Yesterday I ran my second trail run. And it hurt. The first hurt because I started with these three ladies pictured below. I gathered from eavesdropping on their conversation, before heading into the other "hurt"(which will be discussed shortly), the 13 miles of hilly trails, that they were around my age, had multiple children and were ALL running in sports bras showing abs of steal! Now that hurts!
The second hurt came when they all wished each other fond farewells and one said to the other, "Heather! Go set another course record!" It didn't take but a second to realize the tiny girl, pictured on the left, was the "Heather" they were talking about. Hurt (and she did win).
The third hurt came when I realized I was all alone crossing this bridge...and why did that hurt you ask? Well, moments before this picture was taken, the photographer captured this lovely moment (pictured below):
Now, it didn't actually "hurt" physically (that came later). It was just embarrassing. Look at how silly I look! And Sommer agreed. This same "silly look" happened multiple times during my adventure. Stumbling was a common occurrence and focusing on the rocky, rooty trail was a must.
Around mile 7, I decided I needed a gu. After opening the package with my teeth and messing with my water bottle, my balance was interrupted by my left foot tripping on a rock. That created a series of events, falling, rolling, moaning and then getting up. I said to myself, "Off you go..." What choice did I have? And no one to see it...I bet one of the photographers would have loved the action shot. I could feel blood dripping down one knee, the other knee aching and back hurting...and 5 miles to go. It hurt.
The rest of the race was constant pain going up steep inclines, dropping quickly down, doing my best to manage the crazy terrain.
The best part came when I found out I was the 10th girl after mile 11. It was there we turned around and repeated the same trail we had just completed. It was so fun to see all of the ladies (did I mention this was a Women's only run)! Encouragement followed. I realized runner 11 was too far back to catch me. Runner 9 was about 20 seconds in front of me but I had no muscles left to try and catch her...hurt too bad.
Coming out of the trees and trail I see Garth...cheering. I finish strong. Beat my personal best on that race by 10 minutes...woo hoo! And got 10th runner overall and 2nd in my age group! And the prize was much better...a nice visor.
So although trail running hurts...it hurts good!