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Flagstaff Recap- and NM Marathon

After this race I drove to Farmington, NM to run another marathon. I was pretty beat up when I got to the start Sunday morning at 6a.ht's sleep I would probable still say Flagstaff Marathon was the toughest race I've ever run. I'm not much of a trail runner. I practiced locally on the Ice Age Trail to get used to the single trail, small climbs, roots, rocks etc. It helped a little but the elevation 8k was our peak and we reached it a couple times. I started out kinda slow to get used to the lack of oxygen, cold weather, and the pack of runners. A lot of the trail was wide but had a washed out center full of good sized rocks - ankle breakers- so you had to stay more to the sides. Several people wiped out on the downhills- it was pretty dry so you'd just see a puff of dust then a body. I came close 2 times but with wide stretched arms was able to gain my balance thankfully. At mile 19 my left knee locked up all of a sudden and wouldn't bend. I had just finished another long downhill- heel striking I'm sure. I walked a couple steps until it bended and started running again. It hurt to walk or run so I figured I might as well run. From that point on I made sure to take smaller steps to guarantee I wasn't heel striking. I slowed down on the downhills to keep my feet under me more and didn't have anymore issues.

I came in 5:10:54 4th female in the 40+ category. Unfortunately they didn't have a 50+. I was 10th female out of 30 and 37th overall. the average time was 5:20.

After this race I drove to Farmington, NM to run another marathon. I was pretty beat up when I got to the start Sunday morning at 6a. I decided to walk the first loop since it was still dark out and I didn't have a headlamp. The race was a Mainly Marathon marathon so it was a series of 1.1mile loops which consisted of 2 inch ankle breaking rocks, uneven slick bricks and dirt trail. Because I was already tight everywhere and afraid of falling I ran very stiff which didn't help. They had the best French Toast at the aid station so that slowed me down a couple times. It was worth it!! I came in 4:49:26 2nd Female and 5th runner overall. Not too bad considering how bad my knee was.

On the way back to Phoenix I took the long non-highway route. I saw some beautiful mountain views. Spoke for about 45 minutes to a Navajo man and learned to really appreciate their love of the earth.

Other than all the flight delays and lack of sleep- I was gone 3 days and only one night was spent in a hotel- It was a great weekend.

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Ken Norton
Ken Norton
Nov 13, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

So inspirational.

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