Sunday, April 19, 2009

Spokane River Run 50k - 4.19.2009

The Spokane River Run is a wonderful trail run just a few minutes from my house. There are several distances available to run - a 5k, 10k, 25k, or 50k. Tim, David, Ethan, Craig and I ran the 50k. John ran the 25k. The guys came in from Ellensburg yesterday and stayed over for this morning's race. We had a blast. Lots of laughter - the best part of running with friends.

(pic: David, John, Lisa, Ethan, Craig, Tim.)

We carbo-loaded with pasta (with the Englund family sauce and meatballs recipe) and grilled chicken, topped off with a little apple pie (if you had saved some room). We slept well and the dogs woke us bright and early this morning for the run.

The weather was great. The forecast was for mid to high 70's. I don't think it got past low to mid 60's a light overcast. Really perfect for running.

My previous blog entry shows some of the course. It's a beautiful course, not too easy, not too hard. Most of the trail is very runnable, as long as you're good with hills. There were some incredibly rocky sections (see picture in last post) and lots of well-groomed hilly trails through gorgeous scenic views of the Spokane River, which was rolling pretty good.

My goal was to have a "good race." That means that I would try to run well but stay happy. After all, I'm in this sport for the joy of it.

Trails are very difficult for me ever since I ruptured my ankle ligaments and had surgery. I've since ruptured those surgical ligaments too, so needless to say, I'm just no longer a good, and certainly not a confident, trail runner! I wear my ankle brace now - every time I'm on the trails. I have run trails in the past few years but I've never run them without fear of reinjury. I've been running trails filled with tension. I've made progress with that more recently, but this run was going to be a test of whether I could return to running trails with joy and confidence.

That was my goal.

I accomplished it.

It was invigorating to be on these beautiful trails...and to be racing on them. I had only a few scares where my ankle started to turn but I caught it early. Instead of looking at the rocks and trying to avoid them, I instead looked at the flat spots and tried to plant my foot there. Sort of a subtle difference. Kind of seeing the "negative space" if you will. And this turned out to be hugely positive for me. I found myself running through, around, even over the rocks with confidence. I was thrilled, overjoyed.

(pic: 3rd (Francie), 2nd (me) and 1st place women (Emily).)

I finished in 5:08, 2nd female overall. Tim finished in 4:33, 7th overall. It was a fast race! Lots of fast runners as you can see in the results.

All the guys finished well and we celebrated with beer brats on the grill back at home. Thanks to Tim, David, John, Ethan, and Craig for sharing a fabulous weekend and for all the laughs.


olga said...

You never seize to amaze me. What a fast time. You are naturally gifted. Congrats to all!

JeffO said...

Nice run on rocks! I don't have the recent ankle history that you've got. Shattered one ankle and ripped every ligament south of my shin on the other ankle, at different times, but that was decades ago. But I know how it is when they start to go over and you catch it just in time. Whew!

Runner Tammy said...


Congratulations on an excellent race! You were really moving to finish in 5:08 even with the mud, rocks and hills.

It sounds like you had lots of fun before, after and even during the race.

We are lucky to be able to do something that makes us so happy, aren't we?

Keep on smiling!

Backofpack said...

This race is now on my list of "wanna do-s". Maybe next year. Eric and Steve have been giving me the same advice that you just mentioned - to always be looking two or three steps ahead for where to plant my feet. You said it well - to look for the "negative space". I need a lot of practice at this - I'm kind of a klutz and don't react quickly to anything. I'm learning though! Congrats on a great and joyful race!

AnthonyP said...

Simply amazing ! Congrats to you and Tim !

Journey to a Centum said...

Looks like a winner! Time to jot that down on next years calendar.

Glad that everyone had a great time.

Have a great week!

Chad in the AZ Desert said...

Congratulations on a great race! It sounds like your confidence on the trail was really helped by this race. I'm especially glad to hear you had a great time. That's what it's all about!


Wow Lisa, you are amazing! Running on ruptured/re-ruptured ankle ligs! I wouldn't let my patient run with that ankle... but if it was me, I would do it too! You are an inspiration and I will certainly follow your blog from up here in BC.

Lisa Smith-Batchen said...

once amaze us all!
happy sunday!