April 22, 2017 - Cedro Peak Trail Run - Tijeras, NM (about 30 miles SE of Albq) - HM, FM, 50k distances.
Went to bed a little later than planned but got in a good night's sleep. Woke up earlier than the alarm. Already had my running gear set out. Left around 7 am. Cup of decaf coffee, banana on the drive. It's about 33 degrees!! Cloudy, cool breeze which makes it feel colder but I love it!! Driving directions is easy following signs on highway. The 50k runners have started. Every runner has to check in even if they got their bib the day before. For runners' safety. I'm really early but I make sure I have what I need, hydrate. I'm wearing short sleeve under long sleeve tech shirt, and also a light pink windbreaker. I pin bib# on running skirt in case I take off long sleeve and don't want to bumble around w/ bib#.
My friend, Mary, from March 10k trail run shows up about 30 mins before HM. It's 'warmed' up to about 40 degrees, still cool breeze. Made sure my garmin is on. My goal for my first HM trail race this year and after dealing w/ an injury is finishing without injury/falling!! haha!! I hope to finish in 2.5 hrs but I would be happy under 3 hrs. The elevation profile isn't too bad IMO but not sure about technicality, usually the main difference in running trails. As we are stretching, another runner comments on my running skirt......she is wearing the same one!! LOL!! She is also in my AG and looks like she can kick my butt!! yikes!! haha!!
WE take off at 9 am. I start slow and towards the back. The first 1/2 mile is rocky downhill. After that, lots of neat winding areas and single track most of the miles, hard packed dirt and rocky portions w/ some slight hills as well. Mary (a young 60 yr old) stays behind me, she's doing good for her first HM trail!! After 3 miles, we take a 30 second walk break, took photos. We starting gaining and passing other runners. My running skirt has lots of pockets so I wear a new smaller waist pack (no water bottle slots). I have my Salomon palm held collapsible 15 oz bottle of water only. I know I can fill it up at water stations which are about 3-4 miles apart. And since the temps are in the 40s/50s for most of the run, I figure I don't need more than my 15 oz. Mary starts fading around 5 miles. I catch/ follow 4 runners who are pacing well. My injury area is holding up and I'm feeling good. Aid stations are so helpful and encouraging volunteers!! It's such a beautiful area for a trail run.
After 8.5 miles, we reach a dirt road, have to run some short hills to get to the 9 mile aid station, it's the first turnaround, they have a freaking buffet, LOL!! Spent a couple of minutes there, stretching mostly. I take a salt tab, fill up my water. I ran out of sport beans and there's no gel!! But a female runner behind me gives me some Stinger honey energy chews, she doesn't want them anymore. Wow!! This is what I love about trail runners, very supportive runners!!
I catch up w/ the 4 runners who I was following and pass them. There's a female runner behind me who I tell to let me know when she wants to pass. We start chatting abit, she ran this before and tells me that we will be running some short hills soon. She tells me she's 65 and has had 4 pins in her hip!! OMG!! She passes me!! LOL!! But says,"you'll pass me later, I'm sure b/c you are good on the hills." She's so observant!! 😛
Anyway, this is the out and back part so there are still HM runners going the other way as well as FM and 50k passing me. It is so nice and cool by this time, trees everywhere. There are times I'm alone but I catch/pass another runner every so often. I finally see the 65 yr old walking the hills, I jog them and pass her. "way to go, she yells." At the top, I take a 15 second walk break, couple of air squats to loosen legs. It evens out w/ dirt single track winding through the trees, this was really fun!!
I take off my windbreaker at the second to last aid station which we have to run past for about 1/4 mile, then turnaround and pass the aid station again going the other way towards the finish.
The last aid station, less than a mile from the finish, is offering tequila shots!! NO KIDDING!! haha!! They are on their 2nd bottle. The last one who finishes the bottle has to take it across the finish line, LOL!! I pass it up though. 😯
The last 1/2 mile is uphill, ROCKY and I have to walk/jog it but I see another runner ahead of me. I want to see if I can catch him so when I reach the top, I take off. I know the finish is near, I can see the parking lot through the trees, the flags and music. He looks back and speeds up, haha!! Almost catch him.....He high-fived me after the finish. 😉
They are tearing off our numbers from our bibs and pin it to a board but no time is written w/ it. They write down the time on their sheet though. It's old-school so we don't know what our time will be till they post it online.
Anyway, according to my garmin, I finished in 2:30:57. YAY!! I'm happy!! Mary finishes around 2:37!! WOW!! They had all sorts of sub-sandwiches, chips, fruits, hot/cold drinks post-race for runners. Yippee!! Mary and I visited and chatted w/ other runners. The runner who is wearing the same running skirt came over and wanted a photo of us!! She finished ahead of me (2:28:37) and also one spot ahead of me in AG (she's 52)!! Not bad!! 😉
It's partly sunny by now, breeze is still cool, about 55-60 degrees by the time I left.
Overall, it was a great trail, love the short hills and technicality, it offered gorgeous views, aid stations were awesome and it felt right for a HM trail race while coming back from an injury. The next day, I felt good, no major soreness. I took the 5 days off for rest.
My official time: 2:30:55; OV 93/151 HM runners; OV female runners: 44/94; OV AG (50-59): 7/12. 😎