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Grizzly Trail Run 5k Race Recap

Having a blog means it is nearly impossible to run a race "secretly". Usually I'm far too excited about an upcoming race not to share it on here, and -hello- gearing up for a race is fantastic blog fodder, is it not?

For this one, though, I kept mum. I wasn't registered for the Grizzly Trail Run, but I had my eye set on it. I've run the Raisin Woods Trails (where the race takes place) a few times, so I knew what to expect as far as the course was concerned. Plus, I've been feeling stronger and stronger and really wanted to put it to the test.

But, um....I was scared. I have had to say SO MANY times on this blog that I missed my goals, that I came in way over my anticipated times or that I felt like a failure. I just didn't want to go through it again, especially not for a 5k. So I kept it between me and Tim, and we were ready to race this morning at 8!

Scared and Sleepy

The course started with a 1/4 mile on slightly downhill gravel before the trails started, so I knew we had to get ahead there or deal with unending passing on the trail. Tim and I had plans to run apart, so he shot ahead on this portion. I was running below 7 minute miles here, so I can't even imagine how fast he was booking it. Once we turned onto the trail, I fell into a groove and began passing people - throughout the race, I passed about 20 people and only got passed by 2 guys - and never a woman. I can't lie - that felt amazing!

There were a couple of places where I had to walk, believe it or not. I can't believe that I walked TWICE during a 5k, but I don't know how I could have avoided it. No one in my vision was running the two steepest sections, so I did the same. I felt strong and graceful on the downhills, which I know made up for the uphills. Although the course was a trail and certainly challenging, I truly felt like there were more downhills than uphills. When does that happen, ever?!

The only problem during this race? I was freaking out about snakes. On Wednesday night I ran these exacts trails with Tim and leaped over what I thought was a giant root in the trail. I yelled back to him, "I totally thought that was a snake at first!" to which he replied, "That is a snake!" And then he was far less reckless than me and ran around it like a human who likes to live. No snakes today, but here's a picture of the same kind - taken an hour or two after the race in our yard.

Final time for the race is....I'm not sure. My Garmin says 28:46, but I think it was a little before that since I forgot to stop it. I'll say something like 28:15 for now, and come back and edit it when the results are posted. It wasn't fast enough to place in my age group (which is usually not too competitive) but I think I was one of the top 10-15 women, so I'm pretty excited about that. 9:06 pace on a trail is A-OK in my book any day of the week. It was a great morning.

*Edited to add: official time is 28:06. Wahoo!

Plus, I walked away with an incredibly large cotton shirt in a color I would never wear. And I won a door prize - a collapsible cooler. Tim and I first thought it was a hat box at first. I guess we don't bring our beer to picnics enough.

All in all - a huge success. I've been bouncing around on cloud nine all day today. I can't wait for the next run, the next race.

Before taking part in a race, its essential to always warm up correctly. A local sports injury clinic can provide you with advice on the correct warm up requirements depending on the type of exercise you are completing. For more information contact one of the private hospitals in Kent to arrange an appointment with a specialist.

What is your favorite race distance?
I think a half marathon is a great distance to race, but I haven't had a good one in a while so maybe that's changed! I will say that a trail race is my pick any day.

Have you ever won any great door prizes at a race?
I feel like I often end up with a door prize, but nothing amazing - small gift certificates, mugs, shirts, that kind of thing.  


  1. Congratulations on your great trail 5K!

  2. Good for you! 28 is a great time, esp. on trails. I really enjoy a good half but haven't had a good one for like 5 years; havin' babies and stuff doesn't help ;) I have a trail half tomorrow so crossing my fingers I can get a sub 2:30. Have a great weekend!

  3. Congrats on a great trail race! The half is my favorite distance for now. I've gotten lucky and won several door prizes but Allan takes the cake by winning his choice of New Balance shoes at Fleet Feet!

  4. Yay - sounds like a great day. What is it with the race t-shrits - they all have those really high necks, they are all massive and always in such beautiful colours. Micko ends up getting most of mine. Favourite race distance is now a 5km, seeing I'm not meant to run, and ive never won a door prize ... they have usually packed up and gone before I'm finished.

  5. Great job! That definitely looks like a hat box to me. I've never seen a cooler that looked like that.

  6. My favorite distance is the half but I can't give up my love for the full! The full really challenges me and it's the only way that I will ever get to Boston! Maybe one day... I have never won any door prizes at a race and I don't think that I have ever seen any offered.

  7. WOOHOO!! Congrats on an amazing race! I love 5K races too. They are over so fast and you don't need to train much for them! They don't really do door prizes here...I've actually never heard of that! I'm pretty sure I wouldn't win anyway because I have the worst luck.

    Hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  8. Oh Vanessa, I'm sooooo happy for you!!! YOU.DESERVED.THIS!!!! I'm sooo happy for you. I can't believe how FAST you were on the trails! Of course, I might do sub 7 m/m if there were snakes around me too - ha ha LOL - No, seriously, you were blazing and I would give you a hug if I were closer. You have worked so hard to deal with your health and your training and your racing and this was YOURS to OWN!!! GREAT JOB GIRL!!!! Sooooo really really really happy for you!!!!!
    High 5!!!!!

  9. Nice job! And I am so very impressed you managed to keep it a secret! I love 5 mile and half marathon races. 10ks seem to kill me though.

  10. uggghhhh snakes!! i'm not too scared of bugs and stuff, but SNAKES, yuck. good job at the race! sounds like a great day! and totally agree about that shirt color being one not acceptable to be worn. :P

  11. Way to go! Sounds like a fun race and glad there were no snakes day of. That sucker looks HUGE.

  12. friend. that is dang fast for the trails! you were flying! congrats on an incredible race! you are a strong trail runner!!!

  13. Nice going! So happy for you and Tim to have had such a great day together... and you won some neat stuff, even if you will never use it!

    Thanks for the heads up on the snakes... I guess I won't be running in Georgia any time soon. :)

  14. way to go!!!!! yikes, maybe that snake made u get ur tushey moving a bit faster?? ;) hehe. i'd say my favorite distance is prolly a track 10k or a half. u sure look cute for running a 'grisly' race! ;) have a great night!

  15. I think the 10k is my favorite distance. I just need to be faster. Awesome job!

  16. Great job on your race! The best door prize i got was a gift card to a restuarant, but i also really liked the camping chair I got at one too....

  17. i think the half is my favorite distance so far. 5k's are fun but it's like you get all hot and sweat for 30 minutes then it's over. and i'm slow so shorter distances are just not my cup of tea!

  18. Way to go! That snake was only a rat snake. They're very creepy but very handy down here because they eat all the rats. Way to jump over it!!!

  19. YAY well done xx
    I so don't ever want to meet a snake on any run I do, I'm sure I'd faint or something equally dramatic!

  20. Great time for a trail race! That is one thing I have not done is run on a trail, I am such a klutz just walking around, there is no telling what I would do running on a bumpy trail lol

  21. i would have freaked out about the snake. I've yet to do a trail race, everyone seems to LOVE them. Glad you enjoyed yourself & that you got a collapsable cooler, never know when that will come in handy ;)

  22. That kind of snake is fine, your husband is right. Even if you step on them, they can't do shit. :)

  23. that's an awesome time for a trail race, congrats!!

  24. Sounds like you had a good race, minus the snakes.

    I've never won a door prize, but I have plenty of cotton shirts that I'll never wear except maybe to bed.

  25. I actually had to stop reading this post to update my blog with a race I signed up for. I don't usually keep races a secret but goals, heck yes! I can't handle the pressure. That's between me myself and I. Great job, that's an amazing time for a trail race! I've never heard of door prizes at a race though?

  26. SNAKES??? AHHHH Nothing wrong with keeping a little secret. Great time and especially great for a trail race. WOOT

  27. Clearly I'm a little behind but HOW FREAKING COOL IS THAT?! As someone who sucks more than humanly imaginable at trail running, and has no opportunities for trail running anywhere near them, I'm totally in awe of how you dominate the trails. Amazing.

  28. What a great race! I think trail is my favorite too. In fact, if it's long, I like the trails because going fast is not as important. If it's shorter, it's sometimes fun to do a 5k on a road, because you feel so speedy compared to the normal long run pace. That looks like fun! I think as far as snakes go, if you run fast enough, they can't get you! :)

  29. Congrats - that's awesome! I ran a race this past weekend with a huge hill and walked up half of it….whenever I started to run, I felt as if I was expending so much more energy, but not really going much faster, so I decided to save some of the energy :) The logo on the shirt is really cute…but I agree with you about the color!


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