|The Tee Shirt (pre-race)|
The single lane trail chosen for the race consisted of three river crossings, steep uphills (netting 2,000 feet in elevation), and treacherous downhills that took down even the most experienced trail runners. In addition to the ludicrous topography of Taylor Mountain, typical Seattle weather decided to show up a full two days prior to the race, cascading copious amount of rain on the trail. The final tally was said to be over an inch of rainfall, which when added previous rainy days, easily blew away June's monthly average in just 48 hours. The result: deep mud puddles spent the day impartially splattering runners and trying to suck the shoes right off their feet.
Here are some before/after pictures:
|What my shoes used to look like.|
|Stretching out the legs with my "sponsor" gracing my shirt.|
|Two and a half hours later, legs cramping up at the finish line.|
|The mud covered shoes.|
Running the half-marathon, up and down the mountain, was a physical and mental challenge to say the least. In retrospect, of course, I had a great time slopping through the mud for a couple of hours; slugging it out against the terrain; motivated and determined by the desire to get the most mileage out of the mobile advertisement on my back.