Rockledge Rumble is a trail race that takes place on the Northshore Trail at Lake Grapevine in Texas. Trail run distances include 15K, 30K and 50K, offering something for runners of all skill levels. I signed up for the 50K back in July. Knowing that I had Palo Duro 50 Mile on October 18th, this race was planned as my last one in 2014 before taking some time to focus on base training for next year. Going into the race I still had some IT Band and hip flexor issues lingering, but hoped that I would be able to run through them and give a high level effort during the run. My goal was to aim for 4:05-4:10, a new course record, and hopefully the overall win in the process.
|Rockledge Rumble 50K Start|
The race started out quickly, running on a section of road for a quarter of a mile before entering the trail. A pack of four of us separated from the rest of the field within the first half mile and continued to run together. I started out in second, after two or so miles was passed, and from there latched on in third place. We ran along clicking off mid-range 7 Minute miles, skipping over the first aid station at Mile 5, but all stopping at the second one at Mile 10 to replenish fluids. I made sure to surge past the first and second place runners to ensure that I got first dibs on the water cooler to eliminate any unnecessary wasted time. Once I filled my bottle back up, I let the previous leader enter the trail again in first and hopped in right behind him, running stride for stride.
The four of us stuck together up until the 50K turnaround at Mile 11.5. As soon as we turned around, we lost the fourth place runner and the remaining three of us (Goño, Myself, EJ) pushed forward. This kept up until we hit Mile 13 where the leader started to gap me and in turn I started to gap third. I let first place go, wanting to run my race and not push too early, hoping that I would have something left in the tank in the final miles. At Mile 14 I didn’t see any course markings for a quarter mile section and got worried that I had missed a turn so I ran back about 30 seconds before running into third place and immediately turning back around knowing that I was on the correct trail. This mishap cost me a minute total and I felt frustrated with myself since I have run this trail at least a dozen times, but I promised myself that I wouldn’t let the error sway my performance. As the miles went on, I could tell that Goño was pulling away from me by a significant margin as I couldn’t see him on any of the open sections, meaning that he was at least 2 minutes ahead.
From Mile 17 to 22 I put in what I felt were my strongest miles. At the Mile 22 turnaround before heading out for a final 9 Mile loop I had actually closed the gap and was only a minute behind. This gave me confidence that I could put in a few strong miles and have a chance to catch up before the final stretch. I quickly refilled my bottle and headed out.
|I continued to run strong hoping that I was closing the gap on Goño. Finally, after what felt like forever I reached the Murrell Aid Station at Mile 27.2. I had run out of electrolyte powder so I decided to just refill my bottle with water and grab a gel since I had also run out of the ones I had stashed in my race belt pre-race. Unfortunately, after my bottle was topped off I asked the aid station if they had any gels and the answer was a gut wrenching no. My energy levels were running on empty, but I didn’t want to take the time to dump my bottle out and refill it with Hammer Nutrition Heed Electrolyte Drink so I took off crossing my fingers that I would be fine in the final 4.4 Miles to the finish line.|
|Receiving My Award from RD Cindy Melder|
Rockledge Rumble was a terrifically put on event. Congratulations to all participants and a huge thank you to all staff and volunteers. I will definitely be back in 2015 if my work schedule aligns!
|1st Place: Goño Enriquez | 3rd Place: Eloy Gonzalez | 2nd Place: Jeff Ball|
The North Face Better Than Naked Shirt
The North Face GTD Short Tights
The North Face UltraTrail Shoes
Smartwool PhD Compression Calf Sleeves
Amphipod Hydraform Handheld ThermalLite 20oz Bottle
Amphipod AirFlow MicroStretch Race Belt
1st Bottle: Gatorade
2nd Bottle: Tailwind (Caffeinated)
3rd Bottle: Tailwind (Caffeinated)
Clif Shot Energy Gels: 2 Vanilla & 3 Mocha (Caffeinated)
- Have you ever tried Tailwind before?
- What is your go to electrolyte drink during races?
- Do you tend to stick to gels, liquid calories, or what is your nutrition strategy?
Thanks for reading! Feel free to leave answers, questions and comments.