I have been busy lately training for my first 50 mile run - the Quicksilver 50 coming up this Saturday, May 10th. This race is held in the foothills around south San Jose, where I grew up. I used to hike with friends and catch snakes in the area as a kid, so have many fond memories of the trails there.
It can be hot in them thar hills, which is why many people around the Bay Area like QS for a Western States training run. It also has some decent hills, with elevation gain around 8,500' or so.
My training has gone well, and I am feeling very excited about running my first 50 miler. I am reasonably confident of hitting my goals: first - to finish; second - finish in under 11 hours to qualify for the Western States lottery; and third - I would like to finish in under 10 hours. While the third goal may be a stretch, I think it's good to have goals that make you reach a bit.
I did run a 50k recently - PCTR's Big Basin which had about 6,100' of elevation gain - and finished that in just over 6:30. And it was more than 50k for me, as I took a wrong turn on one of the loops and added a couple miles, and at least a half hour to my time. Gotta love bonus miles!
With that in mind, and considering I felt pretty good at the finish, I think my third goal is within reach as long as I make sure to hydrate and eat enough. My body is ready for the distance, I just have to do the right things at the right time and let my training take me to the finish line.