Monday, February 14, 2011

Greenpower 25k

My longest distance to date, and my first trail race ever!
25 kilometers (15.5 miles) in 5:53:23
116 out of 179 females

The full report...

This is the map of the HK Trail on Hong Kong island (duh).  The full trail and course is 50 km, but since I've never attempted such a distance, I opted for the half.  We've been spending lots of time on various parts of the HK trail, so there wouldn't be any surprises.

The starting line near Parkview.  The bus and baggage system was really organized.  The only strike was their annoying Green Power theme song that played on a loop.  And also prob the long line at the potty.  They only stuck to the available public toilets and didn't bring in extra porta potties.  I didn't even bother.

Batman & Panda at the starting line.
It was a cool, clear (for Hong Kong) day.  Absolutely perfect.  Probably the best day on the trails I've had this season.

The most challenging section was at the beginning.  It starts going up Jardine's Lookout (433 meters) and back down to go up Mount Butler (466 meters).  This part was also a challenge because the trail is not wide, and there was definitely some traffic.  This is where we converge with the 50km'ers, many of which are a lot faster and squeeze past you.  This is scary when you're going up and down stairs and fear that you're gonna get knocked down like I do.  Everything was ok though.  The uphills were like a slow pack of donkeys climbing up a mountain, but the single file line made for a consistent pace.  I think a lot of participants were not prepared, but this is all for charity anyway.  At the bottom was our first check point, snack and potty break.  We refilled our water and sports drinks, and were on our way after only a few minutes downtime.
 The next stage goes around the reservoir and is a wide, downhill, concrete path.  This is where we got some breathing room.  Then we reached stage 7, which is 7.5 km of boring flat trail along a catchwater.  I swear this thing would never end.  We had no desire to make a good time.  We just wanted to have fun and finish.  But since this flaaaaaat boooooooooring part was giving us the blues, we agreed to possibly run it at our own pace.  That running part was pretty brief and it all got started cause I wanted to run with this dog.  And it's fun to pass people. 

It kept going, and going, and going...

At the end of boringness, we took another quick break to have some sandwiches and bread and sit our asses down for a sec.  And then the final stretch.  Stage 8.  Another climb and Dragon's Back.  8.5 kilometers and the longest stage. 

I was tired.  And I was feeling it from pretty early on.  I probably shouldn't have stayed out late and drank a bottle of wine the night before, but sometimes it's worth it :)  I had a Red Bull before stage 8 and it saved my life.

 Dragon's back is the best part of the trail.  And it was perfect out there.  Not crazy windy like last time.

It's called Dragon's Back because the hills roll like a...

The finish line is down there!  We can do it!  And long before the sun goes down too!

I told a couple people that I wasn't worried about finishing.  The time limit was 10 hours and surely I could do that.  I was worried about legs being tired at the end and...

falling on my butt.  AS PREDICTED, I fell in the last kilometer.  Nothing more than a cut up knee and some bruises and a hurt ego. 

That "last stretch" seemed to go on forever.  But finally, we crossed the finish line, grabbed a beer and enjoyed it on the beach.

We finished!

No comments: