NorthFace Endurance Challenge Recap

Saturday, June 4, was beautiful.  Gorgeous.  We’d been having some seriously H-O-T weather here in DC, so I was afraid my relay team was going to get fried at the NorthFace Endurance Challenge (DC).  Lucky for us, it was perfect!

I ran with Carly, Theresa and Maryll on the Marathon Relay team “Heart Breakers”.  We went out to the Endurance Challenge to have a good time and enjoy the day – we weren’t too concerned with times.

you're a... heartbreaker! dream maker!

The course was in Algonkian Regional Park in Sterling, Va.  It was an out-and-back with a tiny lollypop at the end (see Carly’s blog here for the map!).  Each runner had to run the same course – the tradeoff point was the same for each transition.  Which was great, because it allowed us to set up a little picnic area to wait out each runner.  It also allowed ample time to visit the Expo, which included food, drinks, technical tees, giveaways – I played a darts-game and won an iPhone soft case that says North Face on it!

Maryll and I picnicking!

I ran the first leg, with Carly second, Maryll third, and Theresa anchoring.  We ended up finishing in 4:39:38.  I’m pretty darn proud of ourselves!  Especially considering it was Carly’s and my first trail race!  I enjoyed most of my trail race – with the exception of accidentally running across the water bridge:

There is an ACTUAL bridge to my left, which I did not see until after I'd soggied up my shoes. They squished the whole rest of my run.

I have to say, though, that trail running uses different muscles for stability than road racing does.  I was feeling soreness in my hip-flexors, IT band and calves because I used them so much more to stay upright on the tree roots and gravel.  (I went to yoga on Tuesday to work out some soreness, and that really helped!  I might have to add yoga into the mix on a weekly basis.)

I look pretty happy here for having squishy shoes!

All in all it was a fantastic run, and I had a great time with the Heart Breakers team.  We’ve already talked about returning for next year’s marathon relay as a team! 🙂

Thanks North Face and Heart Breakers!
xoxo, Suzy
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