It was pouring the rain when I woke up this morning. I got up, let out my little yorkie fred and put on coffee and water to boil for my oatmeal while I got dressed in my new floral print moeben skirt/sleeves and north face racing singlet. I mulled over in my mind what the race course could possibly be like.. would I even have a good time at this race? wouldn't I end up wet, cold and miserable?? WHY exactly was I going to run this race??
I tried to shut out all my negative thoughts by thinking of my two good buddies Jim Bowers and Gil Furr I would get to see at the race.. they would be slogging through the rain and mud right there with me. If anything that was my one motivating factor is that I KNEW Jim and Gil would be there rain or shine!
So I ate my oatmeal, finished my coffee, kissed brock good bye and loaded up the FJ and headed on down the road to Church Hill, Tn. I met up with Gill at the red light where you turn off of 11w to Laurel's Run Park.. This park boarders bays mtn. It is very pretty it's right beside the holston river, there are several shelters and a nice looking playground.
Upon arriving, I registered.. the shirts where long sleeve and VERY nicely done. AND I got a free polar insulated water bottle.. NICE! and a coupon for a free sweet tea from Pal's ( thanks mark!)
I figured that the beginning of the course would be muddy, but once I got on kiner hallow trail that the trail would probably drain fairly well and not be too slick. I decided to use for the first time my compression socks.. thought I might as well try them out, figured they would at least keep my legs from getting muddy! I wore my brooks cascadia 4s and inov8 gaiters.
We lined up and the race began! I took off with the lead group of guys and obtained the lead for the females and just kept the lead for the race. I wore my nathan hydration pak so I had the luxury of getting plenty to drink and eat the whole race:o) I grubbed on Gu chomps the whole time. The race course pretty much climbs from 1, 100 ft to 2,400 feet elevation at the fire tower so my legs were ON FIRE:oP I just tried to not walk and push myself onward and upward! I have to mention that the trees were SO pretty!! even though it was cloudy and rainy-- it was SO beautiful and I really was humbled to just get to BE THERE running on that trail. *THAT* was why I got up this morning.. to go run in the mountains!!!
I was VERY happy to get to the fire tower. stored my sleeves and my garmin that wasn't really working for me properly this morning in my nathan pak and took 2 motrin and a salt stick tab and headed back to laurel's run excited that the hard part was over and I knew the next 5 miles were going to be FUN FUN FUN!! I was really pretty hyper at this point and high fived EVERY runner I saw coming towards me and yelled "woo!" alot and told eveyone how awesome they were running. Then I just enjoyed the ride on some of the sweetest sections of single track in the kingsport area!!!before I knew it was back running past the falls and skating around in the mud trying not to lose a shoe!
I ended up finishing first overall female ( no clue what place I came in overall maybe 10th??) in 1:52.
at the beginning of the post is the picture of my trophy:o) I had such a great time at this race! mark skelton did a fantastic job! I really can easily say I enjoyed this race even more than bays mtn 15 miler!! it was practically ALL single track with some very technical sections ( except for the small section to the fire tower) thankfully I never saw any yellow jackets!!
the compression sleeves for my legs worked VERY well!! I am in LOVE!! with them! and I think they look pretty darn cool with my moeben skirts!:o) I definitely picked the right shoe for today. The cascadia's are light but SUPPORTIVE great for more technical runs and they do great in the mud!!! :o) I really hope they don't change a THING about those shoes when the 5's come out in a month-- they are PERFECT as they are!!!
Thanks to my new friend Frank for letting me use 2 of his pictures he took during the race of the trail and of laurel run falls! He has an excellent race report at :
and I borrowed a picture from SFTC website of my buddy Gil and I ( I'm in the mtn hardware hat) at the pre-race meeting.