Yesterday Robin and I went out to a nearby college state park for a 8 hr endurance trail run called the CRUD 8. Neither of us were actually running in the event, but were there instead to help and learn about the behind the scenes portion of running a race. She and I are going to be first time race directors for a trail run on August 21st here in Eureka. I must confess that I failed miserably on the helping bit. I was too enthralled by all the fun going on in addition to the run and was unable to resist the call of the trail. I'll get into that in a bit but first a bit about the actual event.
The run was set up to be run as either a solo run or a relay team of 4, and followed a 5k loop until the final 45 min which was completed on a 1 mile loop. Robin and I hung out with a relay team of guys from here in Eureka most of the day. Our boys were in contention for the overall mens relay lead. In fact they led most of the day. When it was time to switch to the mile loop the top 2 teams were tied. If they completed the same number of laps on the mile loop there was going to be a 1 mile run off to determine the winner. Unfortunately for our guys they ran out of gas. They were a bit disappointed, but had a great time anyway. The best thing about an event like this is the camaraderie among all the people there. Most the runners were there cheering on and congratulating the runners on the mile loop. There was a competitiveness to the top two relay teams, but a good natured one at that. At the end of the day it just a bunch of like minded people spending the day running in a park, eating, drinking, playing bags, jarts, and just having a great time.
Back to Robin and me. We both took our shot at the loop. Her in her VFF's and me in my Nike Free 5.0's. Did I mention that we have had a bunch of rain in the week leading up to run? The trail was a hilly, muddy mess with areas of standing water, and only got worse as the day went along. I had zero traction. To get any kind of footing I had to hug the edge of the trail which force my right leg into the brush. It was a scratched up bloody mess. I think Robin fared a little better than I did but not much. For that matter, no one really fared well traction wise. Several of the hills required a duck walk to get up and the down hills were basically just controlled chaos with the hopes of not hitting a tree. IT WAS A BLAST! Robin did one loop and I did three. My hat goes off to the guys and gals that ran in the event. It was tough going. I fell on each of my loops including a self inflicted head first slide. Looked over my left shoulder to yield to runners in the event and tripped over my own feet. Nice!
They day was a blast and I am now completely hooked on trail running.