For a couple years I’ve had it on my bucket list to do a trail run. A few weeks ago I found out a couple of my brothers were doing one so I decided that this year, I’d join in on the fun. I didn’t have as much time to train for it, but I was able to get up to 6 miles.
So this Saturday I ran my first trail run (14k).
But before my brothers, my nephew, and I ran a few of my nieces did the kid’s race (1k) and did absolutely awesome! I have such sporty (and beautiful!) nieces.
I’ve done a few road races from a 5k to a marathon and let me tell you, trail runs are no joke. I’m used to running on flat, smooth surfaces with very little incline (I live in the prairies). The trail run was muddy, uneven, and very hilly – more than hilly really. I swear I was climbing up cliffs for some of them.
There was a 14k and a 7k, so those of us who did the 14k had to run the lap twice. The first lap was horrible. I got the worst cramps I’ve ever had – they started in both sides of my neck, then going through my shoulder to my arms. Every move made it worse. I’m no wimp, but I was actually tearing up with the pain. I also have a knee injury where the knee doesn’t track properly and it isn’t in place, so that was bothering me as well.
I was really dreading the second lap.
However, thankfully the cramps dissipated a bit and I was able to run the second half with less pain and run it faster than the first lap. Aside from hoping I’d be less than 2 hours, I didn’t really have any goals for the run, but I did decide to really take advantage of every hill I ran down. I have long legs so that’s when I would pass people (doesn’t matter that they passed me on the way up the next hill, haha!).
(homestretch of the race)
You know it’s kind of fun to get to know all the people in these runs. We talk about how nasty our injuries are, how they just started running, or how they just had a couple hours of sleep the night before, or that they should’ve clipped their toenails and now they’re limping – yup, those are my homies. Me and the peeps near the back.
Honestly, the distance wasn’t hard – however going up and down those steep hills was a killer! (Note to self: if I run a trail run again, do some serious incline training!)
Normally races don’t leave me emotional, but after this one I felt really spent. I sprinted to the finish line and literally fell into this lady’s arms. Bless her heart.
I’m not the fastest runner at all (my time was 1:49), but I was happy with that. My brother and his son ran the 7k and both of them did awesome! My other brother ran the 14k and he was second in his division! He did it in 1:26, what can I say…he’s such a beast.
I actually won second in my category, which was actually a weight category (had no idea races did this!). First and third didn’t show up (probably because they didn’t want to admit they were in that category, ha). However, because I’m freaky tall, I fit in the category and got a medal. I’ll take it!
I was starving since my breakfast was almost non-existent (I don’t like eating much before I run), so post-race food tasted amazing! The watermelon tasted so good.
All in all, it was really fun (especially when I stopped running). I can say that I’m a lot more comfortable doing road races, but I think it’s really important to do things out of your comfort zone and this race certainly did that for me!
Have you done a trail run? What is something you’ve stepped out of your comfort zone for?
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