A gorgeous day for the Tecumseh Trail Marathon! 4 inches of fresh snow -- reminding me of Louisville's Lovin' The Hills in February when the snow piled up on the branches till they could hold no more. Awesome scenery!
As for the race, well, I finished. Slower than the disappointing time of last year, as expected, and would have been even slower had the race been the same distance & on the same course as last year. Due to the snow, the race started & finished at the Yellowwood finish line -- an out and back instead of point to point.
I also learned a few hours later than instead of going to the halfway point where the largest hill on the course was located, the turnaround was at least 0.75 miles before then, making the race more than 1.5 miles shorter than last year & skipping the big hill altogether. That would have been fine by me except that I had left a drop bag at the halfway point & I did not realize that we were not going to pass by this area. I had disposed of my gatorade "water bottle" by mile 10 & was looking forward to picking up a new one along with some more gels! This was a mental & physical letdown for me at that point, but I managed to keep positive & continue enjoying the run on the way back to the finish, albeit a much slower return.
One thing about an out and back race is that you can see everyone in the race! I recognized quite a few faces although there were more runners who knew me than I knew (some even admitted they recognized me not by name but ONLY as that "fool" who never wears enough clothes). Felt sorry for the leaders who had to veer off the narrow single track when runners in the other direction did not yield and had to blaze a new trail into the unpacked snow. Much of the course was not meant to be double wide & with several hundred runners, there was alot of dodging for everyone.
I had some intestinal issues at the start & a foot (cyst) issue by the time I got to the finish, but I don't think either had a noticeable effect on my performance. My physical conditioning is still lacking, yet I feel I'm seeing some improvement. With the unsure footing in the snow, slush & mud, the cyst on the bottom right edge of my right foot received more lateral pressure than I was expecting -- even with my modified shoe. The cyst area is still swollen right now & reinforces the fact that this problem is not going away. Since I'm signed up for Lookout Mountain in a couple weeks, I believe I'll have surgery to remove the cyst after the race. Hopefully recovery will be quick.
Brian Holzhausen - Race Director: