I am fine with being cautiously optimistic. I just want to go for a nice long run. Enjoy the beautiful fall weather in PA, spend time with awesome people and run the way I know I can. What happens on race day will happen, I have prepared myself as best I can.