The First Annual Barefoot Josh Elevational Invitational Halfish Marathon

Today at 9 a.m., with great fanfare (we said, "Ready? Let's go."), four of us set out on The First Annual Barefoot Josh Elevational Invitational Halfish Marathon.

This thing kicked my butt. The only saving grace is that going in, I knew it would. The route is only a couple of miles from our house and Josh and I had run it years ago when training for The Blue Ridge Relay and Blair ran it when he was training for the Grandfather Mountain Marathon. It's a nasty 2.7 mile stretch that Josh--in his evilness--decided we should all run five times, out and back. 

The course. Check out the elevation profile. I walked that big mother of a hill you see in the beginning of the course. And walked several short hill stretches on the way back. Plus, I only made it 4 laps. I could have struggled through five but Josh was practically ready to lap me at that point and everyone else had already quit running, so I was happy enough to call it quits with close to 9 miles under my belt. 

It's too bad a lot of people had to cancel last minute because it was a beautiful run and the weather was perfect. Plus, Blair and I put out a post-run spread of bagels, almond butter, chocoloate-chip cookies, rice-krispie treats, and Costa Rican egg-nog (oh my God... YUM) and coffee. 

I've got a couple of 15-mile trail races coming up in January. After today's run, I expect they'll seem like cake.