challenging. um yah.
Race time was at 9:00 a.m. which is nice because I could leave my house at 7:30 and still be there with some time to check in and meet up with any friends that might be there. It was looking to be a gorgeous day, a bit cooler and not so humid. Perfect running conditions.
oh I look so happy.
Bib pick up is so so simple at small trail races. Give your name, here's your bib, here's your shirt. Done. No fanfare, no hoopla, just get your bib and get out of the way. I found Danielle and we took #alltheselfies.
Because what race would be complete without the obligatory selfie?
We found Jim and then had a real photo taken pre-race.
A quick trip to the porta-potty and it was time to start. I don't remember too much about the miles except they were slowish and hard. The trails were technical--meaning lots of roots and rocks to worry about tripping over. Danielle was coming off a 20 mile run the day before so she had no plans to run this fast. Which was great for me because that means we could stay together!
Mile 1: 11:24
Mile 2: 13:36
Mile 3: 16:29
This is the mile that included the first ascent to the summit. There was no running. Just walk/climbing. And a ridiculously failed attempt at a decent selfie at the top.
really, I'm pathetic.
At this point we had joined up with another runner who tagged along with us. It was great to have someone to chat with. She and Danielle would talk about marathon training and I didn't have to participate at all. Which is perfect. I like listening and adding a word or two here, but I'm not very good at carrying on a conversation while trying not to trip and smash my head on a rock. So I was perfectly happy.
Mile 4: 12:12
Mile 5: 13:40
Mile 6: 14:20
I had a gummy energy chew thing that was at least a year old somewhere around Mile 4.5 (the halfway point) and it was perfect. I chewed it for probably 1/2 a mile. (time release energy....I might be on to something) It gave me a nice little pick-me-up and I actually felt GOOD. Imagine that.
I wasn't winded from running so much as my legs (quads specifically) were really starting to hurt. If we weren't climbing up, we were coming down and the constant pounding really took a toll on them. And we still had to climb to the summit one more time. ugh. That just about killed me.
this is not the trail to the summit. that was steeper. just to give you an idea of what kind of climbing we were talking about.
not much running going on here. everyone was walking.
Mile 7: 17:32 slow ass climb, almost dead at the top, ready to quit all things running here.
there's all three of us, me trying not to die.
Then it was down hill again! WOO! The down hill felt great and I decided not to quit running just yet.
Mile 8: 12:29
One more mile left. Thank you sweet baby Jesus. We were almost to the finish (maybe 1/2 mile left?) when Kathryn and I (Danielle had moved on ahead of us) went to pass a teen girl. She was bent over clutching her knee. I asked if she was ok and saw that she was in tears. Kathryn and I stopped to help her. Poor thing. I think she was just done mentally and her shins hurt from shin splints. We both grabbed her arms and helped her along. She started running a bit and we told her we'd stay with her. We were almost done and that she could do it. I held her hand as we ran and she calmed down a bit and seemed to stop crying. We got near the end of the woods and you could see the finish line. We had to run across a grass field to get there. She saw that finish and just took off! We both yelled to her to "go girl and finish!".
Mile 9: 13:49 (forgot to turn off watch)
I think that mile could have been faster if we hadn't stopped to help her, but I'm glad I did. Turns out she was 15 years old and I would have been so grateful if that had been my daughter and someone took time to help her along. I wasn't winning any awards that day and 30 extra seconds didn't mean squat.
Total time 2:03:18
There were plenty of snacks at the finish line--mostly all homemade baked items that runners brought themselves. I missed out on the watermelon this time. Last time, I got a couple of pieces before it ran out, this time I was just slow enough that it was all gone when I got there. That was really all I wanted at the finish. Next race I'm bringing my own god damn watermelon! I'll have enough watermelon for every damn runner and guest there. I just can't eat regular food after running. But watermelon? Mmmmmm. That was my only complaint about the race. And I can't even really complain about that since someone probably brought it in and donated it.
One more race left until I'm officially a BADASS. The last race in the series is the Bradbury Bruiser 12 mile race in September. I can't wait!