Monday, July 1, 2013

Nipmuck South 14.1 Mile Trail Race

Nipmuck South 14.1 Mile Trail Race was my third real trail run since I began running a few years ago. Another necessary step as I prepare for the Vermont50 in September. It was a hot day with temps in the
Nipmuck South 14.1 mile race.
80's heading towards 90. The humidity was building which meant it was going to be a tough race. Because of the conditions and the fact we were truly in the woods I carried 20 ounces of fluids and a gel.

This was the inaugural running of the race which meant a small number of people signed up. 80 to be exact. It was held at a park in Mansfield Hollow, CT. I started out well as we began running between some baseball fields. The trails were not too technical but the first 3 miles had some decent hills. Since trail running is rare for me I was happy with my performance. At the half way point I was in good shape.....very hot and tired but OK.

On the way back I was flying. My gel and fluid intake helped maintain my energy level. I was running hard and enjoying it. Then at about 8.5 miles my toe caught an exposed root. I hit the ground hard. My left knee and thigh were in extreme pain. So much so I thought I broke something. I laid there for a few seconds thinking about how far away help was. If I needed help it wasn't going to be easy. But I picked myself up to assess the situation. My knee was cut and I had a decent bruise on my upper thigh. Nothing appeared broken so I started running and got back up to speed. My legs were functioning but it hurt. As I approached 12 miles I was crossing the original baseball fields which meant the finish was within 15 minutes. Unfortunately when I re-entered the small section of woods before the finish I became lost. Somehow I missed a turn. It was extremely quiet and very isolated. I walked for a while hoping to find a trail. I checked my GPS on the phone but it showed me what I already knew.....I was a dot in the middle of a state forest. No clue which way to go. Eventually I heard faint music in the distance and headed for that. That led me back to the park but was way off course. At least I found the finish. My time was 3:16. Not great. I could have finished under 3 hours if I hadn't gotten lost.

I was happy to finish a significant trail race in OK time and condition. A good training day to develop my trail skills.

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