October 1st I lined up for one of my favorite local races... The Stump Jump 50k Trail Race. It is hard to pass up since we run on these trails for training runs all the time. They are also some of the most beautiful trails in the area that provide many scenic overlooks that you can glance over and see as you are running. Spectacular views of the Gorge and Tennessee River will make most anyone running the race appreciate all that Chattanooga has to offer. http://www.rockcreek.com/stumpjump.rco
Today I would run with my friend Michael Emerling. We had run the trails on the 50k route many times in preparation for the race along with a few of our running companions. Ramping up for the race we encountered heat, humidity, downed trees and bees! All of these seem to play a factor on race day... so we felt as if we were prepared for whatever the day might bring.
The first half of the race went pretty well and we were able to build a nice cushion as we were ahead of our goal time. We really wanted to break 6 hours and up until around mile 20-21 we were on target for around a 5:40. Of course I knew that once we returned to Mushroom Rock that we would have to run the dreaded gravel loop which always seems to suck the life out of me mentally and physically. This is where much time was lost, but we were able to cross the finish line in 5:59. Good enough for us and Michael was stoked as it was his first 50k distance race EVER!
Congrats to Michael on a strong race! It was really nice having someone out there to share the pain with!
6th female and 66th overall out of 374 runners with a time of 5:59