Over the weekend my husband and I ran the Bridle Trails 10 miler put on by the Seattle Running Club.
We were all smiles while we were still basking in the warmth of our comfortable car.
Neither one of us has been running very much, as a matter of fact I counted the miles I’ve run since CIM, and it added up to a whopping 11 miles. Running 10 at once would be interesting after this break and I told myself not to expect too much.
This race also has a history of being very muddy, and it gets worse as the night goes on since it’s a 5 mile loop course. I’ve only done it once before and I remember being fearful of losing a shoe if I stepped in a muddy spot that was too deep! Luckily (or unluckily?) it’s been cold enough that the ground was frozen.
The race started at 3:05, and the sun was to go down at 4:40. I couldn’t feel my feet for the first three miles. We didn’t start near the front and the trail race is basically single track, so faster people get quite frustrated if they start too far back. John was happy with our positioning and we had made a pact to run this together. I normally don’t promise this because I know how competitive I am and how hard it is for me to reel that in and just enjoy “running for fun”. The first lap went well, we tucked in behind a woman who was going a great pace that felt really good for me, we crossed the 5 mile mark at 42:43, a respectable 8:33 pace. John was wearing brand new shoes and had started telling me that his heel was really bothering him. He had rallied through that first half of the race, but now it was time for us to slow it down and run more comfortably, especially with him dealing with a major annoyance like that.
A blurry photo of John in the first lap, running an 8:33 pace and taking photos does not result in great photography.
I’m not going to lie, it was REALLY hard for me to deal with this. I had a lot of energy in me, I wanted to push myself and see what I could do off of such little training. I might totally fail, but the push is part of the pride! However, it was more important for me to stick to the goal and I decided to let him dictate the run. It’s hard for me to give up that control. The only bad thing that came of this was that I started to get cold as the sun started to go down. My gloves were not thick enough and should have worn a thicker base layer. But honestly that’s all that went wrong, I didn’t spontaneously combust because I didn’t run my hardest, I wasn’t going to win this thing no matter what (winning female came in at 1:18, a 7:51 pace) and while I know I could have beat some of the people who passed me, this was a very good lesson in control. I go out too fast in almost all the races I run, if I can learn to hold back and reserve, control pace and gasp! have fun without competing, then I can run some races without putting pressure on myself.
So cold, so iced over.
Overall this race was great, there’s the option of doing a 5 miler, the 10 miler that we did or a 50k, which runs well into the night and you need a headlamp. Last time I ran this race I wanted to stop at 5, this time, I was totally ready to hit that second lap. I really used my ass and hips like my physical therapist has been teaching me to get up the hills and damn! That felt good! So I even learned stuff on this run. So many non-numbered wins! John is nervous about Orcas and me getting grumpy if I “have to stay with him” through it. But after having a bit of time to reflect, and knowing I’ll be better prepared with apparel, I’m excited to run the full 15.5 miles with him, which includes using my butt and hips a to gain about 3500ft in elevation. As long as it doesn’t destroy my calves too much it will be fun.