The Port Gamble Half Marathon was the final event for those looking to collect points in Poulsbo Running's Roots, Rock Trail Series. There were about 100 people running this fantastic event through the trails that run between Port Gamble and Poulsbo, WA. After the event was a post race barbecue, beverages, and an awards ceremony. Finally, as is usually the case, the Poulsbo Running Store gave away a ton of gear in their customary raffle. All in all, the race series has an excellent vibe with a relaxed attitude. All race proceeds go to local cross-country teams and the North Kitsap Trails Association.
I enjoyed most of the race, especially the last 7 miles or so. The first half was a bit painful, as I was having some stomach distress. The last 6 were great. Lots of downhill running, which I happen to love to do. The best part of the series for me is the fact that it gets the old competitive juices flowing. With about 5 miles to go, I caught another guy that I recognized in the 40-49 year old age group and I was assuming he and I would be duking it out for third place honors. I was correct...we chatted for awhile and with about a mile to go I decided to pick up the pace for about 200 yards to see if he would come with me. I realized after about 201 yards that this may have been a mistake as I was starting to feel concrete filling my legs. Thankfully I had just enough to continue for a strong finish and a placing in my age group.
This brings me to my next thought...as this blog entry is turning into a veritable, rambling mess. Sometimes in road races, trail races, and other racing events I settle into a pace and may even start having a brief chat with someone. This has happened to me in my last several races. Each time, in my mind, there comes a point where you can keep talking or start racing. Is it rude to stop talking and surge? I know I never feel bad if someone takes off, sometimes I am actually relieved if I am having trouble talking and staying up with the person at the same time. However, I know that everyone joins events for different reasons. Some are content with running, relaxing, and enjoying the surroundings, without really thinking about racing. I tend to vacillate between racing or relaxing. I need to make the transition to racing AND relaxing. It shouldn't be "either" or "or", it should be the genius of "and"! Anyhow, enough rambling. I will just go with the notion that people are really out there just doing there own thing for the most part and that is okay with me! Can you tell I have had one too many cups of coffee this morning...okay off for a long run!
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