Monday, December 6, 2010

2010 XTERRA Trail Run World Championship Half Marathon

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Helene Phillips at the Finish
 The Xterra 1/2 marathon trail run at Kualoa Ranch was . . . well, enlightening. Even though I train on trails a lot this was way more difficult than expected. I keep reviewing it in my head and swear they managed a course that was more uphill than down. This is hard to do when a race ends up at the same place as it starts. When I arrived early to Kualoa I wanted to check out the surface we were going to run on. I had planned to do this barefoot but ( as I was warned by a few concerned friends) the gravel roads were way too sharp and one of the most difficult surfaces to run barefoot. I pulled out my water shoes I bought for $10 at the ABC store and ran a bit on the gravel and that was good. I also had the expensive trail shoes with me but after running so many miles barefoot in the last six months they feel too high off the ground - kind of wobbly. They stayed in the car.

Right from the start you go uphill.
The first hill was a mile long and steep. Any ideas that this was going to be easy flew out of my head. The single track was most to my liking but it was only a small part of the course. Most was on gravel roads.

Three quarters of the way racers get to the longest and steepest climb of all. Two miles of very steep running/walking where all hopes of a sub 2 hour time vanished. I talked friend and fellow lifeguard Helene Phillips into doing this race and was sure when she got to this hill she wouldn't want to be my friend anymore (happily she was smiling at the finish.)

I loved every minute of it all. Will be back next year to do it in under two hours. How do my feet feel? A little sore like they had a good workout but nothing serious. There are advantages to running barefoot or in minimal footware but drawbacks too. I cover all that in a post later this week..

Don't forget I'm doing this to raise money for Blue planet Network and Cha Cha Cha Salsaria and McCully bike are helping me do this . Please support those who are supporting me. Check out the ads top right.

That hole in the shoes was not there at the start
 and was ripped out rather than slowly wearing through.
My heel is fine.


Anonymous said...

I'd have worn boots and my feet would still hurt. I'll be in Hawaii soon and we'll do something crazy together.

Debbie said...

Good for you, Jeff

Anonymous said...

I'm a lifeguard partner of Jeff's and enjoyed talking strategy with him going into the race. But I don't we ever even considered a gravel surface. man, I thought it was a horse trail and I doubt that horses prefer gravel! When I heard Jeff's reaction to how much harder it was than he expected I was very surprised. I watch this guy work out and I've never seen anything come close to phasing this guy. So to hear him say "that was harder than I thought" speaks to the degree of difficulty in this very unique event.
My hats off to Jeff and Helene for representing Ocean Safety in tackling this X Game type of challenge. I know one thing for certain; Jeff will go into next year's race prepared and in the hunt.
as for me, the gravitational force at the surface of the Earth precludes me from even imagining such super human efforts.
now it Xterra had a rough water course where I could use my duck feet,....well, that would be something to consider.
How about a fin swim in 10 foot surf, and the first turn is a buoy outside Pipeline!!!!!!!!!!
Congrats Jeff and Helene for a job well done. and they didn't miss a day's work at the beach. true professionals.