Tuesday, 23 November 2010

I'm a mountain goat; hear me roar!

I've been wanting to run the Cherry Festival Mountain Race for as long as I can remember.  Now, this is not just any old race.  And it's definitely not for the faint hearted: It's run mostly off-road and it nearly always rains during the race.  And, did I mention that it goes up the one end of a mountain, crosses the entire mountain top and goes back down the other end?  Which is why it took me more than 15 years to finally do it...  Yes, I've finally done it!

The night before the race had its ups and downs: A definite up was the huge bowl of steamy, delicious macaroni and cheese served at the pasta party (yup, I love fuelling).  A definite down was our non-running campsite neighbours who decided that blasting out loud music 'till the wee hours of the morning was the appropriate thing to do the night before a race...  [Yup, I also love sleeping :) ].

And then the day finally came...  Race day!  It was a perfect morning; not a single cloud in sight.  Runners from all over the country anxiously toed the starting line and then, we were off.  Man, we fought hard: We ran; we huffed; we puffed; we walked a bit; and then we soldiered on again.  And, in the end, we made it.  We conquered the mountain!

I've learnt a few lessons during this whole adventure.  One: You can do so much more than you've ever imagined.  Prepare well, stop doubting yourself and just do it.  Two: Sharing life's adventures with a friend makes them twice as much fun.  And, lastly, Three: Chafing is not your friend.  Lube, lube, lube!

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