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  • August 9th, 2014
  • Bend, Oregon
  • Haulin’ Aspen
  • Sharon: 3:08:22
  • Tim: 2:39:08


3 down only 49 to go.

I need to start a segment of my blog called – What Did You Forget This Time? This time I forgot to pack a razor. Of course, the one running shirt I packed is sleeveless. I know this is nowhere near as serious as forgetting my running shorts (see Catherine Creek) but it is still annoying. I’m self conscious enough about being a fat runner without being a fat hairy runner.

Packet pickup was at FootZone. I love it when packet pickup is in a running store because – shopping. At first I was horrified by the color of this week’s T-shirt. Orange makes me look like a pumpkin on steroids but then I remembered that I need an orange shirt for the Orange Chicken Run in October ( see Races ). I am glad I remembered the Orange Chicken Run or I would be jealous of Tim’s green shirt. Don’t worry Tim has an orange kung fu shirt he plans to wear to the Orange Chicken Run.

Haulin' Aspen - mens shirt

The men’s shirt was green.

I knew I was in trouble Friday night when I realized that I still had chafing from last Saturday’s race. Note to self – more Body Glide. Body Glide is this miracle product that looks and goes on like deodorant but stops (most) chafing. Lucky me, I get chafing on my inner thighs (chub rub) and under my arms whenever I run more then 3 miles, or sometimes just walking to the store.

This run was beautiful. The race was run on single track, double track, and on service roads that weaved through forests with mountain views. It is more physically challenging to run on a trail than on a road, nevertheless, I prefer trails. I especially love running trails in Oregon. I’m used to running on the rocky, technical trails of Tucson. In comparison, the trails of Oregon look and feel like someone came through and swept them. After looking at the course profile I decided to walk the uphills, jog downhill and see how I felt on the flats. I didn’t really need a plan for flats as there didn’t appear to be many.

Looking at the run profile I knew I would be power hiking about half the race. That is when I made a dumb decision. I should have known better. Have I learned nothing? I decided that I would wear my Brooks Pure shoes. These are great shoes for a 5K. I once wore them for a road 10K and my feet ached a bit but I could still walk. I will be walking half the race, I told myself. Trails are softer then roads, I told myself. They will feel so light and bouncy, I told myself. I had never worn these shoes for a half marathon. The most common advice given to runners after “don’t go out too fast” (see Catherine Creek) is “never try something new on race day”.

Brooks Pure

Brooks Pure

I felt great at the start of the race. After a small flat section the race started with a fairly long, steep climb. I was feeling smart. I was thinking something along the lines of “thank goodness I don’t have those big clunky Hokas on my feet. Yes sir – I should wear these shoes for every race”‘

Tim took a picture of this sign around mile 3. I found out later that the trail we were on was a cross country ski trail and the sign was a warning about upcoming dips, but that day it was an omen of what was ahead for me.

Sign - Danger Ahead

Could you be a little more specific?

About mile 9 I felt A hot spot. By Mile 10 I knew I had at least two blisters. Damn you Wright brand anti blister socks. I believed you. To be fair these are my favorite socks and I almost never get blisters wearing them. Before I discovered them I would get blisters between my toes just hiking. At this point I could feel every tiny rock and twig through the thin soles of my shoes. I stubbed my blistered toes twice. The last 3 miles were a death stumble. Forget running, I was trying to remember how to walk at this point.

Right before the finish line a girl ran past me yelling “Come on, run with me, we’re almost there” or some such thing. “OK” I said feebly, and actually ran across the finish line.

Again I must give a big shout out to Tim who was waiting to cheer me across the finish line. He came in 29 minutes ahead of me. He helped me hobble to the medical tent and put band-aids on my blistered toes. After my toes were taken care of he helped me limp to a rock I could sit on and got me bean salad and beer. Yes – free beer for the runners.

Special thanks to the Renee at Recharge Sport who let me sit in the shade of her booth. I don’t deal well with direct sun and was about to fall over.

Cons

  • Like many trail races this one had no bathrooms on the course. Really that’s the best I can do. This race didn’t have much of a downside for me.

Pros

  • Well organized with friendly, helpful volunteers
  • Great goody bag
  • Well marked course on nice groomed trails
  • Beautiful scenery
  • Free beer

Although it was my slowest time (how can a loop course be all uphill?) it was my favorite race. It was Tim’s favorite, so far, as well. At $60 this race was a good value for all they provided. We recommend it.

Haulin' Aspen trail

Please leave a comment to let me know you’ve read my blog. I love comments.

9 Comments

  1. beckysylvia

    Hi Sharon. Sylvia says take care of your feet! We will follow your journeys and wish we were with you – just cheering on the sidelines (not running!)

    Love your stories!

    • Hi friends. Thanks for reading. I’m not sure why it took you to this race. We have been having some interesting issues. You should be able to go to sharonschaller.com and get the most recent post. Then they should show up in descending order. Let me know if you have any problems. Hopefully we got this fixed. Lots of love to both of you.

  2. rvolbeda

    Ruth here! Found you! Looking forward to the Albany Half blog.

  3. joannehead

    An idea so you don’t forget any more necessary items. Make a checklist. Keep copies in your suitcase. Keep up the good work. Jeannie is also trying to register for comments. Maybe you could help her as I cannot remember what I did to register.

  4. Shelby

    I’m learning a lot! I’ve never heard of some of the products you are mentioning. Maybe that’s why I got hurt when I last ran? Hmmm you are inspiring me! I just may give it another try. Remember the last time we had dinner together? You guys told me about a pair of running shoes that were like running on marshmallows? What were their names?

  5. desertmarilyn

    I note there seems to be a shoe theme “running” through these entries! I hope your blisters are better. Remember, you have another race in just 2 days. I think what you’re doing is amazing, so don’t give up. Besides, think of all the fun things you’ll be able to do with all those T-shirts!

    • Thanks Marilyn. Only one blister left. I will put Newskin on it and tape it up. Not giving up yet.

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