I am blogging, so that means I survived my half ultra trail run this weekend!
Things have been going great. No breakdowns of splurges, other than just a bit last night when I finished off cookies and a muffin in the house because I got sick of seeing them around the house…
Lately my life has been mostly playing Stardew Valley, with a bit of hanging out with friends. Our best friend/former roommates birthday just passed, so we had a fun night with him at his apartment!
I also had a little DIY spark and made myself a bib/medals display. I LOVE how it turned out.
So, now to talk about the Evergreen Lake Ultras! I was SO nervous for this race, up until I realized it was too late to train any harder to do well. I wanted to finish within 3:30, but was okay with anything before 4 miles. My new goal was to have fun and finish the 17 miles. It was raining the whole day before it, and all morning of the race. This didn’t look very promising.
We were VERY lucky, because the rain slowed down just as we got out of our tent and got ready to head to the race start. We didn’t get ANY rain for the whole race, and the rest of the day was beautiful with flecks of sun, but lots of cloudiness to keep us cool during the race.
I started out as expected, stay with Tony until around 2 miles into the race, when the small inclines started to get to me and I had to slow down. I did lots of running with walking when the hills became to much. That’s when the mud came. We hit a section of the woods that was SLOP. You couldn’t run. It was like skating slowly through the woods. This is when I decided I’d be happy as long as I finished before 5 hours. The hills started coming with old creek crossings in the middle. It was a matter of sliding down, and then struggling up the mud with help from others. I used trees, my butt was pushed up a hill by a stranger, and we all helped each other as well as we could. It was actually fun, since I wasn’t trying to finish quickly. The trail was a beautiful loop around the lake, and very interesting with different sections all looking different. I wish I would have met it in better conditions!
After sections of road, grass, and then more mud, it evened out and the second half was a bit more pleasant. I ended up sticking with someone who was running the 34 miles (2 loops) and she ALMOST talked me into running the first 5 miles of the second loop with her, but I was hurting BAD once we had only a couple miles left, and all I wanted was my flip flops from my car. My hips were sore, which is strange, and I’m guessing it’s from bracing myself the whole time in the mud.
We came up to a parking lot, and I saw my car. I was thinking there was still close to a mile left, but as many trail running routes work, it ended up being 16.1 miles instead of a full 17. I ran across the finish line, slowing down a bit to come in after the friend I made. My official finish time was 4:02:07, finishing first in my age group (20-29) by a landslide! I LOVE the finisher medal. It’s an arrowhead with a small metal plate with the race name and date on it.
After changing into my flip flops and eating my Power Bar, I sat around a bit waiting for the others doing the half ultra with me, also grabbing a pulled chicken sandwich and a pickle to munch on.
They came in, and after they ate, we headed to the showers and got ready to go back. We expected to wait another half hour to an hour for Tony, but shortly after we sat at a picnic table not to far from the finish, he busted out of the woods! After 2 loops, and around 32.2 miles, he finished in 6:30.
It was a great race. It was amazingly marked, and everyone was so helpful. They even already have SO MANY pictures online, and I’m just waiting on the ones from the finish line.
Now, to focus on my next goal, 26.2!