I just wanted to say thank you and share my experience of my first Ultra. I decided to sign up for this event after watching Unbreakable a few months prior. My training went pretty well and finally got to the point where I could complete a trail run without falling. The week before the race, I was becoming more nervous with each pre-race email. The weather report forecasting a chilly 16 degree start had me rethinking my decision to do this race however my family flew in from Colorado so I knew I was starting :)  I was a little less nervous race morning. Maybe it was the 30 degree weather that calmed me down more. The first few miles went great! I met someone from Philly and we started talking about our trail running experience. Well after falling twice while talking I decided I better first stop talking and start focusing on the trail and secondly walk off the pain from a second fall.  After a few minutes I was good to go. I have to admit that I let out a little scream at the creek (I know trail runners are not supposed to scream at such things) but it was a refreshing break. The rest of the first loop went by pretty fast and before I knew it I was greeting my family at 16 something miles. I grabbed some powerade, advil and some quick hugs and I was off. At the first aid station after the turnaround I felt great and starting calculating how fast or slow I could run to beat 5 hours. The next aid station came pretty quick, now one more aid station and then the finish. At mile 27, I did a mini celebration of surpassing the longest distance I have ran to date. Now only 5+ miles to go. No need to stop at the last aid station, I had all I needed on me.  I decided that my one gu was not going to get me to the finish so I took one more...still not feeling that needed energy to make it back so I decided to take one more. Guess I needed to take more nutrition earlier on! Oh well, no more time for carbing up...I was anxious to get to the finish. The rest was a blur until I hit the paved road. I knew I was almost there!  I was so glad it was downhill because my left knee was screaming at me to stop running. Yes! 32.5 on my watch and the finish line steps away. I was done!  Hugs by family and friends made it even more perfect at the finish. I didn't break my 5 hour goal, but that is for next time I guess.


Kendra Bell