Thursday, March 29, 2012

Lord Hill 5 Mile Trail Race Recap

It's a wee bit late, this recap, as the race was over a month ago...but it's been a busy month.  ;)

My first ever real "trail" run was this race put on by the awesome people of Evergreen Trail Runs on February 26th.  Since the course was way up North compared to my current dwelling, I decided to stay at my oldest sister Kristal's house the night prior.  Perfect timing as it was her birthday that night and I got to hang out with my siblings for a bit.  Also, it was my first official night away from Goober, and it was a little strange (yet free!).

The weather was looking pretty mean--snowing/hailing/raining on and off--but the forecast was promising sun breaks for the day.  As I parked the car (super early, I might add) I completely bottomed it out on a big bump in the muddy ground.  OoPs!  Luckily no damage.  Sorry Volvo.  I was over an hour early in order to find the best parking, so I hung out in my car, trying to chill out without "chilling" out.  I nervously watched runners around me in their cars, getting gear together and chatting with each other.  To be honest I felt a little out-of-place being a trail newbie, and I wore capris.  Um, not a single person I saw around the area was in anything that revealed calves or ankles.  Oh boy.  Quick change into my RunningSkirts.com RunLove socks and my calves were protected.  Go me!

The course start/finish in panoramic view.
Once I headed to the start area for the briefing of the 5 & 10 mile runners I saw a lot more leg...more shorts, capris and even a skirt (yeah!).  The 20 mile & 50K runners had already started their loops.  

GO!

Mud mud mud MUD.  Almost felt like I was going to lose a shoe a couple times, the mud was so deep.  I wasn't exactly sure how to handle the hills once we got to them.  There were people starting to walk up the hills, and others slow jogging (kind of bouncing?) up them too.  I noticed that if I did long-stride walking, I conserved energy, caught my breath AND went faster than the jogging.  Whatever works, right?

But those little hills were NOTHING.  Really.  Nothing at all compared to THE "Lord Hill." See the little orange flags on sticks at the bottom?  That's about the size of a person.  Holy moly.
Photo courtesy of Glenn Tachiyama
Here's me after I "tackled" this bad boy.  I could barely get myself moving!  The view from the top was pretty epic, though.
Photo courtesy of Glenn Tachiyama
After the giant hill, the participants were more scattered and I even found myself running alone in the woods at one point.  Thank goodness Evergreen T.R. marks the course with bright orange flags really well!  I was truly enjoying myself and reminiscing about hiking with my mom and sisters.  Whoever I met on the course I would cheer for or even make small talk (Jay ran the 20 miler!  Yay!  And Ryan was running the 5 miler).  Seeing the super hardcore ultra runners made me feel like I needed to step it up a bit.

Here's me crossing the big creek towards the end.  No avoiding the water on this one!  Actually, the water felt good (and it cleaned my shoes...kinda...before I found the mud again).
SPLASH!
Photo courtesy of Evergreen Trail Runs
The end was in sight, and I was gaining on the two people in front of me.  Kick it to the finish!  Through the mud!
Finishing strong.
Photo courtesy of Evergreen Trail Runs

And by the time I finished, the sun was shining.  
Great start to the day!  
Muddy shoes!  BEFORE and AFTER. :)
Post-race pic. Muddy, wet and happy. 
Final stats:
Mileage - 5
Time - 59:28
Overall - 35 out of 94
Sex Place - 21 out of 66
Pace - 11:53

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