Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Trailing Away - Fox Trot Trail Race (4/25/10)

Race: Fox Trot Trail Race, Blue Hills, MA
Distance: 10 Miles
Goal Time: 1:30:00
Actual Time: 1:26:14

So it was about 4.5 miles in when I officially confirmed to myself that a ten mile trail race is WAAAAAY harder than a regular half-marathon:

I was briefly talking with a guy. He asked me how much trail running I had done.

"This is my first time." I said.

"It's my first race, too. I've only been training on trails for a few weeks."

This is when I officially confirmed to myself that I was a moron. "No," I said, "this is the first time I've ever done any trail running. I suppose I should have done it at least once before."

By Six miles, I felt completely finished. I had to walk up one of the hills. (something I've never done in a race.) Then I threw up at the top.

This is when fortune smiled upon me. A woman in a 2010 Boston Marathon shirt ran by me during my expelling of the morning's coffee. She was running slightly faster than my brain wanted to but in a speed my legs could handle. "I'm following her," I said to myself and that I did until about 7.5 miles. She tripped up a little bit. I tried to process the trip to avoid the root or stone she tripped on only to find myself flat on my back! "Awesome!" I exclaimed. Well, as she tied her shoe I got up started running. (The small blister on my right foot was no longer bothering me since there was a big strawberry on my left knee now that was killing me.)

A little past eight miles was the last real tough hill and by then I wanted to quit. Well, once again fortune smiled. The same woman in the 2010 Boston shirt passed me again. From there a strange random memory of a friend's band hit me: I am on top / I can do anything. So, I was just determined to just follow her footsteps.

For the rest of the race until I could smell the finish, I just followed that turquoise (maybe, aqua-marine?) shirt. As we reached toward the end, I realized I could probably beat somebody in a sprint who ran the hardest marathon major a mere six days ago. While I almost killed myself in the sharp slope that led down into the Trailside Museum parking lot, I happily blew by the woman who spent Monday out on the hills of Newton while I sat on my couch eating nachos - wondering where Meb had dropped back to.

My goal time was surprisingly close to my finish time - considering I had NO earthly knowledge of translating road times to trail times. I think I might run some more trail races (but practice trail running at least once before hand). And I know I won't complain about the Great Bay's hills again.

Tino pai,


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