North Face Endurance Challenge Championship Half-Marathon, Marin Headlands, California

Up and Down
I sure felt like a flatlander as my legs tried to make sense of the steep climbs and plunging descents at The North Face Endurance Challenge Championship Half-Marathon in California. In the past three months running in New York, my total elevation gain and loss is still probably less than the one day in the Marin Headlands. 
But who cares! The beauty of the course distracted me from the pain. When the going was too tough, I slowed, inhaled the fresh, ocean air and absorbed the views. 
Homestretch at The North Face Endurance Challenge, Marin Headlands, CA. Photo By Myke Hermsmeyer. ©2014

Homestretch at The North Face Endurance Challenge, Marin Headlands, CA. Photo By Myke Hermsmeyer. ©2014

As I had no idea how I would react to trails and hills, so I started slowly and gradually picked up my pace. I tried to take make up time lost in the uphill struggle by running faster on downhills. I was pleased to finish 15th overall and 2nd in my age group, and above all simply grateful to be there, doing something I love.
I am looking forward to next year and running something longer than the half-marathon. Why not stay out there as long as possible?

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