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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Fall Foilage 5K

Day 311 - November 7, 2009

Today was the Fall Foilage 5k trail run at the Blue Ridge School. All I can say is I forgot how much harder cross country is than road running. What a course. Not only were there two stream crossings, but there was also a hill so steep that I doubt many cars would have been able to make the climb. It was so fun, they had us run it twice.

I got out with the lead group of runners and we hit the first stream crossing as a group. The first three all tried for the same rock and ended up ankle deep in water. Being older (I was going to say wiser)and a bit less willing to be wet the entire race, I took a slightly longer approach to the stream and made it across dry. The group stayed together until we reached the hill. The first 30 yards are like climbing out of a stream bank - I'm talking steep and the third place runner just stopped to walk. I felt pretty good the first time up the hill and managed to work into second place and was gaining on the leader by the time we reached the summit. After that, he destroyed me on the downhill.

The race was pretty uneventful after that - I did make a challenge to close the gap on the second time up the hill, but I think the leader was just taking it easy because I never saw him again after he crested the hill. I held on to finish second, comfortably in front of third place.

I've only run this race one other time and that year I finished in 4th place in 22:17. Today I was a bit faster in 21:40, but they did extend the course, so pace wise I think I was even faster.

It was a fun morning and the weather was beautiful for November. I look forward to running it again next year.

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