It has been a long year of quarantine / hibernation. I am fluffier coming out then going in, but that is OK. Thankfully, things are returning to normal and I have participated in my first REAL in person race in over a year! My last in person race was in 2019! SO LONG AGO!
I signed up for this run only a few days before. I did not have race day jitters even though I am a little rusty and out of practice on what to do pre-race. Its been SO LONG! I did lay out my flat runner to make sure I had everything I needed for race day.
I signed up for the 3.5 mile run with an 11 am start time. Its almost 2 hour car ride to the state park where it was held. My brain decided to wake up at 5:55am. Way too early and way before my alarm clock! I got up and leisurely enjoyed my 2 cups of coffee, my brekky protein shake with collagen and morenga powder and hydrated with a new Nuun Energy.
We made it to Malad Gorge State Park. I have done this specific race two times before. One time the 5K in 2016 and the half marathon in 2015. I do recall the race course being extremely windy which really slowed me down. My half marathon was 15 seconds from my half PR and I was 4th from last place. Everyone was really speedy that year! This year was more chill and more a fun, party atmosphere. So many people were dressed up! It was great! Only a very small handful of people were wearing masks.
I thought I warmed up ok, but the front of my legs were a little crampy and tired feeling. I did a run / walk as my lungs were confused with what I am doing – running@! Since I was running with my other half, he was pushing me to go faster. I obviously resisted by my Garmin time.
One of the previous times I did this race, I recall hearing a few rattlesnakes along this canyon side of the run. Today, there was none as it was too dang cold for them. That was nice.
After the run we had a very generous lunch! This is my favorite part of this particular race. The local trout was smoked and so tasty! Potato salad, pasta salad, fruit salad and a roll made this very good post-run meal.
And guess what – beer and wine are included!
The adult beverages available were Coors and a local winery and brewery. I tried the wine and really liked the reisling and pinot grigio. Very drinkable! The merlot was a little young tasting, not bad. It was light and had a thin mouthfeel. Not super thick and heavy like you would assume a merlot would be.
Despite this being a hard location to run in, this is one of my favorite Idaho races. It was nice to be getting back to normal with an in-person race after this past year. I recommend this run to anyone.