Johnson County - River to River Relay
I ran in the 80 mile River to River Relay today, which allowed me to run in three counties, as I attempt to run a race in all 102 Illinois counties.
I was the eighth runner for my team and the second leg I ran in (16th section overall), took me through Johnson County. This was the longest (at just over 4 miles) of the three sections I ran in today but also my best. I knew it would be coming in.
It was a little hard starting it, as I completed the first section I ran in about three hours earlier and had been in the van a lot of the time after that. But after getting my sea legs back and navigating a couple of minor hills, the course turned into a two mile steep downhill. That rocked. The end of the section was a bit of an uphill but not insurmountable.
I ran this section in 34:45. Not great but under a nine minute mile on my second run of the day.
It was still cool and overcast for the run, but nonetheless for this section I switched to a lighter shirt than I wore on my first section. Overall, I wore shorts, a no sleeve running shirt, a long sleeve running shirt and a short sleeve running shirt.
I enjoyed running this section of the race and actually looked around at the scenery, as opposed to the asphalt I was running on. At one point I was on top of a hill (no mountains in Illinois) with a fantastic view of the fields and woods.
Johnson County is pretty in this area. Some of the later sections of the race in eastern Johnson County and western Pope County were especially nice and went through Shawnee National Forest. Since I was in a van as we drove through them, I got to enjoy the scenery there as well.