Dizzy Daze 12 Hour Race

Dizzy Daze 12 Hour Race

I entered Dizzy Daze 12 Hour race with a goal running 76 miles in preparation for the 100k National Championships in Madison Wisconsin. Dizzy Daze is a Seattle classic ultramarathon that consists of clockwise loops around the Green Lake bike path. Because I ran 78 miles in 12 hours at Desert Solstice 24 hour race back in 2019, I thought that running 76 miles around Green Lake in 12 hours seemed feasible. I knew that the pace would feel very slow and then gradually become more difficult as the miles accumulated. I knew that the slower pace would allow me to recover in time for the Mad City 100K and the distance greater than the 100K would give me confidence going into the race. 

So on March 30th I toed the line and started off with one of the slowest paces of a race in recent memory. However, much to my disappointment, my legs felt dead right from the start. Troy Haeseler also decided to run the race, however, because he found out that he gained entry to Gorge Waterfalls 100K, he was not going to do the whole 12 hour race. Still Troy and I paced together for most of the morning. This made the miles go by quickly for the first couple of hours. It was excellent weather, with temperatures in the upper 30s near the start of the race and gradually warming up into the mid 50s by mid day. The skies were partly sunny which brought large crowds to the lake. 

I have not run around Green Lake much in my life because I do not really enjoy running in Seattle, or any city for that matter. I first ran the trails around Green Lake when Apryle lived near there for a few months in the autumn of 2014, then again on occasion when we lived in Shoreline in 2016, but other than that, just the Seattle Marathon in 2023. So the 24 loops at Dizzy Daze surpassed my Green Lake Loop life total. Troy and I tried a number of mind games: counting the number of terraces of a random house, identifying birds, and calculating our actual pace against goal pace.

Surprisingly I really enjoyed the scenery around Green Lake and did not get as board as I expected. It brought back a sense of nostalgia from my first experiences in Washington. I began to strategize the line that I took at each checkpoint, I avoided stepping up on to curves and took tangents to avoid wasted energy. I also tried my best to time up the only stoplight on the route, but generally that did not work out. For the first few loops I stopped at the aid station to drink a little water and take in some calories but by the fourth lap I decided to carry a hydration flask and some calories with me. I think this was a good move, especially as temperatures started to heat up. 

For the first 12 laps or 38.4 miles I essentially kept my splits between 26 to 27 minutes. This meant that I ran the first 38.4 miles in 5:23:53. This put me about 36 minutes ahead of my goal pace. So once Troy stopped racing and switched to leisure, I took it a little easier, dropping splits between 27 to 29 minutes. During the middle of lap 16, I turned over the 50 mile mark (7:01:19). By lap 17, I was feeling the cumulative effects of the day and my lap splits crossed the 30 minute barrier for the first time of the day.

I was easily able to take in calories until about hour 8 or 9 (lap 19), which was when eating became more difficult. This tracks with basically every ultra I have ever run. However, with the short loops and access to a wide variety of foods, I was able to mitigate it better in this race. The temperatures reached the highpoint in the bell curve around the mid point in the race and then gradually began to cool off again, which I certainly welcomed. 

Around lap 21, I was not sure that I would be able to reach my goal of 24 laps (and the course record). However, after lap 22 the man operating the timer said that I could slow down considerably and still make 24 laps. He was right and after coming through lap 23 with 50 minutes to spare, I knew that I could almost walk all the way around the lake and make the time cut off. However, I picked up the pace and thought I would aim to finish a little sooner. Other runners wished me well and asked if I would go for one more, to which I emphatically said no. I walked a little near the end of the loop but managed to come through with about 22 minutes to spare.

It was a great feeling of accomplishment to get the record, but post race my body was feeling fairly worked. My body temperature dropped quickly and I was shaking and feeling very sore. My right medial knee was in some considerable pain and I began to worry if I pushed this race a little to close to Mad City 100K. However, I also feel that covering that distance was a necessary hurtle  to prepare for the 100k distance which I had not done since the Wonderland in September of 2023. I also feel that since I took it as more of a training run than a race, my body was not under the same level of stress than it would have been if I pushed Dizzy Daze like a true race. I stand by more decision to run Dizzy Daze.

Thanks to the race directors and volunteers that supported me a kept me warm after the race. Thanks to my dad for dropping me off and Apryle for picking me up. Thanks to Troy for running so many miles with me. Thanks to Sarah Paquet for running a few miles with us and thanks to Rob and Celestine who came out to cheer me on lap 20ish. 

Lap #Lap TimeTotal TimeMilesTotal Miles
Lap 126:05.70:26:053.23.2
Lap 226:30.90:52:363.26.4
Lap 326:53.11:19:303.29.6
Lap 425:47.61:45:183.212.8
Lap 526:47.52:12:053.216
Lap 627:06.02:39:113.219.2
Lap 727:38.93:06:503.222.4
Lap 827:17.53:34:083.225.6
Lap 927:52.74:02:003.228.8
Lap 1026:59.24:29:003.232
Lap 1126:54.74:55:543.235.2
Lap 1227:58.25:23:533.238.4
Lap 1329:29.45:53:223.241.6
Lap 1428:22.76:21:453.244.8
Lap 1527:34.46:49:193.248
Lap 1629:48.27:19:083.251.2
Lap 1730:09.27:49:173.254.4
Lap 1831:41.18:20:583.257.6
Lap 1931:07.78:52:063.260.8
Lap 2032:20.89:24:273.264
Lap 2133:40.19:58:073.267.2
Lap 2233:43.510:31:503.270.4
Lap 2333:10.811:05:013.273.6
Lap 2433:38.011:38:393.276.8


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