|This was the only pic i could take. It was the only time I didn't feel like I was going to fall on my face.|
I was lucky that i did know a few people there but the usuals weren't there. Not sure if that was due to the weather or the fact that it was a trail race. The first part was straight up a hill and my legs were not fresh. I had run 9 miles the day before, late in the day and was pretty tired/sore from that. I decided to get mid pack and be happy with just the experience and not worry about the results. They had told us prior to start that there were patches of ice that they had taped off and it was advisable to walk these patches. I would like to say there were maybe 6 or so total of these. Only one was really scary, mainly because it was down a hill. Now I know those who do trail runs are use to this, but I was not. It was a single track trail so passing was not easy. I had gotten behind a lady that I felt like was going a safe speed for me. many people got irritated because they wanted to pass. I tried to move over so they could but sometimes I just couldn't. I felt like even though we were going a bit slow, i liked watching her feet and I liked walking when it got super rocky or slick or muddy. We were told that there was a water station at mile 2.5. It was on the road and we were told that if we got water, we had to drink it there and throw our cup away and not on the trail. Well, the lady ahead of me grabbed a cup and told the people she would run with it. The next section of the trail was straight up and I guess she was running thinking about drinking and not her feet because she fell and hit her head on a rock. I stopped as did several people behind me. There was a person who had been walking a bunch and this person decided to volunteer to take her back to the aid station, which luckily was maybe 2 tenths of a mile. I went on and wow, I had been going way too slow. I had previously been seeing 14s and 15s on my watch and now was seeing regularly low 13s and 12s. I felt so strong, so free. I had a girl behind me who was quite happy sticking behind me and said she made no intentions of passing. I was glad because I had no clue which trail we were suppose to run and the trails sometimes weren't the best marked. Case in point, about a mile away from the finish, the trail forked and there was nothing saying which way we should go. Luckily there were several of us bunched together at that point and we all stopped and debated which way to go. We figured if we all went the same way, at least we would all be wrong. So we picked the right way and all finished strong. It was such a great feeling to get through it and my legs suprisingly felt great. I finished 4 out of 4 in my age group with a time of 1:08. I think I probably could have gone quicker at the beginning but who cares. There is always next year to try and better my time. I do like the change up that trail running gives you. I was alone some and it was peaceful and beautiful (when I could look around and didn't have to concentrate on my feet). I saw the lady that fell cross the finish line as I was leaving and she looked okay so that made me feel better. I am looking at some trail runs maybe this summer and maybe even some longer distances and some night races. I still prefer road races but wouldn't mind a change of pace. The group that does the trail runs in KC is dog friendly so that is a super big bonus in my mind. This trail was way too narrow for people with dogs so I understand their no dog rule for sure.