I've done the half twice and have put in so many more miles and wasn't 3 months postpartum this time so I decided to give the full a go. 6am start so I did bring my headlamp but didn't need it. Started the race with arm warmers but not gloves convinced I wouldn't even need the arm warmers but had my pack on so I could take them off and store them if needed. Turns out I'm glad I had them because no more than 5 miles into the race it started raining. Very hard at times, and didn't stop for hours. I wish I'd had the gloves but was grateful at least that my core or legs and head weren't cold. My hands were cold and numb and felt swollen most of the run which is something I haven't experienced. Thoughts?
Anyway, sorry for the detail lacking all over the place report, but waiting over a month to blog this hasn't done good things for my memory or writing. The course was so muddy. Thick squishy pull your shoe off muddy in many places, very slick wet stuff on others, particularly on steep up and downhills. There were many very short, like 10 feet, sections that I couldn't believe I made it up because there was just zero traction anywhere. I'm sure most of the time my making up those little bumps was attributed to grabbing nearby grass or trees. Going down at first I was worried I would slip but turned out when it's thick enough it's kind of fun to sink down in, takes some impact off the joints and is a fun sliding/surfing feeling. The mud was still there on the long mile before the last 2-3 mile descent, but at least the sun was out. Sure is hard running at times though with 5lbs on each foot and no where to kick it off you won't just add it back on.
Racing/place wise I started with a friend Ashley who asked me if I was going out to win it (which not necessarily, but that would have been fine) and told me how awful her stomach was feeling and how much time she'd be in the bushes. Yeah, she took off from the start and went on to easily win it. Nice bluff friend ;) I was in second until 8 miles or so when a girl I know is a great ultrarunner Brita passed me. I was able to stay within 30 seconds of her for a long time, but stopped to retie my shoe and never saw her again. I like to think I'm a good uphill runner and by golly there was a lot of steep uphill for a good chunk of the middle of the race. One hill taking us from the BST east up the mountain that seemed to be a 4 wheeler track or something. Straight up, no switchbacks and so steep, probably the steepest uphill I'd ever done. I have no idea how any vehicle made it up there. I worked it as best as I could up the long climb up Grove Creek Canyon, but saw a lady coming up in view toward the top. Tried my best to stay ahead of her but she eventually ran me down at the start of the big downhill. So I hung around in 4th for the rest of the race. That's ok. Wasn't my best race for sure but I actually won't write it off all together. My goal after averaging out the past 3 year's top 3 women's times was 5:15, and that was for not necessarily dry, but reasonable conditions. Not sure I'd call all that hard rain and mud fest reasonable, and I ran a 5:18, so not too bad!