Saturday, November 4, 2017

Tails on the Trail 2017

Okay, this is one of my favorite races of the year!  Tails on the Trail 2017 was an amazing, though short experience (thanks to little man and his activities).  Let me tell you all about this fun race!

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society
First of all, this race benefits the local Topeka shelter, Helping Hands Humane Society.

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society

They have a mobile adoption unit that is at the race that includes dogs and cats.  There are tons of vendors there selling pet products and services.

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society
 There is always a free photo booth with props for pics.  Stella never knows where to look.

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society
There is also a very large silent auction.  You can even bid to have your dog's picture on the back of next year's t shirt.  For entering, you get a goodie bag full of treats including socks, your long sleeved t shirt, dog treats, and human treats.  One year we even got a super cool dog food container that I still use on the daily.  

I mainly love this race because I can run with stella.  That is so important to me, since I train with her every day.  She loves to race and pretty much pulls me the entire time.  She also keeps a smile on her face the whole time.  

Credit:  Stella's best running friend Brue
 This year was a little cold and overcast, but perfect for running.  Let's just say Stella pulled like an ox the whole race.  The race starts in a field, runs through another nice open field, circles a ball field and then heads out into a trail area.  The trail has some nice and up and down hill, nothing too bad, and they mark the roots and trippy things with paint.  There are a ton of volunteers on the course, but anywhere you could go wrong, they have it either roped off or blocked.  There is also white painted arrows or lines to keep you on course on the grassy areas.

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society.  I was trying to hold her back and keep from killing me at that point!

My plan was to wear my gypsy runner shorts and a tech t with my gypsy runner arm warmers.  I felt like I might need the coat, which was stupid, I didn't.  I quickly shed it and tied it around my waist.

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society

I wanted to take several pics of how amazing the course is, but I was worried that my phone would die due to the cold, so kept it in my gypsy runner shorts pocket.  Plus, I was really pushing it to try and get a nice PR.  Everything other than my bum hip was lining up to be PR worthy.  Unfortunately, due to stella pulling SO hard, we had to stop at every water station and let her drink, because I was kind of worried about her.  There was slobbering going everywhere and she pulled HARD for at least 2 straight miles before settling slightly.  I kept telling her to settle and she just couldn't.  I am imagining that we took at least 10-15 seconds if not more per water stop.  I am  pretty sure we would have been VERY close to 26 something if we hadn't had stopped, but I needed to take care of her and make sure she was okay.  I mean, look at that tongue in the picture below!

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society

Credit: Helping Hands Humane Society
Honestly, I love this race for so many reasons.  Even though we didn't win anything in our age group this year due to some SUPER speedy ladies in my age group (22:21 won it this year followed by a 22:30 and a 24:13 by Stella's BRF), I was SO pleased at how the race went for Stella and I.  I finished in 27:48, only 8 seconds slower than my last attempt at this course.  Figuring in that it took me at least 10 or more seconds per water stop, I would have had a PR for my 5K!!!!!  I am really excited about that, especially with a bum hip and just having done a marathon and a half marathon!!!!!  I love this event, I love this course and  I will be back next year!!!!  I couldn't stick around for the awards and the fun contests after wards due to a birthday party I had to make it back for, but they do amazing little awards including embroidered scarfs and dog treats for the dogs and little trophies for the humans.

We did indulge in some bagels, some coffee, and some muffins post run in the nice warmth of the building.  Yes, the dogs are allowed in the building, so they can post race recover with you!  

See ya at Tails on the Trail 2018!

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