The Hares and Hounds 55km trail race was my first race for 2013. I have 11 more races for the year so about one Ultra every month.
This race was always just to see where I was with my training, I had completed all of my training runs on very flat pathways around where I live, however I did manage to get my mileage up a great deal with my longest training runs being 40 and 50 km only a couple of weeks before the race. Trail runs, however, are always a whole lot different than running on flat, smooth concrete paths so I knew I was in for a little bit of pain!
It was an early start with the race starting at 3:30am, Neil (who once again was my support) and I both woke up at 1:30am, left at 2am and arrived just before 3am to get ready. It was a good thing having an early start as the heat was supposed to reach 37 degrees (celsius)!
The race got off to a good start, I had heard that even though being a trail run most of it was pretty flat, most of it was but there were still a few big hills to deal with (something I haven't had to deal with since Turkey in September), so this seemed to wear me out a bit faster than usual. The first half went very well and at a decent pace. My goal was to make the top 10 so I had to push myself a bit more.
The second half of the race was a bit more challenging, the sun was out and it was heating up quite fast, also the hills that I did encounter became more and more tough, something I will have to work on over the coming months. I did soldier on and in result came out with 3rd place which I wasn't expecting at all so I was quite happy with that!
I did sustain a small injury just above my right ankle which will probably take a little while to recover from but I'm sure I will be ready for New Zealand next month where I will race in the Length of Lake 66 km run in Taupo :)