Hills, Hills, Hills

I planned to run an ultra the weekend before I started my new job on April 12, 2021, but ultimately refrained reading the horrific forecast of rain and thunderstorms for three days leading up to the event and continuing throughout, so I rightly felt upset when I saw an ideal weather for this challenge with hardly any rain. Prior to relocating to Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 26, I still decided to squeeze in one more race at the Run Your Bundts Off Half Marathon on April 18 in Cumming, Georgia.

I figured running under two hours should be a given based on the 46-degree start, albeit the sun did eventually add heat, until I saw the race initiate with a lengthy climb and the entire course move steeply up and down with hardly any flat for my body to recuperate. I want to see an elevation chart before registering for a reason, and I certainly did not anticipate an elevation gain of 846 feet, significant for me in this climate when refusing to walk one step. The steepest climb ended up being the exact same I conquered last year in a different race in Cumming, and predictably I heard a few runners bad-mouthing this section while I was mentally prepared. Based on the difficulty of the course, although I am disappointed in my 2:03:57 finish, I am content simply knowing I gave my all for the day and did not take a single walking break.

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