I love the weekends! I love being able to go for a nice run in the morning and having the rest of the day to relax or do whatever needs to get done.
Saturday morning started pretty much like every Saturday for the last several months has started – early, with toast & coffee for breakfast. I crawled out of bed around 5:15 and got ready to head over to Starkey for a short(long) run.
I planned on doing my first trail run on Sunday so I didn’t want to go to long on Saturday. I was planning on doing 6, which I could have just done in my neighborhood, but I truly enjoy going to Starkey & running w/ the group.
I ran the first 3.5 with Michelle & Jamie; The last 3.5 I ran by myself, and pretty much fell apart. My stomach felt off, and I was having a hard time keeping my breathing under control. I felt like I was gasping for breath, couldn’t take a deep breath. It wasn’t a fun time. — I’m guessing I was dehydrated. Friday night when Chris got home we went down the road to a little bar and had a few drinks. I only had two drinks, but that combined w /the fact that I drank very little water all day on Friday probably did me in.
decent splits considering I wasn’t feeling it. Oh well, can’t win ‘em all.
SUNDAY started pretty much like Saturday. Got up early, ate toast (no coffee since we were going to be in the woods). Croom is about 35 minutes from my house, but google maps told me it was 51 minutes. I had no idea where I was going so I left around 5:45. I quickly figured out that it was going to be much colder than I anticipated. The further I got away from my house the colder it got. I stopped @ walmart to get some gloves & a headband. I’m glad I stopped and bought the gloves & headband, I wore them through out the entire run – it was pretty chilly in those woods.
New things scare me, so I was somewhat anxious about this run. Thankfully Jackie didn’t bail on me (Hiiii jackie) so this made me a little less anxious about the whole thing. I knew she’d pick me up off the ground if I busted my ass. She’d laugh, but then she’d help me up.
We met in Croom @ 7, and hit the trail shortly after. The first quarter mile is down hill, but there are a gajillion tree roots to look out for, so it’s not exactly an easy downhill. After that down hill the next several miles are a series of big & small hills.
I didn’t take any pictures, I was very busy trying not to fall! — I was able to find a video on Youtube of one of the hills that we went up. You go down this big hill into a pit, and then you go back up this gigantic hill to the top of the pit. You can actually go around the pit, but I guess half the fun is going down & then back up. (The hill is at 2:30 something, I think).
Croom- John Holmes 50k & 16 mile fun run
This video is actually some footage from the John Holmes 50k & 16 mile fun run that is hosted in Croom every year.
I can’t even put into words how much I loved running this morning. It just felt so peaceful to be running through the woods. No cars driving by, no honking, no people yelling out the windows. Some talking, but not much – just running. It was awesome.
It was hard to really take in the beauty of what was around me because I was very busy watching the ground. I tripped a few times, but I was able to regain my balance before I hit the ground.
I took some gels with me, but I didn’t end up taking them. I wore a water belt, but didn’t drink much water either. It was really cool this morning, and I probably should have drank more water, but I just didn’t feel like I needed it.
I was really surprised at how strong I felt for the majority of the run.
There were a couple times when I thought, “oh man, I don’t know if I can keep up this pace.” or “I need to lay down at the top of this hill, this is killer.” and “OMG MY LEEGGGZZZZZ” or, “kill me now.”
Sean’s idea of a good time is speeding up to an 8:20 through this particular part of the course that he really doesn’t like. He says this part of the trail always kicks his butt in the races he’s run at Croom so he likes to run that portion hard.
It’s pretty much all up hill from mile 6 on.
Sean says, “the first 4 miles are hilly, and then it kind of evens out.”
Claude says, “it never evens out.”
The hills after mile 4 are deceptive. They sneak attack you…and then.. you hit mile 6, and it’s all up hill.
Sean also warned that the last quarter mile is the worst part of the entire trail. It’s the same quarter mile that was down hill at the beginning of the trail.
What goes down, must go up?
No? That’s not how it goes?
That’s how it went today.
He wasn’t kidding. The last quarter mile was up-hill, and filled with tree roots. I almost wanted to just quit & walk, or throw up, or something. I won’t pretend that it wasn’t really tough, but it was so tough it was fun.
The whole thing was so challenging, but it was really, really fun.
The splits, because you really just came here to see how slow I ran today.
and the elevation, because you don’t believe that there are actual hills in Florida. there are. they aren’t that much above sea-level, but they are hills.
I’m in love.
On my drive home from Croom I was already trying to figure out how I can get back out there to run some more. There is a place across the street from my house that might have a few trails I could run. Nothing like what Croom has to offer, but it’s not paved, it’s just a preserve with some trails.
We’ll see. First I have to convince Chris that he wants to ride his bike back there while I run. I’m to chicken to go by myself.
this post is way to long
I need to go to bed.
chris told me he needs to get up at 4:45.