The race was out in Shorewood IL and like every monk race, packet pickup - for both me and my mini-trail runner - was a breeze. The race started promptly at 10 and we were off; the course was beautiful in fall colours (and familiar - we'd run it at the MERICA 5M race back in July - this was pretty much a shortened version of the same course).
We're off! Pic courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.
Why do I always forget how much harder trail running is than road running? The scenery is totally worth it, but it's much more work! In the first mile we had some steep downhills and steep uphills.
Getting ready to jump across a creek! Pic courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.
In the second mile we crossed creeks and edged our way along a steep river bank (twice, since this mile involved the turnaround point and aid station too). And then the third mile we did the first mile in reverse! Except that, just like the last time we ran this course, I stepped in the creek on my way back to the finish line. Sigh.
Happy to be done! Pic courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.
In the end I finished in 35:14. The course was so hard, that was me running the whole time! (well, when I wasn't trying to pick my way down a steep downhill! I joked with a woman as I went uphill who was still heading to the toward the turnaround point so going downhill that before trail running I thought uphills were the worst - trail running taught me that steep downhills are scarier!) With better weather I kept a significantly better pace on the same trail considering back in July the middle mile was wholly paved, so that race despite being farther was actually a bit easier.
Then it was time for the Mini Monk mini-mile! It was supposed to be 3/4 of a mile, so that was my daughter practiced. She ran in her Supergirl and I put on my Supermom bondi band to match. She wanted to run it herself but although she looks big for her age she's only 5, so I wasn't comfortable even though there would be adults at every turn on their course.
Such an artsy out of focus shot! Pic courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.
After how her 5k went back in May I was unsure how this would go, but she wanted it and so we did it. The other kids mostly took off but I told Lily that they could worry about their race and she only had to worry about her race. We had fun! Although, I was surprised to see we had to do one of the steep creek crossings; she panicked a little so mama to the rescue - I carried her across the creek! :)
Crossing that creek! Pic courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.
For the first mile she was totally awesome. When the mile was up and we realized there was still a quarter mile to go, she started whinging a little, but we regrouped with a hug and I reassured her she was almost there. She ran the whole time. She finished in about 16 minutes, which included the first mile at 13:04 and her fastest mile EVER! I am so proud of her. It ended up being 1.25 which is a lot more than she was ready for, and she did AWESOME.
My super girl! Pic courtesy of Muddy Monk FB.
Another awesome trail race done! My next race would be the next morning, the Hyatt's Angels 5K. That one is a road race and I chose to do it to figure out if a) I was in PR shape and b) I had a shot at an AG award at my target fall 5K. I'll recap that one for you tomorrow!