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Brittani Wood devil's lake dances w...
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Devil's Lake Dances with Dirt 50k- Probably one of the most fun races I have ever done. I approached and ran this more like a long trail run, instead of a race. I ran very cautiously on the downhills because I didn't want to re-injure my left knee. I honestly just wanted to finish without causing any long term damage to my body, and I didn't put any pressure on myself pace-wise, yet I ended up first female to cross the line. Seems strange to me, seeing as how this was my first time over 26.2 and I wasn't putting out a max effort, but I'll take it.
The course had some great views of the lake and nice variety. We got single track, ski slopes, and some narrow "trails" through grasslands. It had a good amount of elevation change. The official amount was 4900 ft of elevation gain, but my Garmin only got 3373 ft of gain. Early in the race everyone was bunched up, and it was single file running, so I walked the uphills when everyone in front of me decided to. It spread out a lot latter and I ran by myself from about 25 miles on.
My favorite part of the course was a rocky downhill section that took complete focus to descend. Going up wasn't as fun because it was almost unrunable since a light drizzle had made the rocks slick.
I was getting almost too confident about the distance, because at mile 20 my legs still felt like they hadn't run very far, and I was almost wondering when it was going to start feeling hard. Fortunately both the uphills and downhills solved that problem, and it started to feel like work around 24 miles. But I never felt like I wanted to stop, and keeping moving wasn't an issue it was just that my legs started to feel more beat up and unresponsive at that point. The last 1.5 miles was downhill which, had I not been paranoid about reinjury, I could have taken better advantage of. I did manage to pass a person in front of me within 50 ft of the finish, she wasn't running the 50k, but it was still fun to pass her. The worst I felt during the race was just caused by some GI distress, I need to start practicing running and eating more. After the race I felt sick and worse than at any point during the race, but after a few hours I was doing okay. My legs, back, and shoulders, are still sore today and yet I'm already contemplating another one. Overall, this was a awesome course and a well put together race, I highly recommend it.