Part 13: Dorothy, We Are In Kansas Anymore

A few weeks later, I had the itch to finally get my ass OFF ROAD. I had my VFF KSO Treks. It was LONG over do. The crazies over at Trail Nerds and Mud Babes had the perfect race for me, the Psychopsummer Trail (aka the Run Toto Run) 15 miler (more like 16 miler) or 50k if you wanna double it. I wanted to, but HELLS NO. It took place in Kansas, which isn’t too far from my whereabouts in Missouri. It’s time to go there or be square.

To preface, this was somewhat the most fun I have ever had in a race. Taking in I have a blast at every race, that is saying something.

White Shirt = Brown Shirt
The race started with everyone smelling like bug spray. Me no likie. If I wanted a camp site, I’d go camping but whatever. I guess these people thought they were in Miami, in the Glades, in mosquitoville. Nonetheless, I did not get one bite the entire race that I noticed or saw later. SO there. Anyways, we all started and soon after getting in there, we were in a pretty thin follow the leader line of people. There was no way to pass, so we were forced to go this pace for alot of the course at first. This course was off road completely, basically running through a crazy trail in the woods with some major climbs and dips on an ultra thin path most of the time, sometimes 6 inches wide. Near the first few miles, there was a very fast and steep drop off we were warned about before we started. As I was popping down rock to rock, I noticed at the bottom two girls had both wiped out on one another in the mud. It was….AMAZING. People were falling everywhere, though, because the mud was everywhere with alot of hills.

In the pre-race instructions on the packet, it mentioned that we should not cross our feet. I didn’t know what this meant. As I rounded a corner, I found out. It is a simple concept: you do not run a corner and move your inside foot wider than your outside. See, as I did this, I completely wiped out all over the place. I stood up laughing so hard I could barely catch my breath, thinking about that cross feet warning, and taking off my newly brown shirt. I could be a trail nerd, but right now I was a mud babe.

Continuing, many were asking how the Treks were treating me. They were amazingly perfect I thought and replied, adding I’ve never really run off road tech trails so I have no other comparison. They worked well though as I was not slipping like others, and I was able to hop on rocks and around the path with ease, unlike anything I had done before in running. It was no problem to jump logs, slalom down the trees, and climb.

The course was awesome and all nature, some streams to clear, and some hills so steep, they had a rope to pull yourself up Batman TV show style. Holy toe shoe Batman, I did NOT use that rope! I asked loudly if I had to use the rope and someone told me I’d have to. So I didn’t, as I ran up this steep hill, passing about 15 people, hoping to god I wouldn’t slip in my arrogance, I yelled behind me “I don’t need a rope; I got toe shoes on FOO!”

As I continued, following me was a group of about 4 others. This little pack continued for a good 5 miles I’d think, all conversing like brothers as we tackled this thing together, going the same pace, single file. But we all missed a crazy sharp turn flag and went out of the boundaries, luckily finding our way back without losing too much. I hear this happens alot in these kinds of races, so here was my first. Mental note.

Mr. DUMAS Move
Near the end of the race, there were big mud pits. Long, foot printed, ankle deep mud. People were losing their shoes and having a tough time getting through. I wasn’t losing anything, still hopping rocks and doing what I could like a kid in a playground. I came up to a cute blonde that tripped as her shoe stayed in the mud. I grabbed the shoe, handed it to her and told her if she’d go barefoot, I would. Well, she did. So I did. And it was amazing, until the mud pits ended and the sharp rocks started showing up everywhere. See, I had passed the 13 mile marker a while back, so I figured it was only about a mile left with a tad bit extra. Well, this race was more like a 16 miler. I had not really ran barefoot for months, let alone off road on rocks ever, with hills, let alone in months. I flashed back to the gravel of the race before. Add the fact I had the VFF Treks on for a couple hours in warm July weather, my feet were nice, soft and damp, the equation for massive fail. It hurt, alot. Some parts were simple dirt straight aways, which was nice, but there were alot of only rocks. I apologized to the girl, too, as we were running and laughing at how ignorant we were yet having too much fun. Then she smoked me. I finally made it to the end, nice and barefoot. Man, I would love to be able to run this completely bare. This was the first race I was sore for a good week afterwards all over. Feet were fine the next day though!

From Never Running To An Ultramarathon In A Year
Part 1: It All Started…
Part 2: Injuries!
Part 3: The Wall.
Part 4: The Marathon
Part 5: Putting On My New Feet
Part 6: The Alligator That Smiled At Me
Part 7: The Book That Plants
Part 8: First Barefoot Race
Part 9: Running Forever in the Park
Part 10: The Short Race Report
Part 11: Kansas City, Gonna Get My Baby Back Home
Part 12: The Return of the Long Lost Runs (no toilet humor please)
Part 13: Dorothy, We Are In Kansas Anymore
Part 14: Worn
Part 15: Valet = Achilles Tendinitis = No more running this year, well…
Part 16: Marathon Decisions: Screw It
Part 17: 9.5 Months After Losing Da Shoes: The Kansas City Marathon
Part Last

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