Thursday, November 29, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1. So I'm "running" CIM this weekend.

Excellent.

I am having flashbacks from MCM.

2. I am sneaking in a race in 2 weeks, the "Baker's Dozen" half marathon, put on my ultra hero, Fast Cory.

I won't spoil the surprise by posting a picture of the medal. IT IS THE MOST AWESOME MEDAL EVER.

3. I want this. I want this. I want this. I want this.

Source
J says "where would you wear that??" I say, "WHERE WOULDN'T I WEAR THAT?" Ink n' Burn has outdone itself. This is the coolest running shirt EVER.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Redline Turkey Day 10K (Race Recap)

Thursday, November 22
Broomfield, CO
Weather - Mostly sunny, WINDY (warm at start, cool at finish)


The Redline Turkey Day 10k is the only road race I have signed up for since I decided I hate running and my IT Band has been acting up. It was "only" a 10k, and the course literally runs right by my old house in Broomfield (literally - my house was one house beyond the mile 2 marker AND is apparently for sale again). I was enticed to register early for being one of the first 1,000 to register and getting FREE arm sleeves.

Redline is one of the most disorganized companies I've ever known to put on a race. For example, this is an excerpt from the email I got the NIGHT before the race:

"Shirt and Armwarmer pickup - It is fun to be a race director! You never know what is going to pop up and inevitably, something always does. There is always a lot of excitement around the unique designs of our race tee's on our popular Redline Gear. I flew to LA on Monday and drove back the shipment of shirts for the event, thinking that the delivery was the only problem with our factory's shipment. Upon opening the cartons we realized the factory failed to print the designs on our shirts. So you get a brand new Redline colored tech tee, that has never been on the market, but you don't get to use it as a conversation starter about the cool design and race advertised on it. I am more upset than you are, believe me. The other surprise was the exclusion of the much anticipate release of our totally unique arm warmer that we are introducing as a gift to the first 1000. Those will ship on DECEMBER 3."

W.T.F. For freakin' real. I registered for this at least a month ago? L started seeing advertisements for this months ago. This is the FIFTH year? How does this guy continue to be a race director? (For more of his blunders, you can read about this race.)

Anyway, the race is really close and I know the parking is pretty good, but I did still have to register A for the kid's race, and registration closed at 8:30. So... we dropped the kids off at my parents house at 7:45 and got to the race shortly after 8. Hit up the bathrooms (no line), registered A and picked up shirts (hers fancy and printed, mine not) and then sat in the car until it was time to go.

Apparently, the giant arch was NOT the starting line and we stood in a giant cluster waiting to be told where to start. The race was supposedly chip timed, although we saw no mats and started in the back.

The race is course is almost identical to what I used to run (back in 2007 and 2008) when I was doing my long runs around the neighborhood. I knew it was mostly flat. I was hoping it would be an awesome and glorious race. It was not.

There was no gun or announcement and we ended up in the back of the pack and never moved up. Apparently people in Broomfield are fast (other than me). First water station was around mile 1.4. My old house, as I said, was at mile 2. That was the end of the excitement. Around 2.5 miles in, the course turned north up Zuni, and that is when wind and stupid tired legs kicked in. My pace was NOT fast. I should have been able to run with ease. And yet.

Walked. Got passed. Jogged up a hill. Course turned back to the west and the wind was even worse. Next aid station was at mile 4. More walking.  More getting passed.  The worst of the wind was the last mile. L's awesome turkey hat kept almost blowing off.

Official Time - 1:07:28
Official Place 307/336
Garmin Time - 1:07:29
Mile 1 - 9:52
Mile 2 - 10:46
Mile 3 - 11:31
Mile 4 - 12:40
Mile 5 - 11:21
Mile 6 - 11:22 

Disappointing finish, but awesome outfits.

  • "Turkey" tank. This is the third year we have worn it.
  • Yellow Princess skirt from running skirts (clover socks also from there)
  • Arm Sleeves - Ink n' Burn
  • Hats - Clearance rack at Michael's
The Kid's race was supposed to start at 10:30. We had no idea where that started either. A decided she wanted to wear her awesome shirt, so I had to run back to the car to get it for her.

Razzy Roo Turkey headband
There were a TON of kids, so I told A to line up near the front so she wouldn't get trapped behind all the slow people (like me):


A is freaking fast. She was easily in the first 10 (out of probably 100 kids). Her hat came off too. I should have tried to get a better video of her running. She has a super long stride and it looks so EASY for her. She was one of the first girls across the line. I asked her what it was like to be in the front and she says "like being champion of the kids"


Hannah also ran - success with NO falling (for either kid). They even got awesome ribbons! (Somehow, I think they got a better deal for their $10, than I did for my $32).


After the race there was an insane raffle. Even though the wind picked up it was freezing, we stuck around to the very end. I am sad to report I did NOT win any of the $4500 (CASH) or pies. I might be more sad about no pies.

:(

The rest of Thanksgiving was:
  • Starbucks
  • Jumping at the trampoline center (2 hours for only $5!)
  • Dinner at my parents house
  • Movies - Barbie and Megamind (which, according my blog from last year, we watched then too).
  • Bed at... 8:45?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Route 66 Marathon (Race Recap)

Sunday, November 18
Marathon #15
State #8
Tulsa, OK
Weather - Mostly overcast, (much) warmer than last year, WINDY


I apparently registered for the Route 66 marathon on opening day - January 31. Obviously that was when I was in the middle of being awesome in my ultra training. And what's the big deal with a marathon?


Well. Obviously, a marathon is now VERY intimidating for me, as I've had quite a few now that were NOT great.

Anyway, this was going to be a "first" for me. The first time I would travel to the same out of state race to run another distance. I had picked this for my Oklahoma half because of the huge presence of 50 staters and Marathon Maniacs/Half Fanatics. This race does specific bibs and medals JUST for them. Well of COURSE I want a special medal. Also, by doing the full marathon this year, I could participate in the .3 mile detour to the "Center of the Universe" and get ANOTHER piece of bling - a special coin.

Saturday

Obviously I make travel as complicated as possible. I am super thrifty, so if I can find a deal by picking a weird flight schedule or flying into a random airport, I will.

L did not want to do this race again, but I manged to convince my friend Ruth to join me. We had a 10:35 flight out of Denver to Oklahoma City (much cheaper than flying into Tulsa) and I picked her up in Denver around 8:15 before heading to the airport. Everything took longer than expected and by the time we got to our "gate" it was only about 15 minutes until boarding.

Our flight left on time, and was only about an hour long. Score!! I had booked the hotel in Tulsa and Ruth booked the rental car. Unfortunately her drivers license was expired and she still hadn't received her new one in the mail, and even with the paperwork and her passport, they wouldn't rent to her, which means I got to do the 120ish mile drive to Tulsa.

We had landed around 1 and hoped to pick up some food in Oklahoma City, but there was nowhere tempting by the airport, and before we knew it we were on the toll road to Tulsa, which had ZERO food options.

We didn't end up eating until about 3:30 in the afternoon. Which is WRONG. No one should ever eat that late. We found an Olive Garden and I had a delicious chicken lasagna, bread and salad. Probably ate too much, but we planned on a bigger lunch and a smaller dinner anyway.

From there we headed to the expo and we met up with the Marathon Maniacs (Ruth had to get a wristband to gain access because she wasn't yet a member when she registered). We met up with Lesley, working the Sport Hooks booth. I manged to NOT buy anything, except for an amusing 26.5 sticker - race specific. We did some quick pictures in the free photo booth (I really suck at photo booth pictures) and then we headed out to find the hotel. I managed, once again, to pick a SUPER CLASSY establishment.

We settled in and decided to go to Ruby Tuesday's for dinner so that we could hit up the excellent salad bar around 6:30. Lucky for us, there was one just a few miles down the road. They were super slow and inefficient, but we had a great dinner. Salad and some vegetables, and a pumpkin cupcake for dessert.

Mac & Cheese, Cauliflower, Spaghetti Squash
Got everything ready and laid out for race day, lights out at 10:00.

Race Day

Last year, we accidentally (and conveniently) stayed at the Holiday Inn literally ON the start line. This year, I waited too long and we were staying about 15 minutes away. I knew parking was going to be insane near the start (not to mention all the road closures) and with (of course) me booking travel closely, I decided it would make more sense to park closer to the finish line (they are about a mile apart) so that we wouldn't have to mess with shuttles, etc.

Even though the race didn't start until 8:00, we were up at 5:20. Out the door about 6 am, and we were parked by 6:30. NO issues. We didn't get lost, we didn't get stuck on any road closures. We parked about 4-5 blocks from the finish, and about 2/3 of a mile from the start. Ruth was planning on checking a bag, but I still decided to wear a throwaway. I remembered all too clearly how FREEZING it was last year standing around.

We headed to the start, used the bathrooms with no lines, and hung out in the Maniac tent. We did NOT miss the group picture (I have missed almost all of them lately) and still managed to get through the bathroom line twice.

I even circled myself for you (check out all these 50 staters/Maniacs/Fanatics!)
Ruth and I
About 15 minutes before the race and I feel like I need to pee again. We head over to Corral B and use the bathrooms over there and are lined up with about three minutes to gun time. So efficient!

Corral B
We surge to the front and about 12 seconds before I'm supposed to cross the start, and my watch goes into some weird power save mode. WHAT IS THAT??? I swear, this piece of crap Garmin has been nothing but trouble the last few months. I ended up jumping to the side and messing with it, and when the last of my corral started going by I said screw it and started running. I finally got it to work about a quarter of a mile in. Annoying.

The course is flattish for about 2/3 of a mile, and then we have the first big hill. I made it almost to the top before my calves seized. Again. I'm getting really tired of that and wish I could figure out a solution to prevent that.

I really tried hard to remember the course, and I really didn't remember much except for this:
Swan Lake - Between Miles 1 and 2
Thankfully, my calves stopped aching, and I was able to run a bit better. Somewhere around mile 3 we ended up at the school with all the speed bumps. Wish I would have taken a picture of the speed bump signs - I had not only remembered that from last year, but I remembered how MANY there were (7). The course is deceptively hilly, and there seemed to be a lot more ups than downs as we ran through various neighborhoods.



Only picture where I look moderately normal. No idea where this is on course.

I felt pretty good until we entered the neighborhood off of 33rd Place. My IT Band started to ache, and I stopped to stretch. A bike medic made sure to ask if I was ok. Um. I have been better. I felt a bit better after stretching, and then I tackled the only other section I remembered, the out and back on Riverside by the Arkansas River. I took some water and a GU at the mile 9 aid station, and saw Ruth on the other side - she was about 1.5 miles ahead of me at this point. For once, I was feeling pretty good, and I ran the entire stretch without walking until mile 12. That is HUGE as I have not been able to continuously run that far without a break (during a race) in ages. Across from the aid station was this:

Obviously this was not for me, but it made me smile

If I was hurting, I had hoped to have the option of dropping to the half. This race does not allow that, and stopping at 13.1 would have resulted in a disqualification. I felt reasonably well, so I continued on. I saw Dave right after the split and wanted to run to catch him, but then I got distracted...

Beer AND Jell-O Shots???
Blue raspberry (and I had a cup of beer too).
I ended up running/walking with him for about 5 minutes, just to give my legs a break before continuing on. That might have been a mistake. Around mile 14 we run under this cool bridge:



Immediately AFTER the bridge is the first of the big hills in the second half. I ran up most of that, but I think about there is where I really got off my mental game. My ankles started to hurt. BOTH of them, which is new (and annoying). My IT Band was still aching a bit. And it was still REALLY windy.

We ended up in an industrial section and saw this theater:

Eddie Vedder on schedule for two nights!
Ugliest part of the course...
Pink police car
While walking up this section before approaching mile 15, I talked to a Maniac from Brighton (that's the city where I currently hold my (super) speedy 5k PR). The next thing to look forward to was the Center of the Universe detour. I was hoping it was going to be well marked.


And it was!


I was really surprised at the number of people that did NOT do the detour. According to the results, less than half the people took the detour. And I am not entirely sure it was even a full .3 miles additional. What do I know, my watch is junk.

Center of the Universe
Probably the worst picture of me. Ever.
I totally believe this

Getting back on the course meant going up a big overpass. And then things really went downhill. Everyone around me was walking. And so was I. I have never been this sore during a marathon. I mean, MCM was bad, but I wasn't really sore, I was just "tired." This one HURT. I stopped to use the bathroom right before entering the University campus. There was no line, so I figured, why not.

I've put on about 10 pounds in the last year, and my skirt WAS a bit tight. Thanks to the sweat, I almost couldn't get it back on. That took about an extra minute. Who was I kidding, not like I was going for time anyway. The campus was pretty to run on:

University of Tulsa Campus
I don't remember much of the last section of the course. I don't think it was pretty and I think it was really hilly. My watch claims there was only 600ish feet of gain over the whole course. I think that is a lie. It felt WAY worse than that. Anyway, I was back to jogging a bit and walking a lot. I had initially had a goal of 5ish hours (when I hit the half at 2:30). Now I just hoped for a sub 5:30 (sub Seattle). At mile 23ish we entered "Florence Park" and there was a sign advertising it as the "best damn neighborhood in Tulsa" - and it was. They were giving away  MORE beer. They tried to give me a whole can (of PBR), but I asked for just a cup. A full beer is WAY too much to drink during a race.

I had thought the course was downhill after mile 24, but I remember at least a few hills after that point. I really didn't push and run it in until about .3 miles to the finish, and I RAAAAAN. I chicked a guy in the chute, and I saw his shadow trying to pass me right before the mat. I was sub 8 that last 10 seconds or so. Woo.

No medal right after, since I had to go to the Maniac tent to get my special one. I did a finisher picture anyway (sans medal) and grabbed a diet pepsi and water and headed over to the special Maniac tent.

Medal and Coin
Bib #3244
Official 26.2 - 5:21:15
Official 26.5 - 5:23:51
Official 10K - 1:10:02
Official 10M - 1:54:15
Official 13.1 - 2:30:13
Official 30K - 3:43:24
Overall Place - 1390/1891
Gender Place - 528/822
Division Place - 87/128
Garmin Time - 5:22:05 (Started it late)
Garmin Distance - 26.47 (Started it late)
Garmin Pace - 12:10
Mile 1- 10:37
Mile 2 - 11:46
Mile 3 - 10:53
Mile 4 - 11:09
Mile 5 - 11:51
Mile 6 - 11:13
Mile 7 - 11:17
Mile 8 - 11:13
Mile 9 - 12:07
Mile 10 - 11:40
Mile 11 - 10:54
Mile 12 - 10:49
Mile 13 - 12:43
Mile 14 - 12:45
Mile 15 - 11:25
Mile 16 - 12:35
Mile 17 - 13:05
Mile 18 - 11:52
Mile 19 - 14:06
Mile 20 - 12:56
Mile 21 - 12:55
Mile 22 - 15:03
Mile 23 - 14:02
Mile 24 - 13:31
Mile 25 - 12:26
Mile 26 - 12:32
Mile 26.47 - 9:59 (ha. sub 10 for a HALF MILE).

I saw Lesley outside and found Ruth inside with no issues. The tent was amazing. Our own beer and fluids and food.

Lesley and I
Ruth and I by the Marathon Maniac (tent of awesome)
We ate and had a beer with Lesley before we headed out. Obviously we had booked a 7:00 flight out of OKC and it was already after 2:00 before we started heading out. We tried to find a Starbucks in Tulsa, but without knowing the city, we tried to go to one in a Mariott and they did not have the mugs Ruth was looking for, so we gave up.

We started to the drive to Tulsa. Uneventful except we were on the toll road with NO stops and I had to pee SO bad. It was a dire situation for a while, but thankfully we made it to the gas station with no incidents.

Returned the rental car around 4:45 and had PLENTY of time to check in, get to our gate (the OKC airport is teeny tiny) and have a luxurious dinner. We found a burger place and ordered cheeseburgers and fries (from the tiniest rude woman EVER) and watched the Broncos game until about 6, when we headed to the gate. Boarded and left on time.

Pretty uneventful, except for the obnoxious kid/parents behind me. I understand that kids cry. I have a kid. I have flown with an inconsolable child. But it is NOT ok to allow your kids to kick the seat in front of you. After 15-20 minutes of being kicked, I stand up and ask the woman to have her toddler (must have been under 2 as she didn't have her own seat) stop kicking my seat. She says "but it will take all my strength to control her." Not, "I'm sorry," just a rude/inconsiderate response. FYI, the kicking and screaming continued until we landed. Thankfully, the flight was only 1:16 long (and YES, I was timing it).

Landed about 5 minutes early, dropped Ruth off, and was home before 9.

Of note:
  • DO THIS RACE if you are a Maniac/Fanatic/50 Stater. It is an awesome atmosphere. The tent before was awesome, the tent after was awesome. LOVED the special bibs and medals.
  • Stats: 3 cups of beer and a Jell-O shot during the race, 2 cups of beer after. Probably the most alcohol I've had during a race, ever.
  • The course (in my opinion) is more difficult than it looks, and definitely save "some" for the hills in the second half.
  • Not entirely sure what the post race FOOD was, but they had soda and energy drinks, so I approve of that.
  • The course next year is changing - new finish line was somewhere over by the Center of the Universe. Not sure if that will make things easier or worse.
  • Aid stations had water and Gatorade - different flavors!! There were 2 GU stations that I counted, but Ruth said there was a third I must have missed.
  • Probably the most un-complicated travel I've done (all things considered)
  • This was still a struggle and SLOW going. My body seems to be rejecting races/running. Thankfully I am not committed to that much more over the next few months, and I'll likely be stepping back from the marathon after Little Rock while I try to get this all under control.
  • I ran with my iPod for the first time in a month.
  • With that said, I didn't HATE this race. It was just harder than I am used to, and my body is pretty beat up right now.
  • The outfit (I've been asked a few times)
    • Top - Ink N' Burn (Hollywood Dragon)
    • Skirt - Lululemon (Back on Track)
    • Socks - Pro Compression
    • Arm Sleeves - YMX
    • Headband - Razzy Roo
  • I wore my flip belt, and for the first time ever, it annoyed me. I don't know if it was because the Ink N' Burn shirts are shorter, or because I had my camera in the front, but I kept having to adjust my shirt. I guess it gave me something to do.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1.Did you know it was A's birthday yesterday? 7 years old!

She was lucky enough to have an early release day at school, so I took a half day off from work to hang out with her. We went to lunch (I ate all the salad, but only 1/2 of everything else):
We went shopping to spend the gift cards from my ex in-laws (she got 4 books and a unicorn figurine), and then we saw "Wreck-It Ralph," which was really cute. Pizza and cake with the grandparents rounded out the evening. Gifts included new Hello Kitty vans, animal socks and more books.

2. Route 66 is this weekend. My knee felt wonky on Tuesday, so I lacrosse-balled my knee last night and today it is FREAKIN' SORE AND ACHY. I hope everything is ok. Guess I will find out during my run on the treadmill tonight.

Related: I cannot officially drop distance since the half is sold out, but the split is at mile 13, and if I'm hurting, I guess I'll run the half again.

Also related: I think I will wear the Newtons. It can't be any worse/better than MCM, although I think I wore my old ones at MCM and have a newer pair that I probably wore for Denver that might be better? I'm probably over thinking this.

Also related: I still have NO CLUE what to wear. Relieved the weather looks EXPONENTIALLY better than last year (low is mid 40's and high is low 60's). I guess I could wear my Maniac shirt, but that doesn't seem fun.

3. HECK YEAH!!! Thanks everyone!!!


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

(Mostly) Wordless Wednesday

We got the top necklace at the expo for Marine Corps. New today is the 50 states charm. Thanks, L!

(You can get your own necklace here)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

After a Few Tantrums...

I appear to be back to my normal cheery obnoxious and bitchy self. I ran a trail un-paved half marathon on Saturday. It wasn't fast, it wasn't especially fun. But what's important, is that even though the course was ugly, I was slow, and the weather was lame, I did NOT threaten to quit running for all eternity when I got done. This shows me that even a crappy trail un-paved run is exponentially better than road running.

So... With that said, here is a random post about nothing.

 Running... what's next:

  •  I am running Route 66 marathon this weekend. I hope it sucks less than MCM, and I hope that it is warmer than last year.
    • Should I wear my Brooks Glycerin (I have been running in them since MCM, but nothing longer than 5 miles) or should I stick with my Newtons?
    • I have no one to be matchy matchy with this weekend. (WHAT, WHAT??) I think I may wear an Ink N' Burn shirt. Leaning toward my Zombie shirt or Hollywood Dragon
  • I am running CIM next month with Heather. We are leaning towards a super obnoxious Christmas-y theme with red sparkles, a green top and either Pro Compression neon yellow or some undecided pair of festive socks. After planning all the ridiculous-ness of a point-to-point race, let's hope the running is the easy part.
  • Dare I say two months to GOOFY?? Yes, yes, I do. Also, my flights FINALLY got squared away last night. Frontier is pretty awesome on the Twitter. I arrive around noon on Friday and will leave Monday morning. More importantly, we think we have themes for BOTH DAYS. That MIGHT be because Heather is the brains of the operation.
  • Heather and I (are you sensing a theme here?) are wishy washy on this Arizona race. It seemed like such a great idea when I loved all of the running. Now, a point-to-point super boring scenery (yet flat) race doesn't seem that appealing... I could either flake (but have bought airfare - only $130ish RT), run just the 1/2 OR Lost Dutchman is that same day... decisions...

Black Friday, Shopping, Christmas, etc (aka, my "wish" list)

  •  I sent a check to GMAA for a sweatshirt to commemorate our 50th state (VT, if you are new). This was a funny correspondence between the race director and I - after she read my blog:  I am the one who gets to take home all of the clothing left at aid stations that is not picked up to wash and donate to good will-I folded your super stylish fur rimmed hooded sweater today. I even considered keeping it to use as a throw away.
 
Is this NOT the most awesome sweater ever?
  • Related: I want to buy this race picture. We could hang above/near the Map of Awesome.
Out of 9 successive shots, the only one we both look normal in
  •  Mofo LULU!!! (The Pace Setter is the best skirt ever in the history of the universe)
Source
  •  A red Keurig. I don't know why it has to be red. It just seems pretty. And I'm freakin' obsessed with my one at work. The Gingerbread (Green Mountain brand) coffee is so tasty!
  •  A gift card for Ink N' Burn. I love all of their stuff (except the skirts didn't work for me, which is probably a blessing in disguise). I am obsessed with wanting a pair of the "jeans" yoga pants. MY DREAM is to live in a pair of those. I'm over the whole "fancy" clothes crap for work. YOGA PANTS ALL THE WAY.
  •  And last... but NOT least.... I am only $50 $25 away from meeting my fundraising goal, raising money for the AFSP to run Tinker Bell in January... so if you have a buck (seriously, even a dollar donation would be AWESOME) to spare, you can donate here.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Backcountry Wilderness Half Marathon (Race Recap)

Saturday, November 10
Highlands Ranch, CO
Half Marathon #71
Colorado Half #15
Weather - Overcast, Windy, Snowy, Cold

With our new goal of running all of the half marathons in Colorado, the Backcountry Wilderness half marathon would have to be run at some point. I didn't register for it until 2-3 days before the race, because if it was going to be raining, snowing, or below zero, I would not be running. More than anything, I was hoping that a good trail run would cure my recent hatred of running.

L had to work the night before, but with the race only 45 minutes away, and not starting until 8:30, I didn't even get up until 6:15. We headed out the door around 6:45 and marvelled at the 54 degree weather on our drive. We made it ALMOST all the way to the race without getting lost. Our GPS unit stopped us by the high school about a half mile away and the "on your right" was really a neighborhood. Luckily we found the gigantic rec center. The website directed us to pick up packets AT the rec center. Pick up was really at the park up the hill, and the rude woman at the desk hassled us for wanting to use the bathroom, even though the website specified it would be open during the race. Annoying.

The pick up area was pretty congested, and not super organized. Luckily, there was a guy yelling at us so we knew which of the three crowds we should be in to get our bib and (awesome) shirt. We got our stuff within 10 minutes and then chose to sit in the car until the race started. The temperature had started to drop, and an angry black cloud was hanging over us. Brrr.

A cold front came in, and as a result, Libby ended up joining us in Highlands Ranch instead of driving through winter weather conditions in the mountains to get to the marathon in Grand Junction she was registered for. After hitting the bathrooms one last time, we walked together over to the start line, where I ran into Jennifer and Cheryl. Love seeing the same people at local races! It was a bit disconcerting to see TONS of people with Search & Rescue clothes on (and search dogs!) but it turns out many of them were running in the race and they were the beneficiary.

Libby and Me
The race director lined us up (on the wrong side of the mat), so we ended up starting a few minutes late while we all moved.

The course began on a paved path, and it was probably a mile before we actually got to trail. Right off the bat, the course was uphill, and I had to stop and stretch those stupid calves just a few minutes in. It was chilly and windy, but I took off my long sleeve shirt and gloves within the first mile. I just overheat too easily! The first section of "trail" was just dirt. No rocks, not technical at all. And barren. The course is advertised as "amazing" with "amazing views." Lies.



I think it started snowing on us somewhere around mile 3. It got colder. And windier. We walked quite a bit of the uphill.


Finally, around mile 6, we actually got some downhill. It was a bit more technical of a section, but I would still barely call it "trail."


This was the only halfway pretty part of the trail. Why anyone does trail running, in Colorado, in November, (intentionally), is beyond me. Not that this would have been better in the summer. 95% of the course had no trees, so one would probably bake out there if the sun was actually out.


There was another really steep section between miles 10 and 12 (I didn't wear my watch, so not exactly sure where).


It got REALLY cold and I put my gloves back on. My body was feeling fine and I wasn't really hating the run, it was just icky outside and I wanted to be done. For about 2 miles we were running around on a plateau and we could see exactly where we needed to go, but weren't sure how long it would take to get there.

We actually passed about a half dozen people in the last few miles. The last 3/4 of a mile or so was back on the paved bike path, and then we had a STUPID HUGE uphill finish. We literally passed Libby with just a few hundred feet to the finish (she rocked something like an 18 minute PR). The temperature had, in fact, dropped almost 20 degrees. It was only 38 degrees when we finished, and that doesn't even factor in the wind chill.



Bib #2427
Official Time - 2:51:23
Overall Place - 395/414 (wow. lame.)
Gender Place - 192/206
Division Place - 73/79
MapMyRun Time - 2:51:43
MapMyRun Pace - 12:53
Mile 1 - 12:37
Mile 2 - 13:28
Mile 3 - 13:06
Mile 4 - 13:55
Mile 5 - 13:55
Mile 6 - 13:49
Mile 7 - 12:20
Mile 8 - 12:22
Mile 9 - 12:05
Mile 10 - 13:25
Mile 11 - 14:19
Mile 12 - 12:24
Mile 13 - 11:11
Mile 13.33 - 10:25

It seemed MUCH harder than this
There was supposedly food and beer at the finish, but we didn't see it and it was too cold and windy to really care. Talked with Libby on the brief walk back to the cars and then headed our separate ways.

Thoughts:
  • Even registering just a few days before, it was only $60 (plus fees)
  • Nice gender specific long sleeve shirt (this is the back):
  • We didn't see ANY wildlife. Not even a prairie dog or a bunny. (Of course it WAS ridiculously cold out, maybe they were all hibernating).
  • Calling this course amazing is just a lie. It was not.
  • It was challenging because it was all uphill for 6 miles, NOT because it was a challenging trail. In fact, calling this a "95% trail" was also misleading.
  • Everyone was REALLY friendly. The course was pretty well organized, although if we would have been alone, I'm not entirely sure we wouldn't have gotten lost.
  • Only three aid stations - water and heed only. They DID send out an email telling people to bring their own water though.
  • Bummed I didn't get that beer, but it was way too cold.
  • Still no official results even though they were to be posted within 24 hours.
  • Good for a "beginner" trail runner.
Good news is that I don't feel totally burned out and miserable after this race. I did feel like I might have frostbite or hypothermia though.

Week in Review (May 16 - May 22)

Tuesday (22,341 steps) - Speed work! We had to drive alllll the way down to Greenwood Village for this one. 1.75 mile w/u 10 x 200m re...