Race Report: Blackmores XTERRA Race 4 - Waiuku Forest

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Race Website: Blackmores XTERRA Race 4 - Waiuku Forest

Official Stats:

Distance: 6.5km (I measured 6.8km)
Time: 1:00:19

Pre-Race

After a PB at the RunWalk 2.5k and then catching a cold, I hadn't done any runs during the week and wasn't sure what I could expect of myself on race day.

Friday night and Saturday was spent resting up, making poor food choices and watching TV, mostly due to the torrential rain.  My pre race dinner was hot chips, cheese and gravy which was too tasty to regret!

After a good nights sleep, we were up early as this race was about a 1.5 hour drive away, but with the bad weather and unfamiliar roads I factored in 2 hours.  I had toast and coffee breakfast and we headed off.

The weather cleared up really quickly and it was a beautiful drive to Waiuku Forest through part of Auckland that I hadn't been to before.  We had to park a bit of a walk away but we arrived with over 30 minutes to spare so I had a soy latte from the coffee cart.  I realised that I had forgotten my water, and I could have bought some, but there's a water station on course and I felt that would be fine.

On the Course

After the race briefing, we crowded up to the start line and off we went.  The first part of this race was a downhill so like the last race Kane and I decided to just start running with the crowd.

0 - 3 km  The first km, was along the road (shown in the top two pictures below) and then we turned and headed along a forest trail which was covered in pine needles it was soft to run on.

 
Then we came out at the beach.  I think the tide was coming in and we ran in single file along the black sand, jumping and climbing over tree trunks and drift wood.
 
after a short while we climbed back out and into the forest again.  At first I thought the trail was muddy, but when I ran on it I realised it was sand.  How strange to find sand in the forest with the pine trees!  It made the downhill parts easier on the knees but the uphill parts could be tricky if you walked, it was better to keep the feet moving faster.  Thankfully this race was not very hilly.
 
3 - 5 km It was around the 3km mark when the first of the super fast walkers over took us.  We came out onto an uphill road and this was where super fast walker Jan (who told us of this series) passed us, marching very quickly up the hill.  At around the 5km mark we had reached a hill top with beautiful views over the sea and we knew we were now headed back towards the finish.
 
 
5 - Finish  We got overtaken by 2 senior citizens who were walking and I jokingly said to Kane that I was feeling demoralised.  I was actually really impressed by the speed and agility of the couple and it reminded me of one of the reasons that we chose to live here in NZ because one day I want us to be like that old couple.  Kane reckoned that we only had a km to go and I thought that would be about 2 songs worth of running away, so I started to sing a song in my head to keep me from stopping and walking.  We hit a small incline and I had to walk a little but then we came out onto the road that we had parked on so I knew we weren't far away then.  Further down the road we turned off back into the trails and it was a flat run to the finish line.

Post Race

I was really pleased with how this race went.  I think it was the flattest of the trail races we've done so far and we ran most of it which felt great.  It was such a beautiful course with the water, hills and trees, we are hoping that we can come camping here in the summer.


Other races in the series:




 

 

2 Responses so far

  1. Sounds like an awesome race! I have done 1 trail run and I LOVED it! Thanks so much for stopping by...

  2. I think that running on sand would be so tough! This sounds like a really cool race as it sounds like there was a lot of diversity to the scenery/trail/etc.

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