October 28, 2001
A brand-new event in Griffith Park that intrigued me. There was also a 5K and 10K but run completely on the street, which I was not as interested in. I had done a few runs in Griffith Park (not races), on the trails. (Jimmy Stewart Relay Marathon notwithstanding)
The race start was 1.5 miles from the parking lot, so I was able to get in some bonus miles. This ended up being a really tough run… I couldn’t do much more than walk on the uphills, but I was able to boom on the downhills, even under 7 minute miles. I finished in 1:17, which is around 10 minutes a mile, so I didn’t figure into the awards, or even in the top 10 in my age division.
The reality, of course, is that trails are a different animal (I think I’ve always said that) and how you deal with some of the uphill largely determines how well you will do in the flat and downhill. I wouldn’t consider myself a “specialist” in uphill or downhill, but I have almost always been able to use my long legs as an advantage – even my reduced stride is equal to most people’s regular stride.