The Sundance Trail Run is held each year near the end of September just across the border from me in the Bearlodge Mtns in eastern Wyoming. The first couple of years, it was just a 10K and I ran it both years. In fact, those were two of my first trail races. RD Paul, an ultra runner himself and finisher of the Black Hills 100K this year, added a 50K a couple of years ago. By that time, I was fully gravitating toward trail running and was starting to get into ultras and was immediately excited by the opportunity to run one close to home, in the fall foliage of the Bearlodge. Despite my enthusiasm for the race, I have yet to run the Sundance 50K. You see, my son started playing youth football that first year that Paul included the 50K distance and for each of the last two years he has had a game on the day of the race and I've been involved as either a spectator or, starting last year, as a coach. So, I assumed that I wouldn't have the opportunity to run Sundance this year.
That all changed a few days ago. After several delays, we finally received the full season football schedule for this year (a week after we actually started playing games) and I immediately noticed that our bye week is September 22nd, the day of the Sundance run. Upon seeing this, I almost immediately logged into Ultrasignup and registered for the 50K.
The bad news is that, assuming that we would have a game that day and I wouldn't be able to run, I really haven't been training all that hard. The last several weeks I've been in the 30-40 mile range with, really, no long runs whatsoever since the El Vaquero Loco 50K on Aug. 11th (my longest run since then was 12.7 miles up and down Harney Peak, the high point of South Dakota, a few weeks ago). I guess you could say I'm well tapered?? Or just undertrained, if you're being realistic about it. Whatever. I may not get another chance to run Sundance in the near future, so I had to grab the opportunity when it arose. My race may not be pretty, but I know the course will be, so that's good enough for me....I guess maybe my (probable) slow pace will give me more time to enjoy the fall scenery.