Taking to the Trails

On Saturday May 10th I woke up at 6am thinking

Oh god what have I done? This isn’t going to go well I’m going to fall and be slow and it’s going to be horrible

These thoughts continued to run through my head as I ate my Special K but I told myself that I’ve done that distance, i ran tuesday and managed to survive and plus Brittany would be running with me and I would make it through ok.

My Dad gave me a lift to Brittany’s place which was only 20 minutes away from where the race started. We got into her adorable green car and drove off!

We arrived there after 8 with plenty of time to park, hit the washroom and pick up our bibs (curse me for forgetting cash so I wasn’t able to purchase anything but I should save anyway!)

The package pick up line although long I only waited about 10 minutes. I also got a coveted buff which I already love and prefer (I love collecting shirts but it’s nice to change it up!)

The start of the race!
The start of the race!

It was lightly raining and was not as cool as I originally anticipated but I still chose to rock my Whidbey Island longsleeve if only for the concern that it might rain more later.

These shoes would eventaully be covered in mud..and very wet
These shoes would eventaully be covered in mud..and very wet

The race started in 915. I purposely put myself at the back knowing that I am infact a slower runner. I ran nonstop to the best of my ability only walking up the last major hill. I enjoyed running through the rivers, the cold water felt amazing on my feet oddly enough. Besides I had packed extra socks so I mean what’s the big deal?

Special shoutout to Brittany for being an amazing buddy!
Special shoutout to Brittany for being an amazing buddy!

Once we really got into the trails I barely noticed the rain. I kept looking at my surroundings. I also enjoyed my various friends running past saying “Go Melissa go!” Even people I didn’t know cheered us on!

However the highlight was one of the course marshalls complemented me on my lipstick ! Alongside my red shoes!

The course overall was tough but manageable. The worst hill was right at the end but this was at the top

Made the climb all the more worthwhile
Made the climb all the more worthwhile

After that it was a steady downhill and next thing I know I’m pushing myself for the last 400m to have a strong finish!

Total time: 1 hour 34 minutes. Not bad considering it’s my first ever trail race! Especially when I signed up just to join along with all my twitter friends

The post run food was amazing and just the energy from everyone there. It’s definitely one of the smaller races I’ve attended but I liked the intimacy !

Finish line shot rocking my Buff!
Finish line shot rocking my Buff!

After this event I’m seriously considering registering for Alice Lake, I’ve been told that’s the fastest out of all of them. Here’s hoping I can swing that Saturday off !

Either way this has got me wanting to run more trails and push myself to get out of my usual 10 & 1 routine !

Change is good! I’ll definitely need to work on this more as I train for Concrete Hereo!

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Ladies of The Trails

It’s not just a neat name. It’s a running group. If I recall correctly it was created last summer to allow running women of all ages and experience to come out and run trails. It’s sponsored by 5peaks and is run by Solana Klassen (frequently seen on the web as #beastcoach) I thoroughly enjoy reading her blog especially with some of the crazy distances she’s done!

I told myself this year I would get over my fear and run trails. I must admit the only reason I hadn’t joined these free dropins was fear of my slowness.

Trying to decide what to wear before heading out...
Trying to decide what to wear before heading out…

My mantra right now is

“I may run slower then a herd of turtles running through Peanut Butter….but I RUN!”

because right now that is the most important part to me, is just getting out there and doing it.

We met up just after 6, leaving at 615. I tried my hardest to keep with the group but I found my calves we’re starting to hurt (I need to look at compression sleeves as they haven’t been this bad since I started training for BMO last year)

Lynn Valley is a beautiful area, I've explored it a couple times whilst on break from class
Lynn Valley is a beautiful area, I’ve explored it a couple times whilst on break from class

I was holding back tears when Solana came back to make sure I was still alive (Thanks again by the way!)

Group running is not just fun, it’s important. Running with other people is what keeps people motivated and it’s about a support system , also running the trails by yourself is not recommended.

As a Rover I should know this. And I was prepared I had my phone wallet, and other essentials in my trail vest (more about my awesome vest later!)

In fact when we came to a turn off I insisted that the faster ladies run without me ! I was letting my pride get the best of me, and I didn’t want to hold anyone up. Jen and Chantelle offered to run with me and ironically enough we ended up beating them back! The shorter loop had quite the intial climb but I actually don’t mind that, compared to downhill. I was worried about injuring my self running down them

But I did it.

Post Run Selfie! Oh god what did I just do?
Post Run Selfie! Oh god what did I just do?

I did 8k is around hour and a half. Not my fastest but it’s a start! With practice make perfect.

I’ve got my 1st trail race this weekend, and after last night I know I can get through it and finish!

I’m looking forward to future summer nights of running with these women

Obligatory selfie post run (Credit to Solana!) maybe I'll work on not blinking next time...
Obligatory selfie post run (Credit to Solana!) maybe I’ll work on not blinking next time…

If you’re at all interested in running with us look for us on Facebook if I can do it..so can you!

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