A couple of items on my 12 in 2012 to-do list officially got “checked off” this past month. With 1 month to go, reality is setting in on some of the others…namely the goal to ski 30 days. 😦
#1 – Run 6 trail races: This item officially got completed at the start of the month. Oakley and I participated in the Big Lick Vet Tails and Trails 5K ,with my roommate and her dog, which was put on by the Subway Commonwealth Games of Virginia. There are very few dog friendly events, so I jumped at the chance to sign up for this doggie-friendly 5K trail race.
The course started out running a lap around a field before heading in to the trails. We did a quick loop in the woods, then popped out to run around the field again. Mile 1 complete. Oakley had racing fever and pretty much dragged me up until this point.
Then it was back in to another section of trail, then out of the woods, across a parking lot, in to the woods and UP a VERY steep hill. It was so steep and also filled with tree roots and rocks that running was close to impossible. We arrived at the top, passed the 2 mile sign, and joined the 1st trail loop we ran.
We were supposed to run this section TWICE to finish, but a lot of people only ran it once before heading out of the woods, around the soccer field again and to the finish. The volunteers didn’t have a good system for keeping track of who had completed the final lap or not, so they incorrectly told people to head to the finish before they were supposed to. Then these folks didn’t seem to even realize the error (I think the fact that they passed the 3 mile sign so soon after the 2 mile sign should have been a clue, but oh well) so most didn’t even tell the timing staff to DQ their finish.
Oakley and I ran the correct route, and here we are coming in for the finish:
TIME: 27:29 (8:52 mile pace). According to the “official results” we were 19th overall, 6th for females, and 1st in my age group. However, these results were VERY wrong due to people not running the entire course. For instance, there were NO women running with dogs ahead of me, yet somehow one or two finished ahead of us? There were other folks who were also not ahead of me who finished in front of me (like a 50 year old man who is commonly at the trail races running close to an 11 minute pace, who somehow was behind me from the start, never passed me….yet finished in an 8:30 something pace) hmm suspicious. I saw this in action as well since as I was finishing my final lap, people who I passed who were on their 1st lap just came with me to the finish even though they still need to run another lap.
I know it is just a “fun” event and shouldn’t be taken seriously, but I am competitive by nature. So it just really irks me that Oakley and I missed out on the top prizes simply because so many folks only ran about 2.5 miles, not 3.1. Grrr.
Other than that the race was good. Positive: Oakley got a nice toy (which he played with immediately) in the race bag and there were lots of cute pups there! Negative (other than the course/results): The shirt, was way too big and I will never wear it.
#4 Ski 30 Days: I got one ski day in at Snowshoe Mtn on Black Friday. It was okay…lots of driving for little snow, crowded trails, and a teeny tiny ‘mountain’. It’s the best I have here in the southeast though, so I will take it for now! This brings me to a total of 13 days for 2012. This item will not be getting accomplished since there is no way I will be on skis for 17 days this final month. This is a huge fall off from my previous winters during undergrad when I would get about 20 days of skiing in during the month of December alone! Growing up and being responsible has its downfalls…. 😉
#5 Go on 12 Hikes: 3 hikes were checked off this month. A quick one to the top of Mill Mountain after the doggie 5K was #8 for the year.
Running around in the woods for both the race and the hike tired the Oakley dog out and he promptly passed out on the drive home. How cute is he?
# 12 Visit 2 National Parks: Hike #9 was the day before Thanksgiving in Shenandoah National Park, making #12, visit two national parks officially checked off this month. It was a 6-7 mile loop, which brought us past 3 waterfalls.
Hike #10 was on Thanksgiving Day at Crab Tree Falls, which is supposedly the tallest waterfall east of the Mississippi. It’s only about 2 miles to the top of the falls, and then another 1.5 miles to Crab Tree Meadows (so about a 7 mile hike round trip). We missed out on peak foliage, but it was still a great view at the top of the falls.
How many National Parks have you visited? Which was your favorite? What is on your to-do list for December?
P.S. – Go enter my giveaway for Mediterranean Snacks if you haven’t yet, winner announced on Monday!