For 2013, I decided to take part the Mountain Junkies RoanokeNon-Ultra Trail Series (RNUTS). This race series is made up of 6 trail races in the Roanoke area varying in lengths of 5k to 25k. I took part in some of the Mountain Junkies races last year and I had a great time. So, it only made sense to try and complete all the races in their series this year.
The first race of this series, the Frozen Toe 10k, took part on Roanoke Mountain. The starting area was at a church behind the Outback Steakhouse off of Rt. 220, south of Roanoke. This race took place on January 5th and it was a very chilly morning. The race distance was 10k and it covered a section of trails that I had never run before. Going into the race, I didn’t have any target finishing time. This was only my second trail 10k and the previous one was over 9 months in the past. So the plan was to run at a comfortable pace and finish the race.
The race was pretty uneventful, so I do not have a lot of details. The most exciting part of the race was right before the race started. Missy Bradley and I were talking about our new running shoes we had received for Christmas, when all the sudden the gun went off. I failed to start up my GPS watch and was not really ready to start running. Having no choice, I spent the first 0.5 mile trying to get my watching up and running.
With temperatures below freezing for the entire race, the Frozen Toe 10k was a very fitting name for this race. It was a really nice course and the conditions (other than the temperature) were great. I got set with a comfortable pace and the miles started ticking away. I got to the finish line with an official time of 54:34. This time was almost 4 ½ minutes faster than my previous trail 10k race. So I was pleased, even though I knew I could have pushed myself a bit more.
I was very glad to get to my car and start up the heat after this race. It was a great day of running and a great start to my racing year. I am looking forward to a great year of trail racing through the trails in the Roanoke area. The next stop on the series is the Explore Your Limits 5k/10k at the Explore Park off the Blue Ridge Parkway. I am looking to improve on my 10k PR time at the Explore Park in February.