Saturday, June 4, 2011

My First Trail Marathon

Well, that was one helluva an experience!  Today I ran my first Trail Marathon.  It was quite an adventure to say the least.  I had been coming back from injury after the Kalamazoo Marathon, so needless to say I took it easy out there and that was the plan from the get go.  I just wanted to get a good long run in, because Chicago Marathon training officially begins Monday.  The goal was to run the race in under 4 hours.  From people I had talked to, trail running adds a good minute plus per mile to your race time.  Anyways, I wanted to enjoy myself and it's safe to say I did that today.  After the first few miles, I started thinking, "what have I got myself into"?  There were some pretty steep hills out there, not to mention covered in big rocks.  There were downed trees we were forced to jump over, stairs we had to run down that literally had two foot steps, I swallowed bugs, and almost lost my shoe in some of the thickest mud I've ever seen.  It was a whole different ballgame compared to road racing, but I gotta say I absolutely loved it!  I think I might be addicted.  There were people out there running the double marathon (freakin maniacs, I thought I was crazy)!  I got to the last aid station, and they were like, "nice work, you're in 3rd place".  I was like, "wow, I didn't expect that at all".  I ended up finishing in roughly 3:55, my slowest Marathon time ever:)  The only thing that stunk, was twisting the hell out of my ankle 100 yards from the finish.  It wasn't too severe though, so I should be okay.

On another note, I ran the Run to Climax on Monday (Memorial Day).  The weather was not in my favor that day at all.  The heat was absolutely brutal.  I still managed 4th overall, but it certainly was nowhere near my best race.  Oh well, not every race goes your way.

I am looking forward to gearing up for some hard training for Chicago now.  Track workouts are beginning this week bright and early.  I smell some 4am wakeup times for some before work runs and several two-a days.  I really need to focus on the diet, getting in quality workouts and races, and putting in the mileage.  I'm excited!  Until next time......
Here's a quote to leave you on:  "If you can't run, then walk. And if you can't walk, then crawl. Do what you have to do. Just keep moving forward and never, ever give up." — Dean Karnazes 

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