3 Days at the Fair

Sussex County Fairgrounds, NJ
20 May 2017
53 miles completed

Oh how I love this event! I did not reach my goal of 100k this year, but I finished with more miles than in 2016, so progress counts for something.

In 2016, at my first 3DATF and my first 24-hour run, I didn’t know how to train or how to strategize for the event. I ended up moving as long as possible, despite fairly severe and unexpected hip pain, and then resting for several hours before going back out for more miles.

In 2017, I thought resting earlier might keep me moving more efficiently for longer, so I took a short break after about six hours. This was a mistake. I fell asleep without meaning to, woke up groggy, and then struggled to get back in the swing of things. Lesson learned.

I’m not a dedicated or consistent winter runner, so for spring events I depend on a modest amount of physical training and a generous amount of stubbornness and patience. I think moving forward I’m going to need to depend on a fair amount of indoor conditioning to do well at this event: more strength training, more PT for the hips, more yoga for flexibility.

Beyond the physical, the event was great! We shared the venue again with the poultry show, but my tent was one building further removed from the poultry barn and the clucking and crowing didn’t wake me up at all. On Saturday there was an equestrian event, so that was fun to watch coming around the corner of each loop. The weather was a little hot midday, and a little cold midnight, but overall very nice. There was no rain during the 24-hour.

I was stoked to learn that I would receive a coin for 100 lifetime miles and I loved ringing the bell when I hit 100. Swag this year was pajama pants and a t-shirt. I didn’t wear either during the event, but there were many pairs of plaid pants shuffling around the course. Of course, the best part about 3DATF  is the people and I met so many great folks this year, I can’t wait to run with them again!

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