Thoughts On Marine 17.75k

Ok, first things first… how cold is it up there in April? I’m looking at the previous race pics and everybody is geared up like this is an antarctic trek. If I saw people dressed like that in Miami, I’d figure that the weather was in the 60’s. But when I looked at the finish times, the majority of the locations the runners were from were in Virginia! If the Virginians are so cold that they need race gloves, layers, and hats… I dunno guys, looks like I need to go shopping… for a ski mask and a parka.

And hills. I keep hearing about hills. You’d think in soflo I don’t ever see hills, but that’s not true. All the races seem to be on overpasses and those count as hills here. No, I don’t regularly train on overpasses, but my point is I can handle them without being too thrown during a race.

And trails. Does this mean I need trail shoes? I’m concerned about my new street shoes and what exactly is meant by “trail” at this 17k. Are we talking slippery leaves, loose rocks? Am I just “worried” because I am looking for an excuse to buy another pair of shoes? No no, I think I just need another pair of shoes for safety. That’s all. I’m sure those extra grooves in the trail shoes will make allll the difference in bringing my race pace down.

My race buddy and I keep talking paces and times. It’s weird since we’re not doing this for time. We’re doing it for that MCM entry. But we both acknowledged that we can’t NOT think about time. Last time I raced with this particular race buddy, I was faster. A lot faster. Now my race buddy is a speed demon and I’m just hoping I can finish before my buddy starts daydreaming about how nice it would be to be eating breakfast somewhere warm instead of waiting for me. That’s my time goal folks.

Other than that, I’m crazy excited about it. Cold weather sounds better than hot humid and buggy. And I haven’t done a trail race in, well, ever. Does the Bataan count as a trail race? That was a million years ago. I can’t wait to hit the Virginia trails. This is the raincheck for the trail run through the Manassas Battlefield my buddy and I were going to do last year before the government shut down shut us down.

Update 5/24/14

It’s hilarious to read how nonchalant I was about hills on this race. Hills? Oh yeah, no problem! I ran a hill once and it was no big deal! Holy hell, those hills were IN-SANE. I cannot even describe to you the amount of hills on this thing. Not only were there a million, but they were the biggest no-joke hills I’ve ever seen. They destroyed me. But I will say that, if I could sufficiently prepare next time, I really enjoyed all the hills and the trails. It was fun. Made me feel like a kid again, running around paths and hills and all that.

Also, yeah, I was right about my race buddy. She was totally chillin with my family for almost 30 minutes while I finished the race. Hey, I DID prepare my family and my race buddy for this! I said, in no uncertain terms, that I would be finishing probably 30 minutes after her. That I hadn’t trained. That they should NOT look for me before the 2 hour mark (I did finish under that though but my point was to say – I WILL BE SLOW!!!). So, yeah, fears were realized but it’s ok because I was still proud of my time with all those hills!

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