Saturday, October 25, 2008

Brush Mountain Breakdown Report

I DID IT!!!!!! And I did it strong - mentally and physically - and did not hit that wall like I did in Danville. The race started about an hour late, in a light drizzle, and in a muddy field. Looking around I noticed mine was the lone "mom-van" among a fleet of trucks and SUVs! I met some cool folks and saw a few folks that I knew. It was a very relaxed atmosphere and a small pack of runners.

After the 5K runners were off, the 8 and 15 milers lined up. I ran with a vet student for a while. She was super steady and confident, if slow. But I knew it was best to start off slower than I wanted. After I few miles I felt like a racehorse ready to get in the starting gate and GO! So off I went until I caught up to the next person. She was a young environmental engineer. That was fun for a while while we made our way up and Up and UP Jacob's Ladder. (I passed one guy who I am convinced was hung over!) This part just made me think of all the squats and lunges I've done and I knew I had the power. Down the back side I flew and got about the biggest rush I've ever had while running. Miles 5-12 were on my own terms and just fabulous. I loved the extra challenge of controlling every footfall to minimize mud and wetness and avoid ankle-turning rocks.

The last few miles began with a sizable ascent. This was the first time I felt some burn and I did have to walk briefly a few times. I continued to pass folks (and was never myself passed) until I caught up with a sprightly 17-year-old girl. I knew it would take a Herculean effort to pass her and once I knew she was not in my age group, I didn't sweat it too much!

I finished in 2:27'ish and felt great about my time and the physical and mental race that I had just completed. This will give me a huge boost heading into the Roanoke half next month. AND I have the confidence to know that with some training adjustments, I should be ready to tackle a marathon in the spring.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the race came after the finish, when it took two attempts and six people to push my van out of the field. There was one way in, one way out...up a short but fairly steep hill between two narrowly spaced gates that left little margin for error.

I went to the car wash before even coming home. You should see my shoes!

So, I finished, in one piece, and feeling suprisingly fit and comfortable. I do not think I am completely ill-suited to this. I feel amazing right now!!!