As I had a planned race on Saturday night, I took a slightly easier week in the training. Saturday morning was a volunteer stint at the local Park Run. Actually is quite a good feeling doing that!
Then Saturday night had us partaking in the Moonshadow night time trail race of about 12km, with a 350m elevation at the start!. Phew, that hill was tough! I do not do hills to great. Yes I try be positive about it and talk myself up on hills, but my legs have this argument with my brain:
Brain: “haha, its dark, she did not read the map, will have no idea about the hills, should nail it”
Legs: “What the heck? This is some hill, it just keeps going.– Hey, when does this swear word hill end? Hey brain I am talking to you…I am getting mighty tired, I am pulling on the back..how much further”
Brain: ” ah, its just a little hill, keep going”
Legs: “Frek it, I am walking this!”
Overall the race was very technical, a lot of very tight single track, rock, river crossing, hills, some extremely steep uphills and even steeper rockier downhills. Ones pace was often limited to the group train you were in when you hit those single file tracks, which went for a couple of kilometers each time. So a flat out racing time was not going to happen. But that is what trail is about, and I love it. The last 2km gave an awesome run in, with incredible rock jumping, ducking, diving and weaving. Doing this at night time, on a course you do not know is even more exhilarating. Your vision is restricted to the capacity of your headlamp. Lucky for me I have a pretty good head lamp and it has a very wide beam. At a couple of points on the treacherous rocky downhills, the runners behind called out for me to wait up as their headlamps were not coping and they needed my light to run with ..again trail ettiquette is to help – I do not want anyone one slipping and breaking an ankle because of my selfishness, so we run together…And what great fun that run was. Cheering everyone in, grouping in the run through the difficult sessions, sharing food and coffee afterwards…Absolutely loved it.
I must point out that the terrain our trails are in definately calls for shoes, I was worried at one point my NB Minimus trail shoes were going to be sliced through, but they held out ..just..