If you know me, you know that I am not someone that scares easily. Maybe its because I’m a little crazy. Maybe it’s because I don’t learn from my mistakes. Or maybe it is because I just don’t back down from a challenge, I’m not really quite sure to be honest. I started trail running in the worst possible way last year. I ran my first ever trail run at the Summer Night trail half marathon. Yep. You read that correctly. My first ever trail run ever, meaning I had never ever ran on a trail before that half marathon even in training. And it was at night. Well if that wasn’t stupid, I don’t know what was and it was quite the experience. My best running friend ran the first loop with me (see she was smart enough to just sign up for the quarter marathon) which left me running the second loop alone in the dark with just my head lamp. There was quite a bit of falling because you can’t watch your feet for roots and tree branches and in front of you to see where you are going at the same time with just a head lamp in the dark. When I finished (and yes I was super proud of myself for finishing!) I vowed I would never do another trail run again.
Until the following month I found myself running the quarter marathon at the Women’s Trail run which wasn’t as awful when the sun was shining and you could see where you were going and so I then registered for the Eagle Creek Trail Half Marathon. I was pumped to run it! Even better my best running friend, Mindy was tackling the trails with me once again. The terrain was a little tougher and steeper than we had experienced the 2 previous trails runs we had done but things were going overall pretty well until mile 3 and that is when we met up with the GUARDRAIL. There is a part of the course that runs on the road until it turns back onto the trails but you must climb over the guardrail to get to the road. I was ready and went to go over the guardrail with gusto and felt my right leg slip in some mud. This caused my shin to hit the back of the guardrail pretty hard and gave me a pretty nasty wound. Long story short we had to go back a short distance to the ambulance to get bandages for my leg and then we were able to finish the race. I have had many people tell me that they are surprised that I was able to run 10 more miles after this injury. Although this stung, it did not hurt to run. If it had hurt to run, I would have listened to my body and stopped running!!!!!!!!!!!!! WARNING………………….. I will share a picture of my leg after it hit the guardrail but it may be difficult for some to see
Yesterday I tackled the Eagle Creek trail half marathon once again. I knew I could not let that guardrail get the best of me. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to see that there have been some changes made and there is a beautiful new bridge that connects this particular part of the park to the road and climbing the guardrail is no longer a necessity.
My goal was to finish in under 3 hours and my official finish time was 2:52:15 which gave me 4th place in my age group. I’m pretty happy with that!!
And check out this beautiful medal!!!
So call me crazy but I would say that not letting the accident with guardrail keep me from getting out there again this year worked out for me and made for a really enjoyable and successful day! Now to decide if I have what it takes to tackle a trail full marathon next year!?!?!?!??