Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Fabulous Alta Peruvian Lodge 8-K

And fabulous it was!!  I've raced A LOT and man, this one impressed me big time!  No there weren't screaming crowds everywhere and thousands of athletes (just under 100 to be exact), but this race has its mystique.  My wedding anniversary is today, 8 years for us, and this was our little date.  We dropped the kids off at Grandpa's about 2:45 and headed up Little Cottonwood Canyon for the 4:00 race.  Check in was fast and easy and then we walked up about 1/2 mile to the start.  Good chance to warm up on a great day.  Seriously so beautiful up there.  Sunny skies, slight breeze coming up the canyon, nice green mountains around us.  Anyway, money was tight and my husband Jeremy paced a friend of ours 9 miles of the Wasatch 100 the night before, so he went for a trail run of his own up there while I ran the race.  Great compromise since we wouldn't run side by side anyway.  Forgive the lovey-dovey pics, but we were kid-less and it is our anniversary weekend  :)This wasn't a triathlon so the pressure wasn't on like usual.  I always want to go fast because it's fun, but all I wanted today was top 3 overall or an age group place or win since they have some awesome prizes!  I saw two ladies whom I know are very fast road racers, and talking to one of them there was another fast lady there who took second last year.  So now I had 3-4 to contend with, but that was it, so it eased any pressure some.  I just wanted to go out there, have fun, and hopefully earn a sweet prize.Ok, so this is a 5 mile downhill race, and when I mean downhill I mean downhill!  I heard something like 2000 ft drop in those 5 miles - yeah, wow.  Can't say I've ever done anything like this.  We started just above the Lodge and ran on the road down.  I can only recall about 30 seconds of the race where I could really think about my form and moving the legs forward, the remainder of the race was was applying the brakes, just a matter of how hard depending on the pitch of the road.
So the race starts and I settle into 3rd woman overall.  Didn't even worry about the 2 ladies ahead of me.  My optimistic goal was 30:00.  We roll past mile 1: 5:33.  Yeehaw!!!!  Hit the 5k just under 17:00 - yeah definitely a PR, but I'm not really going to count it as my official 5k PR.  This course is way faster than any other.  Aid station with water at 2.5 miles, took a little just to sip, didn't really need it.  I wasn't really out of breath during the race (not breathing easy either though), but I did deal with side aches.  I think just the fact that I was going so fast and landing a bit harder than usual.  Not too bad, but a little annoying.  I loved that there were a few spectators here and there down along the road, how awesome!  Anyway, the last mile was the steepest down and my legs were feeling it by then.  I never looked behind me for the 4th place woman, don't like to do that, just want to run my race.  I was only passed twice and each time they were coming up on me I thought "please be a man because I don't want to have to run down a woman".  Yeah the last guy that passed me about 1/2 mile from the finish?  Some 60 something year old......nice.  You can't see the finish till you're 200 yards from it and it was nice to see.  Came through happily in 3rd in 29:45!  Just a second under 6min mile pace!!  Whohoo!!! So we hang out down at the finish for about half an hour then jump onto shuttles and head back up to the lodge where a raffle was waiting.  You drew a number and came away with a prize.  I came out with a Utah Natural History t shirt, but they were giving out gear and such as well.  Very nice for everyone to leave with something.  Then onto the post race food.  Probably the best part of the night eating on the grass listening to the live chill music band playing out there.  And would you check out this food.....I mean DINNER and DESSERT!  Such good food!And a great atmosphere with all the racers out there eating (there were tables, just full), listening to music, and eventually listening to the humorous announcer doing awards.  Speaking of awards, I have to tell you how stinkin excited I am about my prize, definitely one of the best ever, if not THE best.
An overnight stay for 2 at the Lodge anytime during the next year which includes dinner and breakfast for two as well as a $50 cash prize!!  Thank you Alta for paying for our anniversary trip to St George this next weekend!  No we don't stay high class, just a chance to get away and be together is great.  Don't think we're wealthy because of all the racing I do and my pretty bike, quite the contrary actually, we're a young family, it's called a very helpful sponsor, Powertri, (but no, my bike was not free).
Overall winners, L-R, Danny 3rd, Patrick 1st, Devra 1st, Mary Ann, 2nd, and myself 3rd

After awards and dinner and dessert, lets not forget the chocolate cream cheese cake!, Jer and I hopped in the hot tub and enjoyed the nice water, views of the mountain, and talking with a few other runners.  What an evening!  So much fun.  We both got to do our running thing, came away with a great and super useful prize and were able to spend time together on a very nice evening.  I highly highly recommend this race.  Started on time, mile markers with people on them calling out splits every mile, shuttle back up, everyone leaves with a prize, awesome OV and AG prizes, excellent food, and use of the facilities, all for $28-$35 - SCORE!

It's so great to be able to get out and be active with my husband.   I love that he's active and fit now...and hot  ;)  Thanks for coming love, what a fun way to spend time for our anniversary.  I hope I can earn us an even better trip for our 10th  :)   Happy 8th Anniversary!


Jarvis Family said...

Love, love, love it! So much fun! Perfect summer afternoon/evening! Way to run fast and earn such an awesome prize! You guys look great!

bryceviewlodge said...

Comfortable hotels and accommodation facilities play a very important role in popularizing any tourist destination.

Bryce Canyon Lodge