Gorge Waterfalls Race Recap

I’ve been avoiding this recap, because it’s the last time I really was able to run. I knew going into this race I was going to have a tough time.  First off it’s a tight 8 hour cut-off and with the pain I’ve been having in my hamstring, but nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?

So Sean & I went up to Portland on Thursday evening, on Friday we explored a little by our hotel in Troutdale while I had to work in the morning.

On Saturday, Sean ran the 100k and I volunteered at the 50k aid station.  It was a lot of fun, but a kind of rainy, cold day.

I saw Jim Walmsley come through in first place on his way to a new course record and a Golden Ticket to Western States. Not the best photo from my spot at the aid station but it’s him ;).

 

 

I had a great time volunteering, we were super busy and it made the day go by really fast.  While I was out there I saw Sean of course, Josh, Natalie, Gina & her fiance Richard and cheered on a ton of runners.

This was the day when I stopped my run streak as well at 138 days.  My leg wasn’t incredibly happy and I decided to be smart and rest another day before the 50k on Sunday.

Sean didn’t push it on this race, he was still recovering from some other races. He came in around 16:18 in a trash bag to protect him from the elements.  We got some of the super yummy pizza they were serving – SO GOOD! and then headed back to the hotel.

 

 

I was excited but also nervous about the 50k.  I made the decision to just go out and have a good time & do my best to make the cut-offs.

 

 

We started at the 50k turn-around.  And unlike the day before it was a beautiful, crisp, sunny morning.

Sean cheered me on as I started my race.  I started the race having to go to the bathroom, oops, so as we made our way to the trail, I hit up the port-a-potties.  I started the race towards the back, which was fine, I knew that I was probably going to be back there regardless so it was fine for me.

 

 

It was an interesting course, wet with lots of moss & pine needles with a lot of roots, kind of reminded me a little of the HURT course.  I decided to wear my Altra Running King MTs for the race.  It was a good choice as there was some snow on the course.  I also ran with my Black Diamond poles, which were a big help to me as well.

 

 

I made it to the first aid station in plenty of time, I was hiking the uphills, running the downs and some of the flats.  Everything was going relatively well.  I was taking photos and just enjoying my time out there.

The second section was a bit more of a struggle, we had a lot of climbing during this section and my hamstring just wasn’t very happy, but I took photos, and just kept smiling enjoying the day.  I was leap frogging with some other girls from Phoenix, they would pass me on the downhill and I would catch them on the uphills.

 

 

We finally saw a waterfall right about a half mile or so from the mile 19 aid station.

 

 

It was there that we had to climb up a section of the trail using a rope.  It was crazy, but there was a rock slide and the actual trail was damaged.  This was the way they could get around it. I wish I had gotten a photo but I was trying to put away my poles so I could climb up.  From there we still had about a mile down to the aid station.

I made it with 2 minutes to spare and could have continued on, however I was in so much pain, I knew it was time to call it and get my leg looked at in case there was something seriously wrong with it.

I had to wait at the aid station for someone to take me and a bunch of others back to the start/finish.  It’s quite interesting, I saw this at the 100k the day before and then again at SD 100 a few months later.  Even though races have strict cut-offs they don’t really have a plan in place to get runners back to the start finish.  There were a number of runners who came in after I did who were past the cut-off that had to turn in their bibs and then we all just waited.  We were very fortunate that there was a nice guy who let us not only sit in his warm car, but also drove us back.  I do wonder though if he wasn’t heading back to the start, how exactly would I have gotten there?

In any case, the course was absolutely beautiful and I did enjoy my time out there.  I wouldn’t mind going back one day and trying it again when I’m healed up even though the cut-offs do stress me out a bit.

When I went back to the finish, I cheered on my fellow runners and had a great time.  They do put on a great race.

Pros: Beautiful course
Well organized
The post race Pizza was AMAZING!!

Cons: No medals or finisher awards
You have to pay additional for a race shirt
Tight cut-offs

And there you have it, my first experience with Rainshadow Running and the Gorge Waterfall 100k/50k.

Griffith Park Trail 50k Recap

One week after the Wisdom Tree Marathon, Sean & I made our way back up to LA for Keira Henninger’s Griffith Park 50k/Marathon & 1/2 Marathon.  We had a ton of friends running and were excited because Keira always does an awesome job.  We always have a great time at her races.

We drove up to Manhattan Beach on Friday to stay with Sean’s sister.  Driving to LA on a Friday is always a bit stressful since there is so much traffic but it wasn’t horrible until we hit the 405.  We managed to get to her house relatively early.

We got our gear out, did our flat runner photos and then headed to bed.

We got up pretty early to drive the 30 minutes to the park. This race started on the other side of the park, by the Merry Go Round, opposite from where we were for the Wisdom Tree race the week before.

Once we got on the road, we hit insane traffic because they closed one of the freeways for construction and had to be re-routed around the airport.  It was super stressful since we were already running a little late.

I was texting with Kristina and asked her to pick up our bibs just in case we were really late.  We managed to arrive with about 30 minutes to spare but I was a bit nervous.

We got lots of photos with the OM Team and lots of friends running the 50k and other distances.

Keira gave a quick pre-race speech and then we were off!  Sean & I were with Kristina for a bit at the beginning and then we all separated on the first little climb.

Once we got up a little ways we were treated to the most spectacular sunrise!  This photo I got of Sean really doesn’t do it justice but gives you a little insight into what we saw.

I really had no idea what to expect from this race except that the course was a little short (29.5 miles) and that there was going to be a LOT of climbing, over 6k.  If you have followed me for a while, you probably know, I’m not a fan of climbing, LOL.

Anyways, I started off hiking the uphill and running the downs and flats.  I chatted with a few other runners and Orange Mud fans. We eventually were treated to an awesome view of the Griffith Park Observatory. The guy I was running with at this point was telling me La La Land was filmed there and that I should check it out.

Just after this we saw Howie Stern taking photos and then we got to another uphill, where there were volunteers cheering us on and sending us down to the left to the observatory.

Down I went, I saw Sean coming back up not too long after I started down.  I was having a weird feeling like my right foot was swelling even though my shoe didn’t seem to be overly tight and I had to go to the bathroom. Odd, but I kept moving and eventually got to the bottom where there were more volunteers telling us where to turn around.  As I went back up, I saw a bunch of my friends, Jenn, Vanessa, Alexis & Kristina.

 

The only downside to this race, at least the first half of the race was that there were a lot of other people out on the trails which meant weaving in and out a bit.

I hiked the way back up and once up we headed over to towards the Hollywood sign.  We went down a pretty steep trail and then up the road to the sign. At the road there were a few volunteers, I saw one of the guys I followed for a bit at Sean O’Brien directing us up the road.  Once we got to near the top, there was a girl there telling us to go up to the flag and when we came down she would give us a wrist band showing that we made it to the top. Once I got to the top, I asked someone to take my photo since I was by myself at this point.  Note to self…make sure to tell the person taking the photo to get your feet in the photo too so you can show off your Altras ;).  The sign was the turn around spot at about mile 11.5.

I got my bracelet and headed down the road to the little hill that the week before I described as a slip and slide ;).  And we did a portion of the course that we did the week before – on the single track section. It was a lot harder to run the single track because it was dry and there were so many other runners coming that it was hard to get any kind of decent pace going.

Once we got back to the road, that the week before would have taken us to the horse trails, this week we headed back up over towards the Observatory.  My legs, specifically my hamstrings & glutes, were starting to really bother me around this section and when I saw Smitha, Jenn & Valerie, they asked me how I was doing and I was like my legs hurt! lol

Fortunately we didn’t have to go back down to the Observatory and just headed back towards the start. Those nice downhills were now pretty steep climbs and by the time I got to mile 17 I was hurting pretty bad.  I texted Crystal and told her where I was, pretty much whining about the horrible hills.  From this point until I was to the final turn around, I was not in the best of moods.

For some reason when I looked at the course map, I thought the course was a loop not a bunch of out and backs, I was kind of confused when I was heading back and didn’t know where the additional miles were coming from. Turns out all the out and backs look a lot like a loop.

Regardless, I finally saw Sean around mile 22 as he was almost back to the finish.  I was not happy and complaining about why was I even doing this, I hated running, etc. etc. This has been a reoccurring theme during my long trail runs lately, especially when there are a lot of hills.

And the worst hills were still to come it would appear.  I hit the last aid station and headed out for the last out and back.  I was not happy when I got there and I was pretty calorie deficient by that point too.  I’ve still got to work on my fueling.  I got some more CarboPro and kept moving.

As I was heading up a pretty steep hill, another girl passed me and then was like this is horrible, how far up to we have to go.  I felt at least a little comforted that it wasn’t just me who was hating these hills lol.

We just kept going up and up and up and then finally I saw 2 people and asked hows much further we had, they told me the turn around was by the trees, which was a lot further than I was expecting.  Regardless I got to the turn around and then saw my friends, Jenn, Alexis & Vanessa coming down.  Then on the second or third uphill, I saw Kristina and we got a quick photo before continuing on.

I could not wait to be done! Finally I got to the last aid station, had my bottles topped off and was told it was only 2.5 miles to the finish! Hallelujah! I took off and caught Tam shortly afterwards, we chatted for a minute and then I started running again.  I’d hike the uphill, run the down.

Finally we got to the final turn back to the finish line.  Raul & his son (Founder of Running4ThoseWhoCan’t) were there and cheering me on.  I started running and didn’t stop until I got to that finish line.

I was so incredibly happy to have made it to the finish.  That was a very tough race.

Sean congratulated me, got a few photos and then I got my medal & buckle from Keira.

We waited for our friends to finish, got a few more photos and then headed back to his sister’s so we could have lunch.

As always Keira does an amazing job and even though mentally I was not in a good place, this was a great race.

My Road to SD100: Stop 1 – Sean O’Brien 50k

The first half of this year is all about getting to the finish line of SD 100.  And with 2 races a month, I’m using races to train & get more comfortable being on my feet for a long time.

First up in my journey is Sean O’Brien 50k, which was my 5th 50k.  I went to Sean O’Brien with my Sean last year and ran/hiked the first 5ish miles of the course so I had a very small knowledge of the course, which is not easy.  The nice thing about SOB is that like with Keira Henninger’s other races with multiple distances, there is a long cut-off for the shorter distances which I like.  I hope not to take the full time, but I know I don’t have to worry about cut-offs, which I really like :).

Anyways, Sean & I drove up to Calabasas on Friday afternoon/evening.  We made it to packet pick-up in time to get our bibs and to try out some of Altra‘s new shoes.  I was super excited to get to try on the new King MT & the new Superior 3.0, both of which I can’t wait to add to my collection.  (I wish I had asked Ben, the SoCal rep, if I could have worn a pair of the King MT’s for the race, but more about that later).

We headed over to our hotel, got dinner at a very clubby Italian place that I felt a little under dressed at in my super comfortable Orange Mud sweatshirt. Side note: If you love super soft, comfy sweat shirts, this is the best one ever, I literally wear mine every day.

We got back to the hotel and got our flat runners set up before heading to bed.  With a 3:15am wake-up call I hit the sack as soon as I could.

That alarm sure came fast, I think I snoozed once maybe twice 😉 before getting up and starting to get ready.

It didn’t take us long and we were out the door and on our way to the start line.  The 100k started at 5am so we were trying to get there by 4:15/4:30 so we could get a decent parking spot.

We got Sean’s drop bags over to the start area & he headed out to start the 100k.  As I was listening to Keira’s announcement, she was talking about how lucky we were to even have the race because of all the rain we’ve had in SoCal lately.  She lobbied with the Parks department, reworked the course and we were all able to run!

The 100ker’s took off and I headed back to the car because my race didn’t start until 7am.  I decided to get a little more sleep before getting up around 6:20ish to get ready, check in and hit up the port-a-potties.  I met up with Emily, a (very speedy) fellow ProCompression Ambassador and a few of my fellow Orange Mud ambassadors.  We got a quick photo and then Keira was asking us to head to the start line.

Once we were at the start line, she let us know that the race was going to be muddy (I was like great, I left my poles in the car, oops) and that the 50k & marathon were the only races that didn’t have a course change.

Pretty soon after that we were off, I kept a steady pace for the first 2ish miles to the creek crossing.  I felt decent during this section.  The creek crossing was a lot higher this year than last year – it was knee high and the creek was rushing.  They had a nice strong rope to keep us safe on the crossing.  The mud we encountered just after the crossing was actually a bit more stressful.

And then up the hill we went and as we went up, we got over the fog and it was so amazingly beautiful.  I chatted with some other runners as we climbed and climbed.

As we made our way up to the first aid station, we were going up over these boulders, which were awesome and so different from the rest of the course.

It was in this section that I saw Howie Stern who got this photo of me.

I got to the aid station, had a few snacks and then crossed the street, a volunteer was advising us to be careful because it was slippery.  This initial section was pretty slippery because there was a lot of flat rocks.  But as we kept moving it cleared up.  I was following a marathon runner who picked up a friend at the aid station, don’t think that’s really supposed to happen, but I guess anyone can come out and run on the trails.

I finally passed them and kept moving.  And then I came across a crevasse taking up 2/3s of the trail, it was nuts.  I slowly made my way around it and kept moving.  This was maybe 8-9 miles into the race.

It wasn’t too far after the crevasse that we got to the mud.  It was pretty slippery but I figured out a way to run/hike through it and I wore my Superiors which really helped as opposed to my Olympus.  This is when I wished I had the King MTs to see how well they really worked in the mud ;).

This section felt like it took a long time for a variety of reasons, one, it was muddy, two, I was in a pack and at the start of the mud, I was behind a girl who didn’t have the right shoes on and she was slip sliding around like crazy and three we were stopping a lot and attempting to move to the side for the lead runners coming through.

After the mud, we had a very steep downhill into the mile 13 aid station.  I had to go to the bathroom so I lost a lot of time in this mile because there I had to wait for someone to get out.  Unfortunately sometimes you just have to wait, and in this case I made the right decision :).

It was about 2ish miles to the next aid station.  There was a nice down hill and then some climbing.  As I got closer to the aid station, people started saying BACON!  And you’re almost there, this one is good, they have bacon.  Ultra runners love bacon! Although who doesn’t love bacon.

I made it to the aid station, practically sliding into the table, refilled my pack and then turned around.  I saw a few friends and enjoyed running the downhill in this section.

I made it back to the halfway aid station, grabbed a few potatoes and I was out.  Now, I should have had some new shirts in my drop bag because I was soaked.  Note to self, put a dry shirt in your drop bag.

I headed up the hill and ran into my friend Tam, who was coming down to the aid station.  We got a quick pic and then kept moving.

I was anticipating a tough road with the mud.  I was pleasantly surprised to see the mud had dried a little bit so it wasn’t as slippery, but instead it was super sticky.  My heels were popping out of my shoes, I was a little worried at one point that I was going to walk out of my shoe, lol.

The first part of the next section went really well.  2 guys passed me and I followed them for a bit, down and through the small creeks – there were probably 11 water crossings during the race.  They ranged from the rushing knee deep creek to small puddles that you could hop over.  It was nice having these guys to follow for a bit.  I couldn’t really keep up on the steep uphill to one of the aid stations, but I caught back up and passed them on the downhill in the last section.

I finally got to the last aid station, a volunteer helped me refill my pack with CarboPro and water.  As I was getting a snack, I saw Sean run into the aid station!  How awesome was that.  He was at mile 40 and I was at 26.  We spent a few minutes chatting about how he fell and hurt his knee around mile 1.5 and then we went our separate ways.

It’s interesting how quickly you forget the course because the first part of the last section was a lot hillier than I remembered.  I ran walked and eventually our friend Josh Holmes, of RunItFast, who was running the 50 miler caught up with me.  We chatted for a few minutes before he took off.

There was a girl in front of me with arm sleeves that I was following down the hill.  This section was really hard on my feet, but I kept her in my sights and eventually a little before we headed on to the single track, I passed her.  We saw another girl too who was a little confused as to which way to go and kept moving.

This section was fun, a lot easier on the feet, although still somewhat technical.  It was made better by the fact that we were getting closer to the creek crossing and I knew then we would only have 2ish miles left.

I finally made it to the creek.  I started across and about halfway through I stepped off a rock (I wasn’t looking for rocks to step on – just holding on and walking across) and I could feel a sharp twinge in my back.  Fortunately it passed pretty quickly.  I got out of the water and kept moving.

As I moved on in this last section, my calves started to cramp.  I think that the combination of the cold water and a little dehydration was the case.

I trudged on again forgetting that once we get back to the single track had some more uphill.  The guy following me was saying the same thing, how did we forgot this?

Eventually we got to the downhill into the campground and I knew we were so close.  My calves were still cramping but I kept running to the finish.

Right before the finish, I saw Josh again, he got a few photos of me before I made the turn into the finish.


And then I was done!

Even with the weather, I had a great time out there.  I feel like I did decently with my fueling, although I did have a stretch of uphill where I was getting tired, I could have probably had a bit more electrolyte, but overall I feel like I did pretty well.

I don’t necessarily feel like the time on the clock represents my fitness as I felt pretty decent out there.  I think I could definitely do better with a little more training & no mud!

Thank you to all the volunteers for spending their day with us & to Keira for all her hard work in getting us all to the start line!

Next up, Black Canyon 100k!

 

Race Recap: Whoo’s In El Moro 50k/25k

I’m not sure why it took me so long to finish this recap, but here goes, on Saturday, May 7 Sean & I made the short(ish) drive up to Crystal Cove State Park to run the Whoo’s in El Moro 50k.

I have wanted to run this race for a long time, after seeing lots of friends with the hats and hearing about the awesome race that race director Molly puts on. I was super excited, but a little nervous.  When I signed up for the race, my best 50k time was just over 8 hours and this race had an 8 hour time limit.

In the months that passed, I had some good 50k races and some not so good but seeing as Sean has his 50k PR on this course I was feeling positive about it and even set a goal of trying for sub 7 hours.

Race week finally got here and I was super excited, until I saw the weather report with rain in the forecast.  After the crazy clay mud in Zion I was not looking forward to more mud.  The week of the race I ran a lot, 2 back to back 10 mile days, a speedy 6 miles on Wednesday and finishing up with at short 2 mile shake-out on Friday.

Again, on Friday I drank a few bottles of juice, including my favorite, BluePrint’s Cashew Vanilla, which is sooo yummy, a bottle of Raspberry Chia Kombucha and lots of water.  I’m not sure exactly what I did but at some point on Friday I developed an issue in my right calf.  I tried massage, rolling, our new stim unit and just stretching and nothing was helping the cramping.  So needless to say I was a bit nervous about that.

Evolution Fresh, BluePrint Cleanse, Kombucha

I got my Flat Jenny ready, ate some pizza for dinner and went to bed early.  We were going to drive up the morning of the race, which mean leaving the house by 4:15am to get there in time.

Lululemon, Altra Running, Running4thosewhocan't, Orange Mud, Dirty Girl Gaitors, Carbo Pro, Procompression, Buff, XX2i

Waking up on race morning, I could immediately feel the tightness/cramping in my calves even without doing anything at all. Ugh…

We got on our way, I made some oatmeal to eat on the way up and since it was still dark and I can’t really stay awake when driving in the dark, I was half asleep as Sean drove us to Crystal Cove State Park.  On the ride up, we hit a lot of areas with rain, which was a bit worrisome because we really didn’t want to run in the rain.

We made it up to the park, paid the $15 fee to get in, thank goodness they take credit cards because I had no cash, parked and then immediately headed to the bathrooms.  Like at Old West, the park had real bathrooms so we didn’t have to use port-a-potties.  Then we made a bee-line to the starting area to pick up our packets.  All the while it was raining.

We got our packets, re-usable bags from 2XU with nice cotton shirts.  She had packets of different things on the table in they were giving out the bibs at including Justin’s, some sort of granola bar and a few other things.  I grabbed a pack of Justin’s and a granola bar and then we headed back to the car to get our gear.

Sitting in the Car in the rain

There were a few things that I felt like weren’t really well explained in the pre-race material and as a first time runner at this race I was a little disappointed by.

1) There was no start time on the email.  In looking at the website, it showed a 6:30am start and Ultra Sign Up showed 6:15am or vice versa, so we weren’t really clear as to the exact start time. It ended up being 6:30 because of the line to get into the park probably due to #2.

2) No where on the website or the email did it say that there was a $15 fee to get into the park.

Waiting for the rain to stop

So we were waiting by the start line for a 6:15am start only to find out we were a little early – we hung out with a few friends under the timing tents and waited for everyone to arrive, all the while waiting for the rain to stop.

UV, Buff, Buff USA, Bibrave, bibchat, whoo's in el moro

And then not long after 6:30am, Molly made a few announcements and we were off.

I don’t remember a lot of the course in this section except there was a little flat & downhill as we made our way into the park.  The mud was definitely there.  It wasn’t nearly as slippery for me as it was in Zion but it caked on my Olympus 2.0 which I absolutely love but not in mud. I could feel my legs getting heavier and heavier until it was hard to pick up my feet at all.  I mean look at all the mud on our shoes!

Muddy climbing

As we made our way up the hill at mile 2 I was just hiking up trying to stomp off the mud as I went along.  I chatted with a few other runners taking it somewhat easy up the hill to avoid any asthma issues.  I’ve found that my asthma acts up if my heart rate gets too high when I’m climbing so I was testing to see if I could avoid that when hiking.

Once we got to the top there was a nice stretch that was relatively flat and a nice downhill to the first aid station.  I stopped at the aid station to take off my jacket.  I tried to put it in the bungie section of my Orange Mud VP2 but it fell out which is why I had to wear it around my waist instead the rest of the race.  I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t any fruit outside of bananas at the aid station so I didn’t eat anything there.

Smiling thru everything

I power hiked my way back up the hill and then ran/walked through the section I just came from.  I came upon a guy who had completed a 50 miler the week before and was running the 50k on his birthday. I chatted with him for a few minutes before heading off.

I passed by 2 girls directing people where to go.  This race has a lot of overlapping sections so it can get a bit confusing as to where to go without help.  I chugged along with my calf cramping on and off.  I finally got to a nice section of single track and followed this girl into the 2nd aid station at about 7 miles in.

I got my bottle refilled, added my CarboPro/Ultima combo, ate some pineapple slices.  Then Steve, one of my fellow Orange Mud Ambassadors, helped me with my calf, by rubbing BioFreeze on it and even gave me an extra to take with me.

After a few minutes I was off.  My calf felt better initially and I was able to actually run for a few miles until I got to some hills.  Eventually we were got to this awesome downhill that went on for over a mile.  It was quite steep so I was a bit concerned for the climb back up.

I finally got down to the bottom of the hill and met a few volunteers who directed me up to the next aid station.  As I was climbing up, I had already been considering dropping to the 25k for a few miles.  I wasn’t really having a lot of fun and it was really challenging with the calf issue and all the mud.

In all honesty, I had been contemplating dropping to the 25k for a while, even before the race started because I was tired.  We had been doing a lot of running with back to back semi-long runs and it was starting to take it’s toll.

More Mud

I was hiking up the hill when I saw Sean coming…he stopped for a second to give me a kiss and I told him I was struggling but chugging along.  After chatting with him for a few minutes I kept moving only to hear one of the volunteers yelling don’t look down, I don’t want to see any heads down, smile, etc. I started laughing and smiling but really I look down so I don’t kill myself because inevitably I trip if I don’t watch where I’m going lol.

I refilled my bottles and then headed off.  A nice downhill to start before a long hike up.  I was pretty much all alone during this section.  At one point I got to a downhill section where I saw our friend Giselle, who would eventually come in 2nd place overall and first woman!  She looked great. After another climb, I saw Sean again and told him that I was done, when I got to the 25k I was finished.  He was like this is a tough course today and even he didn’t look like he was having fun.

After this I just kept moving, hiking the uphills, running the downhills – at one point I had a few mountain bikers following me down the hill which was a bit disconcerting.  After a few more ups and down eventually I found myself at the same aid station again after a short downhill.  I asked the guy there where the turn around was so I could drop but he didn’t know what was going on.

Coming down after loop 1

I got down the muddy hill and there were a the volunteers I saw earlier and I asked them where to go to drop down to the 25k.  They directed me up this super steep hill and said when I got to the bottom I’d be at the turn around.

And when I say steep hill, I mean crazy steep.  I saw a few more runners, even chatted with one on my way up and we were all slowly making our way up this hill.  I walked up backwards half the time because it was so tough.  And by this time the sun was out and it was getting warm.

I finally made it up the hill and was treated to a nice downhill to the turn around.  I made it and when they congratulated me I told them I was done and stopping.  Molly had told us in her announcements that she would allow us to drop down to 25k vs taking a DNF.  If she hadn’t said that, I probably would have just dropped to the 25k before the race even started.

And they finally had watermelon at this aid station lol.  I didn’t realize at first that the start was just a short walk away, but another girl came in and stopped as well so I walked back with her chatting about running and how challenging this race was.

We made it back to the start, I ran into Eric & Willem and they were like uh, where did you come from.  I told them I dropped down and another Orange Mud Ambassador, Tim told me he did the same. He has been struggling with plantar fasciitis and dropped as well.  They told me where to get my medal and I grabbed it.

Whoo's in El Moro Medal

Eric & his company Elevation Culture made the medals for this race too and they were super nice.

I headed to get changed because I was totally soaked with sweat and then came back to wait for Sean.  I chatted some more with Eric & Willem then watched the first place guy, one of the founders of Boom Running, who I would meet at PCT 50, and then Giselle and 3 more women come in before the 2nd male.  That was really exciting.

Sean eventually came in and we got a few photos before heading over to get our post race meal.  They had bottles of Essence pH10 Alkaline Water, which was interesting to me since we’ve been drinking the Core pH water.

IMG_0730Admiring our medals 😉

Molly set up a food truck to provide a post race meal for us all.  They had hamburgers, cheeseburgers, chicken & veggie burgers, chips and potato salads along with a whole bar of toppings.

This was a cool way to provide the post-race meal and it was pretty good too.

Sean and I hung out for a while chatting with some other runners before making the long trek back to San Diego. It’s not far but there was so much traffic on the drive home.

I have to say, even a few weeks out from this race, while most of the time after thinking about it I am not so anti any race, but in this case, I truly think Whoo’s in El Moro might be a one and done.  It is a very hilly course with a lot of steep climbing and in all honesty, I enjoyed Leona Divide so much more.  If Sean wanted to run this again, I’d probably either do the 25k or maybe more likely the 10k lol.

Thank you to Molly and all the volunteers for being so supportive and for putting on a great race.  Even though it wasn’t my favorite it wasn’t due to anything that they did.

And Thank You to Paksit Photos for all the on-course photos.