Have Your Legs Ripped Off, Beaten Against a Frozen Tree and Put Back on Backwards Saga.
You may remember some previous reports from the Winter Run for Regis. This was my fifth time at this race and I love supporting the Regis Shivers Scholarship and the Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher House. It also helps that this run is a blast thanks in part to the head honcho Tanya.
One of the best parts of this race is listening to her pre-run instructions. Tanya is funny and isn't shy of telling people to shut up so her instructions won't be missed.
Aimee and I signed up for the half marathon again. We would have TriSaraTops, JenP, Brandy and Ana joining the fun this year. They were all newbies to either the event or the course. A fresh layer of snow had fallen overnight and the clear skies had the temperature at 10 degrees. At least there was no wind.
With the unceremonious "go" we headed out on the 8 mile loop. As the crowd started to thin out I found a comfortable pace with two other runners. Cassandra and Jeff would be my running mates for this first loop.
Being a very casual run it's great to be able to talk with people. The cold weather was fine if you were running. My toes finally warmed up at a couple of miles. We talked about other trail races, triathlons, and other BS.
At the first aid station I took my time and they continued on. I ate and drank what I felt like. The Coke and Mountain Dew were already getting slushie. The PB&J sandwiches were not frozen yet. I thanked the volunteers and head back to the start/finish(Home) to complete the 8 mile loop.
Back at "home" I had my number marked that I completed the loop, said hi to Joe and hit the restroom.
I thought I felt good starting the 5 mile loop. Before we actually hit the official loop part there was another aid station. I took a HammerGel despite its frozen condition. I would get a small bit out and let it melt in my mouth. I needed some extra energy to make it through the loop.
As soon as I hit the rollers through the woods my legs started to complain. My left knee was starting to bother me and a general lack of energy was sitting heavy in both legs. Maybe that 90 minute bike session on the trainer was a bad idea. I rode pretty hard since I had missed the Tuesday spin because of work.
I started walking every little incline. It felt like a monstrous hill but I kept the legs moving. Slowing down too much or stopping would have been worse because of the cold weather. Each time I would spot a tree and tell myself that that is when I would start running again...no matter what.....because it would get me back to "home" that much faster.
It was a big struggle to keep moving. But I embraced the mental challenge of pushing my legs despite their protests. I crossed the finish line and gladly relinquished my race number to the volunteers. I had completed the 13 miles in 2:25. Two years ago I managed a 2:05 on the same trails.
I wasn't very well prepared this year. Since the Salt Fork 10 Mile Challenge I had let my running slip pretty bad. I need to get my ass in gear. I signed up today for Triple T again. Now that is a course that will kick your ass if you don't prepare properly.
So let this past weekend be the start of something wonderful.....a good training plan leading up to Triple T.
Monday, January 16, 2012