Well, let's call it a learning experience. My Howl was not a positive experience for me in terms of results. Let me set the scene. My race started very well, probably too well in fact. My first 4 laps were very strong and I felt fantastic. The problem was that I was running for the now and not planning for what was ahead. At the end of the 5th lap I was finally starting to feel it and was entering a low. I thought, "here it is, my first low. Just keep moving." As soon as I started the 6th loop, I was having troubles. I was walking a lot and started feeling weak. I continued on my walk to the aid station where I drank more water, filled my bottle and hit a shot of Pepsi which was the only thing I could stomach at the time. I continued on down the trail weavy pretty bad and began feeling very dizzy and faint actually forcing me to the side of the trail. I sat for a bit and knew that my race had probably come to an end. I forced myself up and made it close to the finish when I saw my buddy Craig who had come out to cheer me on. The look on his face when he saw me said it all. He walked to the start/finish line with me to complete my 6th loop and that was it for me. I was very faint and slurring my speech. Luckily Dana and Craig were able to get me down and ice me down and start getting Heed into me. After about 90 minutes I was able to get out of the chair and walk a little bit, but my race was over. 19.75 miles in almost exactly 4 hours.
I've ran things through my head a thousand times and here's where I think I went wrong. Forst and foremost I have lost too much weight too fast the last 6 weeks and I was too weak going in. Combined with going out too hard ealy on and temps in the 90's, it was a disaster waiting to happen. Compensating for being weak and going too hard out of the gate just snowballed with some dehydration and playing catch up from the start. I'm taking a few days off, maybe a week and collect my thoughts. I might head over to Eureka this weekend for the 2nd CITRA race 5 miler and do it for fun and lift my spirits. I don't want to stay out too long and loose my drive. I just want to regroup and learn from my mistakes so Farmdale has a happier ending.
My sincere condolences to the family of the guy from Indiana who had a heart attck early in the race and unfortunately lost his life. It makes you realize what's REALLY important at these events, which is leaving under your own power and your health still in tact.