It was such a laid back race and mid-week, that honestly, I didn't prepare very well for it. OOPS. Looking at the map, I had no idea what kind of trail it would be, single track, dirt, gravel, partially paved, etc. I figured I'd go out and run it as well as I could. The start was funny.... they said "runners, head over that way and wait". So Erin and I stood in an open grassy area, they made a few announcements, drew names for some prizes, and the gun went off. It was a mass start for about 200 racers. We headed to the paved trail for a very short distance to get to a grassy meadow. The grass that we ran on for about the first .5-.75 mies was my least favorite part of the trail. Quickly, we got through the grassy meadow and onto the packed dirt trail. There were some downhills, some pretty steep. There were some uphills, again, some pretty steep. There were creek crossings, LARGE stone steps to navigate. There were roots and rocks and branches. IT WAS GREAT! This was at Sugarcreek Metro Park in Bellbrook, OH and it was absolutely gorgeous! Honestly, I wish it was closer to us so I could go there more often.
The worst part of the run that made me question myself and think that I am in the worst shape of my life was when we turned to go up a hill, that was mostly vertical. Everyone that I saw was walking up the hill. Luckily, there were trees to grab onto to help me make it up the hill. My calves were SCREAMING at me. Then, we made it to the top. Whew! And, we knew that we did NOT have to do that again, thank goodness!
I kept telling Erin to go ahead as I felt like I was holding her back. When was the last time I ran hills?!?! My body was telling me it was TOO LONG ago. Not anymore...I love running hills, I love running trails, time to make sure I do more of it! However, Erin was super sweet (like always) and just stuck with me until the last .25miles of the race. Thanks Erin for sticking with me, it definitely made it easier!
|Right before we turned the corner to go up the "mountain". We had no|
clue what was coming!
This race tested my endurance, my fitness, my mental abilities and my powers of concentration all in five miles. It was AWESOME! I won't lie...there were several times during the race where I wanted to just quit; or at least sit down and take a break. But, I knew that Jamie and Allen were waiting for us at the end. Also, if I didn't quit during the Cleveland Marathon, I wasn't going to quit during a five mile race! This trail race simply highlighted my weaknesses that I will work on in order to do better at the next race. Overall I am EXTREMELY pleased with my first trail race, especially since my average pace was well over a minute faster than I usually run trails!
Official time: 51:26.7
Age Group: 6/9
Thanks Jamie and Allen for driving, supporting and photographing the finish for us! No matter how many times during the race we were swearing at you, Jamie, I'm glad you found the race for us!