Mountain Goat Race Recap: The Road to Success Runs Uphill with Friends
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If you have been following along, you probably know that I ran my first Mountain Goat 10 Miler this past weekend. The Mountain Goat is a race that Syracuse is known for. If you’re from here, you likely refer to it as “The Goat” and everyone knows what you’re talking about. It’s infamous for being incredibly challenging as it is pretty much ALL uphill.
I had the elevation map in last week’s post but in case you missed it, here it is again.
I have appropriately renamed those two big uphill climbs F and U.
I trained as much as possible so I could conquer those dreaded hills and even went to some training runs just to get a feel for the course but you can really only prepare for so much. About a week before, I came down with some sort of super sinus infection that not even 2000mg of amoxicillin a day or holy water blessed by Mother Teresa could cure.
Needless to say, I didn’t get any better before race day. So what’s a girl to do? DNS? No. Find a friend who is also dying from a sinus infection and make her run with you? Yes.
I had already picked up my packet the day before while wearing my fancy derby attire…
…so the morning of the race, I picked up my friend Kelly and headed to Clinton Square in Downtown Syracuse to the start of the race and where all the festivities were being held.
We arrived pretty early which meant we got a pretty prime parking spot (FO’ FREE), early access to the porta potties and time to get hopped up and sudafed and a multitude other cold killing medications and drugs that probably shouldn’t have been combined.
Before heading to the start we both agreed that we would stick together. While both of us run at a similar pace, we really weren’t in top racing conditions so we agreed that this would just be a fun, easy (TERRIBLY HARD) Sunday long run.
After making our pact and shaking on twice, we made our way to the start where all the Goat Herders (aka volunteers) were ready and waiting for us to finish.
Right at 10:15 we were off and I followed Kelly as she weaved her way through the crowd at lightening speed, the weather was hot (a scorching 70 degrees) and I was a little nervous that once we hit the first hill about 1.5 miles in that we would tank.
Surprisingly, we did pretty well the first few miles race and made it up the hill without too much of a struggle. It was starting to feel terribly hot though and we were welcoming any water stations that we could find along the way.
Once we reached the top of the first hill I even snapped this pic….
…if you look really closely at the bottom you can see runners ahead of us on the course.
It wasn’t long after that, that Kelly started not to feel too well. Not only was the sun beating down on us but she was also having some trouble breathing due to her sinus infection. She tried to wave me ahead but I wasn’t dealing to well with the heat either so I was happy to slow down a little plus we agreed not to leave each other and I’m not one to break a promise. I would have hoped she would have stayed with me if it had been my sinus infection that attacked me mid-race too.
The rest of the race was just about making it to the finish line and welcoming all the ice chips, water stations and popsicles along the way. We even crossed paths with this man who apparently thought nothing of running through the questionable parts of ‘Cuse sans shoes.
Seems silly to point out but it provided for some much needed entertainment when we needed it most.
Eventually we coasted our way downhill and into the finish line and I am pretty sure I can speak for both Kelly and I when I say that we were glad we were done and we did it together.
The Mountain Goat slogan that is engraved on the medals says “The Road to Success Runs Uphill” but if you ask me it should read “The Road to Success Runs Uphill with Friends”.
This race for me was all about accomplishing a goal with a friend; time, PR’s and all that jazz didn’t matter. What mattered to me was that we crossed the finish line together.
PLUS we both got that sweet medal…the goat even moves up, down and around! Totally worth those F U hills! 😉
Do you always run to race or do you run races just for fun sometimes?
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