Monday, April 26, 2010

Escape from Prison Hill 2010.......

Yep, you guessed it! Since I am blogging, that must mean that another race has happened since my last blog which was, dang really, only less than a week ago! You know, good thing some of these are close to home because racing is a blast and the drive after this one would have sucked severely. It's Monday, yeah two whole days after running this race, and yeah I can barely still walk. Damn hills these days!

This year I sucked up the pride and decided to take a try at the relay portion of this half marathon course. Oh come now right? It's only a half marathon which I have done plenty of lately but....This is no usual halfer in more than one way. Anyways back to the relay. Not exactly sure what the distances are for each leg but its a 2 man team which consisted of Myself and Dr. Shane Miller. When I say Dr., I am meaning veterinarian. The guy is a genius with horses and how to fix them. Not a bad partner to have when you are running on trails, right? Oh by the way, this is a partner that neglected to tell me that he hadn't run a 6 mile run, let alone a trail run, in over a year! Way to keep a secret doc, haha!

The race started at Silver Saddle Ranch on the backside of Prison Hill in Carson City. Its a cool little daughters school takes field trips there all the time so its a great recreational area. Making a little 1/2 mile loop around the entry is the easiest part of the course and the best footing as well. Just past the entry gate is where the turn into the mountains takes place and the great Dr. Shane was out of sight. The beggining is just a single track through the first set of hills with very little room to pass unless you feel like brush-hopping so Im guessing he just settled in for a little stroll at this point. Sucks for everybody who wants to read further about the first section because, at this point, I was back in the truck heading to the relay exchange point. Good luck Shane!

Hey, Im back! After a quick wardrobe change in the passenger seat at the relay point, I was out of the truck doing my little warmup. Pretty funny running on the same trails that I had just finished mobbing up and down with the dirt bike a few days earlier. So warmup complete now with some time on my hands. Time to throw the plug out there for Mom and Dad now too! They stood there at the exchange point the whole morning clapping and cheering other runners on that would pass through. I was getting anxious and, luckily, I was able to talk to them and a few of the other 2nd leggers to keep from going crazy. One by one the leaders of the half marathon came and went. Dr. Lehman(?) was the first relayer to leave with a commanding lead on everybody else. Needless to say he seemed mighty confident in what lead they had been given. Great guy and an excellent runner as well. A few minutes later, I am pretty sure it was closer to 8 1/2 minutes later, we could see my boy Shane rocking down the course. The guy wasn't even breathing hard and had a huge smile on his face. "Later Doc, Im outta here." Oh you are ready for the fun and interesting part huh? Here goes, the first mile and a half was pretty much all up hill, 1200ft gain in elevation or some crazy amount like that. For the first time ever I am going to disclose some information that nobody has ever been told......I walked a bunch of this hill last year! This year, however, no walking was to be found! Some extremely fast downhills mixed in with a few more steep inclines and a river crossing led us to the road home. Luckily I had run this road the day before in an effort to know what I was up against and it was paying off. No lie, the legs were getting a little tired and sore with 1.75 miles to go. Whatever, pain is only temporary and I hadn't caught Dr. Lehman yet. Crossing the river one last time and running in the deep sand, I looked up to see Dr. Lehman at the top of this ridge. Honestly, I didn't think I had another gear left in me at this point but that nitrous Chocolate Outrage GU that I hadn't eaten prior to race was kicking in. Here I come! Rounding the final turn at a speed that my Garmin couldn't even register, well it was registering it but makes me sound faster this way, I ran out of real estate and finished 9 seconds behind the winning team. Oh so close!!!

Overall, this race is hard as hell on the legs but a great time. The views are perfect and the weather was tremendous! Kudos to Tom and all of the volunteers, sponsors, and event organizers as this seemed to go off without a hitch. I can't wait until next year...not sure that my legs are that excited, but hey, they will get over it!

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