Trail Running

I am getting psyched up for a half marathon I will be running next month. On March 23, I will be running The Chesebro 1/2 – one of two half marathons in “The Great Race of Agoura.” This is a major fundraiser as half of the entrance fees go to local schools and there are 5 or 6 distances one can choose. A couple of the runs are rated among the best in the country by Runner’s World and other sources. I chose the half marathon that is particularly hilly. A slower course, likely. But also a very scenic course.

I am excited for the challenge because miles 4-8 are uphill and miles 9-13 are downhill, straight through to the finish. I am already intrigued by realizing that when I am at my most exhausted point, I will just be starting the final 5 miles in a pretty significant descent. Actually, I’m a bit scared of my legs not moving fast enough and tripping on the downhill. Hmm.  How significant is this downhill at the end of the race? I usually race a 5K (3.1 miles) in about 22 minutes, but the other day I ran these final 3 miles in 19:24! I don’t remember the last time I ran that fast. It’s certainly going to be a psychological reward – something to look forward to as I am running uphill early on.

On Sunday morning (earlier today if you are reading this on Sunday), I am going to get dropped off at the 2 mile mark and slowly run the last 11 miles. I actually have never run this far into the trail system, so I figured I should experience the course before the big race.

Final thought: I am strongly debating myself on whether or not to run the race with headphones. I have an playlist on my Ipod gearing toward a certain pace-the BPM philosophy. And that could be helpful. But in my previous half and full marathons, I did not have music. And they both went fine.

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