Yesterday I did my latest race of the year. For a change of scenery I signed myself up for a trail race. It was my third trail race since I started running. The previous two races took place at the same location as yesterday’s race. The location was a ski hill about 15-20 minutes from here.
My previous two races were 12 km races. Having not done much trail running in the past I was not sure what to expect in terms of a result. One thing that was apparent is that the weather would like lay have an impact because It has been hot and humid here lately and thunderstorms were in the forecast for yesterday.
When I woke up to get ready for the race it was raining. Fortunately that was the last thunderstorm of the day but it meant that there would be mud and puddles along the trails to try and avoid. I probably made my biggest mistake off the start by pushing harder than I should have given the hills to climb along the course.
The toughest part of the race came just after the halfway point when we dropped over 100min altitude. Once we got to the bottom of the hill we had to start climbing again. The climb was more of a series of hills as every time I thought I was close to the top another incline would come into view as reached what I thought was the top. Climbing the hill involved more walking than running because I was feeling the effects of the heat and the run itself.
I managed to finish in 3:13. By comparison, when I ran Around the Bay two years ago I completed the same distance in 2:14. Although I still prefer road racing I am pleased I tried the race. It was a great change scenery from my usual routine. If I have the opportunity I will probably try another trail race again at some point.
When I created this blog last year one of my first posts was about trail running and my limited experience with it.
Fast forward a year and my experience with trail running is still limited. However, I will be running my second trail race next Saturday. It will be the same race I ran last year, the 5 Peaks Camp Fortune Enduro race.
The race takes place at Camp Fortune, a ski hill close to Ottawa where my wife and I often head in the winter. The Enduro race involves 2 loops of the course for a total of 12 km.
Since my experience with trail running is limited I am doing this one more for fun and a diversion from my usual runs. I still do not even own a pair or trail running shoes because I have only completed one trail race.
Since that trail race a year ago my trail running experience has been limited to one “trail”. The trail in question is a trail, a fairly flat with one small hill, of about 2km that runs along the river that runs behind our house. I use this trail a couple of times a week as it drops me off close to our house.
Back to the race next Saturday, since I still do not have much experience with trail running I am not sure what my goals should be. It would be nice to beat last year’s time but really I think the important things for me this time will be to get in the mileage and have fun.
Do you incorporate trail running in your training?
Now that the Perth Kilt Run is out of the way I still have a few races scheduled between now and the end of the year.
So far, my next race is the 5 Peaks Camp Fortune trail race next month. I did the 12 km race last year and am planning to do the same distance again. I did this one last year and quite enjoyed it. I figure doing it again this year will give me a nice diversion from my usual training. You can read about last year’s experience here.
Following that I am scheduled to be a pace bunny in the Army Run half-marathon. I have participated in the run for the past two year and last year as a pace bunny for the first time. You can read about that experience here.
Finally, in November I am running the Philadelphia Marathon which is my goal race for the second half of the year. The goal for that one will be to improve on my 3:23 from the Ottawa Marathon in May.
So far that is my schedule of races for the rest of the year. However, I am toying with the idea of finding a 5 km in order to see how fast I could run it. During the kilt I was on pace for a sub 20 minute 5 km so if I can find a 5 km race around here either this month or next month I will probably add that to my list.
What are your race plans for the rest of the year?