Chris and I signed up for this race again this year because it was so beautiful last year, we just had to run it again!
Once again, got up at 3:00am... we have to start camping at these things! Then we went to pick up John who was coming with us. As we were driving to pick up John, who lives in the east end, we were wondering, why was there so many people and cars on the road at 3:30am? Then we realized, oh yeah, people were just coming home from the bars... I remember we used to do that. Don't really miss it that much.
Anyways, picked up John and were on our way. The drive was actually pretty quick and we got there in plenty of time. Chris and John were running the 56k, I was running the 28k. Their race started at 8:00am, mine started at 8:40am. I saw them off and then went back to preparing for my race.
It was a beautiful sunny day, you could tell it was going to get hot. I had not been feeling well the last few days, but decided since the race was already paid for, I might as well run it. Also, I hadn't run this distance in a while because back in April I started having foot problems (Plantar Fasciitis). I got fitted for some orthotics and started using them about 2 weeks ago and I think it's starting to help. Anyways, I decided to take it kind of easy, but not too easy... you know what I mean?
The race started and we had to run down the dirt road for a bit... it was hot. As we turned to go into the woods, my foot caught on a stump or something... SPLAT! I went flying, made a big dust cloud and everything... so embarrassing. I said, man, what a great way to start! The guys who saw me fall said, there will be plenty more of that once you get into the woods. Great. Hopefully that will be the worst of falling... it was... thank goodness!
Got into the woods, I have to say, this is one of the most beautiful courses I've ever run. Until we got to the BIG hill. This thing was monstrous! There was no wind there, so it was steep, hot and holy crap, it was steep! Finally, got up the stupid thing and then there was a little breeze. The rest of the course was very technical, so I just did my best ran along as much as I could. Man it was beautiful. As I was running some of the fast 14k people started passing me. I was running with one woman who said she had never run a trail run before, only road. She said it was the hardest thing that she's ever done and said she would likely go back to running 5k's. There were three girls running together chatting, they passed me. Then about 10 minutes later, one of them was sitting on the ground, the others were standing on each side of her. I asked them if they were okay. One of them said that she had tripped and that someone was getting a medic to come and help them. As I started down the trail again, I heard her crying in pain. Poor thing, I felt so bad. Hope she's okay.
Finally came out to the road and back to base camp. It was hot. I felt like crap. I thought, I really don't want to go out for another loop, but then I thought, if I don't, Chris will kick my ass. So I filled up my water bottle, took a salt tab (I was experimenting with these for the first time) and was off again.
The second loop wasn't as bad as the first, except for the giant hill. I stopped at the top to get my breath and take a gel, I was running out of steam. My friend Stephan passed me. He asked if I was okay. I said yes, just taking a gel, running out of steam. He gave me another one. Thanks, I said and away I went again. I think I saw a snake, it was kinda cool. At one point I was getting really hot. Since I was running around a lake, I stopped, filled up my hat, dumped it over my head... man that felt good! That kept me going for the rest of the run.
I was wondering when Chris would pass me. Then a couple of 56k fast people started passing me. A couple of them said that Chris had turned on his ankle. I thought that he would probably run through it, like he normally does, if it wasn't too bad. I still hadn't seen him... hmmm.
Finally, got to the road... I don't know how runners do 2 more of these loops. Then I got back to the finish and saw Chris sitting there. Uh-oh, I thought. He said that he had turned his ankle and since he had Burning River coming up, he didn't want to be injured for that. I thought that was a very smart strategy.
After I was finished, I sat for a while, someone offered me a beer, thanks Helen!! It was good. Then we had some yummy food. After I finished eating, I jumped into the lake (in my running clothes), it was nice to get rid of the dirt and salt!
I think I did okay considering I had not been running distance in a couple of months. I was a little faster than last year... so overall I was pretty happy!