Winter is not the best time to run outside. Most leave the parks and stadiums and change the open-air jogging to the treadmills in the gyms. But I really wanted to close out my running season, and then switch to other sports that are more familiar with the winter season. Therefore, the treadmill was not suitable for this purpose.
There are several for the same supporters of running as I do in Ukraine winter raceswhose distance is close to half marathons:
- New Year Half Marathon "Yole" - Vyshgorod
- "Winter to Meet" - Kharkiv
- "Poltava winter" - Poltava
- "Zhytomyr Verticals" - Zhytomyr
- “Win Trail Ternopil” - Ternopil
Risks in Vyshgorod and Poltava are held at the end of December, and all others at the beginning of December. I did not consider the "Poltava Winter" half marathon at all, because in 2018 it was part of a series of cross-country events organized by "Nova Poshta". Usually I want to run the whole series, but I did not take part in any run of this series, so I was not very interested in participating in the "Poltava Winter".
Initially, I focused on participating in the New Year's Half Marathon "Yole". But by the end of November it was clear that we were expecting a real snowy winter. Since I have never had to participate in winter races, so I had no idea what to expect and expect, and most importantly - how to train. Therefore, we had to choose - to participate in the Kharkiv, Zhytomyr or Ternopil race. In the summer, I already managed to run the route “Ternopil Half Marathon” and appreciate the organization of the half marathon, so I decided to opt for “Win Trail Ternopil”.
Registration of participants took place on the site runstyle.net. The organizers set a limit of 80 people for a distance of 21 kilometers, so I did not hesitate for a long time to register in time. Participation in the race cost me 100 UAH, and additionally paid for the medal - it cost 110 UAH. Next, it was necessary to decide how to get to Ternopil. The easiest option is a train. No327 took me to Ternopil.
I did not seek housing because I knew that I would not be able to sleep at night, as I was a little worried, because it was the first winter half marathon in my practice. He took a book with him “What Do I Say When I Run” Murakami not to be bored and have fun twelve hours of free time.
It was to be my first winter half marathon, so I decided to bring my standard running set and not invent something new. It included a T-shirt, pants, jacket, hat and gloves. Unfortunately, it was too late to mention the buff - it should also be taken with you, sorry to forget.
Way to Ternopil
All the way from Kiev to Ternopil, he made a plan for 2019 races and slept. Because I had a good night's sleep because the next 30 hours did not fit into my plans. Arriving at the destination, the first thing to do was look for a warm and cozy place at the station where you could rest and read a book.
Before heading to the starting town, he decided to walk through the station and look for other runners. Since the company of running mates had to be more interesting. Very soon, I met Artem from Kyiv, who had already managed to take part in the "Zhytomyr Verticals" race for 23 kilometers the day before. After getting acquainted, together we headed to the starting place of the winter half marathon "Win Trail Ternopil" - the road passed almost unnoticed by interesting conversation. Not taking into account the organizers of the half marathon, we came in first. While we were waiting for the start of the issue of the starting numbers, I met a friend of Artem Igor, who came from Lviv.
Starting Point "Win Trail Ternopil"
The launch site was well organized - it is spread out on a hill near the local "Far Beach" location. Convenient storage rooms and tents were installed here, with participants' numbers being displayed. There was also a tent area near the tent and a kitchen where aromatic hot mulled wine and traditional Ukrainian borscht were cooked. If you go up, you could see the hydration tent.
Tents for dressing were located a little distance from the paddlers. The launch pad was located at the foot of the hill and the finish line - at the very hill. The half marathon starter pack included a number, promotional brochures and a pack of pasta. After receiving our packages, we still had about one and a half hours to go. So it was decided to walk the race track to know what to expect from this half marathon.
The organizers prepared a rather interesting route for the participants, as it had many ascents and descents in the atmosphere of a magical snow-covered forest. I immediately noticed a good marking of the route - everywhere there were signs indicating where to run, signal lanes. So getting lost was not a big plus. The track reminded me of the trail trail "Didorivka XC Duathlon, MTB Race & Trail Run“ Only here was the greater distance and the snowy forest. Looking at the track, we went to get ready for the start and change our clothes.
There was a start. All participants of the winter half marathon were expecting a 21-kilometer route - three circles of 7 kilometers each. Initially, I decided to run with Igor - so the two of us traveled 2 kilometers somewhere. Since my Runkeeper was showing me one mile in 9:48 minutes. So I decided to accelerate and keep the pace I needed - 7 minutes for one mile.
I realize now that I made two very serious mistakes. First, my approach to the "Win Trail Ternopil" half marathon was like a road race. Yes, there was snow, hills, more distance, but I wanted to run this half marathon, like the previous highway races. Running “Didorivka XC Duathlon, MTB Race & Trail Run” was easy for me, so I thought that the Ternopil half marathon would be easy too. After all, the same conditions are here, only the distance is a little longer.
Secondly, I was not fully aware of the difficulties and preparation for such a distance. That is, I was aware of it, but too late. It was easy to overcome 6 miles at the start of the race - I managed 62 minutes, which is a pretty good result for me. After 8 miles it became not so easy. I overcame the ninth mile in 15 minutes and kept that pace until the end of the race. After running the first lap, I drank tea at the hydration station, on the second lap added lemon and banana.
There were no problems with my feet, as in the first half marathon in which I participated. Therefore, this time everything was following the usual scenario. At the ninth mile, I felt an increase in muscle pain above the knees, and as early as the tenth leg I didn't seem to have the strength to keep running. A little later, it got better. But since the “Win Trail Ternopil” track gave me the same as my track the first half marathon, I decided not to run on the result, but just to overcome the whole distance as it turns out.
Running through the third lap, it seemed that all the forces were exhausted, but volunteers with tea came to my aid. Two small asphalt sections of the route were very relevant on the first and second laps. All the rest of the route ran through forest paths, which then went up and down. Runners at the end of the circle expected a surprise - the rise. The first two times I overcame this climb easily, but in the third lap I almost had to climb on it, and also just because it was about to appear finish.
Most jogging arrangements before the start arrange a so-called pasta party. At "Win Trail Ternopil", the organizers decided to stand out and have a borscht party after everyone had finished. After a grueling run of mini, it seemed like it was the most delicious borscht and burger sandwich in my life. And they were treated to aromatic mulled wine with spices and cookies.
Impressions of “Win Trail Ternopil”
One thing to say about Ternopil - this city can surprise. Like the summer half marathon “Ternopil Half Marathon”, the winter “Win Trail Ternopil” was organized flawlessly. This run has given me many new experiences and good emotions. At once it was possible to see that the organizers of the event are not only supporters of running, but also true professionals of their business.
Pros of "Win Trail Ternopil":
- high level of organization
- well marked track
- the circuit of the route is laid very high quality
- runners are well supported by both volunteers and spectators
- beginners can count on good support
- not found.