What am I crazy? Well I guess I'm not the only crazy one as I run the Bulldog 25K trail run in Agoura tomorrow morning, in particular those who are running the 50K! This race in the hills of Malibu Creek State Park has 2 ascents up 2,528 ft elevation Bulldog Mountain. With a net elevation climb of 4,000 feet, this course is not just challenging...it is BRUTAL. And the 50Kers are running the loop course TWICE.
What makes this particularly nutty is that tomorrow is one of the hottest days of the year and an excessive heat watch was issued for the area (see below). What this means is that I have to really focus on hydration. Normally I don't carry fluid bottles in races. This race I'll be making an exception for (though in prior years I have not carried a bottle through the race).
I am not in particularly well-trained shape. I was given a free entry to this year's race and decided it would be fun. YEARS AGO I won the race a couple times, which is why I get a freebie. Two years ago I had planned to run the 50K for the first time but injuries prevented me from doing the 2nd loop. But I finished the single loop, walking/jogging portions of the course, in 2 hours, 12 minutes.
The 50K starts at 6:30am, when the temps dip to their "low" of 67 degrees. 50Kers will finish between 10:30am (85 degrees) and 3:30pm (94 degrees). Absolutely brutal in and of itself, not even factoring in the massive hills (and by the way, the downhill is as killer as the uphill). The 25K starts at 7:30am (about 70 degrees). If all goes well I'll be done by 9:30am, right about when the temps start hitting the 80 degree range.
I hate running in the heat. But too late to wimp out :> Stay cool and think about me and the 500 other crazy runners in Agoura tomorrow morning!
Excessive Heat Watch for Los Angeles County San Fernando Valley
Issued by The National Weather Service
Los Angeles, CA
Fri, Aug 26, 2011, 7:57 PM PDT
EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM SATURDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH SATURDAY EVENING...
* HEAT INDEX VALUES... HEAT INDEX VALUES MAY RISE TO AROUND 105 DEGREES DURING THE AFTERNOON HOURS SATURDAY AND REMAIN ABOVE 105 UNTIL EARLY SATURDAY EVENING.
* TIMING... SATURDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH EARLY SATURDAY EVENING.
* IMPACTS... HEAT RELATED ILLNESS AND FATIGUE WILL BECOME MORE PREVALENT DURING PERIODS OF EXCESSIVE HEAT... ESPECIALLY FOR THE HOMELESS... ELDERLY... AND THOSE WHO WORK OR ARE ACTIVE OUTDOORS.
AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH MEANS THAT A PROLONGED PERIOD OF HOT TEMPERATURES IS EXPECTED. THE COMBINATION OF HOT TEMPERATURES AND HIGH HUMIDITY WILL COMBINE TO CREATE A DANGEROUS SITUATION IN WHICH HEAT ILLNESSES ARE POSSIBLE. DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS... STAY IN AN AIR-CONDITIONED ROOM... STAY OUT OF THE SUN... AND CHECK UP ON RELATIVES AND NEIGHBORS.
... POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS HEAT EXPECTED OVER THE LOS ANGELES COUNTY VALLEYS AND MOUNTAINS...
.A LARGE RIDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE OVER THE SOUTHWEST UNITED STATES WILL CONTINUE TO BRING HOT TEMPERATURES TO THE AREA THROUGH THE WEEKEND. MOIST SOUTHERLY FLOW ALOFT BRING INCREASING RELATIVELY HUMIDITIES THROUGH THE WEEKEND. HEAT INDEX VALUES ARE EXPECTED TO CLIMB THROUGH THE WEEKEND AND COULD HIT CRITICAL LEVELS OVER THE VALLEYS AND MOUNTAINS OF LOS ANGELES COUNTY... ESPECIALLY ON SATURDAY. IN ADDITION... OVERNIGHT TEMPERATURE WILL BE WARMER THAN NORMAL.