One of the toughest things about the many months that I struggled with knee pain was that I couldn’t really see the light at the end of the tunnel. There was no way to look ahead and know that if I could just be patient for X more weeks, then I’d be able to run again. Not knowing how long the injury would last made it easy to feel as though I was destined to be injured forever. It also meant that I couldn’t do things like sign up for races…which would’ve helped me stay motivated and given me something to look forward to.
Fortunately all that is behind me now. I took a risk in April when I signed up for NYCM and I’m so thankful that I’m actually up and running well enough to train for it. Not only that, but it just feels so good to start putting races on the calendar again. Especially since fall in New England is the absolute best time to race.
So here’s what I’m looking at for the fall. I’m sure there will be a couple other smaller races thrown in there before the end of the year. Even though I was a bit tempted to go race-crazy and sign up for every local fall race I could find, reason won out in the end. Plus, that whole unemployed thing helped. Not having much disposable income means I need to be a little pickier about the races I choose to do…but that’s a tale for another blog post.
The plan to do this race came together when I was out on the West Coast, still riding the Hood to Coast high . Basically, Emily mentioned how sad she was to let go of this race (which was originally supposed to be her fall 50 miler ) because of how close it is to the one she has been training for all summer. Being that I am currently obsessed with all things Vermont and wanted to help my friend out of her current predicament (slash find a way to lure people up here to visit me) I investigated the option of 3 person relay. Within 10 minutes we had roped in Stephanie with the promise of a weekend filled with running, beer and cheese in the greatest state on earth.
My leg of the relay will be 19.6 miles (which I’ll extend to 20 just to get the distance in). As much as I’m looking forward to #VTcheeseparty, I’ll admit that I’m more than a little scared of the actual running portion of the weekend. Beyond the fact that I’ve never done a trail race that’s longer than 6K, there’s this:
( Source )
Yikes. I know I’ve gotten a little more practice running the hills of Vermont over the past few months, but nothing like this! An email this morning from the race director that encourages us to walk up the hills made it even clearer that I don’t really know what I’m getting myself into.
However, I’m excited to run a relay with two awesome ladies, excited to experience what I’m sure is a beautiful course, and excited to be surrounded by some incredible runners who will be completing the 50 miles all on their own. Who knows – maybe it’ll even inspire me to sign up for an ultra sometime in the future.
Every year since before my husband was born, the Conkeys (and friends) have been traveling up to Southern Vermont on Columbus Day weekend for their annual camping trip. I’ve been fortunate enough to get to tag along for the past 3 years, and it has quickly become one of the highlights of my year. (It is also responsible for our decision to get married in and ultimately move to Vermont, but I’ll tell you more about that another time). The weekend is usually filled with a lot of eating, drinking, card playing, and harvest festival-ing (yes, I’m making that a word).
But this year, we are starting (what I hope will be) a new tradition — visiting Harpoon Brewery for a fun 3.6 mile race, beer, German food (for the non-vegetarians) and Octoberfest. Some of us are going for the running, others just for the food. Regardless — it’s going to be a fun party.
You already know about these two races , so I won’t bore you by repeating myself. I’ll just say that this double will be the main event in terms of Fall 2012 racing.
I’m also hoping to add in a few other “for fun” races before the end of 2012. I’m heading down to FL the second weekend of October to finally meet my niece and there just so happens to be a 5K in my sister’s town that weekend (how convenient!). I may or may not be currently formulating a plan to convince Christina and the little one to sign up with me.
There’s also a 10 mile race in NH a few weeks before NYCM that sort of seems like it’d be perfect for the marathon taper.
And of course, there’s always local Turkey Trots, Jingle Bell runs, etc. But we’ll see what happens. Mostly, it’s just exciting to be able to look ahead again.
Any other fall New England races I should look into? Is there a particular race this fall that you’re looking forward to?