Scenic hike recap, 32 km, and a goodbye (for now)

August 25, 2010 at 10:19 am 3 comments

This past weekend I patrolled through Whistler with a few babes for the fourth race in the 5 Peaks trail racing series. Most of us were feeling a little apprehensive, having little or no trail experience (see here for a recap of my first trail race ever) and we debated dropping down to the “sport” division, which would have been about 5k. We all decided the race was more of an opportunity for a “scenic hike”, and in the end, our desire to be HC (hard core) prevailed, and we all decided to stick it out in the Enduro category. Go big or go home, right? And since the race didn’t start until 11am, we could go big the night before!

The race itself was icing on the cake for such a lovely girly weekend. Andrea, Aly, Evie, Keri and Memes, it was so fun to hit the town in Whistler with you all! And we actually clean up pretty good! (Who knew?)

getting ready for prom

Even Andrea couldn't resist the fist pump

The next morning, after hitting the breakfast buffet at our hotel, we headed up the gondola for the race. This was only my 3rd time up in Whistler, and my first time in the summer- it was so beautiful! I have to say, I really love the 5 Peaks races- it’s just such a positive and friendly atmosphere, and a lot more laid back than road races. I love the relaxed feeling at the start and how we start in waves so there’s no frenzied push to get ahead.

ps. thanks to amelia for every single one of these photos

This was probably one of the hardest courses I have ever run! It was just so varied, we covered dusty single file paths, steep rocky slopes, and stretches of slippery snow. Alyson described the race as a “march” rather than a run, and I think I would call it a scramble. There were huge sections where you would be absolutely foolish to run due to the steepness, and every single person was walking. At one point a guy next to me joked that he would pay $100 to anyone he saw running. And I continued to hike, totally bent over, hands on my knees. That’s proper technique, right? While the uphills had my legs crying for mercy, the downhills were so fun, albeit terrifying at times. I’m not too proud to admit that at one point I was grasping for branches to slow myself down and gain some control. I totally felt like a kid again though, scampering down hill and getting dirty. I didn’t wear my garmin, and at one point I passed a hiker coming in the opposite direction who said, “Good job, almost halfway!” and I thought, “Wow that woman is so rude, why would she try to trick us into thinking we’re not halfway yet??”, but sure enough, I rounded a corner to a water station where the volunteers were yelling, “halfway! halfway!” In the end it took me 1:30:27.6 to finish 10.6 km, for 9th out 23 in our age group and 22/99 among the ladies. The fastest woman finished in 1:08- how did you do that??

Lessons Learned:

I feel like every trail race I do will be a huge learning experience in terms of technique (little steps!) since I’m so new to it, but the one big message that sticks out from this one is to trust myself and have some confidence- why did we all doubt we could get through the enduro?? In the end we all did great, and it was so fun. I’m so glad we didn’t cop out, and I’m so proud of all of us ‘road runners’ for getting down and dirty. You definitely need some trust and confidence as well to burn down those downhills like some of these crazy trail runners do, but it looks so liberating.

Major shout out to 5 Peaks (once again!) for the awesome post race snack selection. Chocolate chip cookies spread with PB? Yes, please. Post race we headed back down the gondola for celebratory ceasars, and then more ceasars, and then lunch at the Longhorn, where we basked in the sun and our post-race glory.

We headed back to Van in time to run 32km to Burnaby and back. This post is already outrageously long (much like this run?) so suffice to say that my legs felt like someone had encased them in cement in my sleep, but we all got through it! Thank the lord for walk breaks! Great job, runners. We were actually pretty speedy, holding 5:30 pace including walks.

Post run, we hit Cactus Club for brunch and caesars (Broadway Marathon Clinic: keeping Motts Tomato Clamato in business since 2010?) and to send off my running roomie, Amelia, to China. I am so sad! It’s been so fun to live with you again, twinny! And to run with you, too! We’ve come a long way…

Sackville 2004?

Cuba 2007

Myrtle Beach, 2007

London, 2009

Or have we…

Whistler, 2010

Have so much fun, friend! And see you WHEN I come visit! xoxoxo. Babe Patrol- any trail races in China you guys are keen on doing?


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Sympathy Pains Pier Pressure

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. suckitupevie  |  August 26, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    i love your post about 5 peaks. i would totally be up for doing a trail racing clinic. northshore athletics hosts some on saturdays, i think. i’ll check it out for us interested babes.
    also, your post about your friendship history with memes is absolutely a-d-o-r-a-b-l-e. thailand christmas 2010, baby!! see you tom for some hardy party at the square 🙂

  • 2. Tina  |  August 27, 2010 at 3:13 am

    I think trail races would be SO challenging! You did a great job! And it sounds like a great time with friends.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. 🙂 I really appreciate it and hope to continue seeing you around there. Especially with the 30 Days in September. 😉

  • 3. theroadtoboston  |  August 27, 2010 at 11:03 am

    Such a fun weekend! I’d be up for doing a trail racing clinic too. I have a lot to learn. Next spring?


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