Monday, December 13, 2010

MGM 50K Race Report!

This past Saturday marked the 19th year the Virginia Happy Trails Running Club has held its annual holiday-themed 50k run along the Bull Run trails. Seeing as how this is a Fat Ass race, its name has evolved over the years by translating "Fat Ass" into various languages. A few years back they settled on the Latin name: Magnus Gluteus Maximus, or MGM for short. Regardless of the name, the point of the race is always the same: Give the opportunity for VHTRCers to gather one more time before Christmas and have some fun on the trails.  This year had a special bonus in it for me as I had the privilege of pacing my friend Andy through his first-ever ultra. Considering he just ran his first marathon a couple weeks back in Philly, and the MGM was a breeze for him as well, I'd say the sky is the limit for this guy!

Like an idiot, I forgot to bring my camera, but thanks to the VHTRC website (you're the man, Anstr!), I can share some of the sights here:
RD Joe Clapper would look a little strange in his green tights anywhere but the MGM (or maybe in a Green Giant commercial). Either way, "Ho Ho Ho" applies!

While Joe instructs the crowd, I sneak in late and sign-up on the roster. I know, the ring around my hat isn't really "green", but it was the best I could do!

A total of 188 VHTRCers signed up to brave the cold for this run. Bonus points if you can spot me and Andy (green shirt) in the back!

The colorful pack stretches out along the banks of the river early on...

Most people fear the "Do Loop" on the Bull Run course. Not for any imposing climbs that you can see, but for what secrets (all bad!) it hides under its year-round blanket of leaves.

The best part about the MGM is the "Hanging Bourbon" tradition at the Aid Station just after the Do Loop. No better way to forget the horrors you just survived!

Mark Z. sums up the fun of the MGM run in one shot here. Also, he looks like Santa, which is pretty darn awesome for this race!

I've had a ton of fun over the past few weeks while starting to run again and taking advantage of the opportunities to pace a few friends in various races. Now that the race schedule is clear for the next few weeks, I'll start ramping up the training to prepare my legs for a year of more mountain running than ever before. With a couple races still TBD for me next year (most notably Hardrock..and whatever 100 I replace it with if I don't get in), I'm just going to prepare the best I can with focused speed and climbing workouts multiple times each week to have me ready for whatever races I find myself lining up for in 2011. The weekly long runs will be back in full-order starting this week, and with my body and mind both feeling great, I'm excited to see what kind of shape I can hammer myself into over the next couple months!

Oh, and speaking of Hammer...

Many of you know I love using Hammer gels and perpetuem as my main fuel source during races, and I thank them quite a bit for their sponsorship during this past year. That said, I've decided to not renew my deal with them for 2011. I'll continue to use their products, but I'll also feel much less guilty about mixing fuel from other companies that I've found also works well for me (and my stomach) at various times. I like to be able to tell those of you who are interested exactly what I'm taking during my races to help you possibly find better ways to fuel yourself in your own runs. The point of this blog was never to "sell" anything, just to help share info with other runners to help everyone achieve their best in this sport. I look forward to doing that in a completely unrestricted way once again from here on out!


Kim said...

Wow, what a great turnout!

The Gittelman family said...

Gaaah, so bummed I had to miss my first MGM! Was looking forward to meeting you, Dan. But with 10 stitches in my hand from an unfortunate encounter with a medicine chest door (!), I figured I might be a danger to myself and others! Next time! Alison

Andy said...

Thanks for being an awesome wingman for my first 50K!!

Dan Rose said...

Alison - Yikes! Ten stitches! There are enough tripping hazards on the Do Loop to give you 10 more if you're not lucky, so you made the right call to stay home and heal up!