Talking with my friend, Alissa, as we slipped and slid through the woods this morning really made me realize a few things. I've said I love the trails. I love the beauty:
[caption id="attachment_494" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Thank you Stuart for the picture from our run this morning![/caption]
I love the quiet, and I love the fact that I have to pay attention. There's no zoning out on technical trails like there is on the road. But, I think it's the casualness of being out there. For me (I know not all trail runners feel the same way), I have no anticipation of time. My main goal is distance; with staying upright a close second. I'm not worried about pace (until race time to make sure I finish before the course closes!). I'm not worried about the walking we do. Or stopping to take breaks. In fact, walking and taking breaks between loops is highly encouraged!
If you had told me a year ago that I would be thrilled with an 11 mile run averaging 15:11 pace, I would have thought you were crazy. Today, I had a fantastic run with friends. I enjoyed the conversation, I enjoyed the scenery and I enjoyed the burning in my glutes telling me that I was working hard. I love that I am able to incorporate variety into my runs. Some days, a nice flat road run is just what I need, but other days, I can head to the woods.
Some days, you just need to slow down and enjoy life.