Put your Big Mac down and drive!

That was our mantra yesterday as we were nearly run down or riddled with rocks on our 18 mile long run at Pinnacle Mountain, there were more than a few choice words spoken to more than one driver yesterday.   I don’t think any of us were looking forward to this route to begin with, I know I had just put it out of my mind the whole week.  This course is, how do I put it, FUGGLY, comes to mind.  It even beats Rahling Road.

Lets start at the beginning, Tammy meets me at my house and we head to the Kroger store on Hwy 10 to pick up Kim, we get there way too early and just sit in the parking lot watching these two cats, mind you it’s dark thirty, our start time is 6am.  Kim shows up on time and as we head out of the parking lot I start to turn right for Pinnacle Mountain Visitor’s Center and both Tammy AND Kim say NO wrong way so I turn left, and I drive and I drive and before you know it we are back at the interstate, wrong way!  So, the lead we had, gone.  Turn around and head from which we came past the Kroger store for maybe a block and up the damned Mountain where we are following a butt load of vehicles, oh this is not good, parking is at a premium.

As we are climbing the hill we already know we are not going to have a parking spot, the road goes to the right and there is a sign ‘Stay Right’ or something to that effect, we loop around and I start to back up where the parallel bus parking in and this bitch and I use this term loosely, whips in going the WRONG way, parks her itty bitty piece of crap right in my parking spot, HOLY CRAP, I was ready to explode!  For one I was backing in, going the right way, she was going the wrong way on the road, no courtesy AT ALL, she could plainly see my back up lights, it was just rude!  We were all trying to get parking spaces, this is not Chicago or New York, we are in Little Rock Freaking Arkansas at a Saturday morning run!  I wanted to scratch her eyes out!  Okay that got me going.  As we finally get parked we see everyone running down this 3/4 mile hill, and its a huge hill.  Yes, we are late.

We get signed in and see the girly who stole the parking spot she was stretching and talking to her buds about how she forgot her ipod in her car, I wanted to say something, but I kept my mouth shut, until she was gone and then I was going to KICK HER ASS!! LOL

We finally get under way, the run down the hill was pretty cool, weather wise, I actually had a few goose bumps on top of the mountain, but we warmed up, it was still pretty dark and blinkly lights were abundant.  Lucky for us there wasn’t much traffic on the hilly section of the road down to Maumelle Park, all I could think was “This is going to be hell on the way back”, it would be about the last 2.5 miles of our 18 miles.

Everyone was in excellent spirits today and it made for a great run, until we got to the stupid road with the gravel, I think its County Farm Road, whatever it is, for the record it sucks.  They have been putting this huge blue green pipe underneath the road bed and since they haven’t finished they haven’t paved it where they’ve been working, so more than half of the road is torn up with gravel, dust and just debris.  I’m not sure how long we were on this road, but guessing it was somewhere between 1-2 miles of misery.

On our way down to Two Rivers Park it wasn’t so bad, still early, once we got into Two Rivers we were in there for a while, we had to run both trails inside the park which seemed to take FOREVER, it was really quiet and not hardly anyone out, not like the River Trail at all.   Part of me was wishing we were on the River Trail for some sort of distraction, I do not like the nothingness and that is what it was, a lot of nothing, just green grass and some funny talk about Bamboo and poop.

Okay, here is where the Big Mac comes in, as we are heading out of Two Rivers Park I think it was around mile 12ish, so it had to be around 8:30, traffic picking up quite a bit, and people are number 1, flying down this road where the speed limit is 35, we made a joke about was it 55 or 35?  There is no shoulder whatsoever on this road so we would run single file and people were just not paying attention.  Tammy is the one who said “Put your Big Mac down and pay attention!”  It was insane, they would either be WAY TOO CLOSE to us or fly by us throwing up rocks.  We couldn’t get a break, it was every couple of minutes here would come another car headed straight for us, it was scary!

As we were getting closer to the turn off onto Pinnacle Valley we hear a car coming up behind us because we can hear the stupid gravel under the tires and it sounds way too close, we turn around and Tammy and I both scream because the car is on our ASS, literally, if we would have been an inch over they would have mowed us down.  It was a lady in a gold Toyota, my heart rate shot up to about 170, scared the shit out of me, closest I’ve ever come to being run over.  Tammy said her elbow almost hit the side mirror.

Not to mention the numerous times I was yelling at drivers to slow your ass down and the huge ass rocks under our feet.  Kim did a half twist on her foot.  We were really happy to get off that piece of shit road.

We reached Maumelle Park a little over 15 miles, I had to pee really bad and was happy to take a break, but knew the worse part of the run was coming, ugh, I was absolutely dreading it.  Especially that 3/4 mile climb up to the Visitor’s Center.  From Maumelle Park there is a straight stretch, but as soon as you see the sign for Pinnacle Mountain State Park, be prepared, no relief in sight until you reach your car!  It’s uphill from there.

Tammy had been feeling some pains and was wondering if she was going to make it while we were in Two Rivers, but let me tell you, she popped some Ibuprofen and it did wonders for her, she loves those hills and is like the energizer bunny, up she went.  Me, I was running really well and all of a sudden, no air, I had to take a walk break before I got to the top of the second hill and that was a mistake, should have never stopped, but I just couldn’t breathe.

We finally saw the sign for the Visitor’s Center, but holy cow, that stinking hill was coming, there went Kim and Tammy, both of them, up that damned hill without a walk break one!  Me?  I had to take a few walks in between my slow run up that massive mountain.  Hate that thing.  But, then I saw my vehicle, woohoo, thank goodness!  We made it in three pieces!  Once again thankful for such great weather and that we were able to complete another long run which I questioned all week long.

My Garmin 17.88, not quite 18, but I did not care.  Tammy on the other hand ran around the parking lot until her Garmin beeped 18, my back at that point was about to put me under, so no way.  Average pace 10:31, actually too fast considering I took some walk breaks at the end.  Mile 16 was a 10:00 pace, where my last mile was a 12:20 pace.

I think we will be ready for Tupelo next weekend, Kim running the full, me and Tambo the 14.2 mile course at 5am, should be interesting!  Wish us luck!  I am hoping for between 2:15 – 2:30 finish, but I really will just see how I feel that morning, you never know.


One Response

  1. Oh you….and…oh you…it was actually a fun time with you guys despite my physical torture…it’s true..you said I could finish, and I did…However, your not supposed to post about your doubt in my ability to finish on your blog..I read it…

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