Thursday, April 17, 2014

RACE REPORT: Xterra Trail 5k | Quest to Defend my AG Title

I am back.  The move into our new home was very challenging and we are still unpacking.  Making amazing progress, but this has been such an exhausting 2 weeks. First, with Running Mama's accident and then the move.

In the middle of those two weeks, I ran the Hollywood Half Marathon and then also the Xterra Trail 5k (Lake Las Vegas).  Great opportunity to release some stress and change of pace in my madness.


I have raced the Xterra Trail 5k (Lake Las Vegas) since 2012.  In 2012 & 2013 I won my AG.  Coming into this race, I wasn't sure what to expect as I was perpetually tired since the end of March and my legs were just...pooped from HHM and moving.  This year, there was a different route. I had no idea what that meant, but I was ready for any challenge.

Beautiful, crisp morning.  I love Xterra because it brings out a different crowd and the vibe is totally different than other races I have raced in.  The staff is exceptional. Professional, courteous and friendly.

Lake Las Vegas

The distances were to be 21k, 10k, and 5k. The announcer informed us that the 21k was 12.5, the 10k was 6.5 and the 5k was 3.5.   I was running watchless, so it didn't matter to me the distance and a PR on a trail course is always out of the question.

After the 21k and 10k runners started their race, the 5k'ers lined up.  The first part of the course was paved road, then onto the golf pathway and running across the golf course. As I was running, I was thinking, "okay - this is not trail and quite lame"

I spoke too soon.  We came up on dirt and holy cow, the hill that was ahead of me did not look inviting.  Soft dirt.  I ran, and I was determined to run it.  Then, another hill...and another hill...and another hill. That last hill, was such soft dirt and so steep, it was impossible to run for about 20 feet. I ran, but my feet did not propel me forward. I felt like a cartoon character, where you are running and not moving.

This was tough, I am not going to lie, but I was enjoying it. We came down the other side.  Ran back onto the streets again.  I came up on a mom and her son, I could tell she was pacing him and this was a big deal to him.  We had less than a mile to go and I thought about passing him, but I didn't.  I didn't want to pass this young man on his special day and I also didn't want to possibly ruin his finish line picture.  You only get one first 5k, right?

I came in at a 9:30 pace for 3.5 miles and very happy it was over with. For the first time in a year, I had a tough time breathing at the end.  All that dirt upset my asthma.

After some replenishing of fluids and eating some fruit, we were able to retrieve our results.  I will admit, I was nervous. Had I defended my 2 time title?

I then, tracked down my friend, Celeste Sportsman and he successfully defended her 2nd place AG title.  So proud of her!

Celeste Sportsman

Stepping up to the 1st place podium for the 3rd was very surreal to me.  Most likely, the last time I would be running the Xterra trail 5k.  The Hollywood Half Marathon has changed it's date for 2014 and it will conflict with Xterra (since they always happen on the 2nd weekend of April).  While I love Xterra races, my loyalty is to Hollywood Half, the RD's & Elite Team.

(Photographer asked me to hold up my PowerBar gift)

2012, 2013 and 2014

Thank you Xterra, for a wonderful 3 years.  

Traditional post-race picture with Award & Ladybug's Ball

(c) C. Ragsdale 2010-13
Run F.A.B. & Boston Strong,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
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*Founder, Running Troops
RRCA Certified Running Coach, IFA Certified Sports Nutritionist & Public Speaker
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