|A shot of the finish line at Speedgoat.|
Half marathon #66 was the Timp Half. This was my third time running this race, and honestly, it was probably my last. This year, like last year, they didn't get a permit to keep the canyon open longer than an hour and a half. That meant that if you weren't out of the canyon by 7:30, you would get picked up by the bus and driven to the bottom, then they would let you continue. This really bothers me. They're just robbing the slower people of the accomplishment of completing the distance. Sure, they offered an early start. But a bus that was full of people also broke down on the way up and that bus had people who didn't get to take advantage of that early start because of the delay.
I can run 7.5 miles in an hour and a half. If nothing goes wrong, if I'm not having any issues, aches, or pains. This race has stressed me out of my mind the last two times because of this deadline. I spent the entire morning waffling back and forth between taking the early start or not. Trying to assess how I felt; can I do this? I decided to just go with the regular start and run like hell.
And that's what I did. I ran my guts out for about 7 miles. And then everything hurt so much that I just stopped caring. I had just enough of a time cushion to shuffle through the last half mile out of the canyon. As soon as I got out and onto the bike path, I walked. So there. I was just burnt out. I don't do fast. I do distance at a relaxed pace. I spent the rest of the race just plodding along, praying for the finish. At least the medal was nice and heavy.
|Smiling, like it doesn't hurt or something.|
|Some not terrible swag.|
After my race, my mom, brother, and I, headed over to watch my bike brother finish his first 60 mile race. It was a nice change of pace to sit back and watch the finishers come in. We cheered him in and got some nice finish line pictures.
|60 miles! Whoosh!|
|The sweet taste of victory (medals).|
|The family that races together gets a bunch of cool medals together.|
The second race of this report is the Park City Trail Series 15k. I've never done a 15k before, so it was an interesting change. This race was on the Round Valley trail system. I knew with it being a trail run, at elevation, I was going to be very realistic about my finish time. Trails are tricky beasts.
|Heading up into the hills.|
The trail started out as a fairly wide, double track trail. We chugged our way up, and up, and up. None of it was ridiculously steep, thank goodness. When we got up to the top of that particular section of climbing, we were rewarded with some decently technical single track. I think this may be my favorite type of trail. I like just enough roots, rocks, and obstacles to make my brain work a bit. The fourth and fifth miles of this race were really great.
|I see you, single track. Shaking your thing.|
It was a perfect day out. There had been a big storm the night before, and it kept the temperature down. It also made for some extremely muddy sections on the trail. Mud keeps things interesting. It wasn't too terrible, just another trail challenge.
|Trail running montage!|
I was supposed to do some extra mileage after this race, but honestly, it took more out of me than I thought it would. Trail running is so much more difficult than road running. It took me 2 hours and 25 minutes to get those 9.5 miles. So I called it a day and just added bonus miles to my run the next day. Besides, I had a date to go on (you're all completely shocked, I know). My weekly mileage didn't suffer, and I felt better doing it that way. Flexibility is key in training, you guys. Trust me.
The last race to report on (at least for another week) is the Porter's Half Marathon. There were some great things about this race. Starting with the option to pick up my race packet on the morning of the race, saving me a drive through rush hour traffic the night before the race. Huge bonus points there. The race started at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, also a nice thing. But the course started to lose its charm as we continued through random neighborhoods and along busy roads with no shoulder. There were a few times that we got to run on a bike path with no traffic and that was alright. I have to call the course a downside to this race, sorry Porter's people.
The biggest issue of the day for me was the heat. When I woke up Saturday morning, the temperature was 77 degrees. That was at 4 a.m. guys. By the time the race started at 7 a.m., the temperature reached 82 degrees. Yikes. I was doing alright for the first 9 miles. Then, it was just too much. The heat had become oppressive. It took me nearly an hour to get through the last 4 miles. I was reduced to running for about 30 seconds, then walking, then trying to run again. It was one of those days that I started to question everything about my running life.
I got to the finish, albeit 10 minutes slower than I had anticipated. I was rewarded with a giant medal (bonus) and Jamie's commiseration about how awful it was out there (bonus because misery loves company). We were both just happy to have made it through yet another tough race. 2015 has been a year of extremes for us and race day weather.
|Bullet holes in my medal/belt buckle? Hells yes.|
I finished up last weekend's running adventures with a 28 mile treadmill run, because I was NOT suffering through that kind of heat for that long. Flexibility, kids. For real. And with that 28 miler, I logged my first ever 70 mile week. I've been doing my best to stick to the training plan for Javelina. October 31 is going to be here before I know it, and those 62 miles aren't going to run themselves.
I'll have a whole new slew of races to report on in the next few weeks, so stay tuned! And until then, happy running!