Last weekend I ran a 5K with my daughter and some friends. It wasn’t until afterwards that I realized that it was this very same weekend one year ago that I ran my first race. What a way to celebrate running one year!
This race was a Pumpkin Run at a farm. We had perfect weather. It was sunny and 55 degrees. There was a fog lifting as we drove to the race, so that meant the whole course was wet and slippery. The course was on a farm that included a pumpkin patch along with sunflowers, a corn maize, and all kinds of various vegetables. We started out on gravel and then ran through the corn maize and then through other parts of the farm.
When we arrived, we noticed a group of about five girls in orange tutus. They snarked at us old ladies in our tutus of various colors.
The race started and we went straight up a hill and then into the corn maize. I was barely awake and not ready for that hill yet. The corn maize was especially treacherous with the ruts, animal tracks, and uneven ground. Running a straight line was impossible. It was a zig-zag the whole way. Once out of the maize we hit the mud and tall, slippery grass, so it was till very careful going. Once I hit the one mile mark, I passed a couple of the girls in the orange tutus. As I passed them I heard, “Oh, that’s scary.”
I now had a goal. I was going to do everything I could to cross the finish line before these two girls did!
It wasn’t long until they passed me again, but as soon as we were on a flat straight away where I thought I had good footing, I passed them again. They got me again on the next hill, but as soon as we were at the top and I had some flat ground, I passed them again and heard, “There she goes again!”
After that we had a short decline, around a corner, and a nice, flat straight away. I pushed myself as much as I could to get far enough ahead of these girls that they would not be able to pass me again. At the next turn I looked back to see that the girls were far enough behind me that I probably wouldn’t have to worry about them catching up. Still, I did not want them to sneak up on me at the last second. I pushed up the final hill and then down to the finish line. Mission accomplished!
My time was not the best I’ve had or the worst, but this was my first trail race. This was by far the toughest 5K I’ve done simply due to the terrain. Most satisfyingly of all was beating the snobs in the orange tutus!
And then I found this and had to take a photo: