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Escape from Folsom 10 mile trail run

February 18, 2012

When I signed up for TBF’s Escape From Folsom 10 mile trail race, The Jogging Dog wasn’t even a concept in my mind yet. It sounded like a fun challenge, and I was up for a challenge. Well, race day arrived and to be honest, the last thing I wanted to do today after a 53 mile week running with the dogs was run another 10 miles, on a hilly trail race. But, since I had already paid my registration, off I went.

I told myself I wasn’t going to be competitive, and I was just going to have a nice, easy run. Those of you who know me well are probably laughing right now. About 2.5 miles into the race, we headed up “water tower hill.” I walked up it to conserve my energy, and as another woman started to pass me, she stopped to walk as well, commenting “I can probably walk up this faster than I can run it.” I shared with her that when you run enough hilly courses you learn when to conserve your energy. She stuck with me another couple miles, and as I walked up a less challenging hill 5 miles in to take a Cliff Shot, she passed me. I kept her in my sights the rest of the way, although her lead gradually increased.

That’s when my competitive nature kicked in.

I knew I had a considerable lead over anyone behind me, and I knew I still had a secret weapon in the bag. I told myself “I can still take her at the end.” Shortly before mile 8, I saw her catch up to another woman who had passed me early on in the race. They stuck together for the rest of the race, and I kept trying to judge whether I could make up the distance between us at the end. I told myself “Just don’t let anybody else pass you.”

Having run the trails out at Granite Beach several times, I knew exactly when I needed to kick it up a notch to start gaining ground on those two women. As I closed in on them, I kept telling myself “You got this.” With a half mile to go I passed them and it was on! Racing is as much psychological warfare and strategy as it is physical capacity. I could feel them trying to keep up with me and I knew I couldn’t let off. As I rounded the last turn, the path opened up and one of the ladies tried to pass me on the inside. I thought “Oh no you don’t” and sprinted past her and over the finish line. What she didn’t realize was the fact that I was a middle distance sprinter in high school and junior college.

Although I don’t have any race pictures to post, I can show you what these ladies saw as they crossed the finish line.

Many thanks go out to the Java Joggers who have not only helped me to become a better runner but more importantly have provided me with friendship and support in my running endeavors. They truly have become a second family to me.

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From → Races

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