Sunday, September 20, 2015

Flint Ridge Trail 10 Mile

This was the inaugural Flint Ridge Trail race, and the first race in the Big River Running Trail Series. You could chose between the 4 mile or the 10 mile race. I signed up for the 10 mile race to be eligible for the Trail Series (you tally points from each race, including the Flint Ridge, Skippo and Castlewood Cup).

It took me around an hour to get from home to the race location. I got there plenty early, got an awesome parking spot, picked up my bib and shirt, and then I had a little over an hour before the race start. That part sucked, but I was able to catch up on some work in my car (sounds horrible).

I've never run these trails before, so I had no idea what to expect. So I just told myself to have fun with it. This is not a competition, rather I'm just going to enjoy being out of the City and enjoy being mentally away from some things that have been bothering me.

I started in the 10:00 pace group, near the back. We started and the trail was pretty flat! I was having a lot of fun. Then around mile 2, we started to see some inclines. We also ran through a swarm of hornets, and I got stung by one on my leg. That sucked a lot. I've never been stung by a hornet before. The next mile, it was pretty hilly, and a bit challenging, but I was running with a group and that kept me going. I knew that the course would do a loop after we passed the finish line at the 4 mile. I was psyching myself for when or if we'd have to run through that portion again. Luckily, at 5.5 miles, we made a turn right before the hornet incident.

Smiling, knowing that I wasn't going near the hornets again.
And yes, walking...
The next miles were really peaceful. A lot of people had finished their 4 mile race, so the trail wasn't as packed (and we were more spread out). I was feeling really good, and the miles just kept going by. I did start walking some portions, but I was just really thirsty.  I should have brought my water bottle.

Flint Ridge Trail.
I finished in 1:49:27. I thought I did really well! The course didn't measure out to a full 10 miles, rather it was 9.25 on my watch. I then saw that I placed 145/168... so I didn't do all that well. Bottom 86%, hmmm. I placed 10/12 in my sex/age group.

Smiling at the Finish!
Anyways, I'm happy with the results. Trail running isn't easy, especially when you see people tripping in front of you and the hornet sting didn't help much.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

SW #5

Definitely a case of FOMO....

But I'm in for 2016.

Monday, September 7, 2015


The weather in St. Louis had been beautiful. 70s, no humidity, pleasant. Then of course we'd get a heat wave. I was the first runner and started at 5:30 am. It was dark and humid. I only had to run 2.3 miles and it was hard only because of the humidity. The course was fun. I enjoyed running a grass trail that was illuminated by glow sticks. I also did not run with music on this leg and it was peaceful listening to the sounds of nature. I finished this leg with a 9:32 pace.

I started my second leg at 9:20 am. I had been sitting in a van for the 3.5 hours since my last leg. I was feeling okay, but was worried about the heat. This leg was rated as difficult. I couldn't understand why for the first 3 miles. It was a gravel road. Most of it was shaded, so it wasn't all that bad. The route then turned into single track, and that's where the fun began. However, I had to walk the majority of it because it was rather difficult. Large rocks, steep ups and downs, lots of tripping hazards. The trail zigzagged around a creek, and it was just beautiful. I finished with an 11:44 pace.

Finishing my 2nd leg.
My last leg sucked. I started running at 2:05. It was now in the mid-90s and it felt terrible outside. This leg was just on the Katy Trail, so it wasn't all that interesting. And a majority of it was in the sun. I walked while I was in the sun... my head was hurting so bad and I seriously thought I could get heat stroke. I was the first one to finish running, and it felt so good!! I cracked open a beer and it tasted so good. We made our way to Hermann. This was my first time in Hermann (but it didn't feel like my first time). I must have been there when I was younger. I really enjoyed stopping at all the old railroad towns along the way.

Team finish.
This is the best team finish photo we got... and they took 10 of us at the finish. They really need to redo their layout, or hire a new photographer.

We finished the 82 mile relay in 12:03:23. A pace of 8:50. I had some fast runners on my team! It was a lot of fun! I just wish we had cooler weather. And here is a better finish photo:
Team 82 Problems but the KT ain't 1