After the first loop was done we headed back into the lodge to warm up and sample some of the delicious baking. Yum!
Unfortunately, I got a little too comfortable sampling those goodies and visiting with everyone that I started to cool down quite a bit. My reindeer poncho held quite a bit of rain and was getting pretty chilly as I stood around. It was definitely time to head out for another loop.
For the second loop I ran with different friends and it was great to catch up a little. I had taken off my warm long sleeve top because I had been so hot on the first loop but as we headed out that second time I was pretty darn cold! I knew I'd warm up after a couple minutes but it felt like it took forever!
The trail had also gotten pretty muddy and yucky by the time we ran again. Understandably so with all us ugly sweater-wearers out there and the occasional group of mountain bikers too. I was wearing my brand new Mizuno Wave Ascend 8's and I'll admit it was tough to see them all muddy after the first puddle but I got over that quickly.
I haven't worn too many trail shoes but right away I could tell that I loved the Ascends. Although lighter feeling and grippier (is that a word?) than my road shoes, they felt very much like what I'm used to in a Mizuno fit and I liked that. The inside of the shoe felt familiar but the outside of the shoe was more aggressive and definitely responsive to the muddy, rocky trails.
I even customized mine with some sweet, after-market jingle bells...
I only had time for two loops so my Ugly Sweater Holiday Trail Run ended at about 9 km. I was happy to get back into the lodge and sample some more of that yummy Christmas baking. I was even happier to take off my soaking wet poncho and trade it for some warm, dry after-run clothes!
This was definitely another successful event organized by Solana on behalf of 5Peaks and Ladies of the Trails. It is so nice to go to these events and see the community that she has built in just a few short months starting this summer. I'm hoping I can join in on more of the weekly group runs next year...especially if I end up throwing one or more ultras into my calendar for 2014!