Our first trail run was exactly one year and 8 months ago, and in that time we have sporadically gone trail running but rarely multiple times a week. In the last four weeks we have run on the trails for the majority of our runs. In fact, we've run on trails 9 times since we started back up. I have put about 50 miles on my trail shoes in a lot less time than it took me to put 100 miles on them (the amount of miles on my shoes before we started back up at the end of October).
This morning, in celebration of one month back on the trails (not really it was just a coincidence), Mike and I met up with about 20 other trail runners for a run that we organized. In all honesty, all I did was make a Facebook event and invite people to come run with us at a local park in Rochester. One of our friends, Sean, and his dad, Dave, practically live in the park and lead us on a 6ish mile run.
Sean and Dave showed us a new trail that they developed in the park, how cool is that?!
Running the new trail, thanks Dave for the photo!
While trail running, I rarely look at my watch. We do the majority of our trail running on Tuesday and Thursday nights, so you can't really see your watch anyway. You also need to pay more attention while out on the trails because those roots, rocks and mud can really cause some damage (like Mike's rolled ankle, which is basically better now!)
We were out there today for almost an hour and a half, 8 miles, and I never really knew my pace or how long we had been out there! It honestly felt like the time flew by, and that is very typical of our trail runs. I am not looking forward to the run being over, even if I am struggling (which doesn't always happen on the roads).
The group taking on the sledding hill, photo courtesy of Dave
Out on the trails I enjoy the company of our friends around us, get to know new people, and take in the beautiful surroundings that we are lucky enough to get to run through.
My renewed, and deeper, love of the trails has prompted me to keep a weekly trail run on our Ironman training plan. We won't be able to get out there as much as we are now, since we'll be splitting our time between swimming, biking and running, but I know I will need time on the trails.
The physical benefits from running on the trails have been wonderful, but they are slightly outweighed by the mental benefits. Allowing myself to just enjoy the ride and not worry about pace all the time is time well spent.