Mountain Goat Run 10 Miler (1:08.23)

I wrote a pretty lengthy recap on my dailymile a few days ago, I didn’t think I could possibly find more to say…but alas…I can always find more to say. 

The Mountain Goat is not a race you run to PR.  You run it because it’s hard and hilly and everyone in the Central NY area knows that…Coming off my half marathon at Nike last weekend, I knew I would be rolling in the pain train this weekend.   I wasn’t exactly sure where this race would go but really wanted to be under 70 minutes.  (That may seem like oh Hollie surely you can do that stop underestimated your goals…no this is a hilly hard course).  The gold standard for woman is 70 minutes and every female that finishes sub 70 gets a gold medal (males I believe it’s 60 minutes).

Moving on, so once I knew that placing wasn’t an option and that I would be hovering around 70 minutes I made that my goal. 

The race itself started at 10:20.  It was already extremely hot when I got there but found parking, mused around and did a 2 mile warmup.  I left at 7:45…because well I had nothing better to do and god knows I don’t want to frantically be there at race start.  (or speed there)

We all lined up and I got a glimpse of Jason (who had given me some pretty solid advice about the race and later broke an hour!  You go on with your bad self).  Also at the start, I saw someone from my Potsdam calculus class…it was super awkward because I was literally like (out of nowhere mind you…you went to Potsdam right?  We were in the same ACalc class some 3 years ago…)…creepings kind of my thing. 

So with that we were off.  Mile 1, I felt like I was not moving very quickly and was literally running elbow to elbow with people.  That is something I’ve never experienced in any race…I had to keep reminding myself that I did not want to roll out the pain train just yet.  So I hovered with a 6:41 first mile.  (I was secretly hoping some of these people might roll the pain train because it was a hot sweaty mess and it smelled).

Mile 2 we had the first set of hills and I passed 3 females… I really only pay attention to females…sorry dudes…don’t care what you do…minus I talked to a nice one for a couple sentences.  (7:03 mile)

Mile 3-5 had some serious brutal downhills.  I thought I might roll down the hill faster…since I run on my toes (literally a human ostrich…fun fact it’s how I walk too) downhills have always been a struggle.  Both these miles were high 6:50s.

Mile 5 was preparing us for mile 6 and was pretty flat..(6:46)

Oh mile 6…the mile I nearly cried on…the mile I passed 4 more girls…the mile I cursed more than a sailor…yes that is mile 6…(7:03)

Mile 7: The mile started to tell me I was almost done and also the mile I realized that 48:45 did not give me much run leeway for sub 70 minutes.  Oh and I saw 2 boys stop and walk…people running in the sub 70 minute range that needed to walk.  Oh hills. (7:05)

I don’t really remember mile 8 except high fiving a little boy saying thanks my main man.  (6:59)

Mile 9, I began picking it up…so I you know…break 70 minutes.  (6:21)

Mile 9-10 I literally said…oh yes we are getting that sub 70 and turbo charged it…literally one man said da faq did you come from little lady…I said (as I’m going into cardiac arrest by this point…must…have. medal…haha)

And I did.  Those race photos I probably look like I’m about to run to get some coffee or something, I’m pretty sure the only thing I had on my mind was a sub 70 minute time. Hashtag all that determined, focused stuff people do…(yes I realize I spelled medal wrong…but I’m over it)


It was nice to see so many familiar faces.  I’m looking at you Heather and Christine.  As well as a lot of others.  It was certainly a great final Syracuse race and I’m 100% glad I did it.  Did I feel awful the entire time?  Absolutely.  Is this a PR for me?  No, it’s 4 minutes slower…Did I have great time?  Duh.

Heather and I
Heather and I

Questions for you:

Hilliest race you have ever done?

Do you high five spectators, talk or anything during races?

Because I do all three.


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  1. Loved this post! For me, i have never done a marathon, but love to cheer them on from the sidelines.

    That look of determination is amazing!

  2. Hilliest race you have ever done? I live right outside Chicago so ‘hills’ don’t exist except in the forms of trash piles covered with artificial grass or as bridges over the expressway. The hilliest race I’ve run has probably been one over around the Mississippi River (can’t remember the name as it has been THAT long.)

    Do you high five spectators, talk or anything during races? Definitely, who wouldn’t!!

    1. Let me amend that – I will high five spectators – I don’t talk though, I’m usually in a pretty solid zone of talking to myself to get through the race. I’ll occasionally scream randomly like a banshee. Is that weird…completely! But it does help me release my nerves and get more settled into my stride. I think I scare at least two people every race.

    2. That is how VA Beach is too…we have literally no hills at all so upstate was a nice surprise. It baffled me when people didn’t high five the kids…but I have to remember not everyone races like I do…

  3. I ran 13.1 Boston in 2010 and it was by far the hilliest race, ever. They said it was in Boston so I thought it was going to be closer to the city, but it was really in Blue Hill. We did so many out and backs in major hills. I wanted to cry haha. Sometimes, though, running downhill can be pretty rough. I like a good mix in a road race.

  4. I am easily one of the worst spellers ever and at work we have an interoffice IM thing and it DOES NOT have spell check. Talking to important people and spelling things wrong always make me feel like such a tard. Meh, it happens.

    Great run! Looks like a bitch. I will high five peeps on the sideline, I especially like it when its a kid who is super excited for me to be running when all I want to do is sit the frick down.

    AND hilliest race I have ever done was my very first. The Reston 10 Miler, that thing sucked.

  5. Congrats on breaking 70 min. It must of been freaking difficult if guys who were running sub 70 had to take walk breaks! Sounds like it was worth it to have a fun last race before you move.

    Hilliest race I’ve done = The Six Foot Track Ultra Marathon. Over 5000 feet climbing with 5900 feet of descent along 45 km of bush.

  6. That was a brutal course with that heat, I’m pretty sure I was cooked medium well coming into the city on mile 9 & 10. Add that to the fact I may have celebrated cinco de mayo a little too hard the night before, and my 1:23 sounds pretty good to me, haha.

    Side note, I was high fiving the kids, talking, and running through those makeshift sprinklers all race. Especially the kid who was handing out the icee -pops, what a miracle to have one of those during the race.

    1. I was certainly sad that we missed each other! I wanted an icee pop but the guy in front of me took it and I would have had to stop and wait (which made me seem rude I felt) LOL.

      The kids were awesome and probably my favorite part!

      1. You have any final races around CNY before you’re outta here?

  7. I haven’t done any really hilly races, this is SC. But there was one back in Florence that had an infamous “mountain” at the end. It was really just a hill but in a normally very flat city, it looked out of place! Felt out of place too- and there was no other hill like it in town to train on either. Like you I only pay attention to passing females too, could care less about the dudes… but I do feel empowered when I pass em.

    Glad you got your gold medal and had fun at this race, you still did a great job coming off the half!

    1. That’s how VA races are too. There are literally no hills anywhere…minus mount trashmore but there is one race up that beast.

      Glad someone else doesn’t care about how males finish. I literally could care less.

  8. You are such an inspiration. A great run after a spectacular half… you rock my world, Hollie! Medels are the best 😉

    Isn’t it funny how one thing can just willpower us through a run. LIke the gold medal! For me at my half it was having the satisfaction of being able to do a half with no training. I may have almost cried at the finish cause I doubted myself from the start to well… the very last second.

    Hilliest (& worst. race. ever) was the Nashville Marathon last spring. I died. It ruined me for a solid year.

  9. I always appreciate the spectator high-five… from kids. Sometimes adults, but mostly kids. And you CAN’T do a race recap about a race where you were like GIMME DAT MEDAL and not post a picture of said golden medal. It’s against the rules.

    Also, those shorts are awesome. Nike?

  10. 😆 Oh man, your mile 1 recap cracked me up – that sounds all sorts of nasty. I’d probably die if I had to deal with stank and hills, so a huge congrats on getting your sub 70. Hills are seriously the bane of my existence, even if I’m just walking them, and I’d go as far as to say that I dislike going down them more than up. I think I have this secret fear that I’m going to fall head over heels and go tumbling all the way down. Makes perfect sense… 😯

    1. I would be there with you. I do not like running down hills in the slightest…pretty sure I run slower down hill then up sometimes. I’m not joking about that.

  11. AWESOMEEEE job, seriously hills are the WORST for me. BTW what did you get for the last mile for your pace…curious what your “pick up” was… 🙂

    1. Weird, I def know I typed it up at one point. My pickup consists of an all out sprint but my last mile was 5:59. I’m pretty proud of that one.

  12. I love the Mountain Goat. It was my 4th race ever! I am still attempting to get back to it some year. The year I did it the heat was brutal. They had all kinds of water and cup issues BUT it was a great race!!!

    I actually did a post about elevation changes in races I have done prior to running Blue Ridge as I was starting to doubt my training. I evidently love hills.

    I talk – to myself and to others. I curse at myself. I high five people. I do all three as I race.

    1. That was our problem too, the water was seriously boiling when they passed it out. Then I see photos from last year where people are bundled up…

  13. The worst thing is when you remember people and they don’t remember you at all. This makes for an extremely awkward conversation, so I hope this person remembered you. Lol. You are a BEAST. I’m glad you conquered it and congrats on the medal! Hills are a bitch and I hate running downhill because my shins kill me afterwards. It’s the only time I have problems with my shins.

  14. You totally rocked it as I knew you would.

    Hilliest race I have ever done is probably Sauerkraut 20k… stupid hilly course that is in August and always brutally hot. They keep ambulances on a few of this hills if that says anything.

    I love high fiving people in races. During my last leg of Seneca 7, a little boy ran next to me then high fived me and I loved it…needed that boost so bad after a long day!

  15. Yay for gold medals! I have to admit, that’s a pretty cool incentive to run like a bat out of hell. Currently I am not a huge fan of hills at all; mainly because I live in a very flat place so I can’t train on them. (I didn’t mind them when I lived in Colorado.) With that being said, one of my dream races is the Big Sur. I’m pretty sure I’d die on the first hill, but at least I’d have some breathtaking final views. Congrats on another stellar race, Hollie!

  16. 10 miles is always a tricky distance for me. I’d love to run under 1:10 on any surface, let alone on a hilly/tricky course like that.

    The hilliest race I’ve ever done was a fell half marathon and it was terrifying – the ground was unstable in multiple places and the hills were more like sheer rock faces. I had to scramble up some of them and I saw a guy fall down one of them at mile 3 and smash his face and both knees to pieces…blood everywhere. Thankfully I didn’t take any tumbles but it made me never want to do another fell race again.

    With a time like that on terrain of that nature, you can spell medal however the Hell you want 😛


  17. I HIGH FIVE ALL THE PEOPLE. At Pittsburgh last weekend, I HIGH FIVED A DOG! Made my day! Did that girl remember you? I hate hills. Did you make the little boy’s day? Can I have a gold medal?! RANDOM!

    1. LOL, dogs frighten me. I’d afraid they would bite me.

      The dude from my calc class remembered me. I hope I made the little boys day…or at least someone he high fived did ha.

  18. I’m so glad we got to meet up and complain about the heat, haha! I high-fived alllll the kids and tried to not look like I was going to pass out as I went by. Really wish the race started earlier though! Or that they’d at least have cold water at the aid stations.

  19. What’s more important is you had fun! Congratulations! 🙂 Looks like a tough race Hollie. Love the story. 🙂
    Hilliest race I did was the Flying Pig. The course was challenging. I like to high five people. Shows I appreciate their support for staying out there cheering for runners! 🙂

  20. Hills scare the crap out of me but I’m starting to deal with them a bit better since trail runs have massive ones.

    High fiving spectators? Only all the time.

    Congrats on the run! Awesome result!

  21. Congratulations on the gold medel =) HEHE. Your speed baffles me.

    The hilliest race I ever did was the knickerbocker 60k in central park. The inner loop of central park is hilly. We had to do it 9 times. NINE. It was just as hard mentally as it was physically. (I don’t know if I’d ever do that race again).

  22. Congratulations amazing as always!

    I’ll be honest when most bloggers post detailed race recaps, I’ll often skim them. Yours however are incredibly entertaining and motivate me to find that internal racing fire!

  23. Congratulations!! I’m glad you got the gold medal! Little kids out on race courses are always the cutest!

    The hilliest race course, hmm. Fall Foliage half was pretty hilly, and it was our first half ever. Seneca7 is a pretty hilly relay as well. I think the winner will be the MDI Marathon in October, though.

  24. I can honestly picture you saying every line of this recap girl! I am going through Hollie withdraw. Not good! Also I am glad I am not the only one who hates running down hill!

  25. Jason tell you about the old Mountain Goat course? You used to have to go up and around both reservoirs, which sucked for a number of reasons. Partially because it was hard, but also because you had to weave around SO MANY PEOPLE. Years ago I remember running behind the basketball guy (think he still runs the Goat, though back then he was hovering at 7:00 min pace or below) while he dribbled down the hill and it was hard to pass him because I thought I’d somehow make him lose control.

    The one good thing about that race is that the hills really do balance each other out…not like you can pace easily regardless. It’s Syracuse’s own special breed of hell. 🙂

  26. Oh crap I can’t tell you how much I love this recap. Mile by mile I was holding my breath – even though I knew the result! It takes some serious courage to pound out those last couple of miles, no wonder that dude swore at you. Send some of that determination my way? Thanks!

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