Sunday, September 16, 2012

Rough Creek Half Marathon

So when the name of the race is Rough Creek and they warn you about the Rusty Crown over and over and over again... it probably means something. 

I drove down to Glen Rose, TX this weekend to run a little half marathon called the Rough Creek Half.  It was touted as being a fairly flat and easy race... except for 3 miles of the Rusty Crown.  The meanest, nastiest, soul-suckingest traverse of a mesa.  In retrospect, that 3 miles was fun, but at the time I didn't know it.  And I didn't know it right after the race either.  Only time has allowed me to realize what fun the Rusty Crown was.

The race itself was a pretty small field.  The full marathons and the 40 milers started a half hour before us little half marathon runners.  When we started I placed myself at the back of the pack (where I rightfully belong) and started nice and slow and easy.  The first couple miles were really nice and easy  And then I saw the Rusty Crown looming in the distance...
and then I got close and saw just how steep the climbs were
 It was actually fun in a torturous way climbing this thing.  There was no running uphill.  There was only walking/slogging/crawling and clawing your way up.  And that's what made it so fun!  It was 3 miles (from mile 3-6) of the course. The pic below is at the top of the first climb, heading back down.  I think we climbed to the top and then turned and came back down up and down and around that thing no less than about 10 times.  Each climb tougher than the last.
only halfway through the Rusty Crown... are we done yet? 
ruh roh... the biggest hill is right ahead of me.  I don't know if this picture makes it look as steep as it actually was, but it was STEEP.  I lost a calf muscle somewhere mid-climb.  I was on all fours slipping and climbing up this bad boy.  It was a beast, but I felt like jumping and shouting for joy when I reached the top
a woman behind me climbing on all fours getting up it
Running because this is an official race photo.  I wanted to pretend I was at least trying to run on the Crown.
Ahhhh...after finishing the Rusty Crown- a cheeseball hambone picture to show just how happy I was to have conquered it!!
I finished in 3:38.  Not exactly a speedy time, but considering the Rusty Crown had me doing three 25 minute miles, it's not so bad.  I was trashed after the Crown, but the rest of the course was flat and fast.  I had fun the rest of the time.
My finisher medal.  Pretty sweet, eh? hee hee
Overall it was a fantastic event.  This was the first year for this particular event and I had a ball.  They had yummy vegetarian tacos and fruit after the race, and I ate one and then headed off to Dallas to spend the evening with my sister who was in town from Virginia. 
This was my toughest half marathon EVER, and I'm pretty darn proud of this body for finishing and not collapsing somewhere out on the course to be wolf food.  Woot!!


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