Run the Keweenaw Weekend Part III: 25K Carl Olson Memorial Adventure Run

1

July 14, 2013 by Amy B

This post’s alternate title is: The day I sucked it up and did it anyway.

I wasn’t sure how my legs were going to feel this morning. Was I going to be able to walk? Get out of bed without assistance? Was there any way I’d be able to run for an estimated three hours?

I did a lot of thinking overnight (as the baby was up multiple times) and after the alarm went off this morning.

I’d just had a conversation with someone regarding her running her first half. I was doing my best to impart to her that she’s stronger than she thinks she is, and that she wouldn’t know what she was capable of until she pushed herself.

So duh. Like I had any choice but to suck it up and give it a shot.

I was still feeling iffy when I left the house. I reasoned with myself that any mile I ran was one mile farther than what I’d figured I was capable of running in my condition. I told myself I could bail out of the race halfway if I needed to. You know, for medical reasons.

I look super thrilled to be doing this.

I look super thrilled to be doing this.

I got to the Harbor with time to spare, which gave me time to get anxious over the fact that I was setting out on a 25K course and thinking, when the hell did it get so hot outside?

I looked around and didn’t see many women. I also didn’t see one of the women in my age group from yesterday, which kind of bummed me out because I knew she was someone I could probably beat. Yeah, I can be a jerk sometimes.

Reflection in the Visitor's Center window

Reflection in the Visitor’s Center window

I started out slowly and hung with a few guys who were running right around my same pace. We chatted for awhile; they were bringing up the rear. One women stopped to tie her shoelaces, and she stayed at the rear of the pack for the remainder of the race. I may have made a mental note to always stay in front of her – she was probably one age group up from mine.

As we got into the paths that run up Brockway Mountain, I started to slow down and so did my fellow runners. I started doing some weird walk/run thing up and down the dippy sections, which were really hard on my legs and feet.

Then when it became painfully obvious at around mile 3 that the rest of this race was completely going to suck if I was even able to finish, I made time to take some photos.

photo 4-2

photo 1-2

For my dad, a big Rocky and Bullwinkle fan

1) Dude running in my proximity running  a really wicked wooden bridge 2) "Stairway to Heaven," which was a long series of wooden bridges going straight up. Not exactly heavenly, but pretty damn cool.

1) Dude running in my proximity running a really wicked wooden bridge 2) “Stairway to Heaven,” which was a long series of wooden bridges going straight up. Not exactly heavenly, but pretty damn cool.

20130714-145656.jpg

Dying slowly

What can I say other than there was a ton of walking, some definite moments of wanting to just give up, and thinking that this felt like the last six miles of a marathon over and over and over.

But damn, the views are spectacular out here. This photo doesn’t quite do it justice.

20130714-145732.jpg

At this point (aid station), my buddy G was taking photos and his car was parked right next to the water. I considered crawling in the backseat.

At this point my buddy G was waiting with his camera, snapping shots of runners as they left the aid station. This was mine. Blargh.

Just smiling because I'm delirious and trying not to fall off the edge of this cliff to my death

Just smiling because I’m delirious and trying not to fall off the edge of this cliff to my death

I came to the final aid station by the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge, a cruel location as you can smell breakfast cooking as you run (or as I did, walk) up the long drive to the lodge. I estimated I had about five miles to go, which was completely soul-crushing at that point. But then there was this glorious “5K left” sign near the road. I downed a cup of water and Heed and had a renewed energy. It also could have been due to the s-cap I took (should be known as Sweaty As Hell-cap).

The last 5K are pretty flat and downhill and I ran 90% of it. It wasn’t a blazing pace, but it was enough to keep a huge annoying fly from landing on me (but not from buzzing in my ear the entire way). I finally turned out onto pavement and hit the final push to the finish, which was also followed by another loop around the lake and another loop through a field until FINALLY I reached the finish, with a few stragglers hanging around to give me a round of applause as I stepped across the mat.

photo 2-1

my hard-earned brunch ticket

photo 1-1

After hosing myself off with some cold water in the parking lot. So glad to be done.

photo 3-1

the “brunch.” I ate the eggs, the watermelon, and the sausage and then regretted the sausage.

photo 4-1

Final time – better than last time I attempted this race (though on a different course) and the distance hopefully off by 1.3 miles.

The carnage. My Oiselle tank performed just as well as I'd expect, and my shoe/sock selection saved me from any major blisters or chafage.

The carnage. My Oiselle tank performed just as well as I’d expect, and my shoe/sock selection saved me from any major blisters or chafage.

I didn’t stick around for the award ceremony (it was getting late and I was sure I didn’t win anything). I was pleasantly surprised and shocked when my buddy G showed up with my prize – apparently I’d won the SISU award for gutting it out for all three races.

Salomon was our race sponsor

Salomon was our race sponsor

I won this super cool Salomon hydration pack thingie. I never win anything!

G gave me his winning prize of a visor, which Sophie immediately claimed. It probably looks better on her than either of us anyway.

"Thanks, Mom! This is awesome! This is for when I run the race!"

“Thanks, Mom! This is awesome! This is for when I run the race!”

So there you have it. It wasn’t the fastest finish or series by far, but I set out for a challenge and finished what I started.

I will, however, never refer to my running on old railroad grades as “trail running.” If I ever do, you can punch me in the face. Copper Harbor’s trails are a thing of beauty and difficulty, and while I wish I’d have been able to put forth a little better showing on today’s race, I have to hand it to the Harbor – you kicked my ass. And even though it’s the last thing I want to do at the moment, I’m sure I’ll be back.

Advertisements

One thought on “Run the Keweenaw Weekend Part III: 25K Carl Olson Memorial Adventure Run

  1. […] know I’ve already recapped my last races (here, here and here), but today was a day for reflection, after the euphoric wave of satisfaction had started to wane […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Runner, Eater, Mother, Tweeter

Amy, July 2013

I'm a thirty-something suburbanite turned ruralite living in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Wife, mom of two, eater of all things delicious, and a runner. This is where I blather on about running and health. Baby Number Three will be here in November (so yes, I'm a little crazy), and I'm running through my pregnancy for as long as my body's willing and able. There's also more of me at amyupnorth.com. Read more here.

Insta!

All I ask is that the sweater comes back in one piece from school picture day. With the buttons still attached. #arlocardigan #brooklyntweed

I’m an Ambassador!

nuun hydration

Posts by Date

Posts by Category

Friends?

%d bloggers like this: