My wife encouraged me to sign up for the Coastal 50k as a birthday present to myself back in September 2015 for my 26th birthday. Granted, I hadn’t done really any training for this at all except 2 runs the week before the race. We completed the sign up registration about 5 days before the race.
50k is a pretty good distance to run. 31 miles. And if you look at the course elevation, it’s a good amount of elevation gain, too!
I’m not really good at race recaps or anything, but I will say, it was a brutally hot day and every vertical bit of elevation gain was felt. Legs were jello, but loved it. And disliked it. But I loved it. nearly 2000 ft gained within the first 5k. OUCH! Met some really cool folks along the way and that’s one of the things I love about ultra marathons. Almost everyone is going slow enough to talk and have good conversations.
One of the coolest parts (actually hottest since it was 348 degrees outside that day) was running to the aid station that was underneath the Golden Gate Bridge. Actually that part really sucked, too, because it was an out and back aid station. So while the descent was appreciated, right after that aid station (mile 25) we had to climb right back up 1200 ft or so to continue. I had never been under the bridge before, and it was neat to see so many tourists riding bikes on the winding roads, too.
All in all, one of the best events I’ve ever done as far as organization. Not my greatest performance, but not too bad considering it was my first event since July 2013 (Blue Blazes Ultra 3 day race). I ended up with an 11th overall, 2nd in my age-group. Not bad! Maybe I’ll go back next year and go for a better result since I’m not going to let myself get out of shape again. No way!
Another part of my birthday present to myself was to do this event and inspire myself to get back into the swing of things. No more lazy bum-ness. I want to run and run fast again! I won 2 ultras before ( Nashville Ultra 60k 2011 and 2012) and several 5ks in 2011. I want to get back there, but faster. And of course I want to get back to seeing more places, hike more, and get back to enjoying each run! The Coastal 50k was definitely a great choice.