Last month, I ran Max and Jake’s Big Race 5K at Mission Trails in Santee, CA.
While race day was bright and sunny, it had rained the day before, causing the dirt trails of Mission Trails to become very muddy. Ronald McDonald of Ronald McDonald House Charities waved the starting flag for the few hundred runners.
This was only my second trail race and definitely my first mud run. I was slipping and sliding every other step and eventually I just focused on not falling down rather than on speed. Other than the mud and rocks, the trails were beautiful, with some of the trail following the San Diego River. It was near the Old Mission Dam that I started to lose track of which way the race course went, so I relied on a runner in front of me for guidance, wanting to pass him by, but afraid of losing the course if I did.
On the return leg of the lollipop loop, the trail crossed over a foot bridge that had become flooded over. A park ranger supervised the runners as they crossed the ankle-high waters, cheering us on as we passed him by.
This was a fun run 5k, so we didn’t wear timing chips, but as I passed the finish line, I noticed my finish time as 32:30. This is considerably slow as my 5k times go, but considering the first place runner’s shoe came off in the mud and she also dropped her navigation watch (but recovered both), I’m pretty lucky I only came out of the race with a mildly twisted ankle. With my limbs twisting and turning in ways which they usually don’t, this race left me sore for a few days afterward!
I look forward to running this race again next year!