August 24, 2008

Just call me Chris Columbus...Dirt Cheap #5 report

So those who know me might be keen on the fact that I have a very, and I mean VERY poor sense of direction. I blame my mom as she once got lost going down a MAJOR road in our little town once when my sister and I were little kids. She would get lost in a paper bag....

Now I am an Eagle Scout, and as my brother in law, Dave would say, "I thought eagle scouts had a good sense of the direction from using compasses so much?!" It's true, I can use a compass, but I get lost easily. Just a matter of fact. In high school cross country we would run in the woods and I was one of the fastest on the team and I swear that I made those poor guys run so many more miles to find the busses. Sorry guys!

And still, it is the case. Just Wednesday this past week I ran in the Dirt Cheap race #5 (just a small trail race series here in Rochester) and as the gun went off, I was feeling okay and we all were joking around a lot. after 2 miles, I started to feel good and to pull away. There's something I really enjoy about bombing thru at top speed thru singletrack that is quasi overgrown in the woods. In the woods I ike to be a front runner and not have anyone in front of me in order to see the terrain beneath my feet.

So two miles out of five are in, I'm feeling good and I was thinking to myself before the race that Ironman training should have really sapped my speed, but I was blazing thru the woods and feeling good. Mile 3 comes and I'm still leading and have about 150 meters on Alan Powers, with Brian Matthews behind. I go a little longer and bounce up a huge hill and go a little longer to realize that there are no more cones and there are trails branching of everywhere...

"I must have gone the wrong way" I think to myself and silently curse. I turn around and about 2 minutes later I finally catch up to the race, I jump back in (I seem to have missed a sharp left into a stream - yes they ran us up a strea for about 200 yards) And yes at the pre-race meeting, the director called me out in front of everyone and said "Now Travis, don't miss the stream, it's a sharp left..." and I totally blew right by it. But I rejoined and kept on going. I was WELL out of the lead at this point....

I go about another mile, pass a few more folks and blow RIGHT by another turn. I realized it at the top of a hill AGAIN. I turned around and just kind of dialed it down to the finish line and cruised in going from a solid lock on 1st overall to 9th with not one, but TWO wrong turns. Oh well, it was a small little $10 trail race, but it would have been nice to get another W under my belt. But still not really the focus for this year.

A thank you goes out to Alan Hatch who said kept things in perspective by "reassuring me" and saying, "it's a good thing that Ironman is REALLY well marked..." Smart ass :o) But hey, I'd rather get lost in a small trail race then IM anyday. Keep running strong folks, and PLEASE go the right way. Cheers.

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