Tomorrow is the Wissahickon Trail Classic, a 10K race on the trails along the Wissahickon Creek. It is rare that a race fits all of my criteria for choosing a race, but this does. It's got an interesting course, good competition, good beneficiaries, 10 AM start, reasonable entry fee, and I can jog right over to the start from home. This race is so special that in only its second year of existence, it already called itself a "classic."
I'm excited about running the race. Even with such a home course advantage, I can't say with confidence that I can bring my top gear to this race. Trail running requires different skills that I am only starting to get. Without the ability to descend and stride right through uneven surfaces, I can only go so fast. But I can savor the scenery and make sure I don't get too caught up in the competition and miss out on the fun.
Or get injured. My main goal this year is to come out of the trails without any falls or ankle sprains. I haven't decided yet whether to tape up the ankles to prevent them from rolling out. Since I tend to turn my ankles when I lose concentration and/or am tired, one other prevention measure is to not run as hard, especially in the first half of the race. So maybe I'll try to even split the thing. Without mile markers. That'll be fun.