Disclaimer: I received the OOfos OOriginal Sport Sandals to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
Hi everyone! Well, I did it – I’m a Lost Lake Run finisher! On Saturday I hiked/ran almost 16 miles up and down a mountain in Seward, AK. I hiked it last summer (recap here) and loved the trail, so I was really looking forward to getting up there this weekend – especially because the weather was gorgeous! We drove down to Seward on Friday night and I woke up crazy early to make it to the finish area to catch a bus ride to the start line at the Primrose campground. I made it there right before me and the other walkers started at 8 am. I wasn’t exactly sure how to prep for a race like this, so I decided to start my day with a bagel and pack my Camelbak with lots of water, Sport Beans, and Honey Stinger Waffles. I also wore shorts and a tank top to prepare for the 70 degree sunny weather I’d encounter at the top, but carried a long sleeve shirt with me because I never hike without layers. I was heading out on the longest race I’d ever done with the highest elevation gain, and I was carrying way more gear than I usually do in a typical running race. But this race was definitely more intense than the average road race I run! It can basically be broken down into 4 parts:
Miles 1-5: The uphill part – This was the part I was really worried about, and I knew I was going to hike this entire part. It wasn’t even close to being the steepest trail that I’ve done in my life, but it definitely had its steep parts. I was pushing myself to the limit on this part of the race, and only stopped to rest when I got above the tree line. It was pretty muddy and crowded on this part of the trail, and I was honestly pretty happy to have lots of loud people around me in the middle of the forest where I knew there were lots of bears. It took a lot of mental strength to keep pushing to the top, and I was so happy when I saw the mile marker for mile 5 and knew I was going to stop going up!
Miles 6-10: The gorgeous part – This is the part of the trail that makes all of the uphill worth it. It’s all above the tree line, and you can see so many mountain tops and little lakes as you hike along the trail. It took me about a mile to fully catch my breath and feel like I wasn’t going to die anymore, but by mile 6 I was feeling good enough to run down any downhill portions of this mostly flat portion of the trail (except for the final uphill portion in mile 9). The crowds definitely thinned out here, and I really enjoyed the solitude at the top. I did stop to take lots of pictures and to enjoy the views!
Miles 11-15: The downhill part – This part starts with a gorgeous view of Seward in the distance as you come off the top of the mountain and go back into the tree line. I made a deal with myself that I’d run downhill as much as I could because it was more of a controlled gravity pull downhill than actual running, and I found that it was pretty easy to keep up with that. I was dealing with lots of runners passing me on this section, but it was really cool seeing the super fast trail runners totally killing it out there! As for me, I was running pretty slowly but was still moving as fast as I could to the finish without being in too much pain. By this part of the trail I was physically over it and really hungry, and just wanted to get to the bottom as soon as I could. I had lots of fun acting like a trail runner though!
Mile 15-15.7: The surprise part – At mile 15, I finally reached the Lost Lake trailhead in less than 5 hours, beating my time goal! I was thrilled! But even though the trail was finished, the race wasn’t. I had only learned about this surprise portion of the trail the night before the race, and I wasn’t happy about it. This part went down the road from the Lost Lake trailhead to the Seward Highway, and I was just too hot, tired, and hungry to be able to handle it. When I finally saw the finish line I was so completely happy that I couldn’t help but sprint across it! I finished the race in 5:03, and I was so crazy proud of myself. And crazy hungry.
After finishing the race, I ate lunch, napped, and ate dinner. So much eating after burning so many calories! I was finally feeling great after dinner, so our friends took us out for a ride in the bay on their new boat at sunset. It was such a pretty and relaxing way to end my day! And I also ended the day by deciding that I’d probably do this race again. It’s just such an amazing trail and I want to do it over and over again!
Sunday was filled with lots of recovery time. My friends have a hot tub and it was a lifesaver for my serious case of DOMS. After my long soak, we decided to take advantage of the sunshine and went fishing in Kenai Lake. Well, everyone else went fishing and I just laid out in the sun on the bow of the boat. It was the perfect way to recover from my longest race ever!
Speaking of recovery, a big part of it was my OOfos OOriginal Sport Sandals! I was sent a pair to try out for being a BibRave Pro, and I knew that this race was going to be the perfect way to test them out. They’re super cushy, and according to OOfos’s website, “The OOfoam footbed provides impact absorption, superior arch support, and unbelievable comfort.”
I really liked how the sandals felt on my feet, especially when I was sitting or standing for long periods of time. I did feel that the arch support was probably more than I needed, so I don’t think I’d wear these if I was walking around a lot. But for days when you’re super sore and recovering from a long race, these sandals were perfect. I didn’t take them off all day on Sunday, and I’m wishing I could wear them at work tomorrow while I work at my standing desk. I’d recommend these sandals for someone who needs lots of cushion and arch support who runs or hikes long distances. I’ll be packing these in my race bag in the future!
Have you ever run a trail race? What’s the prettiest race course you’ve ever run? How do you recover after a long race?