My Best and Worst Experiences via Trail Running.
I would have to say my best experience was running the Medoc Mountain Trail Marathon. IT wasn't the best not because of the trail or that I finished and placed 2nd in my age group. It was the best because during the second loop after running 2 laps and ~19 miles my daughter Calla who is 3yrs old saw me running during my second loop around and came running up to me and said "GO Daddy GO" then gave me a hug. That was the BEST experience of all.
My worst experience came on Nov. 21 st 2009
at Raven Rock Rumble. Leading up to this
event my training was going well and I was preparing for hills and doing run/stairs quite intensely for muscle endurance and cardio.
Me, Ashleigh and Calla arrived early at Raven Rock and I picked up my packet and my race number 578 and was excited in being able to attend this event for my first time. I felt great and had been training frequently for this event. Prior to the start I warmed up by jogging and stretching and so far so good.
At 9:00am 10 M runners gathered at the start and we were off . I started out strong keeping up with the front pack of runners and entering the trail. Once I transitioned into the single track trail I felt rocks and roots that were hidden underneath the fallen leaves and felt a jolt a couple of times on my left ankle from rocks and roots;yet I still pressed ahead at a good pace still keeping up with the lead pack. At all times I kept my eyes on the trail and suddenly from what felt like a root I twisted and sprained my ankle severely I stopped for 10secs winced and resumed running at a snails pace and suddenly I inverted my ankle again which was already weakened. Somehow I managed to get to the turn around point and go up the stairs and of course my ankled inverted again.
Above: Me struggling to reach the aid station ( Start/Finish)
Finally, I reached the aid station and saw Ashleigh taking pics and I told her to get me lots Ibuprofen and that I had injured my ankle. A guy in the road saw my ankle from at least 50 feet away and said "oh no! you sprained your ankle I can see it from here" I didn't realize how bad it was until I looked down and OH WOW! it was swollen really bad I limped to the aid station sat down contemplated on finishing and said it would be insane to attempt this and I asked if anyone had ice and no one at the time had any. Finally a friendly Park Ranger prepared a ice pack and helped me and allowed Ashleigh to drive up to the aid station to pick me up so that I wouldn't have to walk any farther.
I really hated not being able to finish this race I had done much harder trails than this Uwharrie, Springmaid Splash and Mount Leconte. And to be passed by so many and not being able to do anything felt horrible.
After the drive back to Greenville I went to an Urgent care clinic and went from being runner number 578 to patient number 761.
I'm no doubt going to run in this event next year . From what I could tell it seems to be a great trail run and love the stairs added to the section of trail I was able to complete. This event was well organized and started on time and surely I hope to be back.