Over the past two years, I've done a handful of hare scrambles and posted them up here. The first was in 2008 - Daniel's Ridge. I only did one that year. I had planned to do more, but it never worked out. I did two more in 2009 NCHSA Series (North Carolina Hare Scramble Association) - Flat Rock, and Brown Jug. Flat Rock was quite memorable, aren't they all, though? And now here it is 2010 and I've already done two races this year, Devil's Ridge and Mountain Challenge, the latter being the most recent. So it looks like I might be able to swing a few more races this year, and as a result I decided instead of posting up a new thread for each one, which made sense when I was just doing one or two a year, I decided I would create a single thread to post my reports, thoughts, prep, etc. One thing that is interesting in looking back over my report from 2008 is how new it all was to me, it really was an adventure in the sense that I did not have a good idea of what to expect and was totally unprepared for the difficulty of the event. The nervousness was very real, and the knots in my stomach leading up to it were nearly debilitating. As a result, I rode tense, and the resulting arm pump was literally numbing. And for the two races in 2009, I was still pretty nervous leading into Flat Rock, and again, that race kicked my butt in terms of physical conditioning. I was learning that Daniel's Ridge was not an anomaly, these races are just plain HARD. Then for Brown Jug, I worked extra hard jogging and exercising in the heat of the day, because that race was in South Carolina in July in the hot afternoon baking sun. So I did my best to prepare myself in the same conditions, and it was STILL very difficult. Then there was Devil's Ridge in March of 2010. That was a real killer, but the conditions in this race were more extreme than that of the others, being a very gnarly mud race, so while it was still very difficult, after it was all over, I did not get that deep muscle soreness that followed the other races. I have been exercising more, and doing a better job of preparing by riding the full 1.5 hours on a practice track at least once during the week before the race. I did that twice in the case of Devil's Ridge. I think that is helping? My most recent race was NCHSA Round 2 - "Mountain Challenge" from last Sunday. This race was probably my best race yet, not in terms of results, but the track conditions were near perfect, the temperatures were near perfect, it was a beautiful day with not a cloud in the sky.