Rapter Ridge Trail Half was my 16th half marathon and my 10th this year. I had a good day today. It was a good, solid run and turned out better than expected. Got in some dirt and some hills which is always fun!
So...I was supposed to do a 20 miler on Sat and a 5 miler today per my plan but the Raptor Ridge Trail Half was the last race in the Animal Half Series for Dirt Devil Racing. Since I'd done all the others (Wild Horse, Foxy, and Cougar), I HAD to do this one, right? Oh, yeah! I decided to do 13.1 yesterday and 13.1 today.
Yesterday's run went well. I was a little tired because I went to my mom's and waited for my mom, sister, and niece to get back from their Hawaii trip (and not just because I was going to pounce on the box of Honolulu Cookie Company deliciousness!) and their plane was late. I didn't get to bed until about 1:30 but still got up at 6 to go for a run. I didn't feel too tired though. The bad thing was that I didn't get to eat before or after my run so didn't eat til we all went to lunch and by then I was STARVING. And then in the afternoon, I had a major energy crash. :( I ended up taking a nap and then falling asleep about 8:30.
I woke up at 3:30 this morning and got ready for the 90 minute drive down to Escondido. I MADE SURE I ate breakfast before I left. I did not want to crash again. I got there at 6am in plenty of time and picked up my bib and race swag.
Raptor Ridge started at 7 and there were 3 waves. I was in the last wave so started around 7:12. It was cool and foggy/misty and I felt pretty good. My left glute and calf were a little tight from Saturday's run but they loosened up and didn't give me any grief.
The race was held at San Dieguito River Park. The course was mostly smooth trail or double track with about a mile of single track (all hill). I had never been there, or so I thought, but it turns out the hill we hit at mile 5 was the same hill we ran during the Cougar Half, just in reverse, so I was familiar with it.
I ran easy til we started the climb up the hill. Like I said, it was a mile long and it was still cool so it was pretty nice. I did walk some of the steeper sections but ran as much as I could. Once we hit the top, it was a smooth more gradual downhill to the turnaround. I ran much more of the hill coming back since it was gradual and only walked a couple of sections. Here's a pic I took looking back at the valley as we went up the back side of the hill:
Once down the hill, it was mostly flat to the end. I did get a little tired at the end and my stomach was a tiny bit gurgly but I finished strong. I passed about 4 or 5 people in the last couple miles including a woman who almost caught me at the end. But the RD was announcing #s and he said mine and then he said #363 and she's coming fast and I was like, "oh no, she's not going to pass me back" so found something left in my legs and beat her to the line. Ha! ;) It's the small victories that count sometimes!
I finished in 2:27 and change (per my Garmin) and that is 20 minutes faster than I did the Cougar Half back in June so I'm happy. Here's the killer medal we got:
Thanks for reading and have a great week!