Monday, September 21, 2015

More 200 Thoughts

Some general thoughts on running 200:

You probably want to use caffeine wisely. I don't what "wisely" means other than to say "to your advantage," but I think that cutting back before the race would be good, then not using it until you need it during the race is likely beneficial, because then you'll notice its stimulating effects more. I didn't take any until Sunday evening, and then I definitely noticed its effects. I think not drinking Coke at aid stations for the first day and a half makes sense.

You probably want to go with maximal shoes. The pounding in my feet, especially on some of the paved sections, or the rocky sections, got so bad that I would stop and stand still and could my pulse in my feet, and the pain radiating up through my entire body, like the pain from a horrible roadwalk on a thru-hike. I started with a fairly new pair of Lone Peak 2.0s, which have a pretty substantial amount of padding, but I think their somewhat boxy fit doesn't agree with my arch. (I had no such problems with Lone Peaks with the 1.0 and 1.5, but 2.0 was a significant change. Prior editions did have significantly less padding, so I could never use just one pair for a race.) I switched to an older pair of Altra Olympus, and that definitely helped, despite their age. (Don't ask me about my terrible time trying to find replacements in Reno after the race. Sorry brick and mortar stores for things that aren't food, you and me are done.) Even though I was getting blisters in the Olympus, I could not imagine switching into the less padded Cascadias I had in another drop bag.

RDs of the world (regardless of distance): Oriental flavor Top Ramen is vegetarian. ALL RAMEN FLAVORS TASTE THE SAME, so it's a Pareto improvement to serve Oriental flavor instead of chicken. Please!

I thought some of the aid stations (Sierra at Tahoe, Spooner, Brockway, Rideout) were particularly cool. Maybe it's just the effect of being up for four consecutive days, but erring on the side of consistency across aid stations would be good. Of course it's always nice to be surprised with something extra, but it's really disappointing when something you've come to depend on at previous aid stations isn't available.

Put a toothbrush and toothpaste in your dropbags. The accumulated sugar may wreak havoc on your teeth otherwise.

Sweets will very shortly prove upsetting. You're going to want savory or bland. Granted, I have never once desired any of the sugary candy that aid stations have to offer, but ever more so at Tahoe 200, all I could imagine eating was pretzels, saltines, potato chips, and soup. I was bummed they didn't have boiled potatoes, as boring as they are.

Don't forget lip balm with some sunscreen in it.

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