Friday, August 13, 2010

Twilight Trail Run RR

Just did one of my favorite races of the year, the Twilight Trail Run last night! This was my fourth year doing the 8K event! It is for a good cause and just tons of fun!

2007 - Teamed up with MT and we won First Overall Female Team, Time ???
2008- Teamed up with CV and we won Second Overall Female Team, Time 37:05
2009- Teamed up with GP and just short of ranking! Time 38:10
2010- Teamed up with my girl ET and we showed we could have fun (even off our mountain bikes) and took Second Overall Female Team, Time 36:10 (my garmin was just over 5mi and 7:10 pace)

So I showed up pretty early with the husband in tow. It was HOT! Nearly 90 degrees and 70% humidity!

I went out for a two mile warm up with my ladies which included 2 strides and then did 3 more strides in the parking lot with E just before race time. One quick hit to the inhaler to try to keep the asthma at bay and I was ready to go....and completely drenched already!

The course is 8k/4.9 miles, 99% of course on dirt bridle trails, crosses one stream and has one MAJOR & many minor rolling hills. The start is staggered start by age and sex. You can start at 7pm if you are 70+ female and 75+ male or you if you are a 24-34 aged male, you would start at 7:16pm. Everyone else starts in 1-2 minute increments in between. You can ‘jump up’ a stagger by a $5 donation to Cleveland Rape Crisis Center (a very worthy cause). The first runner back to the finish wins the race! There were a number of fast chicks that jumped up a wave.

My partner and I lined up right behind the fast chick in our wave and with the start, we were off. Oh I know we were running too fast...especially for that first 400 or so on the open field as we were with fast BW. We got a little boxed out a couple times on the corners as we had already caught most of the group that started a minute ahead of us. Then there was across the lil stream crossing where ET and I dusted people who were trying to keep their feet dry on the side. I planted my right foot firmly in the middle of the stream where I crossed and I swear my shoe never even got wet. Then it was more passing people and before long it was up the HUGE hill.

My partner, ET was at my side and I felt like I was pushing too hard to stay in step with her. I think she felt I was doing the same thing to her. BW, was still only about 100 yards ahead as we crested the hill. Holy crap, I had totally gassed out up that hill and I tried to back off a tad to recompose myself. Pushing along down the bridal path and thankful to have the hill done, I finally hit mile 1...seriously that was only a mile, I thought. However my garmin had beeped about 100 yards before so I knew it was at least close.

Mile 2 was rolling hills and ET fell off. We were both breathing hard and she warned me, so I put my head down and focused on continuing to catch people and seeing how long I could hold off the fast guys! Again as I crossed mile 2, it did not seem possible that I was only to mile 2. Mile 3 consisted of lots of small rollers, #1, #2 and #3 male all caught me during this mile. Oh if only I had my rope but their pace was much too quick for me. The bridal path was in good shape and surprisingly dry....I really should have just wore my road shoes as I would have been much more comfy, as my trail shoes felt heavy and a bit tight (I have moved up 1/2 a size in the running shoes I purchase over the last yr or so). I was counting down looking forward to the big downhill by Squire's Castle for some reprieve....hang on, I thought! Finally I hit the big downhill and let the feet fly and the arms come out to balance me out. I was flying so fast and working to be a tinnny bit cautious so it was not quite the reprieve I had hoped. I was still tired at the bottom, but thankfully the air seemed a little less thick. Around the castle and passing all water stops without taking any, I was happy to see some CTC cheerleaders! Thanks guys really did pick me up a bit! I missed the mile 4 marker. At 4.3 on my garmin, I checked it, b/c I was wondering where the heck it was.  I was glad that I must have just missed it and was indeed in the final mile. After passing the River Grove driveway, there was some loose gravel on the last small uphill which felt rough and I begged my legs to keep plugging along. I felt spent and was focused on the final field just up ahead. As I hopped out of the woods and ran out into the field and I glanced over to see BB (another fast CTC guy) passing me. I wanted to kick with him but I was whooped and resolved to take my place as there were no ladies close to me. Hit the finish at 36:10 on my watch. My partner ET was not too far behind and I cheered in some other friends, taking pleasure in giving ElizaBeth a hard time of course!

Then it was afterparty time! Pizza and a keg....helllz ya! Then we hit a bar/grill after to complete the super fun night! ET and I ranked 2nd overall female team behind my friends, speedstars EH and NC!

All in all, I was quite pleased with the run. I have not been doing too much running relative to other years and very limited speed work. I had not run an open running race in awhile and I was not sure how I would fare. While my pace was not that fast, in that heat and humidity on that course, it was not too shabby! One of the biggest concerns I had about going long this year was that it might slow me down some. Everyone talks about lots of long slow training and often getting slower. However, I think this was my fastest run on the course yet and have been feeling pretty good about my paces in general so perhaps the hard work and focused pacing on my bikes and runs is working out alright for me! Now if I can just keep my legs (ok specifically my forever worrisome tibia) happy!


Matty O said...

Wow! Nice splits!

I get very nervous running trails. Being a bigger guy I roll my ankle easy.

Sounds like it was a nice course with a little bit of everything tossed in there.

I think its good that you keep doing road races to keep your speed work up too!

solarsquirrel said...

Great Job yesterday!!! You were smokin' fast! Congrats on placing, too! I gotta get working to catch back up to you girls!

allanjel said...

You did AWESOME!! I think mile 4 was right at the end of the blacktop path when you get back on the bridal trail after the castle, course you were probably running so fast you didn't see it :o)