Saturday, October 09, 2010

Closer to hell. But faster.

Dear Diary, 
Today, I did the 15 mile run at the Pajarito Trail festival.

Last year, I did the Pajarito trail run, a 15 mile bit of heaven that I recall thoroughly enjoyed, and blogged about, here:  The title of that post was "Closer to God".

I also took pictures.  I'm going to re-use those pictures because, well, it's a mountain.  Not much changes.  Plus, I didn't stop to take any.  For reasons that will be explained, in time.

101009 Pajalito Trail Run
Valles Caldera from 10,000 feet.

101009 Pajalito Trail Run

101009 Pajalito Trail Run

The race starts in a ski resort at 9200 feet, and climbs
up to over 10,000 feet in the first couple miles, which is where this picture was taken.

101009 Pajalito Trail Run

Fantastic aid stations, wonderful volunteers, very well run.

Here's the problem.  I don't recall last year tripping over every fuc#ing root and stepping on every single loose fuc#ing rock.  I think they got a lot of rain, and it washed a lot of loose rock down.

The result, was that I tripped and went face-down, HARD, at mile 0.75.

I played leapfrog with a group of folks, and was very proud to chick one youngish-looking guy, only to watch them all peel off and head toward the 10K finish.  After this, I was alone.  Very, very alone.

The rest of the run was me tripping over everything you could trip on, letting loose with profanities, and then apologizing to the  family and their small children that were, inevitably, around the corner.

Forget about scenery. Forget about pictures. I had to keep eyes down.  The race itself, by the way, had almost no flat spots.  Just steep uphills and downhills, covered with loose rock.  There was no stepping around it.

If you do this race, I recommend training by having close friends place trip wires at hidden and random intervals on your favorite trail.  Then put baseballs and golf balls on a flight of stairs and run up and down. 

This is me last year.  

My finishing time: 4:20.

This is me this year.

My finishing time: 3:53.

This year, for being the last place finisher, they gave me a jar of honey.

I looooove honey.  I intend to boil it, though, or something. It's raw, and I'm not into botulism.

Now, last year, I reported that my last place finisher prize was a pair of gloves. Baboo had them waiting for me when I finished.

I found out today that this was a lie.

Apparently last year, the race people reneged on the last place finisher prize.  Baboo won the gloves in a raffle, and then made up the story about the prize because he thought that I deserved something for how hard I worked.

So I bet you can guess what the real prize is.  It's not a jar of honey.  Do I have to say it?  I bet I don't.

My prize finished a lot faster this year, too.  But I'll let him tell about it.



  1. Your pictures are gorgeous. The road hazards, not so cool. I'm doing my first trail race tomorrow. It's only 12 miles instead of 15, and thankfully less elevation gain. At least, I hope so.

    Your prize definitely rocks. Much better than some ol medal.

  2. Don't boil the honey. It will lose all its healthy properties and don't worry about any germs. Honey keeps for thousands of years without spoiling (the honey found in egyptian graves was perfectly fine) - germs can't live in honey if it's kept away from any water sources (NO refrigerator - ever).

    And congrats.

  3. No no no no no!! Hunney GOOD!! Boiled honey BAAAAD! Srsly! Google first (I'm pretty sure I'm right on this - hunnney, she don't spoil but she has a lot to give (raw).

  4. Well, I don't know a thing about the honey but think a 27 min PR and the difference between last yr's photo and this yr's photo are AWESOME. Congrats!!!

  5. Great job; you're really getting speedy!

    I'd like to do some trail races next year. I'm thinking of easing myself into it with something like Sandia Mountain Shadows trail run in Albuquerque. The profile of this one intimidates me. But it looks beautiful.

  6. Brian's improvement over last year is shocking. And he beat me dammit!

  7. Big improvements (in weight and performance)! Must be very encouraging.

    Don't sweat Javelina. You'll do fine- it's a good choice for a first 100 miler. I've heard really good things about it. Plus you're getting your freaking out phase over with long before the race (good plan).

    Baboo is so cute! (much better than honey)


  8. I am hoping "honey" is a euphemism for what I think it is, because you are both looking pretty damn hot post race!

    (You can always count on me to class the joint up :) )

    I still can not fathom that elevation. I would be dead at the start. I do not have nearly enough hemoglobin or tidal volume for that.

    JAVELINA!!!! Woo hoo!!!!

  9. I LOVE last year's photo compared to this year's look so darn cute!

  10. You ran this the day before we went shopping for awesome outfits for you? Wow! I would have likely been in bed with my honey (and toast), sucking my thumb. I am so doing this race next year because by then, surely I will have the ABQ Half Marathon out of my system.

  11. New to this blog. Great photos, and I love the idea of receiving honey as an award. I also like the term 'getting chicked', that's awesome. Looks like you've come a long way in just one year. Don't let the roots and rocks and other obstacles get you down, they're much more personable than asphalt and concrete. Onward and upward, keep on keepin' on Athena-lady.


Comments containing links to commercial websites from people with invisible profiles are deleted immediately. Spammers are immediately deleted.

...and I, I have a goal.

Dear Diary, For the first time in 7 years I have a goal. It takes a lot to get me motivated.  I am the demotivation queen.  The princess...