I've attended Highland Games in Alexandria, VA before I came to Paradise six years ago. I always enjoyed it. Moving to Dunedin, Fl, I realized the strong Scottish heritage, and was amazed at the participation from all over the US! I always wished I could compete in a small way.
Then, this year, a Trail Run was added as a part of the official competition! Oh yeah! AND I got to bust open my kilt!
The pre-race excitement was so festive!
As soon as I got there, I met up with my new Outspokin Multisport Teammates, (OMT) Mike & Lori! They're wearing the Navy Tartan. I'm wearing the specially created Scottish Irish American Tartan.
Shortly after, I met up with my longtime OMT teammate and close friend, Allen, sporting his Clan Tartan!
Ran into a Race Manager I've known since I started running in 2010. He knows how far I've progressed on this run journey.
Last minute instructions and you can see I was paying attention! D caught my new pre-race tradition...striking the Super Hero pose! As always, she got some pretty great photos!
The Race Director brought all the Kilts to the front for the "Official Trail Run Portrait."
Talk about run geeking, look at me getting ready to start my Garmin!
After that shot, we started to channel William Wallace and the Braveheart battle scene. Mike & I started shouting "For Freedom!" Yeah, we incited to riot...and others followed as the horn sounded!
D caught this great shot. It's probably the only shot of me ahead of Allen...for about .2 mile! My first mile was very fast as I knew I would slow down once we hit the trail. Pretzel Logic!
We set off and ran right through the center of the Highland Games. Everyone was cheering for us as we entered Hammock Park Trail. Coming out of the Trail, spectators were screaming for us! It was so cool. After the race, everyone commented on how great that scene was and glad the Run added to the Games!
We hit a steady incline as we entered into the Trail. After, there was nothing but sugar sand to muck through, marsh bridges to cross, tree roots to dodge, and vague signs to keep us on the path. Some veered off too! That 3.5 miles got tricky but I truly embraced and had fun with it! Time flew by and as I came out of the trail. Hitting the straightaway to the finish was bittersweet! I wanted more!
I so loved this Trail Run and will do it every year, encouraging more of my OMT teammates to join us and make it more epic! I'm also going to look for more trail runs as there are many in our area!
After the run, D & I visited the Vendors Village, shopping and eating traditional UK food. We also spent time in Clan Village where I confirmed being of the Buchanan Clan and D of the MacLachlan Clan. Yes, we will be wearing new Clan kilts very soon!
We watched the Bagpipe competition for a bit then took in the Stone-Putters (Dunedin Stone Throw,) Caber Tossers (Log throw), Sheaf Tossers (Straw Bundle Throw), and Weight Throwers (Hammer Throw) where women also competed (Very impressive!)
All I can say is embrace life and enjoy it! Feel alive! Thanks for stopping by!