This morning I drove to North Park for my 14th race there. Wait that's it? It seems like more. Last year I finished in 46:11. This year I hoped to do better.
The race is mostly uphill for the first mile, rolling trails from two-four, then back down the hill for mile five. It is not easy, but it is also run able even for the new to trails runner. The shirts this year were tech. Love it!
Before the race I was talking with Bob Lynn, a volunteer and runner from the Boston Harvest when Mark from FAAP asked me to be on a team. I said sure. The team was to be me, him, and this british lady named Naomi. SNM... oh geez...
I got to talk with Jim Woolfitt who directs two half marathons in WV. With him, me, Mark, the real director Elaine, Erin, and I think there was one more race director there. That is six race directors at one race...lol. It's no wonder the race went almost perfect. Some of the fastest runners got lost. But it's a trail race. You have to pay close attention to the signs. I've gotten lost before.
When the race started, it was nice and slow for me. I was going to run the hill, but not like crazy. The plan worked. When I got to the top I was able to speed up and fly through the course. It was so nice to get energy left.
I was on track for a 40 minute finish, when the left knee started hurting again. It was only mile 2.8. I ran threw the pain until mile 3.5 when the course changed to an open dirt road. I was able to get some more speed and only had pain on the up hills.
I picked up as much lost time as I could on the down hill of mile five. I finished in 42:21. That is 4 minutes less then last year!! I got 6th place and 3rd in my age group. The 2nd placer bet me by 7 seconds!! What was really cool, was that the team "SNM" got 2nd in the team challenge out of 7. I have never been apart of that. It was pretty cool.