Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My first trail run

My First Trail Race – Sunday April 5th, 2009

By taking that first step, your goals are that much closer to being achieved. This was a firm slogan for many who participated in this year’s My First Trail Race as they simply got out there and did it.

For many, this was a huge stepping-stone, showing that it really is possible to get out there and compete in a race. This year’s race was such a success that participants are still talking about how much fun they had and what they accomplished on a personal level.

It was a brisk Sunday morning where over 200 participants gathered to embark on their first sanctioned event and complete either a 5km or 10km trail race. The atmosphere was filled with energy, the emotions were high and some nerves were rattling, but all that quickly dissipated when the race announcer asked runners to take their mark and start the race.

Off they went…. Barreling down the trail starting their watches (and HR monitors) and wondered what lay ahead. A sea of IF jackets lead the way with eager runners following along side. For many, this race was their first. It was a great event to kick start not only their running careers but their running season. It offered them the chance to get out there with others in the same boat and give it a try…sort if a “test the waters” race if you will. 

Participating in a local destination like this allows a person to experience the gratification and successes with others just starting out. Connie is a great example of a person just starting out in the trail running scene. She was lead by IF coaches to this event having never run in a sanctioned trail race. Her experience was very positive and she did very well. In asking her after-the-fact her thoughts about the race and how she personally felt about her experience she went on to say that this was a great event for beginners and that she is now hooked into doing many more similar events! She is a great example of a person that has the drive and ability to do many events, each more difficult, but needs an event like the My First Trail Race to get the ball rolling. Connie has plans to run a marathon in Oregon and is pumped that she is in the racing scene now.

Peter is another great example of a person with the determination to succeed and who is now just getting back into the swing of it. He was thrilled with the turnout of beginner runners which made him feel at ease. He’s always been a go getter and has competed at the highest level of competition before – but running has never been his thing. He is now totally stoked on doing more events as this event was very positive and has left him with a need to do more. Peter continues to run on his own and with friends, both at home on his treadmill and on the trails shown to him from this race and he looks forward to surpassing his expectations of what is possible down the road for a running career.

Overall, this race was a huge success! It was able to grab the attention of runners who didn’t think they would ever run a race in the trails and who now can’t wait for the next race to start. For all those involved, they left with very positive experiences, a chocolate medal and for those not on the nutrition challenge, even a cup of hot coffee!

Until the next one…

Steve Bell-Irving

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