Xterra Boney Mountain 21K Recap and Lots of Pictures
Carrie and I went up to Thousand Oaks yesterday, hung out for the day, relaxing, and both ran the Xterra Boney Mountain 21K this morning. It was my first running race since Oriflamme last March and it was the perfect welcome back to trail racing.
The parking area was at a school about 3/4 of a mile from the start, this wouldn’t be a problem except it was pretty damn cold this morning at 6AM. After we checked in and got our stuff together we headed over to the start. We should have waited for the shuttle. Carrie was freezing and couldn’t feel her fingers, even in her gloves. After giving her crap for being a wimp I resigned myself to being entertained at her ways of attempting to warm her hands, which besides the normal opening/closing of the hand turned in to clapping….over and over. I decided to act like she was my own personal cheering section but I stopped short of humming the Rocky theme song. Got to the start area and hung out a bit. Met up with Matt and a girl doing her first trail half marathon. She was NERVOUS! It was so much fun just hanging out with other people that came out to run the trails and have some fun.
Anyway, once the race started it was an absolute blast. Matt and I ran the first 4-5 miles together at a nice relaxed pace. Once we hit the flat stretch leading to the 4 mile sustained climb I was feeling really good so I picked up the pace a little bit and felt the competitive juices start flowing as the hill started to pitch up. I changed my mind about just hanging back and started passing people pretty regularly the entire way up the hill. I was shocked how easily I was climbing the hill and how good I felt. The downhill after the climb was significantly harder on my legs than the climb.
The course as a whole was fantastic; some incredible single track, great views, and water crossings. I met a handful of cool people and chatted em up during the race. I finished in about 2:06 for an avg pace of 9:37, just about the pace I hope to run at Oriflamme 50K. Considering how easy today felt as a training run, I’m pretty happy about my current level of fitness and how I’m progressing. In the end, I couldn’t have asked for a better way to start the 2011 race schedule. Enough rambling…on to the pictures! (Click the pics for full size)