Bay Area Back to Back on the Trails

Back to the Bay Area included a weekend of trail races. Both races were held on trails I had yet to explore and it was so much fun.

On Saturday I participated in the Inside Trail Racing Lake Chabot 30k. It was so good to see so many friends and familiar faces out there running. As with any trails, the course was hilly, but certainly doable. I ran with friends, I chatted with other runners, I enjoyed the views, I got some major blisters on my feet as well as some brutal chafing on my arms. I crossed the finish line with all smiles. I wasn’t last, but near close. This race marked my longest mileage on the trails. I loved the shirts that were given to all participants with a bonus surprise; a coffee mug! Inside Trails always puts on great events and I am happy I was able to use this race as a training run on a supported course surrounded by supportive people. 18.2 miles 3:46, 2,245 climb

Layla, Kristen, and I at the top of the hill climb at Lake Chabot
Dirt & Beers post trail reward! W/ Kristen, Layla, Paulette
Sunday, I woke up in the wee hours of the morning and did it all over again. This time, I headed out to the peninsula and participated in The San Bruno Mountain Ultras. This was an inaugural event. If you remember, I had won an entry from The Robert & Linda Mathis Memorial Run I attended. I am so glad I did! This was such a wonderful race to be apart of! It was a fundraiser for the fight against neuroblastoma.

At the last minute, Alyssa and Shannon also decided to join me. Alyssa, like myself had participated in the Lake Chabot 30k, and Shannon had ran 16 hilly trail miles with her running group the day before. Our legs were tired, but we were happy to take on running the half marathon together. This exposed trail ran on single track which held steep hills climbs and lot’s of rolling hills. I mean steep and deep hill climbs. And, the downhills were nothing of a break as we were practically sliding on the loose gravel.  It was quite challenging, but oh so rewarding. The Bay views were absolutely gorgeous as we lucked out and there was no fog. It was sunny, but in certain areas, it was quite windy. Shannon almost lost her hat, and I almost was blown off a cliff. Okay, well not really. I just wanted to add that in for dramatic effect. It was quite windy at the top though. It is here that I will point out what a beast Alyssa is. She is seriously the female version of Kilian plowing up all the hill climbs. Shannon has always been a very strong trail runner, and running alongside these girls is super inspiring!

Disgusting right? Photo courtesy of Alyssa.
Clearly I am focused on getting up that hill! W/ Alyssa and Shannon
More ugly views. Photo courtesy of Alyssa. 
Steep Steep Steep
I met a few other people on the course who shocked an inspired me as well. One guy, who was not a participant of the race, but a fellow runner was out there with this huge uncomfortable backpack on. As we were running up a hill we chatted. Apparently that huge uncomfortable backpack he was wearing held 60 pounds. Did I mention he was running? Up a hill!! He was not training for anything in particular, but only wanting to improve his endurance and strength. My god, I will never complain again. Another, who was an actual entrant of the event, was amazed that Alyssa and I ran the 30k the day before. Come to find out that he had also participated in the Lake Chabot event running the 50k. Like us, he was also running the half and was a fastie to boot. when I showed my amazement, he commented that a 30k and 50k were the same thing and we were hardcore. I remained silent or rather I was confused. There simply was not enough time for me to explain that while I am training for my first 50k, at this point, a 50k just seems so out of my league.

Shannon and I on one of the many hills climbs. Photo courtesy of Alyssa.
The course was a 10 mile loop where we then came back to the start line and headed in another direction for an out in back on a combination of pavement and dirt. Luckily, my chafing issues were not bugging me, but my blisters from the day before certainly were screaming those last three miles. Shannon and Alyssa continued on and I fell way behind. That last mile was tough, and I was touched that they waited for me. Alyssa told me that we lasted this long together, we were going to cross the finish together. I love my friends! We indeed crossed the finish line together at 2:55 and some change. What an amazing morning! So grateful I was able to be apart of such a fabulous inaugural event. The Race director Alan was awesome, not to mention was just an overall humourous guy! 13.1 miles in 2:55:04, 2,195 climb

Some of the Folsom Trails Runners came out to represent. So lucky to have them in my area to run w/.
Got to have that finisher photo! W/ Shannon and Alyssa.
Thus this marks my second back to back holding my longest mileage in a row. I can’t believe I did it, but I survived and happy to report, I might even do it again!

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