Attempted Runner.

Race Recap: Brazen Racing – Summit Rock 5k

Summit rocked and I rolled.


A few months back, I debated on signing up for Summit Rock or not. I couldn’t decide because it was a little intimidating since the first 1.5 miles was up hill. It was also a single narrow track and people have blogged before that it kicked their ass. Then again, it was something I’ve never done before and I could get Woodstock’s Pizza afterwards. For obvious reasons that don’t need to be explained…I signed up.

J got our bibs earlier in the week so we didn’t have to worry about bib pick up on race day, although I think bib pick up the morning of would have be easier and more convienent since we’re always at the races at least 1-2 hours prior to race start. However, J cannot handle the excitment and anticipation well because she just can’t wait to see the fun desgins of our shirts. Here’s this years shirt.


I forgot that I ordered a tech tee, so it came as a fun surprise when I pulled it out of the bag. I got tech because I figured it was going to be one hell of a run and I can show it off while running other races. This is the scenario that pops into my head.

I stop running and start walking and someone first thinks those mean thoughts of, “That girl shouldn’t be here at this run. She’s walking!! She isn’t a runner,” then as they pass me and see my shirt they go home and Google Summit Rock and realize how bad ass the course was and that I did it…they will take back all their mean thoughts and admire me for my ambition.

At least that is my hope and why I pick tech tee’s over cotton tees on some events.

The [5k] race started at 9:00am and I had the lovely pleasure of waking up at 4:45 to get ready and be at J’s by 6:30. I had a feeling it was going to be one of those days because as I was getting dressed, I tucked my shirt into my underwear. My shirt was hanging out the leg holes of my undies. I laughed it off and left for J’s. I was running a little behind but I still made it on time. I used her bathroom when I got to her house and when I was done, I pulled my pants up and it didn’t feel right. That’s when I realized that I pulled my pants up, without pulling my underwear up first. Yep. One of those days. After J got her coffee off the roof of my car (not quite one of those days for her…she caught it before it had a chance), we headed over to pick up T and we finally were on our merry way.

The race was in Saratoga at the base of the Santa Cruz mountains, so it took us about 45 minutes to get there. We arrived at the park around 7:30 (as planned) to find plenty of parking and ice/snow on the ground. We hung out in the car for about an hour to keep warm, before having to get out into the 40° weather to put our gear on, use the bathroom (with working plumbing! No porta potty!!) and start some stretches.

As we were walking to the starting area, we heard the Irish Rocky mix that announced the start of the half marathon runners. Soon after, they sent off the 10k runners and there wasn’t really many people left for the 5k. I had high hopes that because there wasn’t many people, I could automatically place in my age group.

I have dreams.

I dropped my bag off at sweat check. This was the first time I took advantage of bag check and let me tell you now…it’s amazing. Your warm clothes are there when you finish and you don’t have to go back to the car that’s far away for them. Your chocolate milk is there…and cold since it’s outside. I think I’ll use it more often.

4 minutes to start, I turned on Garfield to obtain GPS signal. I thought I would have trouble because of the area, but surprsingly I found it quick enough and the horn sounded and we were on our way.

The trail had a few big rocks and a lot of leaves but it didn’t bother me. It was the size of a fire trail so we were able to space out a little. It was flat for a few seconds and then started to go up hill. I was only able to run .30 miles before I had to walk. I saw J like two people ahead of me walking too so I didn’t think I was doing all that bad. It soon flattended out and I ran again and caught up to J. It was a little sunny, so I unzipped my new Nike Vapor jacket and my eyes started to feel funny and things were getting blurry so I walked again to gain my barrings and when I looked up again, J was gone. I kept up for at least a mile, which is more than I have in the past. I think I reached the mile marker at 16 minutes.

The trail continued to go up and soon started narrowing down into a single track. And up. I ran a little more, but soon had no choice to walk because everyone else in front of me was walking too. The trail was getting steeper. I ended up just walking it and ran when I could but wasn’t much. The back of my knee started to feel a strain, but this is nothing new as I’ve always felt that when hiking.

I’m still going up and now starting to pass a few people that stopped to sit down for a break on fallen trees. Passed the ones that just stopped in the middle of the path cause it was getting tough.

The runners in the front started to come back down and that’s when things got interesting. Because it’s a single track with switch back after switch back….


See all those switch backs!!

….you cannot see that far ahead of you, unless you look up on the trail above but because of the rocks, roots, steps, holes and the side of the cliff, I didn’t look up much.

As the first runner was coming down, all you heard was someone yelling “RUNNER!!!!” and the pounding of feet hitting the ground. I moved as far right as I could to allow them to safely pass. As I continued to climb up, they continued to yell and zoom past me.

Runner coming through!!

On your left!!

Move, move, move!


I started seeing people walking down or slowly running downhill. That meant the turn around point was clod. They kept saying, you’re almost there, you’re almost there. Some guy behind me said, “There idea of almost there is a lot different than mine.” I had to agree with that guy because it felt like almost there was never there.

I’m still going up and J passed me going down. That’s when I finally looked at Garfield. I didn’t bother before since Mr. Brazen said because of the area, most Garmins end up loosing signal. Mine said 1.45 and as I hit the last switch back, I finally saw it. The aid station/turn around!!

I was breathing heavy but my asthma held off. My knees were not hurting. I was doing well. I grabbed a sports drink, rounded the cone and began my decent.

No one was around me as I started going down. I was very worried about the down because of my runners knee, but I wanted to at least give it a try. I kept my eyes on the trail and just went for it.

I ran down.

At some points it got a little scary because of how fast I was going as I was approaching the switch back turns, but I managed to slow down even though some times it was a little sketchy and didn’t think I would stop in time. Garfield clocked my fastest pace at one point of being a 3:13 minute mile.

I was flying.

I reached mile 2 at 19 minutes. I’m pretty confident to say that 17 of those minutes were walking up a 1/2 mile and the other 2 minutes was me running down the other 1/2 mile.

I reached the wider fire trail section and continued to run, but now at my normal 12 minute mile pace. I did take a few walking breaks to catch up to my breathing or to remove my ear warmers/gloves and roll up my sleeves. I started running again and my ear started aching. I’ve noticed on colder runs my ear starts to ache (anyone else have that problem?), so I took my headphone out and and held my hand over my ear hoping to get some warmth in it. I slightly rolled my ankle like everyone has done at least ten times in their and just played it off like it never happened. I thought to myself….Phew, that was a close one.

I started my run again and glance at Garfield. He showed 2.80 miles. I wasn’t sure how accurate he was because I didn’t know if I ever lost a signal or not but I kept running. I saw the 3 mile marker flag and heard the music.


Then I don’t know what happened.

One second I’m running the next I’m falling. I put my hands out to brace myself, naturally did a tuck and roll, landed on my shoulder and tumbled.

Now that I look back on what happened, I remembered that once I was done tumbling I actually laid flat on my back and just looked up at the tree tops.

It was euphoric.

I heard someone far away yelling, “Are you ok? Are you ok? You check her, I’ll check the next one!”

After laying there for what felt like 5 minutes, but really was only a nanosecond, I stood up and noticed someone behind me was being helped up after falling. That’s who they first were asking if they were alright. As I stood there hunched over with my hands on my quads, the lady now was next to me asking if I was alright. Apparnetly, I was the “next one”. I told her I thought I was ok.

Lady: Are you sure? You didn’t hit your head?

Me: No, I’m good.

Lady: You didn’t hit your head?

Me: No, I don’t think so. I tucked and rolled.

Lady: Are you sure?

Me: I promise.

::lady runs off::

I stood all the way up and with my priorites set, I checked to see that my Garmin wasn’t scratched.

The whole thing from falling to getting back up felt like forever but probably was only a minute or two.

I started walking and my ankle was sore. I think I fell because I twisted or rolled my ankle. I probably jinxed myself, since it was one of those days. I have no clue. I reached the last turn, realized how close I was to finishing before falling and just decided to finish it up with running.

My 3rd mile was 12 minutes. I bet you, if I never fell it would have been 9-10 minutes.

I crossed the finish line, stopped my Garmin, grabbed my metal and walked over to J and sat down on a boulder. I told her I fell all while laughing at the same time.

Again, I had my priorities straight and checked to see if I tore a hole into my new jacket or my ProCompression socks and checked my iPod to see if it was smashed when I rolled (I didn’t smash or tear anything) and then checked my battle wounds.

My knee was nicked, no blood, but already brusing. I think Ferris Mueller took the brunt of it and with that rubber tube he has, saved my knee from a gaping wound. I took my shoe and sock off and my ankle was turning slightly blue and was puffy and hurt to the lightest feather of a touch. I then checked my phone to see if that was cracked since I landed on that too, but I think my water bottle took the hardest hit.

I told J awhile back that I would use my handheld water bottle for the nice flat 3-4 mile runs and anything over that, use my hydration belt because I would get tired of holding the handheld bottle. I also told her that no matter the distance, during any trail run, I would use a hydration belt or a hydration vest (when/if I ever get one for 10k trail runs or longer) because I would want my hands free incase I fell and needed to brace myself.
Boy! Was I smart on that decision. I totally used my hands to brace myself when I fell! I could only imaging breaking a wrist (again) or a nose because I couldn’t brace myself well enough since I had the handheld bottle.

Anyway, I limped over to sweat check and put my sweatshirt back on when Mr. Brazen called me over the loud speaker. I got excited thinking I placed or something, but all he wanted to do was give me my Road ID band back. I don’t know if I lost it when I took my sweatshirt off for bag check or I lost it in my fall somehow. After all, it was one wicked ninja tumble fall.

It was like magic.

T came into finish and we went over to check our times. T’s were not posted yet, but from her watch she thinks she was an hour and fifteen. J was 47 something and I was 48:52. I was only about 1:00 -1:30 behind J . I was soooo close. It was the downs….Running down hill, not falling down, that had me so close to J . I bet you anything, that if I didn’t fall, I would have either finished side by side with her or even passed her up at the last second.

Garfield also must have kept single cause I have a mileage of 3.05. He did well.

Overall, I didn’t place in my age group but I did come in the top ten. I placed 8th out of 9 in my age group.

Dang. Maybe next time. Despite falling and having to go uphill forever, I think I did very well.

Anywho, they had me go to the medic tent for ice. The medics assisted with ice and told me to hang out for 20 minutes.

J offered to go back to the car for me to get my boots and sweatpants. So, as I’m sitting there talking to the girl (icing her ankle) next to me, the medic tent got busy. Three or four people came in for ice packs. Someone mentioned someone with a bloody face (The person posted on facebook earlier that they’re ok). Almost all the 10k runners came in for benedryl/bee sting stuff. Apparently, at the turn around for the 10k, a wasps nest was kicked or stepped on or something so all the runners and volunteers at the aid station were getting stung. People came in needing ointment on 1 bite/sting, some needed it for 2-3. The most I heard was 5.

That was brutal. The medics handled it all like pros. As another runner came in for ice, I took my pack off, grabbed some apple cider to earn up and we walked back to the car.

Jand T did some awesome parking lot maneuvers to take their sweaty clothes off and put on some warmer things on, while I didn’t care and just left my sweat pants on over my capris. I did swap my sweaty tank for my tech tee though. J helped me put KT Tape on my ankle, knowing that it would help with the swelling/brusing and then wrapped an ace bandage. Yep, my gear bag has just about everything. And I was only able to put one sock on. Good thing I had my cheap Ugg boots (Emu’s) with wool linning.

We had plans to go to Woodstocks, so we jumped in the car and began our drive over the hill and into Santa Cruz. That’s when my asthma cough decided to show up. Not while standing in the cold or running up and down a mountain, but while in the comfort of my nice and toasty warm car.

When we reached the top of the mountain, my ankle started to hurt more, as it was my right ankle which I use for the gas/break pedal. I pulled over and had J drive the rest of the way so I can ice it a little more. Forty five minutes later, as I’m still caughing and pulling into the parking lot for Woodstocks, I noticed my elbow started to hurt and and saw some brusing there too. I went to use the rest room and decided to take my capris off. As I was pulling up my pants, I noticed that I managed to take my underwear off. Who does these things? See…one of those days!! I fiddled with putting them back on and finally everything was situated in the clothing department.

Since Ive been waiting for Woodstocks since I went ocean kayaking, I ordered a large pizza and side salad just for myself. Hey…its really hard to find decent Gluten Free pizza. I also thought I deserved it for climbing that mountain. And falling. I didn’t eat all of it though….at that time. 😀

After enjoying pizza in the 65 degree sunshine we headed back to our area. We did stop at Sports Basement so I could return the Mizunos. I really wanted to like them, but in the end they were not meant to be. Since I’m really good at hydrating and had to pee again, I went to use the restroom, I didn’t have any underwear mishaps this time but did notice some brusing on my hip.

That fall was epic.

Both J and T were still shopping but I told them I was hurting and didn’t want to stand anymore so we left. We finally were headed home without any pit stops and I still had J drive because having a chauffeur is nice and I also had to drive another 45 minutes by myself after dropping them off.

During the drive home (after dropping them off, I started thinking about the run. More importantly, the fall. I can’t beleive I fell. I can’t believe I fell when I was sooooo close to finishing. I don’t even know what or how it happened really. I’m thinking it was some sort of Mystery Spot and there was some weird gravitational pull that took not only myself down or that lady right behind me (that fall at the same exact time) but also the last lady that came into the medic tent right before I left who said she fell at the same exact spot. One person is understandable for an accident…but three? Other forces were at work.

I got home and didn’t want to look to see what my brusing decided to do so I just laid around for a bit. A wanted to go out for dinner and I was forced to take a shower. I made it a quick one but avoided looking at the damage. Walking was tough but not bad enough to where I couldn’t do it. By bed time, my ankle was hurting so I iced it some more and finally fell asleep.

I woke up today, dreading getting out of bed because I was afraid of what would be hurting. I also wasn’t sure if I would be able to walk. I crossed my fingers and stood up. I was able to walk on my ankle, so that’s a plus but my body was achy all over. A and I had plans to go Christmas shopping and that meant I was going to be out and about for the majority of the day. Getting in and out of the car was difficult. Sitting for long periods (we drove to the Bass Pro Shop an hour away) made me stiff. Walking was not fun and going up/down curbs, stairs or steps of any kind was not my friend.

Now that it’s been a full day and I’m now resting in bed blogging….I came to the conclusion that despite:

  • my brusied and cut knee
  • my scrapped palms
  • my brusied hip
  • my shoulder sore
  • my bruised and sore elbow
  • my bruised, swollen and tender sprained ankle
  • my jaw/neck sore (?)
  • my arm pits sore (I’m not making this stuff up)
  • my quads buring
  • my calfs screaming
  • my throat irritated from the asthma coughing
  • Every muscle crying
  • yesterday being one of those days
  • I had the best time ever!!!

    And on the bright side….my runners knee didn’t bother me one bit!!! ::::fist pumps the air:::: Fuck Yea!!!

    And with that, I leave you with a ballad by Ryan Craven.

    Ryan Craven <— click to play the ballad of an injured runner. I would imbed the video, but I'm in the app and can't figure it out. Ha.


    6 Comments so far
    Leave a comment

    Your chocolate milk was in the car…I brought it back when I got your emus and pants. So next time you can bag check all of that. Lol. And I’m totally laughing because your off day was all about chonies. Whatever you were wearing is bad luck – don’t run in them again. Lol

    Comment by Runningfromitall

    They were my rundies. And I’m saying in the future, bag check because your clothes are there…your chocolate milk is won’t have to go to the car to get it.

    Comment by Attempted Runner

    Aw i see. Well retire that specific pair. Lol

    Comment by Runningfromitall

    It was black……I have probably 4-5 other black ones in the laundry…I don’t know which one it was now!!!

    Comment by Attempted Runner

    Well. You will find them next time you wear them…and your shirt is sticking out of the leg holes. That’s the first warning. Lol!

    Comment by Runningfromitall

    […] only as old as you feel. Sometimes I do feel like I’m 95… that time I totally fell at a race and the next week after, everything hurt… but for the most part….I feel young and vibrant. The only thing I’m bummed about […]

    Pingback by 29 going on 300. | Attempted Runner.

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