Thursday, June 5, 2008

Cool places to run...

In this post, I will start to share stories about some of my favorite cool places to run. This list is on a sidebar with links to further information on each site. The first cool run is Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence Kansas. This is the home cross country course for the Kansas Jayhawks. My daughter and I did a early December road trip between Midwestern ice storms for the Jr. Olympic National Cross Country Championships. Race day it was 22 degrees with a below zero wind chill. I'm sure on a nice fall day it would be beautiful and a much quicker course. Despite the cold, I enjoyed running the course with my daughter the day before her big race and treasure the time we got to spend together.

Our first In Motion guest blogger is my daughter. She will share her summary of the race course and her experiences.

Rim Rock Farm Lawrence, Kansas

I'll never forget that road trip. We had a big adventure driving to the race. We went through a snowstorm so bad that you couldn't see the road. Dad and I had to stop at Wendy's and wait for my teammate. We weren't sure if we could make it in one night. Well, luckily we did! The next day was really fun hanging out with my teammates and going to the expo. It was cool to hear where everyone was from and their times. Everyone was really excited for the race.
Rim Rock Farm is a really cool place to run. I remember it looking similar to Antarctica, but I’m sure if you went in the spring, summer, or fall it would be fun. For a course in Kansas I thought it would be flat, but this course has some challenging hills. I wouldn‘t expect to be running PR‘s. It is a few miles off the highway, and you have to drive down a dirt road. The day of the meet the dirt road had so much traffic some kids had to get out of the car and run to their race! We took a “shortcut”. Dad drove out of the line of cars and drove up to another random dirt road and started driving down it. We had a GPS, but it didn't show all the roads because they were to small. We were just about to turn around when we saw this huge hill! Dad didn't think our car could make it up. It was quite an adventure, but his fabulous shortcut worked. (Yes, for the first time in his life a shortcut actually worked!) (Sorry, Dad)
The starting line is huge! It was so cold that my feet were frozen before we started. My team hung out in a tent, but you couldn't ignore how cold it was. The course starts out on a slight uphill, but there’s plenty of space. It takes a little while, but you loop back around and go in the woods. You go up a few monster hills, then you get to a brown covered bridge. A minute later you go over the prettiest part of the course, a bright red covered bridge that goes over a pond. You go up another large hill called “Billy Mills Hill”. (I also got to hear him the night before at the opening ceremony) It was very steep and long. Then you run up along a ridge where you can see the arch where you finish. The finishing stretch is downhill. (Thank goodness!)
We had to get in the car less than 15 minutes after my finish to drive home because another storm was threatening to keep us there until the following week. My feet were freezing until Kansas City! You could tell who had come from the race because all of the cars had a deep red mud on them from the dirt road! Overall this course is very cool and I would recommend it to anyone. I had a really good experience here and I hope you will too!

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