Signed up for the 6 hour event at Dirty Girls again this year. This is my third year running this event. The first year I ran it was my very first trail race. It was fantastic, and still is!
We left the renting of the car until the last minute, so had to opt for the more expensive version, the full sized car. After work on Friday, I went to get the car. They told me they were going to give my a Lexus for the same price as the full sized car... sweet!
We decided to drive up the day of, it was only about a 1.5 hour drive. Got up at 4:00am, packed the car and off we went. We missed the turn off hwy. 400, so had to get off and turn around and go back. It only took about 10 minutes, but we were cutting it close. We got to the race around 7:35 (it started at 8), so we had to really rush around. I hate rushing like that before, I always think I'm going to forget something. The good thing is that the course is a 10k loop, so if I forget something, I can pick it up on the next loop.
My friend Steve was kind enough to pick up a new hydration vest that I bought, I wanted to try it out at Dirty Girls because I really wanted it for Pikes Peak, which is coming up soon... gulp! Anyways, I didn't have time to fill it and put it on before the race, so I left it and decided to pick it up after the first loop.
The first loop was okay, but at the start of the loop there's kind of a big hill to climb, so I was huffing and puffing thinking why do I do such things? Then I finally got into my groove and ran the course. I got to the 5k aid station, which I was going to help with later on, and saw Stephan and told him that I brought my frying pan for him to use later. He said great, now get going. I kind of laughed to myself, I do doddle at the aid stations and he kicks me out, that's exactly what I need!
I finished the first loop, went to where our bags were and got out the new hydration pack. It's a Nathan pack built specifically for women, it is very pretty. Got it filled up with water. There's only one clasp, at the chest, hmm that seems strange. Anyways, put it on, adjusted the straps. It felt pretty light and comfortable. Started running and I was amazed how little it bounced around... sweet! The only thing was that I wasted time trying to figure it out... so my second loop started a little slower than anticipated.
Ran the second loop. There's always a point in a race where I just want to go home. I just think to myself, I don't want to play anymore. Then I think, for God's sake, Chris runs 100 miles, I don't really know what I have to complain about. That usually helps me shove aside those feelings and I start to think about all the good things... I'm able to run... it's really beautiful out here in the woods... all the people at the races are very nice and are becoming good friends. That's better.
Started my third loop. It was raining now, which was nice because it kind of cooled off a bit. Didn't get wet though, the trees were sheltering us from the rain. Towards the end of the third loop it stopped raining and the sun came out. It was going to be a hot day. I managed to get 30k in just under 6 hours. It was a hard course, but I think I did okay. By the end of it my foot was sore, but I did a lot of standing around the night before, which I'm sure didn't help.
After I finished my race, I grabbed a burger and sat around for a bit. I thought I'd better set up the tent, so I can go and have a nap. I was going to help out with the 5k aid station starting at 8:00pm until 8:00am Sunday morning. I set up the tent. Went to blow up the air mattress... dammit, we forgot the pump... so much for that. Oh well, the ground was fairly soft, so it was okay.
I came back from setting up the tent, went back to the start/finish to see if maybe Chris was going to come through soon. There he was. He had to stop because his ankle was giving him trouble. Not good. He has to save that ankle for Pikes Peak!! So he decided to not risk it.
I went to the tent and tried to get a little sleep before my aid station shift. It was really hot in the tent, there was so much activity going on, the best I could do was about an hour or so drifting in and out. I hope that was going to be enough.
The good thing too is that my friend Tracy was going to be helping at the aid station too. I hadn't seen her since last year at Haliburton, it would be nice to catch up. When the time came to start my shift, Stephan came to the start/finish to get water and stuff. I got a ride with him.
The rest of the night was helping fill up water bottles, making some grilled cheese sandwiches. At around 4:00am got pretty tired, so had to drink some coffee. At 8:00 there were a bunch of runners who ran out of time, so they were hanging out waiting for a ride back to the start/finish. Tracy, Chris and I decided to walk back to the start/finish, that would leave more room in the car for the super tired runners. We got back and I decided I had better try to get a little sleep before driving back to Toronto. I laid down in the tent. It started raining. Even though there's a tarp over the tent, it was dripping in. Very annoying. I managed to get about an hour. I thought, that's the best that's going to happen right now. We decided to pack things up and get on the road. We got back to the city before noon which was great!
Had a great time at Dirty Girls again this year! I think that if I decide to help with an aid station again, I won't run anything, either do one or the other. It's different when I crew Chris because I can at least get a couple hours of sleep here and there.
Now there's some talk that I might try to run 50k at Haliburton this year. Still have to think about that.
Next race: Pike's Peak half marathon... getting pretty nervous about this one.