This blog post is a long time coming. Honestly, I’ve been pretty disappointed with how the last half a year have gone, so I haven’t been particularly interested in posting about my mediocre race results.
This “Up The Creek” started as Amanda, my wife, and I ventured to Greensboro, North Carolina. I had quite high ambitions of doing well in the race, so I wanted to make a majority of the drive the day before. We stayed with Amanda’s mother and brother, and prepared for the race.
The location, Raven Rock outside of Winston-Salem North Carolina, was absolutely amazing. We truly enjoyed the river front. We checked into the race where we received a number of unique goodies. Our bibs were handmade,and there was a high-tech timing “chip” that was used at the top of the mountain to cover our up/down split. Amanda and I warmed up a bit and were ready to go!
The race started out well. I ventured into 11th and was chatting with a couple of the runners that were around me. I asked if the others were going to come back as we were clipping around 8:00 per mile and I didn’t feel as if the people who sprinted off in the lead would be able to sustain that. Ultimately, the winner averaged 7:55ish per mile, but none of the runners ever came back either.
We ended up gaining approximately 2000’ of elevation over the first five miles. Quite a lot. I found myself walking in a number of places. At the top, I had fallen to 20th, but really wanted to make the downhill a great opportunity. I passed five or six runner in the first mile of downhill as I was really able to let myself go. We ended up running back up some minor hills and I lost of time there.
With approximately 2.5 miles to go, I ended having quite a nasty fall. I sat on the ground for over a minute and was limping when I attempted to run. Eventually, the pain subsided enough for me to finish the job out. This fall would sideline me for the better part of 2 weeks as my left knee simply hurt to run (and sometimes even walk) on.
Ultimately, I finished in 18th in 1:54.05. I was pretty disappointed with this result as my first 10 miler as I was really hoping to make a statement. Ultimately, I was not in good enough shape to make this happen. I learned a lot for my next long distance race and have some plans moving forward!
Amanda, on the other hand, had quite a good performance! She ran the race in an impressive 2:35.57, good enough for 44th place overall, 10th place among the women, and 2nd in her age group! Definitely exciting.
What was even more exciting was that she had the greatest uphill/downhill split difference (-35 minutes on the way down), and won the award for the biggest difference! She was definitely excited!
The after party was quite fun. There was great food and an even better view!
Derek Cernak, the race director, truly attempted to make the experience great for everyone involved. I was thoroughly appreciative of the small nuances he undertook in order to make the race an unforgettable one! Amanda and I will definitely be attending more races from The Rabid Squirrel.