45F. Great conditions today for my first race of 2016. I got my $&@! handed to me by a few 20-somethings but still had a lot of fun.
Course - it was in good shape, not too wet or muddy other than a few creek crossings (water can be pretty wet). I realized about halfway through the race that these were my first trail miles all year. The course, true to its name, basically takes you up and down switchbacks the whole time except for a few nice stretches of sandy jeep trail. My fastest Garmin mile was ~6:30 and the slowest was ~8:30...actually, those 2 were back-to-back, not that I ever bothered to look at my watch. Anyway, some of my climbs were pitiful "power" hikes, especially towards the end. More trail running needed.
Race - start was fast, but worked my way into 3rd once we hit the singletrack. I stayed there, sandwiched between Short Shorts and Yellow Soler's for the first couple miles and it hit me that I was basically sprinting with 13+ miles still to go. So I pulled over, let Yellow Soler's pass, pulled my head out my @$$ and started running my own pace in 4th place. 3 miles later, I passed Yellow Soler's, and was then by myself in 3rd until maybe mile 12-13. Blue Shirt caught up and absolutely blew past me...he ended up putting almost 2 minutes on me over the last 2-3 miles. Not sure what he was doing behind me for so long, but in Tejas Trails races you only need 5th to get the crazy trophies, so whatever!
Somewhere in the last half mile, during a pointless push to the finish line, I tweaked my calf a little. I thought it was about to ball up and cramp but now it just feels kinda strain-y. I think it'll be ok by next weekend.